If you build it, they will come – The new Oamaru BMX Park track is ready to ride – and the North Otago BMX Club will hold its first annual meeting next month.
Speaking to the Oamaru Mail as his son Mosstyn (9) was tearing around the track, club member Rob Brydges said plans were progressing to officially open the track after Labour weekend.
“The date is to be confirmed, but [we] will hold an open day on a weekend, then pick a night of the week that suits for club racing,” Brydges said.
“What usually happens in BMX clubs is you have 40 minutes or so of kids doing racing, stop for a bit of food and hang out in the summer sun, and do a bit more racing – it is pretty relaxed.”
He said the Oamaru track boasted “one of the most picturesque locations” in town.
“The view is amazing.”
The club is also making plans to build a barbecue and canopy, and have some bikes and spare equipment for people to try the sport out at the track.
“Our focus for the first year is to just get kids involved and get their skills up.”
The club hopes to have a car park installed at the track, off Bushy Hill Rd, by Labour weekend, but is waiting for the green light from the Waitaki District Council.
In the meantime, Brydges said there was still plenty of other work to do, such as installing starting gates and asphalting the berms.
“But that is what BMX clubs are all about, getting stuck in and working on things – it is the Kiwi way, too.”
Feedback on the new track had been positive, Mr Brydges said, and he predicted it would be a hit in Oamaru.
“BMX is an Olympic sport. There is a pathway in New Zealand to get funding, but fundamentally it is a family sport.
“It is just fun.”
Brydges heaped praise on Leighton Selfe, who had done a lot of work to get the track up and running and was now scaling back his involvement.
Local businesses and the Waitaki District Council had also been instrumental in getting the club off the ground and progressing track development.
The North Otago BMX Club AGM will be held on July 24 at the Excelsior Clubrooms.
– Gus Patterson – Oamaru Mail