Downhill down South

Brook MacDonald is one of New Zealand’s most promising Downhill Mountain Bikers and is currently competing in the UCI World Cup.

This is a clip where Brook takes on some of the amazing trails around the Queenstown area. Great bike riding, great photography and even better scenery!



There are shopfitters and electricians working away on the ground floor of the building where i work. In addition there are guys putting in ventilation systems and heating ducts outside the back of our office and right underneath our window.

Oh and there are paving guys digging up the footpath with jack hammers and an excavator right outside the front of the building…

It has been incessant noise all day long and it is doing my head in!!

New wheels on the way

After saving some hard earned pennies, and having been doing some research in the last few weeks, I have bought a new mountain bike.

I have looked at a few options (Giant Anthem X2, Specialized Stumpjumper Pro, Trek Fuel EX7) but have finally settled on a 2011 Giant Trance X2 in XL size. I have bought it through R&R in Wellington as they have been especially helpful and have given me good service when i was making enquiries and they didn’t pressure me into buying it- unlike other bike shops who made me feel like they simply wanted the money.

The bike is currently being couried up from their store in Dunedin and then it will be built up over the next few days by R&R’s Andy (a fellow Brit who hails from Cumbria).

In addition to good service i got a 30% discount too which is great and makes it even more of a bargain too.

Really looking forward to taking it out for its first ride at Makara Peak and tackling the North Face, JFK and Smoking  trails. Im also looking forward to doing the Skyline Trail as an enduro ride too- probabaly once i have gotten my fitness back up!

Specs are below if you are interested:

Bottom Bracket:    Shimano BB71, press fit
Brake Levers:    Avid Elixir 5 hydraulic
Brakes:    Avid Elixir 5 hydraulic w/7” front & 6” rear rotors
Cassette:    Shimano HG81 10 sp. 11-36T
Chain:    Shimano HG74 10 sp.
Crankset:    Shimano SLX 24x32x42T
Fork:    Fox 32 F125 RL w/15QR axle & tapered steerer, 4.9”/125mm
Frame:    ALUXX SL FluidFormed™ alloy Maestro 5.0” travel
Front Derailleur:    Shimano SLX 10 sp. 34.9
Grips:    Giant lock-on
Handlebar:    Giant Connect SL oversize alloy 670mm x 19mm rise
Hubs:    Fr: Giant Tracker 15QR | Rr: Shimano M525 10sp disc
Pedals:    Shimano M520 SPD clipless
Rear Derailleur:    Shimano Deore XT Shadow 10 sp.
Rims:    Giant P-XC2 Performance, eyeleted, double wall, alloy, 32H
Saddle:    Fi’zi:k Gobi XM w/Manganese rail
Seatpost:    Giant Connect SL oversize alloy micro-adjust 30.9
Shifters:    Shimano SLX rapid fire 30 sp.
Shock:    Fox Float RP2 w/XV sleeve & boost valve
Spokes:    DT Swiss Competition 14/15G butted stainless
Stem:    Giant Connect SL oversize alloy, 4 bolt, 8 degree
Tyres:    Kenda Nevegal, Stick-E front, DTC rear, 26 x 2.1”

Snowy south

4 day week this week as Ing and i head off to the South Island for a long weekend in the McKenzie Country.

The forecast is for fine weather and there is still lots of snow around so it has all the makings of a great weekend.

Our illustrious best man Nigel will be joining us as we explore these stunning places:

Aoraki/Mt Cook

Lake Tekapo