6 Hour Blast Mountain Bike Relay

By Jon Bruce, Senior PM and now expert sports blogger

The latest escapade organised by the team at DETA took us to the fabulous Macleans Island bike track, just inland and west of Christchurch. This year the annual event hosted more than 230 teams who competed side by side on an 11km loop that weaved in and out of forest and gravel tracks.

Having been too busy training for the recent rowing event (see blog here) to do much training for the cycle event, DETA still managed to achieve an impressive placing with both(!) teams placed 62nd (DETA A-team) and 70th (DETA B-team) out of 106 corporate teams in all. Awesome effort guys!!

There was a fair bit of comradery on the day with a supply of food (and beers!) worthy for a few days worth of camping. For the resting competitors, Brett’s 500 deck (DETA’s favourite card game – see Wiki link here) kept entertainment levels up through a highly-competitive card game tournament.

For those history buffs out there, the bicycle is reported to have first become a form of practical transportation in the early 15th century, by the Italian engineer Giovanni de la Fontana – however, his 4-wheel design was well ahead of its time and it was the German Karl von Drais who apparently conceived the 2-wheel version in the early 19th century. Perhaps it would have been a preferable option for those people allergic to horses…?

In a world where we spend more and more hours at our desks, driving in cars and planes, or generally sat stationary in front of our electronic devices, it sure was nice to blow off the cobwebs with some fast-pace, dual-wheel transport options. Overall, the experience has certainly encouraged this author to select the bike over the car, for commuting purposes – a 5km journey from home to the office is equivalent to saving over 1 kg of CO2-eq car emissions!! If we can get the full DETA crew cycling just 50% of the time, based on an average home-work commute distance, we could be saving over 3 tonnes CO2-eq per year! Luke…start that spreadsheet!