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The City is Buzzing with Cycling Fever

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After finishing their Five stage New Zealand Cycle Classic Tour in the weekend many of the leading elite cyclists from New Zealand and Australia have arrived in the Manawatu and are now focusing their attention on Bike Manawatu’s UCI Gravel and Tar Classic. Its so great to have them here in our region for the week leading up to the race on Saturday the 27th of January.

This is the main event of our “Manawatu Festival of Cycling“ and already the cycling vibe is exciting. Cycling fans from around the world will be watching with interest these rising star compete in the 131km “Gravel and Tar Classic” that leaves at 1pm from the Palmerston North Square. We are excited to have these star riders here and hope they enjoy their week and the race.

The riders will travel on the Tar road from Palmerston North to Ashhurst past Highland Home through the beautiful Pohangina Countryside and onto 40km of gravel. A tough hard out event these elite riders will be challenged by but will love once they are talking about it afterwards.

Leading local Bike Manawatu riders who now ride at elite level, Robert Stannard (last years winner),Alex West, Joel Yates and Carne Groube are riding for different teams and would love your support.

Otherwise we invite you and your families to be at George street at 11.30am for the introduction of the 11 elite teams on stage before the race at 1pm in front of a enthusiastic crowd of cycling fans. The street is closed off and the vibe we hope will be a little like a European village cycling festival with your help. All day live music while the cafes, restaurants and retails also excite in the day.

At 4.30 after the race we are back to George street for the start of the prizing giving for all three events. On big stage we will recognise 31 different prizes for the UCI race from individual to team prizes followed by the Gran Fondo and Riverpath Challenge prizes and spot prizes.

We would love our cycling community to embrace this day that is unlike any other cycling day we have had before in our region. In the inner city and our stunning Palmerston North square makes for a nice family vibe for all ages.

$2000 worth of prizes for “Gravel and Tar Gran Fondo riders.

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Sponsors Bayleys Real Estate and our four City Bike Shops have got together to provide riders in this years Gravel and Tar Gran Fondo 70km ride $500 worth of prizes in four categories.
Ride starts at 1.15pm from Square January 27th for recreational riders.

Mens grade over 19; Bike Barn vouchers to the value of 1st $250 2nd $150 3rd $100
Women grade over19. AvantiPlus vouchers to the value of 1st $250 2nd $150, 3rd $100
Boys under 19; Central Bicycle Studio vouchers to the value of 1st $250 2nd $150 3rd $100
Girls under 19 : Crankit Cycles vouchers to the value of 1st $250 2nd $150 3rd $100

Online registration are best a soon as possible and are easy please. Late entries for the Gran Fondo and Riverpath Challenge open on Saturday morning at 7.30am and close at 9am at Cyclista Cafe on George street.

“Manawatu Festival of Cycling”-Saturday 27 January ACTIVITIES.

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Check out video
The party starts at “Cycling Central” from 7.30am on Saturday the 27th of January which involves closing off George Street from Cyclista Cafe to Moxies Cafe. Green carpet will be laid on the road to cordon off the Cycling Central Festival and the street party will begin. All retailers in George Street are totally enthusiastic towards helping this fun event succeed. All we need is more rider entries for the Gran Fondo and Riverpath Challenge to help boost numbers.

The big stage setup on George street will be ready to introduce the Pro riders and team at 11.45am before they make their way to the start line at 1pm outside I SITE on the Palmerston North square. Followed by the start of the Gran Fondo ride at 1.15pm and The River Path Challenge at 1.30pm

Lead by the police and six international race commissaires (referees) the UCI Gravel and Tar pro Race will travel up through Ashhurst the beautiful Pohangina Valley showcasing the Manawatu region to the world followed by media and film crew capturing drone and film footage.

The 131km race is expected to finish at Memorial Park at 4.15pm and the official prize presentation starts at 4.45pm on Stage at Cycling Central in George street where we are hoping the cycling vibe of a European Cycling Village event can be felt in Palmy. The more friends you can bring along the better.

27th January day activities time line

Where; “Cycling Central” -George Street
7am to 9am: Late entries for 70km Gran Fondo and 30km Riverpath Challenge
9.45am : Retro Ride Start
9.45am Ongoing entertainment (Musicians) on Stage for the day.
11.30; Introducing the UCI Pro Team Managers and Pro race Teams on stage.
1pm: Start of UCI Gravel and Tar 131km Race from I Site on the square.
1.15pm: Start of Gravel and Tar Gran Fondo 70km ride.
1.30pm: Start of Gravel and Tar River Path Challenge 30km ride
3pm: Riverpath Challenge Finish-Memorial Park
3.30pm; Gran Fondo Finish-Memorial Park
4.15pm; UCI Pro Race Finish-Memorial Park
4.45pm; UCI Pro Race 1st,2nd,3rd Ceremony -on stage Cycling Central -George street
5pm: Riverpath Challenge Prize Giving-on stage Cycling Central -George street
5.15pm; Gran Fondo Prize Giving- on stage Cycling Central-George street.
5.30pm ;UCI teams and Individual prize giving.

Locals Perform well at “New Zealand Cycle Classic”

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In one of the most exciting finishes to the five stage UCI 2.2 New Zealand Cycle classic, NZ National team rider Hayden McCormick wins over Robert Stannard who was awarded the best under 23 rider. In the NZ winning team is photo local rider Joel Yates and former PNBHS rider Luke Mudgeway. This week they compete again for the honours at our “UCI Gravel and Tar”. An exciting prospect not to be missed.

Team Möbius Bridgelane speak to school cyclist.

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Bike Manawatu invited Elite Cycling team Team Möbius Bridgelane to speak to our schools cycling members for night of learning at Hotel Coachman while in our city for the week. Team manager Tom Petty and his team uncovered what life was like behind the scenes as an elite cyclist and how to mentally and tactically prepare to become an elite cyclist for a living. Local star Robert Stannard also added a wealth of experience to the night. An excellent learning for our young talented school cyclists. We thank Tom and team Möbius Bridgelane for their willingness to share such amazing knowledge.