Bike Festival on track
Media release: January 4
The 1st Rotorua Bike Festival, February 2013 – planning for 2014 already underway…
The first Rotorua Bike Festival from February 8 to 17, 2013 won’t be the last.
With a full schedule for the 10-day celebration of cycling the Festival team are already looking to 2014.
“It’s great to have a full roster of events with something for everyone for the inaugural festival,” say Martin Croft from Events & Venues Rotorua. “The support of the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust and local businesses like More FM, Rotorua Daily Post, Advocate Print, Expand A Sign, Nzo Active, and Victoria Grove Costume Hire are helping set the foundations of an event that will grow and grow over the next few years.”
It’s not just headliners like Rotorua’s longest running mountain bike event the 2013 Mountain Bike National Championships, BMX Rotorua National Championships qualifiers or the brand-new Giant 2W Gravity Enduro that are putting a spring in the step of festival organizers.
“The local cycling community are all organizing different events,” continues Croft. “We’ve got the full range from fun rides for the kids, Bike Polo, street criterium, Pimp my Bike, road races, Let’s Ride skills clinics, the Agroventures Shweeb World Champs, the craziness of Bike Speedway and The Redwoods Coast and most things in between.”
One event isn’t in Rotorua but underlines the regional strength of cycling.
The Strawberry Bike Jam will be at the Onepu Mountain Bike Park on the road to Whakatane.
“We’re really excited to be part of the Festival,” says Mike van der Boom, one of the organizers. “We’ve got one of New Zealand’s top jumps experts, Paul Langlands, doing demos which the kids will love and plenty of other entertainment. It’s going to be a cracker.”
The Strawberry Jam is also proving mountain biking isn’t just for young people.
“There’s lots of interest in our Gold Card Ride,” continues van der Boom. “Plenty of over 65 year olds seem keen to mountain bike.”
Cycle Action Whakatane chairman, David Wicks will lead the ride.
“Wixxie loves everything to do with bikes and is particularly fond of the Onepu Mountain Bike Park,” says van der Boom.
Wicks is confident he can cater for all levels of skill and fitness.
“I’ll have some of my Golden Card friends with me so we can make sure all the older riders can ride a course to suit their ability,” he says. “If you don’t want any hills we can still cater for you.”
Another Festival event a little bit out of town will feature some serious hills.
It is a group ride on the new Rainbow Mountain trail, south of the city and built by the Department of Conservation.
“One of the great things about Rainbow Mountain is you can ride to it on Te Ara Ahi, the Rotorua section of the National Cycleway, from the city running parallel with the Taupo road,” says Rob Griffiths from DOC. “Rainbow Mountain is a trail for grade 3 to 4 riders and is quite technical, but we’ll have experienced guides from Mountain Bike Rotorua helping us out and a sausage sizzle to carbo and protein load at the end.”
The Rainbow Mountain track is a spectacular mix of rocky single track and sections in native bush with magnificent views of the surrounding countryside.
“It’s also close to Kerosene Creek if anyone wants to have a hot pool,” adds Griffiths.