Retro Raleigh riders ready to rumble

Safari Brothers Cycle Club members, back, from left,  Nick Lynch-Watson,   Mick Shuffler, Dave Stemming, Josh Normanton, Chester Tiddys, and, front,   Bee Bogan  prepare for today's Raleigh and Healing 20 national championships. Photo by Andrew Ashton.
Safari Brothers Cycle Club members, back, from left, Nick Lynch-Watson, Mick Shuffler, Dave Stemming, Josh Normanton, Chester Tiddys, and, front, Bee Bogan prepare for today's Raleigh and Healing 20 national championships. Photo by Andrew Ashton.

More than 50 riders are registered to take part in the annual Raleigh and Healing 20 bicycle racing national championships in Oamaru this weekend, and with big prize money on offer, organisers expect even more to register on the day.

Competitors will race around two laps of the Victorian Precinct today, and with a men's first place prize of $700 and a women's first place prize of $500, organiser Mick Shuffler said everyone would be going "flat out" for a win.

Mr Shuffler said the race was a "Kiwiana classic" and riders from Oamaru, Invercargill, Auckland, Ashburton and Dunedin would be taking part.

"It is a completely iconic race and a very big race. We have 53 registered for the men's and ladies' races. There is quite a large contingent from Dunedin coming up to line up our locals."

It would be the third time the championships had been held in Oamaru, but for the first time a BMX section, with a $300 first prize, had been included, he said.

The race was free to enter and entries would be accepted right up until the midday starting time. Protective head gear was a must, he said.

"Everyone will be wearing two-piece suits and tracksuits, and as much as it sounds like fun, to have people coming down from Auckland and bringing a bike with them shows how seriously people are taking it," Mr Shuffler said