26 Mar 2015

ANZAC mountain bike champs given green light

1:28 pm on 26 March 2015

The ANZAC singlespeed mountain bike championships have been given permission to use the term ANZAC, after controversy over whether the annual Rotorua race was a commercial event or not.

The Ministry of Culture and Heritage has confirmed the Rotorua Singlespeed Society can use ANZAC as part of the event title, after initially denying them usage of the term.

Some of the eccentric Rotorua singlespeeders

Some of the eccentric Rotorua singlespeeders Photo: Mike Breen

In a statement, the Ministry says they've considered the advice from the Rotorua Singlespeed Society that the 2015 Singlespeed Championships are a not-for-profit event, and that the entry fee is used solely to cover the costs associated to the event itself.

The society's donated any and all net proceeds remaining from the event to charity, this year's recipients being the RSA and Kidney Health New Zealand.

"Based on this advice, we do not consider your proposed use of 'ANZAC' to constitute a commercial use," the Ministry's response says.

"Consequently we do not consider that the Society's proposed use of the word 'ANZAC' in this instance would breach the Flags, Emblems and Names Protection Act 1981."

The Rotorua Singlespeed Society president is delighted to hear the championships can go ahead as planned in four weeks, using the original name the event's used since its beginnings in 2008.

They say they initially used 'ANZAC' with the best of intentions, so it's a relief they've now been granted permission to continue using it.

"We've always run the champs as close to ANZAC Day as possible, with a ride to the dawn parade and service at Ohinemutu on the shores of Lake Rotorua," society treasurer and race organiser Paul Laing says.

"2015 is the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli when the ANZAC tradition was formed and we wanted to celebrate and remember the sacrifice of Australian and New Zealand servicemen and women over the last century."

Race day is on Sunday April 26th, based at Waipa mountain bike car park.

The Singlespeed Championships are part of three months of mountain bike action in Rotorua. The international Crankworx festival is underway and will run until Sunday.

Running alongside Crankworx, on Saturday March 28, is the Giant Toa, round one of the 2015 Enduro World Series.