The last rider to finish at the Whaka100 MTB marathon presented by CamelBak in 2017 can’t wait to do it again. He was the first to sign up for the 2018 edition of the event when entries opened.
We caught up with Alex Disher to hear all about his experience with one of NZ's toughest mountain bike events.
Alex is a father of one and typical weekend warrior. He has primarily ridden road bikes for the last 9-10 years but has branched out into MTB in the last few.
Alex entered the Whaka100 in January 2017 when he was on holiday in Rotorua for christmas.
“It Seemed a good idea to start the year with a training goal, a new event to look forward to at the end of the year, and a reason to simply get into riding the sweet trails in Rotorua” He said.
Despite the training goal, Alex didn’t do any proper physical training. He says he let moving to a new city and a new job get in the way, and consequently, he felt his motivation was low.
“I’ve done long distance endurance road cycling over the years and understand first-hand how to keep pushing on when you just feel like stopping“
To cross the finish line with less than five minutes to go before the 11-hour cutoff was huge – hours on from when most had left and were already four or more beers into the evening, Alex's’ buddies were scrambling around in the bushes at Rosebank cheering him on.
“Everyone at the finish line went crazy when I got there and it was the most amazing welcome. The feeling that despite the odds being fairly well stacked against me, I managed to succeed and had an epic day in the saddle.”
Alex talked us briefly through his journey through the 100km course:
We look forward to seeing what the Whaka100 2018 brings for Alex!