Riders race the main streets

Cambridge’s youngest riders proved just as tough when racing got underway. Photo – Michael Jeans.

This year’s instalment of the Cambridge Cycling Festival saw a massive turn out of children take part in the event.

Over 80 percent of this year’s 600-plus participants were children, from two years old to teenagers, racing the main streets of the Cambridge CBD on the afternoon of Anzac Day.

“It went really well, we’re really chuffed with how the community supported it,” said organiser and Olympic-gold cyclist Sarah Ulmer, who originally came up with the event in 2015.

“We had real growth from last year with over 500 kids. And most importantly there were heaps of families having an awesome day on their bikes – which is the very reason we do what we do!”

Cambridge’s main streets were closed to traffic on Thursday, April 25 for the Cambridge Cycling Festival. Photo – Michael Jeans.

Cycling New Zealand’s elite men’s and women’s track teams rode with the kids this year, including Cambridge’s double-bronze World Champs medallist Rushlee Buchanan, the Olympic medal-winning men’s sprint team of Eddie Dawkins, Sam Webster and Ethan Mitchell, and the recent omnium world champion Campbell Stewart.

A crowd of well over a thousand people cheered riders on as they raced from tiny-tots and primary school level through to secondary school, open and elite level.

The hotly-contested Street Sprint saw Ethan Mitchell, Sam Webster and Bradley Knipe finish first, second and third in the men’s final, whilst the women’s final was rounded out by Olivia Podmore in first, Tess Young second and Cambridge’s Ellesse Andrews third.

In the Battle of the Schools relay, Cambridge Middle School team CMS Flyers won the Year 5 – 8 final and Cambridge High School’s Kaakaariki team won the Year 9 – 11 final.

A team from Evolution Cycles won the Battle of the Businesses.

Freestyle BMXer Paul Langlands and his team wowed the crowd with some crazy aerial displays. Photo – Michael Jeans.

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