Location selected for 2011 New Zealand Singlespeed Championships

Date still to be decided

A week after the 2010 New Zealand Singlespeed Championships, a host and venue were announced for 2011. The seaside town of Napier and the Hawke's Bay Mountain Bike Club will host the New Zealand Singlespeed Championships.

Napier, on the east coast of New Zealand's North Island, is world-renowned for its art deco architecture, Pacific Ocean coastline and high sunshine hours. Hawke's Bay is one of New Zealand's "fruit bowls" and leading wine growing regions.

"Apart from being a very nice place, Napier's also home territory for Vicki Butterworth," said Rotorua Singlespeed Society president, Gaz Sullivan, announcing next year's venue. "Vicki was one of the RSSS members who raced in the Singlespeed World Champs in Durango, Colorado, and helped get this year's Worlds to Rotorua this October."

Rotorua's Whakarewarewa Forest trail network will host the 2010 Singlespeed World Mountain Bike Championships on October 23, powered by Kiwibikes and a bunch of other great local partners. With six months still to go, nearly 750 riders have entered. They come from over 25 countries all round the world, including Japan, India and Greenland.

"This is well up on the previous highest number of countries at a Singlespeed Worlds, which was 17 in Berlin in 2004," says Sullivan. The limit on New Zealand entries was reached on March 21, less than three months after they opened at midnight on New Year's Eve. However, because of the big on-going demand, 50 more entries for Kiwi riders are currently up for grabs.

The South Island tourist mecca of Queenstown hosted this year's New Zealand Singlespeed Championships on April 24, with over two thousand dollars raised for trail development. "John McCartney from the Queenstown Mountain Bike Club was the second Rotorua Singlespeed Society rider in Durango, last year," adds Sullivan. "So it's great both Queenstown and the Hawke's Bay Mountain Bike Clubs will host the New Zealand Singlespeed Champs in consecutive years."

McCartney performed as 'Freddy Mercury' from Queen, in the American Idol/Karaoke first round decider in Colorado, with Hungary and Canada eliminated at this stage. Then, New Zealand defeated Italy in a tight game of basketball and Butterworth and McCartney brought the Singlespeed Worlds home to New Zealand.

The Rotorua Singlespeed Society contributed a thousand dollars to each of their travel costs. "Both John and Vicki are hard-working members of their own mountain bike clubs so it was great to help them get to Durango," says Graeme Simpson, from the 2010 Singlespeed Worlds team. "It may say 'Rotorua' on the society masthead, but being a member of the RSSS is more about a state of mind than geography."

The Hawkes Bay MTB Club will announce the race day date for the 2011 New Zealand Singlespeed Champs, later in the year.

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