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Mayors Get On Their Bikes

Mayors Get On Their Bikes

Wednesday 8 March 2006

The first ever national Mayoral Challenge has been a huge success, with 18 mayors around the country leading over 7000 cyclists.

The event, one of a number to mark Bike Wise Week last week, pitted one region against another as they strove to have the most people ‘ride behind the mayor’. Extra points were allocated for high profile entrants – including celebrities, councillors, business leaders and journalists.

New Plymouth won the coveted title of New Zealand’s Cycle Mad City 2006, with more than 2000 people riding behind mayor Peter Tennent.

Bike Wise manager Brent Skinnon of the HSC said the response had been amazing – particularly for an event being held for the first time.

“All round the country mayors led the way – it was about getting out there and having a go. Eighteen centres entered - Waitakere, Tauranga, Whakatane, Gisborne, Taupo, Rotorua, New Plymouth, South Taranaki, Manawatu, Upper Hutt, Lower Hutt, Porirua, Wellington, Nelson, Tasman, Marlborough, Wanganui, and Christchurch.

“We had whole families join in – some with more than one generation.”

He said that going by bike was becoming a way of life for more and more people.

“The response to the Mayoral Challenge proves again that cycling is undergoing something of a renaissance in New Zealand. You only have to look at the streets around you to see how many people use cycling as their preferred mode of transport.

“Cycling is a great way to keep fit – it benefits the heart and lungs, lowers blood pressure, and helps in weight control. And with today’s high petrol prices, it makes sense economically too.”

Full list of results

Region Number of People Number of points
New Plymouth 2000 2390
Christchurch 80 90
Feilding 271 684
Gisborne 280 290
Hutt Cities 1040 1070
Marlborough 667 856
Nelson City/Tasman 634 778
Porirua 152 155
Rotorua 147 190
South Taranaki 263 355
Taupo 185 265
Tauranga 231 395
Waitakere 98 148
Wanganui 232 447
Wellington 685 820
Whakatane 299 401

“While a couple of events suffered from bad weather and other biking events running on the same day, the turn out at most exceeded expectations.”


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