RIDES | Juliana Strega
If you're riding at the Christchurch Adventure Park you might just bump into Emma Bateup on park patrol. Emma set-off from her Nelson home town in 2018 to race Under 21 Enduro World Series rounds in Chile and Colombia before returning to Christchurch to chase her ultimate dream of being paid to ride her bike. Emma has been riding bikes her whole life and credits the discovery of mountain biking to her younger brother. A naturally competitive person, Emma is drawn towards the personal challenge of racing both Enduro and Downhill and has gathered a swag of podiums to her name including 2nd woman at the 2017 Mammoth Enduro. Learnings along the way haven't just been about skill and speed, but about managing fitness, injury and other setbacks that only make her more determined to achieve her goals. It's not all about racing, big mission adventures and shredding with mates, like the team at Gravity Nelson are top of Emma's list for a good day out.
Follow Emma on Instagram
RIDES | Santa Cruz V10, Santa Cruz Nomad
Finn Hawkesby-Browne grew up terrorising the Cashmere streets below the Port Hills mountain bike trails on his scooter. It comes as no surprise that this affinity with two wheels grew to mountain biking of the extreme nature. Now an all-around gravity rider Finn pushes himself between the tape at national level enduro and downhill events across the country and to great success. At Crankworx Rotorua 2018 Finn won the Redwoods DH and placed second at the Oceania Championships in Dunedin. Christchurch’s Port Hills are the ultimate asset for Finn who laps out the trails with the boys in preparation for his competitive events. Finns favourite trail to link up in Victoria park is Pedal-fine to Race line which has a mix of everything a competitive gravity racer could ask for in order to hone their craft.
RIDES | Santa Cruz Blur, Santa Cruz Bronson
In 2018 Rebecca Hufflett took out multiple under 15 category titles. At risk of exceeding the web hosts text limit here goes. 2018 New Zealand National U15 Women’s Cross Country and Down Hill Mountain Bike Champion, U15 Women’s Oceania Cross Country champ, U15 Women’s South Island Cross Country champ, CrankWorx Secondary Schools Cross Country champ (2nd fastest women U20), Crankworx Secondary Schools Down Hill champ (fastest overall women U20). Though Bec has seen great success in more endurance style mountain bike events she has a passion for gravity racing as well, so who knows which one of our bikes she will come to admire most in the coming years. As she says “mountain bike racing is totally unpredictable you never know what type of ride you are in for.”
RIDES | Santa Cruz Bronson
Brady Stone has the demeanour of a Judge but he rides his Bronson 3 like an escaped convict. He cleaned out the entire field at the 2018 Mammoth Enduro in Nelson by taking the fastest total race time for the day. Brady has his sights set on racing internationally at the EWS but in the mean time he’s happy to ride as fast as he can at national level events. When it comes to his backyard Brady is a fan of the riding and thinks there are too many good trails in Nelson for him to call one out as his favourite. So it sounds like you better get there to see the trails for yourself.
RIDES |Santa Cruz Highball, Juliana Roubion
Jessica Manchester has been a dominant force in Cross Country Mountain Bike racing in New Zealand for several years. Her list of credentials as an athlete include 6x national XCO champion and 5x Oceania XCO champion. She aims to add another tally to each of those this coming summer season. Previously based in Auckland she recently made the move to Rotorua so it’s no surprise her favourite trail is Tuhoto-Ariki. Jess also competes in Enduro which makes for some great bike time for competitive cross-country racers. Though small she will no doubt be seen (and heard) shredding her Juliana Roubion in the forests of Rotorua this summer.
RIDES | Santa Cruz V10, Santa Cruz Bronson
Tuhoto-Ariki Pene was born on wheels. Now residing in Maketu. He grew up racing BMX and honed his bike skills for years before making the switch to bigger knobbier tyres. Tuhoto’s name was on everyone’s lips at the 2017 edition of Crankworx Rotorua after a stand out performance in the pump track finals night show. In 2018 Tuhoto proved that he has made a comfortable switch to the bigger wheels taking the Junior Men’s National Downhill title. He showed his rapid development and proven psychological approach to racing which includes music and kicking back, again more recently at the 2018 World Mountain Bike champs where he placed 7th in the Junior under 19 men still as a 17-year-old. We can’t wait to see what this kid can do in 2019. Tuhoto’s goals for the upcoming season are to podium consistently at the world cup races and the world mountain bike champs to be held on the famous Mont Sainte Anne venue in Quebec, Canada.
RIDES | Ibis HD4
It's fair to say that Loui is obsessed and totally immersed in all things mountain biking - race organisation, trail building, coaching and racing. He has a real passion for people and the sport involving himself in the Nelson Mountain Bike Club as part of an amazing crew of people who volunteer their time to make Nelson a greater place to ride bikes.
Loui loves competition and after consistently proving himself in the tough Nelson race scene and taking second place in the 2016 Top Gun Enduro (a highlight of the season) he has officially changed his sporting goals and left the Rugby pathway (Nelson Bays, Tasman under-20 and Tasman Makos B) to focus on EWS rounds in 2017 whilst continuing with the NMTB club events and trail building for next summer.
RIDES | Juliana Furtado
Jodie Fa’avae started mountain biking in 1990, she borrowed a front suspension mountain bike in 1992 and won her first New Zealand Downhill Mountain Bike Title. Her second downhill race was the American Junior Final Round in Colorado, and her third race was the World Championships in Canada. While picking herself and her bike up after crashing, Julie Furtado went whizzing past and went on to win her only World Downhill Title. Jodie went onto to win 7 NZ Downhill Titles. Fast forward to 2017, Jodie loves to ride with her children now 10,12 and 14-years old.
Jodie organises the biggest adventure race in New Zealand - The Torpedo7 Spring Challenge where teams of 3-women raft, bike and run. Jodie is rides a Juliana Joplin and has set her next challenge of competing in the NZ multi-day adventure race ‘GODZone’
RIDES | Santa Cruz V10, BOS Idyll Fork. Santa Cruz HightowerLT 29.
Kieran has spent most of his life on two wheels starting out on motorbikes and bmx's before finding a passion for mountain biking, mostly of the downhill variety. This eventually led to several years racing in Europe and the USA on the World Cup downhill circuit.
His impressive CV includes 2012 NZ #4, 2008 Oceania Champion, 2x US National DH Round Wins, 2007 NZ National Champion, 2006 NZ #3, 2005 NZ Junior National Champion.
These days he resides in Christchurch where he works in sales and marketing while still racing Enduro and downhill races throughout New Zealand.
Follow Kieran on Instagram
RIDES | Santa Cruz Bronson.
Jonas has a long-standing passion for bicycles. He had a humble beginning picking gravel out of his knees as he struggled to stay upright off his rickety ramps as a youngster in rural Nelson. Now residing in Christchurch he balances a busy day job working as a product development engineer with training ,riding and racing mountain bikes all around New Zealand and abroad. In the past couple of years Jonas has focused on the Enduro racing discipline, finishing the 2016-2017 season with round 1 and 2 of the Enduro World Series (EWS). Up against the best in the world he finished a respectable 50th in Rotorua and 44th in Tasmania.
RIDES | Juliana Strega
Wellington-based Canadian Meagan Robertson only found true love (of mountain biking) in 2010 in Squamish BC when her flatmate introduced her to sport, she introduced him to his wife – she reckons they’re even. Since transplanting to Wellington in 2011, Meagan has thrown herself into the scene wholeheartedly. She attended her first Revolve Cycling ride months after arriving, and has been invested in the women’s cycling club ever since – first as a ride leader, then as a committee member and, more recently, as president. Keen to use her skills – as a communications/PR specialist – to contribute to the trails she enjoys, she joined Trail Fund NZ in 2013 as their communications manager. There’s nothing Meagan enjoys more than seeing women getting involved in, and realising the awesomeness of, mountain biking. This motivated her to help coach the next generation of women MTBers through the Wellington Off-Road Department (WORD), where she guides the 10-12 year old shredders of tomorrow!
In her “spare” time, she also writes articles and reviews for NZMTBR, Licence to Chill and other MTB publications.
RIDES | Santa Cruz Highball 27.5”, Santa Cruz Hightower, Bos Deville 140 fork, Ibis wheelset
Brian has been having adventures around the globe for a long time, generally up high and far from civilisation. He’s been riding mountain bikes since the 80’s and has combined his passion for wilderness and biking into many out there adventures.
A stalwart of the Golden Bay Mountain Bike Club, Brian has been instrumental in the running of the Club’s annual Milk and Honey Race, an event like no other, and marshalling for other legendary events like the NZ Enduro In his day job, Brian works as a guide on the Nelson’s famous back country trails the Heaphy Track and Old Ghost Rd and also guides on cycles tours in the outer reaches of the cycling world through western China and Kyrgyzstan.
For kicks Brian has a knack for riding a long way, like a really long way. Always a contender in local bikepacking epics like the Kiwi and Great Southern Brevets, he finished 5th in the 2016 Tour Divide, riding 4500km in 16.5 days.
RIDES | Juliana Roubion
Based in the South Island, Emma is the founder of Wheel Woman mountain bike workshops and, on a quick tally, reckons has coached more than 800 woman! In 2015 she launched Krankin' Kids coaching, which has gone from strength to strength, increasing from 20 in the first year to 300 in 2018. As numbers grow, so does the need for coaches and behind the scenes work on processes and certifications to keep things running smoothly and safely. With this in mind, Emma gained her NZOIA / Skills Active Assessor for Coaches qualification. While racing on the national circuit may be a distant memory for Emma, there is plenty of challenge and enjoyment racing to keep up with her son and daughter,and sharing skills to help other woman feel empowered and happy on their bikes.
Brenda Clapp & Chris Burr
BRENDA RIDES | Juliana Roubion, Bos Deville AM fork. Santa Cruz Chameleon 29
CHRIS RIDES | Santa Cruz 5010. Santa Cruz Chameleon 27Plus.
If you’re 26 or younger, Chris and Brenda aka 'Bob' have been riding mountain bikes longer than you have been alive. After many many years of racing mountain bikes around New Zealand and the world (with a couple of National and Oceania titles, and course records between them), they finally got tired of travelling to nice exotic locations and racing the same loop for 2 hours. So, the washed up XC racers got trail bikes, a Landrover and a dog, and started exploring. They can be spotted in an occasionally good camping spot, sneaking in a Tour Aotearoa or helping out at top notch events, like the ‘NZ Enduro, ‘DME’ and ‘Coppermine’, or at demo day doing bike set ups.
Anja Mcdonald & Tristan Rawlence
ANJA RIDES| Juliana Strega. Santa Cruz Stigmata. Santa Cruz Highball 29.
TRISTAN RIDES| Santa Cruz HightowerLT. Santa Cruz Stigmata. Santa Cruz Highball 29.
Peanut butter and jam, cheese and Marmite - all good things by themselves, but better together. The same could be said for Tristan and Anja, longtime Santa Cruz stalwarts. Although they're each high achieving riders in their own rights, these days it's hard to mention one with out the other.
Anja and Tristan hail from Rotorua and Nelson respectively and both had mountain biking in the blood from an early age. both have dabbled in the full spectrum of off-road racing, but biking, to them is much, much more than competition.
Back country missions with mates, thousand kilometer bike packing missions, high octane cyclocross hit outs or just a post work afternoon pedal, they're up for it.
Anja's also keen on seeing more people loving riding as much as she does and is a coach for Tasman based Wheel Woman clinics and the Nelson Krankin Kids program when time allows
RIDES | Santa Cruz Blur. Santa Cruz Highball 29".
A 24 year old professional On and Off-road Triathlon athlete from Rotorua, New Zealand. Living and training in Rotorua, a mecca for mountain biking, trail running, and open water swimming, Olly has the perfect platform to chase his dreams. Olly has been a previous Xterra 20-24 age group World Champion, Asia-Pacific 70.3 Champion, New Zealand Elite Cross Triathlon Champion, and was 1st New Zealander home at the Xterra New Zealand Champs in 2013 and 2014 where he finished 3rd professional. Olly has already achieved over 10 Xterra World Tour podiums in the past three years and won his first World Tour race at the Motatapu Xterra in early 2016. More...