The annual Cromwell Summer Series wrapped up at the weekend with a lap around the lake.
The Lake Dunstan Cycle Challenge was the fifth and final event in the series, organised on behalf of the Cromwell and Districts Promotions Group.
More than 115 riders from throughout New Zealand hit the highway on Saturday for one of the country’s most unique road cycle races.
Cyclists raced a 96km circuit around Lake Dunstan, crossing the Cromwell bridge then heading through Northburn, Tarras, Luggate and back down State Highway 6 to finish in Cromwell.
Cyclists compete in the Lake Dunstan Cycle Challenge on Saturday. PHOTO: SHANNON THOMSON
Event director Bill Godsall said the race, which has been running for more than two decades, was a unique experience for riders.
“It’s one of the very few mass rides now where everybody starts at the same time and they’re actually on the main highway now … These sort of races are slowly disappearing,” he said.
The costs associated with running road races on the highway as well as ensuring rider safety were no small thing
“It’s such a unique race because there’s just not that many of them round. They do take a lot of organising and the costs associated — the traffic management is a major, it’s quite huge and it is quite nerve-racking as a race director. All I want to see is everybody cross the finish line safely.”
Julia Spark, of Ohoka, competes in the women’s 45-54 category. PHOTO: SHANNON THOMSON
There had been no incidents this year and traffic had given cyclists plenty of room, he said.
Alexandra rider James Williamson took out the overall first place with a time of 2hr 7min 10sec followed by Hunter Gough, of Invercargill, with a time of 2hr 7min 13sec.