Yep, the 2012 Kaiteriteri Beach Adventure Race is locked in for March 10/11.
This is a multi-sport event that caters for all levels - from the country's elite athletes like last year's winners Richard Ussher & Fleur Latimer to rank amateurs out for a day's fun (me).
There's a whole range of categories to enter including kids, teams, single or multi-discipline.
A highlight of this year's MTB 20/40 kms loop will be the opportunity to ride down Corkscrew. While there might be the odd demented soul from last year that will miss the hair-raising, semi-skid/slide fest that Velocity turned into after a night's rain, I'm pretty sure most riders will much prefer this year's alternative.
It'll make for a more interesting race. The climbers will be able to stretch the gap on the grind up to the top ridge while those with better riding technique will be able to haul them in on the long, switchbacking descent. Unless you're a champion at both...
Check out the mtb course options here:
Meanwhile, the rest of the Park is still busy.
After coming across this group of Nelson riders for the third time in different parts of the Park, I felt a photo was overdue...
Andrew Meffan from Nelson now has even more reason to make use of his Kaiteriteri holiday home. I've spotted him a few times shepherding young ones along Easy Rider.
Daughter Iris is especially proud of her very blingy new bike - complete with recommended bell!
This lad, one of a group from Mapua, shows how to bunny-hop the gap jump.
Teens like these are crying out for more challenges on which to test themselves. If anyone has some simple ideas on how to enhance our Skills Area, we're all ears!
Recent arrival to Motueka from the Netherlands, Michiel Overweel, thought he may have died and arrived in mountain bike heaven after his first Park circuit.
'Though a keen mtber, they don't really do hills in Holland so, esp. after a long lay-off, his face was doing a good colour match with his shirt by the top of Swamp Monster.
Not deterred, two days later he was cresting Corkscrew.
The thing I love about mountain biking is that it's such a social sport. It's as much about the company you ride with as how fast or skillfully you can handle the trails.
The BBs and the BBs from Nelson seem a perfect example of this. Despite a little initial hesitation, especially after I said they would be appearing on our website, they gave up their acronym.
Meet... The Blistering Bollocks and Bouncy Bits!
The Park clearly offers something for mountain biking families that was previously lacking in the region.
I love coming across parents getting their kids into the sport, gently coaxing them through the more challenging bits, prepared to let them have a spill or two in the process of developing their skills.
The Hampden Street Hammerers (from the primary school in Nelson) were giving the pump track a good hammering when I chanced along. Only a couple could be persuaded to pause long enough for a photo with their minders before heading off up Salivater.
Our Park map currently shows two downhill lines (in black) as part of possible Corkscrew loops. Unfortunately, we ran out of time to complete these last year so our apologies to those who have gone looking for them.
The good news is that Andrew Spittal has managed to free up a weekend to bring over a Chings digger. If the weather holds true to forecast, we'll be working on opening up the overgrown firebreak from the top intersection. We'll let you know as soon as it's rideable.
The other line is to be a hand-benched track with much of the route clearing already done. It will be one of our first projects on the resumption of w/bees in March. If you live locally and would like to get involved, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org