Paddle boarder’s pedal power

To catch the perfect wave you need good wheels to get there.

For Kaka Point stand-up paddleboarder Tony Somerville, it is a simple ride in his home-built pedal car to get down to the beach to catch the waves.

“I made it out of a couple of wrecked mountain bikes about 10 years ago and have been tinkering with it ever since,” he said.

The four-wheeled artful creation was constructed from the handlebars, frames and gear sets of the two 24 inch discarded mountain bikes which Mr Somerville then riveted and bolted together to construct the frame.

He then called on his passion for corrugated iron art and covered it to look like a car complete with a large bonnet scoop, front radiator grille and the finishing touch — a Holden badge.

Mr Somerville is well known in the district for his talents in creating art installations and letterboxes from sheets of corrugated iron and thought it would be fun in his spare time to construct the pedal car to tow his 3m long stand-up paddleboard down to the beach at Kaka Point in the weekends.

Kaka Point stand›up paddleboarder and corrugated iron sculptor Tony Somerville with the home›built pedal car he uses to transport his 3m paddleboard down the beach. PHOTO: JOHN COSGROVE
Kaka Point stand›up paddleboarder and corrugated iron sculptor Tony Somerville with the home›built pedal car he uses to transport his 3m paddleboard down the beach. PHOTO: JOHN COSGROVE
“It’s the only one of my vehicles that has a tow bar.

“I can wear my wet suit and easily tow my board down to the beach. The hills are not a problem because I have five gears to use, but I am looking at increasing that soon to make the hills easier.

“It’s the quickest way to the beach when the waves are good.

“I like paddleboarding because I’m standing up out of the water most of the time as I surf out to the waves.”

He said the most memorable days’ surfing he has had were when he was out there accompanied by dolphins, but admitted when sea lions showed up they were the scary ones to watch out for.

“They are often longer than my 3m board and all I see is a big dark shadow going underneath me which gives me quite a fright.”

Recent Covid-19 lockdowns have allowed Mr Somerville, who works for the Clutha District Council, the time to add a convertible roof to his pedal car which also showcases his desire to dabble into foil boarding in the future.

The locals always give him a wave when he trundles past as he has become a local identity.

JOHN.COSGROVE@cluthaleader.co.nz

Add a Comment

drivesouth-pow-classic-2.png

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter