Kia Ora. Well the weather has finally cleared here in Rotorua, not that we are complaining, the trails are excellent, even in the rain. And did we mention the friendly bike shop folk here? When we rocked into Auckland from the airport we visited Bike Central and caught up with our friends Benny (who has just been appointed the Director Sportif of the newly created all-NZ road team) and Clynton (racking up the k’s as an Auckland courier) and our new mate Wayne the courier. Benny gave us the lowdown on where to go in Rotorua and after a few phone calls hooked us up with some required spare parts. Thanks guys!
Now for Rotorua. We’ve been eating daily at Zippys cafe, which is next to our (new) mate Jeff the frame-builder’s shop and major sponsor of the Single Speed Worlds next week, Kiwi Bikes. They have been kind enought to set up a computer for free use of all wandering bike travellers. Bike Vegas (sponsors of the Whaka 100) have also been great, with a spare workshop space for us and other travellers to use, also giving us beers, coffee, free parking out the back away from the street meters. We have spent so much time there people think we work there now (I think Libby was spotted rearranging the clothing stock – ‘Dave can I get some more smalls of this design to put on the rack’).
There are plenty of internationals here taking the opportunity to ride the Whaka 100 as well as the Single Speed Worlds next week. Yesterday we ran into Deejay (Niner) and Jake (New Belgium Brewery – how cool is that – riding for a brewery that makes a beer called Fat Tyre Ale!). These guys are here from the States and Damo was keen to check out their bikes, Deejay was on a carbon Niner with DT forks, and Jake was riding a Black Sheep (he told us he designed on a bar napkin one night with James of Black Sheep Bikes) with breakaway frame and prototype Gates belt drive. We shared some Australasian hospitality and had them over to our campsite for a NZ salmon cookup. More soon and check out our flickr photostream at http://www.flickr.com/photos/cogbikecafe/sets/72157625048704927/