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More Than 800 Bikers Enter The Inaugural Tour De Wakatipu

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

7 APRIL 2009 - Interest in the inaugural New World Tour de Wakatipu on Easter Saturday (April 11) has exceeded all expectations, with 835 bikers from all over New Zealand registered for the innovative new event, which will traverse some of the region's most scenic trails.

Race director Geoff Hunt of Southern Traverse attributes the outstanding response to the course being designed in particular for recreational or social bikers.The timing of the event during the Easter holiday period is also significant.

Over 200 entries for the event which include elite, sport and recreational categories have come from the Queenstown Basin, 150 from Invercargill and Southland, 120 from Dunedin and Otago and 70 from the Canterbury region. A dozen competitors have also entered from the North Island.

"To get these sorts of numbers for our first Tour de Wakatipu is very exciting," says Hunt." "We will certainly be doing our best to fulfil everyone's expectations and we think people will be blown away by the diversity of the course. It offers exclusive access to the right bank of the Kawarau River which is a plus in itself."

The start line is at Millbrook Resort and the course leads to Speargrass Flat Road, and over Slopehill Road to a single track alongside the Shotover River and across the restored Lower Shotover Bridge. Off the bridge a track leads on to the wide gravel roads of the Shotover Delta, followed by 300metres of single track along the banks of the Kawarau River.

The next stage is the back of Remarkables Park and across the Kawarau Bridge, followed by a short section of state highway to the privately owned Kawarau River road on Coneburn Station, finishing at Chard Farm.

A mini wine and food festival will be held at Chard Farm with a range of food and wine and entertainment by Queenstown musicians Jessie Coutts and Mathurin Molgat.

"We are looking forward to a great get together at Chard Farm thanks to owner Rob Hay and all the other locals who are getting involved." New World owner John Thompson says there has been an overwhelming response to the first Tour de Wakatipu. "Thanks to everyone for choosing to participate in this exciting new ride and as keen cyclists ourselves my family and I have been out there training hard and we are now eagerly awaiting the start."

The Tour de Wakatipu will donate $5 from every entry to Cure Kids which raises funds for research into children's life threatening illnesses.

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