INDEPENDENT NEWS

Reid to Defend Title

Published: Fri 13 Nov 2009 09:38 AM
Reid to Defend Title
Olympic cyclist Robin Reid has signed up to defend his title in the Armstrong Motor Group Festival of Cycling.
In just its fifth year Christchurch’s Armstrong Motor Group Festival of Cycling continues to attract New Zealand’s best cyclists. Scheduled this year for December 5th and 6th, former Olympian and current national time trial champion Robin Reid is the latest to sign on the for the weekend long celebration of cycle sport.
The Nelson-based rider was a surprise winner in last year’s Avanti Long Bays Classic, defeating more fancied riders such as Olympic medallists Hayden Hayden Roulston, Jesse Sergent, Sam Bewley, Westley Gough and Marc Ryan, and national series winner Jeremy Yates.
Coming after a long recovery from a crash in 2007, Reid was a popular and deserving winner. But this year he comes to Christchurch in even better form following gold and silver medal rides in the time trial and road race in the New Zealand club championships.
In 2008 the Armstrong Motor Group Festival of Cycling attracted a record 1700 riders from Australia, England, USA, France, Germany and all ends of New Zealand. The weekend long cycling festival is a celebration of the sport that allows recreational riders of all age and ability to rub shoulders with stars of the sport.
As well the Avanti Long Bays Classic, day one features the Armstrong Motor Group Harbour Ride, which follows the same 80k route from McCormack’s Bay in Redcliffs, around the base of the Port Hills to Motukarara where it returns via Gebbies Pass, the undulating Lyttelton bays and Evans Pass to finish back at McCormack’s Bay.
Other highlights on day one include the Benchmark Homes Kids’ Mini-Bays and the new 35k mountain bike event around the Port Hills, both of which also start and finish at McCormack’s Bay.
On day two the Armstrong Motor Group City Criterium brings a taste of European cycling to Christchurch with exciting multi-lap racing around the inner city’s Oxford Terrace café strip. Last year saw close to 10,000 spectators watching New Zealand’s best and organisers hope many will bring their bikes this year to take part in new events such as the Rookie Criterium and Kids Criterium. An annual highlight is the Armstrong Motor Group Celebrity Tandem charity race organised in conjunction with the Harcourts Foundation.
Entries for the Armstrong Motor Group Festival of cycling are open now. For more details: www.festivalofcycling.co.nz
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