Five motocross riders have been injured in an event near Taupo today.
Five riders taking part in the Suzuki Trail Blazer trail ride in the Tahorakuri Forest received injuries to their arms, legs and spines in separate incidents early this afternoon.
Rescue helicopters from Rotorua and Taupo flew to the forest, which was about 20 minutes from Taupo, treating the injured riders at the scene before flying them to Rotorua Hospital for further treatment.
Trail Blazer organiser Gordon Sandilands said one rider had to get x-rays for a twisted knee, and due to the remote location of the race it was decided all five injured riders would be taken out by helicopter.
"Logistically it makes things easier for everybody for the helicopters to get everyone else out at once instead of waiting for an ambulance.
"We were just lucky that the injuries happened in a short period of time so they could all be seen to quite promptly."
Between 700 and 800 riders took part during the day, with about the same number expected to ride again on Sunday.
- The Dominion Post