It all started back in 2005 with three retired Napier chaps getting together for a casual bike ride on a Wednesday.

A simple bit of fun, some happy chat and of course a spot of keeping fit thrown in for good measure.

Since the day Peter Everett, Ken Griffin and the late Gary Christison first pedalled off the philosophy behind it all hasn't changed, although the participating numbers have.

And now they have a title for their club - "The Recycled Rebels Cycling Team" and they have the bright yellow jackets to show it.


"I came along in 2005," club spokesman Roger Arrowsmith said.

"I made myself the chief liaison officer ... and I haven't been challenged since," he said with a smile during a break in pedalling proceedings on the Hardinge Rd stretch of the Rotary Pathway on Wednesday.

"Yes, it's always been a Wednesday," he said.

"And because of the wonderful weather we get here and the quality of the cycleways we haven't had one cancellation this year."

Mr Arrowsmith said that through word of mouth about what they were getting up to they started getting more retired lads calling up or turning up to take part in a bit of leisurely biking as well.

Today, the club has reached its capping peak of 32 - a figure they had to impose as any more would create logistical as well as cycling in a large group issues.

With a smile he said anyone wanting to get in now had to wait for someone "to die or resign".

The average age is around 70 - so when the 16 who took part in Wednesday's ride approached they brought with them around 1120 years.

They are a diverse bunch but one core aspect unites them all - apart from knowing how to repair a puncture or pay for lunch at the conclusion of the ride.

"We solve all the world's problems when we're together," Mr Arrowsmith said. To which fellow member Hanno Hasselman replied "but no one ever listens".

Accompanied by the groans of derision from his cycling chums Mr Hasselman said he was happy to be in the club despite the fact he was too young [he's 71] and "much too fast".

Mr Arrowsmith, 75, said he was a late returner to cycling - only climbing back into the saddle 10 years ago.

"But when I was a kid I would cycle all the way in from Taradale to Napier Intermediate because there wasn't an intermediate in Taradale then - and I also rode every day to Napier Boys' High School".

Original member Peter Everett said it was a fine chance to enjoy seeing a bit of Napier after retiring - "after being stuck in a shop [Everetts Books] all day".

It was also the "fun and the fitness" which is effectively the club's catch-phrase along with "retired blokes spinning spokes".

Noel Hendery said one of the club's main rules was "an absolute ban on wearing visible Lycra and a cheerful greeting for everyone we meet coming the other way".

They have 10 cycling routes, each about 40kms that they ride in succession and they stick to the concrete and limestone tracks for 95 per cent of the time to keep out of the way of traffic.

"The cycleways in Hawke's Bay are world class - very well constructed and with great scenery and all those involved in these cycle and walkways deserve to be recognised and congratulated," Mr Arrowsmith said.

Then it was time to get back aboard and finish the ride for the final important factor " a bite to eat and a few sips to drink.

"And solve some more of the world's problems."