I am in the learning phase as club chairman and I am sure you will agree that there are a lot of great characters in our club across the many different riders and volunteer groups. The banter between people is a huge part of why we enjoy biking so much apart from the health and fitness cycling brings.When we talk to members they often share funny stories about fellow club members or how proud they are of both past and present club riders who have enjoyed, local, National or International success.These are humble people who ride amongst our riding groups today who we can learn from.
At last years Bike Manawatu prize giving held at Hotel Coachman we were treated to some great insights by our former Olympian and Commonwealth games racers Mike McRedmond and Anthony Cuff as well as our young crop of NZ rising stars Campbell Stewart,Robert Stannard,Michaela Drummond and Elizabeth Stannard.They shared the hard work they put into their training programs and racing lives.Brilliant to listen to and a great people asset our club can share with all members.
The growth phase within our club is all about the members helping each other improve whatever area of participation as a cyclist or volunteer you are involved in. By each taking some responsibility for your riding group or racing event to support "cycling etiquette and safety" is top of mind and has to be a continual priority for us all.
When it is required,just saying to a fellow cyclist who is not riding safely "safety is one of our key cycling protocols". The right encouragement to help them become a safer rider can only help build a great culture amongst all members.This also gently removes bad habits such as "half wheeling" which for most cycling enthusiasts is dangerous.
A culture change occurs both on and off the bike by members committing to more time talking together.We can all learn more from each other especially being around knowledgeable cyclist who ride in our weekly riding groups.This could be at the after ride coffee catchup or the Bike Manawatu "Monthly Happy Hour" where you get the chance to connect with more members more often.
Bike Manawatu First "Monthly Happy Hour"
Feedback from last Friday's first Bike Manawatu "Monthly Happy Hour" has been excellent. Roughly 30 people mingled and shared a very social get together at Hotel Coachman.
Positive comments from, "it was a relaxing way to end the week" and "it didn't interfere with family time" or any weekend ride time made it enjoyable".All in all this is positive club initiative for our cycling community and we look forward to seeing more people join us on at our next "Happy Hour" Friday 27 May 5.30 to 7pm at Hotel Coachman.
The warm autumn weather has been kind to our cycling mad region with plenty of people out on their bikes getting fitter while others have been racing for themselves and Bike Manawatu at the New Zealand road Nationals down south in Alexander with great success.More about that in an upcoming report.
A followup reminder that Bike Manawatu has it first monthly "Happy Hour" for our cycling community this Friday the 29th of April from 5.30-7pm at Hotel Coachman.Support your club and fellow cyclists by coming along to enjoy some social time together off the bike if you can make it.
Also a long time favourite The Manfeild 6 Hour Cycle Challenge is next week the 8th of April which people are really looking forward to.This is renowned as a fun event not to be missed.Check it out if you want a great day out.
After two years on the Bike Manawatu Board I was surprisingly voted in Bike Manawatu Chairman at our recent AGM replacing Steve Stannard who was standing down after six years on the board.Steve has done and will continue doing great things for this club and cycling in New Zealand.We wish him and his family all the best and thank him for his amazing contribution to the club.
I have quickly learnt the success of Bike Manawatu has been all about the cross section of amazing club members,volunteers and sponsors that support one another, week in week out enjoying this amazing sport of cycling.What ever level you are at as a club member, think about how much more fun it is to be around like minded people from all walks of life riding or volunteering together, talking and sharing experiences.This is often how many of your friendships get started in this great sport.
Statistics recognise cycling is one of the fastest growing sports for people who want to stay fit and build great friendships as a recreational or race rider while taking in stunning New Zealand countryside which the Manawatu has plenty of.
We are wanting to grow our Bike Manawatu's membership and build a club that we can all be proud of and spend more riding and social time together. As a club member, we ask you to talk to more people about the sport and get them along to experience our club bike rides together.Christine Christie will welcome them to the club and our organised beginners rides. We all have the responsibility to help new cyclist learn cycling protocols and we all must remember the embarrassment of our own first few rides.Not easy were they?
Our recreational membership is growing fast and for those who want to race a bike,a new Bike Manawatu racing events committee have exciting plans ahead. Over many years the Manawatu region has produced cycling superstars from school cycling through to masters riders on the road or track and the club have access to top coaches to help set new benchmarks for those riders.The best of our current crop of young riders are competing internationally for New Zealand this year which we are all proud of and the club support.
Steve Stannard 5th April, 2016
Last year my report started with the observation that it didn’t seem like a year since the previous year’s AGM and that the year had gone very quickly. Well, I’ll start this year’s report by noting that this year has gone even more quickly!
Presenting this report is my final formal task as Chairperson of Bike Manawatu, as according to our club constitution, I must step down from the Board, and thus the Chair role, after six years serving as a Board member. I am the last of the original Board members who guided Bike Manawatu through its formative years, and I have been either the Chair or Deputy Chair during these six years. Through my time as a Board member I have learnt a lot about what it takes to run a club like ours, and even more during the last 18 months as the Chair. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank present and past Board members for their contributions; we have worked well together and that has enabled the organization to remain steady and financially sound.
My major achievement as Chair has simply been to keep things ticking along during the transition to a very new Board and a new administrator/secretary last year. With Paul and Glenys leaving in quick succession, we lost a lot of very valuable institutional knowledge and two very hardworking people. These were big shoes to fill and I’d like to think I managed the club through that period in a satisfactory fashion. That’s not to say that a few ball weren’t dropped and perhaps a few opportunities missed along the way.
Christine, of course, has been in the secretary/administrator role for a year now. I thank her for her hard work, long hours, and absolute commitment to Bike Manawatu. I know from my own experience that it’s not easy to pick up the myriad of tasks the role entails, but I think now Christine has settled in nicely.
The usual thing now would be for me to describe the highlights and lowlights of the last year for the club, and talk about the opportunities and threats to Bike Manawatu. Instead, I’d like to make a series of observations and give my opinion about a few things, partly because we don’t want to hear about the low-lights tonight and the highlights of our riders have been well publicized (though I will briefly mention these later).