Course record broken at Taupo

It’s been six years, but the record has finally been broken, and who better to break it than a local…

Taupo local Patrick (Paddy) Bevin has smashed the record for riding 160km around Lake Taupo in the Holden Men’s Classic Race at the Contact Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge with a time of 3:40:05:45 – that’s 2:55 off the record set in 2008 by Peter Latham.

Winner in the under 23-age group and third overall was Fraser Gough (3:41:56:95) from Havelock North and winner of the over 34-age category is Andy Hagan (Wellington).  Aucklander Mike Northey came second (3:41:53:95).

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Results in the Women’s Road race – a fast paced 100km from Taupo to Turangi and back – overall winner and winner in the under 23-age category is Ruby Livingstone (Auckland).  The over 34-age category winner is Jeannie Blakemore (Christchurch) with Emily Collins (Auckland) in second place  and in third place Hannah Van Kampen (Hastings).  It was a close race taking just 2:58 hours with point two of a second between the place getters.

Commonwealth Games silver medalist Sam Gaze (Cambridge) knocked two minutes off last year’s time and keeps his first place title in the Contact Huka XL 85km  mountain bike race in 3:46:18:45. Rotorua man Sam Shaw (3:48:47:71) came second and Carl Jones (3:50:43:18), also from Rotorua, is third.

NZ mountain bike champion Karen Hanlen (Whakatane) held on to her title winning the first female home in the Contact Huka XL race making it a hat trick for the NZ  Olympic athlete. Katie O’Neil (4:38:38:18) came second with Amber Johnston (4:50:04:43) third.

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It’s been a fantastic start to the 38th annual Contact Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge.

More than 7400 participants were up early and joined the wave of cyclists from around New Zealand and 23 other countries heading across the start line this morning for one of the 20 event categories on offer in this premier cycling event.

Some were up even earlier, leaving at 1.30am in the Barfoot & Thompson Enduro event, completing two circuits of the lake. 20 of these 99 riders are contesting the 2014 UMCA 200 mile World Championship title, which takes place in this category.

“It was wonderful to have Taupo’s MP the Hon Louise Upston and Mayor David Trewavas helping to send riders off this morning and such a mass of colour and energy down Tongariro Street – cyclists, supporters and spectators – as far as the eye could see; a fabulous Taupo day.” says Contact Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge Event Director Kay Brake. “

You can find out all you need to know about the Contact Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge at www.cyclechallenge.com.

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