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Wednesday May 9, 2018



Extension of Makara mountain bike tracks

Map of proposed and existing tracks. GRAPHIC SUPPLIED


Councillor Andy Foster (left) and Makara Peak Supporters spokesperson Iain Feist inspecting the Makara Peak Mountain Bike Park’s tracks. PHOTO supplied

Wellington City Council, in partnership with the Makara Peak Supporters group, will help fund and build some 16km of new tracks at what is Wellington’s premier mountain biking destination. That will be added to the park’s current 40km of tracks over the next decade. Because of the park’s growing popularity for mountain biking, jogging and walking, the council also plans to fund an extensive upgrade to the park’s main entrance and parking options on South Karori Road. Makara Peak Park is now the region’s most significant mountain bike destination and attracts 100,000 visits a year. Councillor Andy Foster, himself a foundation member of the supporters’ group, says the park’s success is a testament to the value of council and community’s constructive working relationship. “Makara Peak Supporters are a trusted and skilled partner who are leaders in their field. Since it was created in 1998, the group has, he said, worked with council support, to create an internationally-recognised MTB destination hugely popular with Wellingtonians. Over 3500 volunteer hours are spent

developing and maintaining the park each year and Andy says the work has involved countless of those hours with picks and shovels. “It’s also involved helping regeneration of forest with at least one tree planted for every metre of new track. “The supporters are also actively involved in pest control under the title of Katch 22, and do trapping in all the reserves surrounding Karori. “Now the supporter’s involvement in the park’s future design and decision making means we’ve ended up with a really solid user-focused plan.” Makara Peak Supporters spokesperson Iain Feist says this level of investment will help keep Wellington on a par with centres like Nelson, Rotorua, Taupo and Otago who are investing heavily in mountain biking facilities. In its draft 10-Year Plan, WCC is proposing $1m be spent on the new tracks, and on safety and entrance developments. It also proposes to increase parking for up to 36 cars as well as space for overflow parking. It is hoped the new entrance may include larger toilet and bike wash facilities.

JRC supporters energised The Johnsonville Rugby Club (JRC) reports that the extraordinary meeting held at their clubrooms last Thursday had a very good outcome. They report good numbers, demonstrating the club really does have some” hearty and resilient” supporters. The attendance of some players, who offered feedback, also proved constructive. The club’s initial brief report to supporters said it was clear all those involved were

very keen to ensure that Johnsonville remained as a Premier Rugby Club. Positive discussion followed the presentation by chairman Kerry Walsh and the committee is undertaking to ensure a clear action plan gets put in place with initiatives put forward. Supporters are being reminded: “Ideas are only good ideas when adequate resource and people power are behind them. This is an action for all of us!”

• First Grade

Old Boys University beat Johnsonville 28-5

Hutt Old Boys Marist beat Old Boys University 57 v 17

• Premier Reserve

• 85 kg Restricted

• Women’s

• Reserve Grade

Old Boys University beat Johnsonville 22-15 Old Boys University beat Poneke 65-7

• Under 21s (JRD Cup)

OBU Black beat Avalon 30-13 Johnsonville beat OBU White 68 v 0

• Under 21s (Paris Memorial Trophy)

OBU Green beat Oriental Rongotai 27-14

Western Suburbs beat Tawa 24 v 17 Avalon beat Johnsonville 39-13

Upper Hutt beat OBU 69ers 41-19 OBU Righteous Bros beat Marist St Pats 28- 24 Paremata-Plimmerton beat OBU Pink Ginners 21-17 Johnsonville beat OBU Teddy Bears 60-0 Poneke beat Western Suburbs 43-21

Sports talk

with Jacob Page

Hard to punt against Purdon The dominance of Mark Purdon on Canterbury’s harness racing scene is a turn off to casual racegoers. I took my partner to her first ever harness racing meeting at Addington on Friday night. She didn’t know how to read the form guide in the race book and called the drivers ‘riders’ in the first two races. I explained the basics of how to gauge form, barrier draws, drivers, trainers and she picked it up very quickly. Come race three I explained the impor ta nce of back ing horses trained by the All Stars barn of Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen. My Grandad always told me on the eve of Cup Week each year that you don’t back against Mark Purdon because he’s the best trainer, racing for the biggest prize money of the year. Purdon had five runners competing on Friday night. Those runners quinellaed two races

together, finishing first and second, including the $200,000 feature race of the night while the fifth won the last race on the programme. That’s training perfection but I can’t believe such dominance, while admirable, is good for the industry. How can other trainers make a decent living? Why would potential owners want to have their horses trained by anyone other than the All Stars team? While an argument can be made that Purdon’s dominance is admirable, it must have its negative outcomes for the industry. It surely makes life much harder for trainers, harder for them to entice potential owners to let them train their horses. I spoke to an owner on the eve of one of the races and she agreed the dominance made the industry less appealing on a number of fronts. Purdon deserves respect for his accomplishments but at what cost are those achievements being made?

Independent Herald 09-05-18  

Independent Herald 09-05-18

Independent Herald 09-05-18  

Independent Herald 09-05-18