A five-day cycling festival next January will put the Waipa¯ district under the spotlight and provide marketing opportunities the district could not otherwise afford, according to Waipa¯ mayor Jim Mylchreest.
Council confirmed its financial support for the Three Peaks Ride: New Zealand Cycling Festival, encompassing the New Zealand Cycle Classic road race. The road race is expected to attract top national and international riders with the supporting festival providing events aimed at locals and domestic visitors.
As part of the adoption of its 10-Year Plan, council confirmed it would put $100,000 per year for three years into the cycling festival. The funding is part of a wider strategy to encourage and support events in the district which drive economic activity.
“The festival will showcase the district and is supported by council on the basis that this is a Waipa¯wide event, to highlight our unique offering and to market the district to domestic and international visitors,” says Jim.
Analysis has shown that multiday events in the district like waka ama and Maadi Cup rowing provide an influx of spending.
“We’re expecting our community to benefit and have sought assurances from festival organisers that the unique attractions of Waipa¯ will be showcased to a wide audience,” he says.
The festival, from January 23-27, will include a mass ride on January 26 — The Hobbiton Gran Fondo — similar in format to the popular Rev, last run in 2016.
The course will pass by the world-famous Hobbiton Movie Set in Matamata and will be including a number of new event features, to be revealed soon. Entries will open at the end of the month.
The New Zealand Cycle Classic road race, which is part of the festival, is an event internationally ranked by the UCI, the world cycling body.