Burt Munro Challenge another winner
The organisers of this year's Burt Munro Challenge have wrapped up another success.
Invercargill Motorcycle Club president Craig Hyde said the 2011 event had been excellent.
"Everybody seems pretty happy. It's been a big weekend of racing but it's been great," he said.
A few negative points included Jake Gillespie's crash at the speedway on Saturday, and the weather-related cancellation of the beach racing, but overall the Challenge had gone well, he said.
"(A highlight is) probably getting to the end of it. I'll be able to get some sleep now."
Retailers were also pleased with the event, with restaurants and motels around Invercargill busy.
Tuatara Cafe manager Nathaniel Byers said the week before the Burt Munro weekend was always one of the busiest of the year.
"During breakfast and lunchtimes we've been pretty much full the whole time. It's been chocka," he said.
Aside from the increased revenue because of the challenge, visitors to the city also added a lot to its atmosphere, he said.
"It was great; it went really well, I think.
"It's always good to see the bikes floating round town – it gives it a bit of life."
Accommodation was also booked solid, with most moteliers hanging up "no vacancy" signs.
Monarch Motel manager Kerry Mariu said the Challenge was one of several events, including weddings and the United Fire Brigades Association conference, keeping moteliers happy during the weekend.
"It's been booked out for months, but all the motels were," she said.
"From about September they (the motel's 22 rooms) were pretty much booked out, but it wasn't just because of the Burt Munro; it was just a particularly busy weekend for the town."
Chamber of Commerce chief executive Richard Hay said the event had had a two-fold impact on the city.
It increased spending into the region and also extended a positive image of Southland.
This year the Chamber of Commerce had been told of visitors travelling south who were not just staying in Invercargill but travelling to other parts of the region such as the Catlins, Te Anau and Riverton, he said.
It was "pretty much impossible" to pin down an exact figure of how much money flowed into the region because of the Burt Munro Challenge.
But, anecdotally, income appeared to be growing each year as the event grew in popularity, he said.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Your club information portal, post or view your sports fixtures, results and general information.
Check out what's on in your community or post an upcoming event.
Subscribe to a digital replica of The Southland Times.
Southland Times subscriber news and information.
Click here for information about advertising with The Southland Times.
Buy copies of photos featured in The Southland Times.