Entries are selling out for the 13th edition of the Whaka100 Mountain Bike Marathon presented by CamelBak, with the event already 60 percent sold out overall.
The Whaka100 proudly holds its reputation as one of the toughest mountain bike marathons in the Southern Hemisphere. The event gives competitors a chance to show off skill and endurance in the Whakarewarewa Forest in Rotorua.
The 100km individual category has sold out and has a waitlist, while the 50km, 25km, Women's 10km fun ride and 5.5km kids ride still have entries available. The packed schedule of events serves up something for everyone.
Among a bunch of keen Mountain Bikers who entered the 100km early on was Kent Wilson from Hawkes Bay, who entered straight off the back of the Pioneer Mountain Bike Stage Race in the Southern Alps.
Wilson has entered the Whaka100 five times. He said in the 2018 event he had a seeded start and the tracks were dry and quick, in which he managed to place 10th overall with a time of 6 hours and 10 seconds.
“We get to race in one of the best parks in the world - what a way to explore it with so much single track, there’s something for everyone.”
He said racing the Whaka100 is about being disciplined and sticking to your plan.
“Get your nutrition plan sorted and stay focused.”
Wilson said he prepares for the Whaka100 by riding lots of smaller races over winter and then road cycling to increase distance. Two weeks before last years event, he rode 80 percent of the course.
“As I’m racing in the 50 + we are running out of Summers, especially good ones, so got to make the most of every opportunity.”
“I challenge everyone to get out, have a go and have fun. There are awesome distances to choose from. This race caters for everyone from beginner to pro.”
The Whaka100 will be going on a road show tour to the South Island in early June and the North Island late June/early July. The tour will involve information nights and an exclusive offer to enter the sold out 100km event for those that attend.
Event Director Tim Farmer said the road show would give opportunity to answer questions about the event and would give insight into what the Whaka100 has to offer in terms of an event experience.
He said the 13th edition of the event would bring improvements to the social aspect of the event.
“We aim to deliver an amazing event experience.”
In the 12th edition of the Whaka100, Oamaru's Tim Rush won with a time of 05:10:56 and Manawatu’s Josie Wilcox won with a time of 05:53:32, both breaking the 100km records. Tim Rush beat the course record by 11 minutes, while Josie Wilcox beat her previous record by 19 minutes. Rush and Wilcox will be back at the Whaka100 on 27th October and will be looking to defend their titles.