Submitted by Amdy McGechan
Thursday, 7th July 2016
Viewed 610 times

CAPTION: Who will be the latest Kiwi super heroes to be honoured? Find out in Wellington on May 20-22. Photo by Andy McGechan, BikesportNZ.com

MAY 11, 2016: There are no shortages of sporting super heroes in New Zealand and the motorcycling community will recognise, honour and reward some of their elite individuals at a special function in Wellington in less than two weeks' time.

It is 100 years since Motorcycling New Zealand (MNZ) was formed in 1916 and the organisation will celebrate its centenary during its annual conference with the New Zealand Motorcycle Awards ceremony, to be held at the Te Papa Museum, in Wellington, over the weekend of May 20-22.

A key part of the weekend's festivities will be to honour great achievements by a handful of intrepid New Zealand motorcycle sports men and women.

"Our annual awards and conference is the industry event of the year and a fantastic opportunity to sing the praises of our many outstanding athletes," said MNZ general manager of operations Vicky Hicks.

"An organisation that has survived 100 years is worthy of celebrating and we'd like to also acknowledge the clubs and volunteers who have been involved over the years."

Award categories for the function will be male rider of the year, female rider of the year, best up-and-coming road rider, best up-and-coming off-road rider and there will be a special award for services to motorcycling.

The finalists among the nominees come from all corners of the country and from a wide variety of the diverse motorcycle codes that MNZ embraces.

Finalists for the Service to Motorcycling award category are Christchurch's Wendy Ashmore and Huntly's Sandra Healey.

Both women have been tireless workers behind the scenes at motorcycling activities in their respective regions and choosing to announce just one winner here will perhaps be MNZ's toughest task.

Finalists in the Best Up & Coming Off Road Rider category are Wellington's Dylan Ball, Ngatea's Benjamin Broad and Palmerston (Otago) rider Courtney Duncan.

Finalists in the Best Up & Coming Road Rider category are Ashburton's Lewis Dray and Hamilton's Jacob Stroud.

Finalists for the Male Rider of the Year category are the sidecar pairing of Auckland's Colin Buckley and Tauranga's Robbie Shorter, along with Hamilton motocross ace Josiah Natzke.

There is only one finalist in the Female Rider of the Year category and so, not wanting to spoil any surprise on the night, the name of that rider will be kept under wraps for now. Suffice to say, her win will probably surprise nobody in the end.

All of the finalists are world class riders who will no doubt, over the coming years, continue to enhance their sparkling reputations and just being named as finalists already serves to do this.

The awards and centenary weekend is supported by principal sponsor Mike Pero Real Estate, with a number of category sponsors also backing the event. The categories and sponsors are: Female Rider of the Year (Bike Rider Magazine, Dirtrider Downunder); Service to Motorcycling (Crombie Lockwood); Best Up & Coming Off-Road Rider (Precise Print & Design); Best Up & Coming Road Rider (Suzuki); Male Rider of the Year (Mike Pero Real Estate). Supporting sponsors: BikesportNZ.com, Gibson Sheat Lawyers, Spark New Zealand.

Credit: Words and photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com

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