Categories: General Date: Nov 13, 2011 Title: Bike Show pulls in the crowds
Inaugural On Your Bike expo drew thousands at the wekeend!
Big bikes, little bikes, scooters and jumps – mixed with some prime Waikato weather – drew thousands to the inaugural On Your Bike multisport expo at the weekend.
Pro riders and national sports people including Steve Gurney, Sarah Walker and Richard and Elina Ussher gave talks and mingled with the crowd that descended on the Claudelands Events Centre in Hamilton.
The AirBag, pump track and dirt jumps were a big hit – especially when pros like Kelly McGarry, Brook MacDonald, Kashi Leuchs, the Triplesix BMX team and the ABD Development team went skywards.
Hamilton rider Connor Smyth, 18, relished the chance to try to perfect his spin on the AirBag – a giant air-filled cushion – which was brought from Wanaka. He said it was a great way for riders to improve their skills without hurting themselves.
Inside, multisport athlete Steve Gurney was signing and selling his book Lucky Legs. It is already about two years old and Gurney is penning a new book, Eating Dirt, due out next August. Eating Dirt will focus on New Zealand's "cotton wool" society.
"I go into schools a lot and see they've taken the jungle gyms down and cut branches off trees so they can't fall out and hurt themselves," Gurney said.
"Some have brought bullrush back in, but it's just wrong."
The Ohaupo-born sporting guru said he was surprised by the number of people who had visited despite it being a busy weekend on Waikato's sporting calender, including the Karapiro half-ironman and Round The Bridges.
Event organiser Michele Connell said that although visitor numbers could not be confirmed until later this week she was impressed by the size of the crowd at the event, a national first for the multisport industry.
"There's nothing like this anywhere else. It's different. It's so interactive you can come in and go to an exhibit and then jump on the AirBag."
Mrs Connell said that though there was an extreme element for the adults, the children's activities – including the scooter and skill sessions – were also popular.
"It's all about encouraging people to get on a bike."
Mrs Connell showed her own lack of extremism by pulling out of a two-metre freefall jump on to the AirBag.
"I'm not very good with heights," she said. firstname.lastname@example.org