Bike rally back for 28th year

JOANNE BENNETT
Last updated 06:59 21/01/2014
karina kirdy
JOHN BISSET/ Fairfax NZ

CROWD FAVOURITE: Karina Kirdy battles it out in the women's tug-o-war competition at the March Hare.

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Motorbike enthusiasts are gearing up for the March Hare rally in Waimate which is in its 28th year..

Organisation for the event has been ongoing since the closure of the 2013 rally, according to president Stuart Oughton.

"As soon as we finished cleaning up from last year's event, we start planning the next one."

Mr Oughton said attendees are always asked to provide feedback, which informs the planning of the next event.

On March 7, 8, and 9, riders will descend on the Waimate Showgrounds. Ralliers come from far and wide, and the first group to book their tickets were from Tasmania.

"The next lot were Aucklanders, and there's a group who come from Mackay in Queensland every year who treat it as their annual holiday."

Mr Oughton said he is confident that the weather will be fine this year.

"There's no rain left up there now, so we should be all right."

In 2012, motorcyclists' travelling plans were hampered by stormy weather and flooded roads. The organisers are expecting around 2000 people at this year's event.

"We think the days of numbers around 3000 have gone. The younger ones find it difficult to keep up with the price of registration, so the average age is around 45. Some of them have never missed a rally."

This is the first year Mr Oughton has been president, but the seventh year he has been involved.

This year, money raised will go to Waimate historic sawmill and timber village Bushtown. Last year, police praised the organisers, and said apart from a couple of incidents the event was very successful.

Mr Oughton is confident of a similar result this year.

"It's mostly about the music. It's like a music festival for bike-orientated people."

New Zealand bands Top Shelf, The Elevators, and the Easy Hearts will feature over the weekend.

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- The Timaru Herald

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