The Wairarapa Regional Mountain Bike Track Trust (WRMBTT) is seeking the views of the community, as it considers the feasibility of developing new mountain bike trails and experiences in the region.
A comprehensive survey has been developed as part of the feasibility work being carried out on three proposed new trails. Each completed survey will go unto the draw to win a bike from Avanti-Plus Masterton, thanks to the generosity of both South Wairarapa and Masterton South Rotary clubs.
The survey is aimed at everyone from long-term Wairarapa residents and riders from out of the region, and covers a wide range of questions about the riding opportunities available in Wairarapa as well as the proposed new trails. The results will help to inform WRMBTT, a charitable trust recently formed to develop and manage mountain bike trails in Wairarapa, as they look at the feasibility of new trails to gain further funding for their development.
The three proposed new trails are the Remutaka Descent, a 15km trail suitable for intermediate riders (Grade 3 and above), Tararua Forest Park Mt Holdsworth Mountain Bike Park, a series of easy trails (Grades 1-3) set in native bush behind the Holdsworth campsite, and the Kiriwhakapapa Trail, an existing 9km walking trail 20 mins minutes’ drive north of Masterton, which will be upgraded to a Grade 3-4 track.
The project was initiated by the Department of Conservation (DOC) who are seeking further opportunities for people to use the Tararua Forest Park. The majority of the proposed tracks are within the forest park and the government agency see bikes as a good way of getting more people to experience the area.
The WRMBTT is a group of keen local riders looking to create more places to ride around the Wairarapa. WRMBTT Deputy Chair Stephen Brown says the survey is a vital part of the process. “Our proposals are very much in consultation with DOC and local Iwi, and once we have undertaken the study we will be able to take the project to the next stage,” explained Stephen. “We are aiming to cater for all ages and skill levels, giving people the opportunity to learn to ride in a safe environment as well as creating some great places to ride too.”
“We need a broad view of the current provision and what people are looking for in the future. Our aim is to coordinate with other groups involved in developing cycling infrastructure for a connected cycle trail network that includes road, mountain bike and recreational trails in our region.”
WRMBTT hope to begin work on the first track within the next 12 to 18 months. To complete the survey and go into the draw to win a brand new bike, simply click: http://aprconsultants.co.nz/wairarapasurvey2018.
Huri Huri News
Pedalling into Carterton on Thursday 19th April, as part of the exciting Carterton Go By Bike Week programme, the dynamic film concept The Big Bike Film Night rides into town with a breath-taking array of movies devoted to the bicycle and all who ride.
The Big Bike Film Night showcases a range of short cycling films from New Zealand and around the world; from the deserts of Oman to the Canadian Arctic Circle, with a selection offering plenty of appeal and thrills for riders and movie goers.
“It is a privilege and an honour to present our 2018 collection to a new bike audience in the Wairapapa. This is our “4th vintage” and we have a stellar line-up with a smorgasbord of stories, a treasure trove of tales for those with an appetite for everything on two wheels” says Curator/ Film Pedlar, Brett Cotter.
“This entertaining event is a great reminder of why we love to ride our bikes by showcasing movies that celebrate the fun, adventure and inspiration that cycling enables. At its heart, these films draw upon true stories with universal human traits- those of character, hope, courage, discovery, and much much more with the humble bicycle the unifying factor throughout” says Brett.
Selected by a panel of Kiwi film and bike buffs, Brett says to expect action, drama, humour and plenty of inspiration in the 2018 compilation. There are 13 short films being shown ranging from 2 to 26 minutes in length, including a number of New Zealand premieres’ and International award winners.
The line-up includes an ambitious journey across the harsh desert landscapes of Oman; a New Zealand female road cyclist who believes in the power of bicycles; double-trouble with twin uni-cyclists strutting their stuff; Kiwi BMX riders with a passion to see the youth of today succeed; a beautifully charming narrative that shows an artisan Italian frame builder who puts his heart and soul into building bespoke bike frames; and the remarkable story of an American Cellist who challenges the notion of limitations by travelling over 6,000 kilometres by cargo bicycle.
Mountain bike fans are also in for a treat with two movies featuring arrestingly beautiful landscapes and world class riders.
“To see these on the big screen is something else, they’re mesmerizing films,” says Brett.
Brett says he’s particularly excited to showcase “Escape” a Canadian short documentary on JaBig, a Montreal-based DJ and his fixed gear bicycle ride in winter across Canada, coast to coast to coast.
“JaBig buys a single speed fixed-gear bike on a whim and then decides to beat the world record for the longest continuous bike ride in a single country. This movie, however, isn’t about the quintessential hero or the quest to break a world record; it’s about vulnerability, and what we do with the weight of the expectations in our lives.”
“Our event celebrates cycling in all its glorious shapes and forms. There is some cool stuff here I think everyone should see, it will whet your appetite for all things bicycle related and I’d even go so far as to say it’s bike-alicious!” says Brett
The Big Bike Film Night 2018 collection screens in Carterton on Thursday 19th April, 7pm at the Carterton Events Centre. For more information on the Big Bike Film Night, and to buy tickets go to www.bigbikefilmnight.nz or on the night at the Centre.
World class BMX display team Freestyle Lifestyle will be the star attraction of Carterton’s Go By Bike Week, organised by Huri Huri: Bike Wairarapa in conjunction with Carterton District Council.
The week-long cycling festival is taking place during Monday 16 - Sunday 22 April, to celebrate the Vantage Age Group Road National Championships, which take place in the Carterton District between 20-22 April.
Councillor Rebecca Vergunst, elected member to the Carterton Walking and Cycling Advisory Group, says that the cycle championships coming to Carterton is the perfect opportunity to encourage the community to get on their bikes.
“For some time we have been talking about how to encourage residents to use cycling as their preferred mode of transport, and having a significant cycling event come to our district was the perfect catalyst to get an initiative underway.”
A packed programme of events for all ages has been created to give residents a taste of cycling as a sport, hobby and mode of transport. Events include a kids decorate your own helmet competition, Big Bike Film Night, a chance to try out an E-bike and an opportunity for people to get back on their bikes with an adult ride out with Pedal Ready instructors to Fensham Reserve.
The Huri Huri Kids BMX Workshop sees the Freestyle Lifestyle team make their first appearance in Carterton following successful events in Martinborough and Masterton in the last year.
The event runs during morning and afternoon sessions on Saturday 21 April, where young riders will learn about bike safety equipment and essential safety skills, and how to fix and maintain their bikes. There will also be games, stories and stunt demonstrations, and the kids get to try out some basic BMX stunt skills. Registration via EventFinda is essential and the cost is just $10.
For more information about any of the Go By Bike Week activities, check out www.hurihuri.co.nz or the Huri Huri facebook page.
Huri Huri News
15 February 2018
Cycling’s rapid growth in popularity throughout Wairarapa has led to a change of role for Huri Huri, the organisation originally established to encourage community support for the Women’s Tour of New Zealand and the New Zealand Cycle Classic road races.
Over the last four years, Huri Huri has established itself as an overarching body for the promotion of cycling activity in Wairarapa.“With more and more people jumping on their bikes for both transport and recreation, a coordinated and cohesive body to support and promote further growth is vital,” explained Huri Huri Project Manager Catherine Rossiter-Stead. “This is imperative from both community and tourism perspectives, particularly in a region that is currently behind the eight-ball in its development of cycling infrastructure.
“Last November, Huri Huri facilitated a Wairarapa Cycling Stakeholders Forum involving personnel from all aspects of cycling in the region, ranging from accommodation suppliers to providers of cycling facilities and cycling clubs. The stakeholders lent their support behind Huri Huri taking on a leading advocacy role for cycling in Wairarapa.
“As a result, Huri Huri is being developed into an entity responsible for hosting and promoting cycling events throughout the year, to be a conduit for information on cycling opportunities in the region, and to support and encourage a safe cycling message. It’s been fantastic to have the backing of the three Wairarapa councils and Greater Wellington to help achieve this.
“Huri Huri has undergone a recent name change to reflect its new role, from Huri Huri: Wairarapa’s Bike Festival to Huri Huri: Bike Wairarapa. This aligns with its recent move to absorb the Wai Bike website and its new objective to be a source of information for all things biking in Wairarapa. The Huri Huri website will become populated with trail maps and other useful information such as where to get your bike fixed or what clubs you can join, as well as safety information and event details.”
Huri Huri News
22 January 2018
One Wairarapa family brought a whole new meaning to the ‘morning after the night before’ as they carried on partying and scored themselves a brand new BBQ from Mitre 10 Mega for their efforts.
The Norman family and friends decorated the gate to their West Bush Road property for the final stage of the New Zealand Cycle Classic road race – the morning after a family wedding.
“What better way to work off a post-wedding hangover than to cheer on the many participants of the NZ Cycle Classic,” explained newly-wed Emily Ireland.
“We had visitors from Western Australia, the South Island, and around Wairarapa shift all the wedding decorations from the shed to the gate to ensure the cyclists had a proper Wairarapa welcome.”
Armed with plenty of water, the fans cheered on the teams from as far afield as the United Kingdom and Switzerland, surrounded by the recycled purple and white decorations. A quad bike driven by the bride’s brother joined in by driving through paddocks parallel to West Bush Road, only just keeping up with the cyclists.
The quad’s horn was tooted for every passing cyclist, and of course the race officials, sponsors, and the Wellington Free Ambulance – which on one lap of the race circuit matched the horn with its own siren.
“We went to a bit of effort, but it was well worth it to win the barbecue,” added Emily.
“Funnily enough, no one supporting the race was a cycling fan – we were just fans of having fun and making sure visitors to our region know how welcome they are.”
Otis and Frankie Lennox also won a BBQ, and Poppy and Freya Sparrow a tent in the kids dress-up competition also supported by Mitre 10 Mega.
The competition was organised by Huri Huri: The Wairarapa Bike Festival Charitable Trust, which promotes cycling throughout the Wairarapa region.
Huri Huri News
20 January 2018
The 2018 Huri Huri Bike Festival spun into gear on Saturday, with a record number of riders taking part in the Family Fun Ride through Castlepoint Station. With 75 advance registrations and a number of last-minute entrants on the day, cyclists of all ages took advantage of the unique opportunity to ride through some of New Zealand’s most beautiful countryside on a stunning Wairarapa day.
The event, which forms an integral part of the year-long festival, doubles as a fundraiser for the Peter Laing Memorial Trust, with all registration revenue being donated help people obtain practical assistance for entry into the agricultural industry.
Festival organiser Catherine Rossiter-Stead was delighted: “It was beyond all expectations, with so many great people joining us on the ride from little Tessa on her princess bike, the awesome CrossFit team from Wellington and Jim and Sheryll who had travelled all the way from Warkworth especially for the event,” she explained.
“We are extremely grateful to Emily and Anders Crofoot for once again allowing us to ride through their land and enjoy some of the best views in the region, and to the Huri Huri team of volunteers, sponsors and funders who made the event possible.”
Huri Huri News
10 January 2018
Wairarapa cycling fans young and old are gearing up for a rare treat in Masterton on Tuesday 16 January, with a display from FreestyleLifestyle BMX – one of the world’s leading cycling display teams.
The line-up for the Huri Huri Family Fun Evening at Mitre 10 Mega on Ngaumutawa Road includes the legendary Jed Mildon of Nitro Circus, the first rider in history to successfully complete a quadruple flip.
Jed will be joined by Paul Langlands, Ellie Chew and Hugh Wotherspoon, who were all part of the spectacular display in Martinborough during last year’s Huri Huri Bike Festival. The team will be jumping, leaping and flipping their way over ramps and jumps in a display which takes place between 4pm and 7pm.
The Huri Huri Family Fun Evening will also include kapa haka displays, free BBQ food and a cycling obstacle course for kids with plenty of spot prizes, so don’t forget your bike! The event also marks the launch of the New Zealand Cycle Classic, with all the international road cycling teams being presented to the crowd before the start of their five-day event the following day. Supporters are also encouraged to dress up, as Mitre 10 Mega has donated a BBQ as the prize for the best dressed supporter of any age.
Event Manager Catherine Rossiter-Stead is looking forward to an exciting evening. “We’re delighted to be able to welcome the FreestyleLifestyle BMX team back to Wairarapa, and there’ll be some incredible feats for the crowd to enjoy,” she explained. “We’re extremely grateful to Mitre 10 Mega for hosting the event and for the support from all of our funders and sponsors which has made this event possible.”
Club cyclists are invited to take part in a criterium around the neighbouring streets, before watching the elite cyclists take on the same course at 7pm. The entry fee is $10 for this unique opportunity for local cyclists to test their cycling ability against some of the very best international riders.
Another major Huri Huri event is being staged on Saturday 20 January with the rare opportunity to explore the historic Castlepoint Station by bike along three different coastal tracks. Riders can choose from a 7km short loop (1-1.5hrs); a 14km long loop (1-2.5hrs) via the beach or a 20km (1.5-3hrs) course option that covers the limed road to Otahome and back.
The event is open to riders who have a reasonable degree of skill and fitness and registration is through the Eventfinda website www.eventfinda.co.nz or in person at Avanti-Plus Masterton. Registrations can also be made on the day from 8am.
Huri Huri News
28 December 2018
Huri Huri: Wairarapa’s Bike Festival, spins into action in January, with a repeat of last year’s highly successful Castlepoint Station event and a family fun event at Mitre 10 Mega Masterton, which includes the presentation of the teams taking part in the New Zealand Cycle Classic (NZCC).
Huri Huri is a series of community-based cycling events designed to celebrate the Wairarapa’s bike-friendly roads, tracks and trails; the people that ride on them and the bikes they ride. One of the major attractions is the rare opportunity to explore the historic Castlepoint Station by bike along three different coastal tracks, which this year takes place on Saturday 20th January, during Wellington Anniversary Weekend.
Riders can choose from a 7km short loop (1-1.5hrs); a 14km long loop (1-2.5hrs) via the beach or a 20km (1.5-3hrs) course option that covers the limed road to Otahome and back.
The event is open to riders who have a reasonable degree of skill and fitness. There is no age restriction, but the event is not suitable for riders who haven’t mountain biked before, as there are some steep, rocky and bumpy parts to all the courses which require a reasonable level of skill to negotiate.
Huri Huri’s family evening takes place on Tuesday 16th January and features the internationally-renowned FreestyleLifestyle BMX display team, which will literally turn the world upside down! As well as NZCC team presentation, there’s also a free BBQ, kapa haka displays, an obstacle course for kids and a prize for the best dressed supporter.
Club cyclists can also take part in a promotional circuit ride. The elite teams will later ride the same Criterium circuit, enabling spectators to get a taste of the international racing which will take place at the NZCC between 17th and 21st January.
JLT Condor, a registered Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) Continental team from the United Kingdom, will return to the Wairarapa next month to contest the New Zealand Cycle Classic.
Team manager John Herety, a former British road racing champion, is looking forward to bringing his team back to New Zealand to contest the UCI 2.2 five-stage Cycle Classic which begins on Wednesday 17th January with a 121km stage from Masterton to Afredton and return.
"This will be the fourth time the team has come to the New Zealand Cycle Classic. It's a race we really like and is a great way for us to start our 2018 season,”
“It feels like we have unfinished business at the NZ Cycle Classic. Whilst we’ve had a number of stage victories over the years, that final general classification win has always eluded us. The Wairarapa’s terrain and great roads coupled with the outstanding hospitality we receive from everyone in Masterton are a perfect way for us to kick start our season. Let’s hope this year we can finally make that top step,” says Herety.
Leading the charge for the JLT Condor team is highly regarded Australian rider Jason Lowndes who just signed with the team for the 2018 season, this will be his first time in New Zealand cycle tour. A fierce competitor, who got into cycling thanks to a regular group ride that passed by his house each week, Jason has developed quite quickly says Herety. This is thanks in large part to his ambitious nature. Jason raced in Canada in 2015, and jumped to Europe in 2016, beating World Champion Peter Sagan in a sprint, as well as taking sixth in the U23 World Championship.
Lowndes was a very busy rider in the 2017 season racing for the Israel Cycling Academy Pro Continental team participating is stage races of Argentina, Croatia, Spain, Korea, China and Portugal among others,
Returning to New Zealand once again is Robert McCarthy from Ireland, a solid sprinter who demonstrated his potential in the elite ranks with stage wins in the Herald SunTour and the An Post Ras stage races.
Alistair Slater is a talented young rider who is developing a reputation for making break-away moves in the bunch, will be a formidable force on flat stages. Rounding out the team are: Ian Bibby, also returning to the New Zealand Cycle Classic after a strong performance in 2017, Thomas Stuart and Mathew Gibson.
Kiwi Alex Frame, who featured heavily in the team’s stage races in 2017 won’t be returning to Wairarapa after he signed a two year deal with Trek-Segafredo.
As well as confirming JLT Condor’s attendance and the already announced Swiss national team, New Zealand Cycle Classic race director Jorge Sandoval also confirmed two Australian teams have been confirmed for the tour. They are Oliver's Real Food Racing and the Mobious Future Racing team, both teams being registered as UCI continental teams for the 2018 season who have competed in Wairarapa before.
The New Zealand Cycle Classic is recognised as the premier international road cycling event in this country and has developed a reputation for unearthing new talent, with many of riders having gone on to win stages in the Tour de France, the Tour of Italy and world championship titles. In 2018 it will be held in the Wairarapa from January 17th – 21st with more riders coming from around the world. These teams will be announced in the coming weeks as will confirmation about whether 2017 Tour winner Joseph Cooper will defend his title.
The five-stage tour features two new routes that weave through Wairarapa’s rolling country side and will also see the team’s presentation held in a festive evening setting on Tuesday, 16th January in Masterton.
Being held simultaneously, is Huri Huri a series of community based cycling events designed to celebrate the Wairarapa’s bike-friendly roads, tracks and trails; the people that ride on them and the bikes they ride.
These include: an opportunity to explore the historic Castlepoint Station by bike along three different coastal tracks on Saturday, 20th January and a fun, family friendly evening at Mitre 10 Mega Masterton on Tuesday, 16th February. This promotional evening will include a freestyle BMX display; fun cycle obstacle course for children; a free barbecue and a promotional circuit ride for club riders. The elite teams will also ride the same Criterium circuit enabling spectators to get a taste of what exciting, international racing will unfold in the coming days.
DETAILS FOR THE 2018 NEW ZEALAND CYCLE CLASSIC
Teams Official Presentation & Promotional Criterium: Tuesday, 16th January 2018
Mitre 10 Mega Masterton, evening
Includes teams presentation, Criterium, Huri Huri BMX display, family BBQ
Stage One. Wednesday 17th January 2018
Masterton – Alfredton - Masterton
Stage Two. Thursday, 18th January 2018
Masterton – Gladstone Circuit – Masterton
Stage Three. Friday, 19th January 2018
Masterton - Martinborough
Stage Four. Saturday, 20th January 2018
Masterton – Te Wharau – Admiral Hill
Huri Huri event
Explore Castlepoint Station by bike, 20th January 2018
Stage Five. Sunday, 21st January 2018
Masterton. Riders complete 12 laps of a 10km circuit.
Huri Huri News
23 November 2017
Kuranui College acting principal Maree Patten has ditched her car in favour of an e-bike and has already clocked up a whopping 6,600kms since making the switch in September 2016.
The South Wairarapa teacher spent time in Denmark last year and was attracted to the bike scheme run throughout its capital Copenhagen. “My husband and I hired e-bikes. They’re a lot of fun, you just pay for them and drop them off at the next stand,” she explained. “Inspired, I returned home and bought my own e-bike. The weather’s generally nice here and this country is just perfect for cycling.”
Patten admits she’s no ‘greenie’, but immediately embraced the health benefits of cycling and has cycled to work from her home in Martinborough to the college in Greytown ever since.
She has only missed eight days out of about 180 since adopting this new form of transport. Four were because it was dangerously wet, one was because the Waihenga Bridge was closed, and the rest because Patten was away at a teacher’s conference.
“The wind has been a challenge and logging trucks are just dreadful. I also hate the bridge going into Martinborough. It’s such a nightmare because it’s so narrow: I just end up riding in the middle of it.
“The steep hill out of Martinborough can also be a challenge because there’s no shoulder at the top of the cutting, so when you get passed by a logging truck, which are pretty common, and the big cattle trucks – some of them get so close you feel sucked in.”
The e-bike chosen by Patten is a power-assisted entry-level bike. It doesn’t have a throttle, so must be pedalled. The power-assist means that the bike goes much further with one revolution than an ordinary bike, which can come in handy when you’re cycling up hills or into the wind.
“I do adore my electric bike. On really windy days, like some of the terrible southerlies you can get, it can be horrible. The wind almost pushes me backwards, so you just put the bike on high power and it takes away the effect.
“I don’t mind hail, and the rain is only an issue when the road is very slippery. On the way back down to Martinborough, my bike gets up to in excess of 50kph and it can get quite scary. If I came off I’d lose a lot of skin,” she said.
Patten has ridden her bike throughout the winter and takes safety very seriously ensuring she wears reflective clothing and uses lights. “Although my bike’s got great lights, I try to get home before it gets dark. Safety is hugely important. You have to remember you’re a cyclist and you’re no match for a big truck or a car. You do have to have your wits about you and be vigilant on the road.
Patten says she wouldn’t be so committed if she didn’t enjoy it, and it’s the enjoyment that has kept her going, with each journey taking up to 40 minutes each way.
“You’ve really got to use your eyes and look around and take in the beauty we have here in Wairarapa. When I ride my bike in the morning into Greytown, I look to the left and it’s just stunning. On a really cold frosty morning when it’s so clear and so crisp, you just look at the snow-covered ranges and you think - oh my goodness – I live in the most beautiful place.”