Short-changed riders wait for the re-start of the Whaka '70ish'Short-changed riders wait for the re-start of the Whaka ’70ish’

It’s 2pm, and instead of finishing the Whaka 100, I’m on my third beer and sitting in a spa.  Why?

Because the N-Duro 100km race in Rotorua today was sabotaged by course-changing, arrow-fiddlin’ kids. 

More than three-quarters of the field were thwarted by the actions of some unscrupulous mother-Whakas (to put it mildly), ruining the race for them and the organisers.

I knew something was up when we were barrelling down Tickler, which was in the last part of the course last year.  By the time we’d started the climb up Katore Rd, the jig was up.  We were on the wrong side of the park, heading towards the finish.  About four hours too early.

Racers were offered the option of re-joining the race with an adjusted time at the 60km transition/feed zone, after the leaders (who had ‘made the cut’) came through.

A lot of us were demotivated and decided the hour of cooling down and waiting to re-join was too much, and, demoralised, pulled the pin.

Organiser Dean Watson was obviously apologetic and rightly pissed off himself, and offered refunds to those who pulled out.  Nice.

Not the best way to spend the weekend, but should the culprits be caught, ‘prize-giving’ should make up for it.

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