Rivalry at its most naked, the OGO Dual Slalom’s crowd-pleasing format pits two competitors, side by side, in a downhill knockout challenge as they battle it out to the finish line.
Each lap through the track raises the stakes and works up everyone’s appetite to win, while providing spectators full view of the nonstop action.
It’s a new event on the Rotorua Bike Festival programme on the evening of Thursday, February 20. With two of the headliners—the Skyline Sprint Warrior and Giant 2W Gravity Enduro—already sold out, there’s lots of interest in the Dual. A lot of New Zealand’s top downhillers will be in town for the National MTB Champs on the opening weekend of the festival and are staying for the week, so lots of talent will also be on show.
The course has been designed and built in their own time by a talented group of young Rotorua riders and friends including Louis and Connor Hamilton, Patrik Corbett, Lawrence Cawte, Dane Nimmo and Matt Tew. They’re a mix of New Zealand representatives at World Champs and regulars on the National Downhill Circuit.
Team leader Louis Hamilton says “it’s a real honour to have the opportunity to be building a track at OGO, it’s the first opportunity we’ve had to build and ride here since the Mountain Bike Championships back in 2006”.
Riders line up at the old 4x race start line and the newly built track will weave in and out of parts of the old course mixed in with some new challenges.
The format for the race will offer all riders an hour of practice, followed by racing. Successful heat winners of their bout will move through to the next round.
There will be a twist, of course. The top riders of the day will exchange their bikes for OGOs, and throw on their Speedos and bikinis to see who the fastest ball roller is.
Winner takes all. Cash prizes will be awarded to the overall male and female winners of the bike dual slalom and the overall winner of the OGO dual slalom.
OGO Rotorua, is owned and operated by the inventor of ball rolling Andrew Akers.
Along with his brother David, he developed the sport around the world. After selling out of Zorb Ltd in 2006, OGO Rotorua is ball rolling 2.0, with the longest Sidewinder ride in the world and dual straight tracks.
Louis Hamilton is a talented 19-year-old downhill mountain biker who currently rides for the Commencal Troy Lee Designs Downhill Team and is a force to be reckoned with on the New Zealand Downhill circuit. Louis represented New Zealand for at the UCI Mountain Bike World Downhill Championships in Pietermaritzburg in South Africa in 2013.
Check out more on the Dual Slalom: www.ogorotorua/dual-slalom
And the full festival programme is on the website: www.rotoruabikefestival.com