Author: Tristan Haycock - tristanhaycock.co.nz
As the kiwi winter strengthens in Rotorua the trails are holding up well. Fingers are crossed around the region for another dry race.
The courses have been released for round 2. What are your thoughts? For me stand out sections of trail include ‘Old Exit’ and ‘New Exit’ trail which all 3 courses will ride down towards the finish at Longmile Road.
Prior to that the short course will tackle ‘Soakhole’, ‘Grinder’, ‘Creek’, ‘Alpha’ and even ‘Challenge Roadside’. Considering the race is just under 15km long that is a lot of epic trails that will pack a punch for the short course riders. Make sure you pick and choose your lines carefully down Grinder as the trail is full of roots, top to bottom. Keep the rubber side down. Good luck Short Course participants.
The Medium Course and the Long Course gets a little extra climbing added into their loop this month. Tokorangi Pa Road will sort the men from the boys, or the women from the girls. This staircase shaped climb will certainly get the heartrate up, blood flowing and thaw out the fingers at the start of the day.
Then riders are treated to a bit of a novelty for a Nduro Events race. After ‘Gunna Gotta’ riders enter ‘Katore Jumps’, riders in the Long Course and the Medium Course will still be fresh by this point, so if you’ve got some skill and some confidence the small gap jumps shouldn’t be an issue for you. Just back yourself.
So, we’ve had a bit of a warm up and an adrenaline rush and now we’re entering the epicentre of the forest. What next well the Direct Road climb isn’t to far away. Pace yourself riders as this hill just keeps on going if you’re new to the forest. However, it does gradually flatten off the closer we get to our next trail. Corners, a lot of novice riders favourite. I’m sure even the top Long Course riders were even a little excited to see it in the map for round 2.
Not long after the two courses take on ‘Sweet n Sour’ and then ‘Dragons Tail’ before they split.
Medium Course riders start to make their way back towards the finish line on some top-notch trails including ‘Be Rude Not To’ and ‘Turkish Delight’.
Meanwhile the Long Course head towards the back blocks of the forest in search of even more hills. Steep, hard hills. After a course change in round #1 riders thought they’d dodged a bullet not having to ride ‘Pondy Elevator’, however the event team is a step ahead.
So now the Long Course is making their way along ‘Yellow Brick Road’ on route to ‘Pondy Elevator’. Now it’s time to get your Tour de France on, settle into your tempo and start making your way up the climb towards the middle section of ‘Kung Fu Walrus’. After the grade 4 trail in the back corner of the forest riders start making their way back towards the finish. ‘Tarua’, ‘Ball n Chain’, ‘Lions Tail’ and ‘Turkish Delight’ make up the last few kilometres of the course.
After riders set out for the climb up ‘Nursery Road’ at the beginning of the race the competitors will complete their desired course and find themselves shooting down the final Exit trails, make sure you have your smiley faces on because it’s common for photographers to spend their time in the ‘New Exit’ and ’Old Exit’ trails. Return the Event Village and get yourself a hot drink or some delicious warm goodness from Deejays. Not to mention some of the other food stalls on offer including yummy goods courtesy of ‘Baked’. Pop round and check out the sponsors promo stands, look at some rad products and maybe get yourself on a cool set of Gloworm Lights? Good Luck and I will see you at the start line.