HBMTBC – July 2021 Newsletter

Kia ora everybody!

Welcome to the final wrap up for the 2020–2021 membership year. Thank you for taking the time to read this report.

I really hope you have had some great rides during the year in the mighty Hawkes Bay and beyond. The options have continued to grow in our region.

This has been my eighth year as chairman of your club and I am very proud of what we have achieved collectively during that time.

As I reflect back over the last 12 months, there has been a lot of change from our original plans however as a club we have made good progress despite a number of obstacles. Some of our plans to roll out further infrastructure have been put on hold accordingly.

The good news is that there are plenty of quality trails to choose from in the greater Hawkes Bay area.
We finished the 2020 – 2021 membership year with 2638 members plus hundreds of visitor passes sold (making it our most successful year yet! Up 169 on last year)

Like a lot of clubs, the percentage of members who volunteer their time, skills and energy is actually very small and if you are one of those folks who contributed in any shape or form I applaud your actions and thank you on behalf of the club.

We are grateful to our key stakeholder Pan Pac who continue to support the HBMTBC. In particular, I would like to express our gratitude to Tony Clifford, Tim Sandall, Richard Airey, Sean Wright and the Pan Pac board for their continued support.

Positives to report for the last year.

Along the way your club held a few of its classic events again including :

  • HBMTBC annual shuttle day in Rotorua
  • NZDH down hill event
  • Doug Wisor memorial Enduro
  • Regular BMC rides

We have had another great year of youth development across all disciplines & its pleasing to see programmes & rides available like :

  • Blazing Bandits youth rides & development from Claire & co
  • Shred it Sisters female youth rides
  • Bike Craft mtb skill development from Paula
  • Mtb Skills coaching from Glenno
  • Downhill practice days with Roger

We have a lot on offer for the youth at present and I look forward to seeing their progress over the next few years.

We continue our affiliation with MTBNZ and Cycling NZ.

Your club has raised and donated funds to local rescue helicopter trust and St John’s Ambulance

We have seen the addition of more trails in HB including

  • Te Mata Peak
  • Waipukerau Gum Forest
  • Ranui Farm Park
  • Gisborne mountain bike park
  • Wairoa mountain bike park
  • Taradale Dirt Park had a huge makeover funded and managed by HBMTBC

So as the Hawkes Bay Mountain Bike Club we must be open to supporting & encouraging where we can new opportunities throughout the region as they arise!

New Park Development

The Tait and Waipunga Block re-development has been a major focus for over 4 years and has really kicked into gear recently – however this development comes with a hefty price tag

HBMTBC traditionally generates income from 5 main sources :

  1. Membership + permit fees
  2. Gaming trusts
  3. Trail sponsorshop + donations
  4. Events
  5. Central & local government agencies

Financilally your club is currently in good shape with another pleasing finish to our financial year. This has been achieved through prudent fiscal management of club funds. We have missed out on a several funding applications in recent times. The overall operating costs have risen generally and there is the cost of maintaining equipment and trails, however the club has been focused on saving hard for the future and we plan to spend a large quota of these reserves in conjunction with a continued drive for additional funds which will predominately go towards the rebuild of Tait and Waipunga Blocks.

We currently have approximately 18 months to new build trails before we are due to lose access to the Mill Block so a succession plan is critical for everybody’s benefit. Your committees has spent a huge amount of time, energy and resources planning for this transition.
Key members of our senior leadership team have been hugely engaged and have worked tirelessly on this project – pulling together all the threads and facing many hurdles along the way!

This year we hit some considerable hurdles in the traction of the big plan mostly through opposition to certain elements of the plan being disputed by outside parties who are partially affected – mostly disputed through social media hype.
This has been frustrating, a big distraction from our goals and created lack of traction of our momentum and timelines as per original ambitions.

Behind the scenes

Accordingly behind the scenes your committee has been consultating and planning extensively with a number of key partners to establish a way forward to meet the needs of all parties.

What has since happened is we were in a position to then further engage with a number of the associated stakeholders which has lead to a full council led reserve managemnt plan process being initiated.

This is a 7 stage process and we are currently expecting results of round 3 to come out in July 2021 then hopefully have a positive outcome by early–mid 2022

I will state that along the way we have had great endorsement & support from a number of key stakeholders in our quest including:

  • Pan Pac
  • Maungaharuru -Tangitu Trust MTT ( with several karakia held on site )
  • Mana Ahuriri
  • Petane Marae
  • Hastings District Council
  • Napier City Council
  • Hawkes Bay Regional Council
  • Heritage NZ
  • Tourism HB
  • Eskdale locals and schools
  • HBMTBC members
  • Local bike retailers
  • Tourism operators

Construction has started

In the meantime we have just started actual construction after 4 years of hard labour instigated by a tight knit crew of members who have been instrumental in achieving all that is required to make this development happen.
Again as a reality of our partnership with Pan Pac we need to be mindful of our presence within the forest and respect the needs of their commercial operation at all times.

This however is very exciting & a real milestone in club operations.

Going forward we have to build as much as we can with the funds that are available, continue to fundraise and stay focused on building an amazing new park within the means at hand.

This will be a mix of professional and volunteer builds catering to a broad range of rider skill with progression in mind

In the interim, we continue to experience great value from our existing trail network within the Mill & Replanted blocks – In fact as of last week the park is a good as it’s ever been, thanks to well built and maintained trails with a regular maintainence programme in place to ensure they stay in great shape.

Thanks to the lovely awesome Debs and my kids who have given me the space to drive the club this year.

Also thanks must go out to your committee. I am humbled and hugely appreciative of the committee members who have continued to step up and got the job done this year, we can all be proud of what we have achieved to date and with a keen eye on the future.
For the new year and beyond we will require new blood and fresh perspectives in conjunction with solid leadership to take our club and the sport we love into the new chapter within our region. We will require your continued support to get us through.

For me personally I have had many great times riding around our local parks and around the North Island and want to thank all of those people who helped facilitate and shared those moments with me!

In the meantime I look forward to the adventures & seeing the results of the year ahead !!

Hei kona I roto I nga mihi – I hope to see you out on the trails …

Cheers, Scott