SOUTHLAND will host a round in the Calder Stewart Cycling Series for the first time this weekend.
Cyclists will line up for the opening round which starts and finishes at Wyndham on Sunday.
Cycling Series spokesman John McKenzie said the series was the leading domestic teams-based cycling series in New Zealand featuring “the country’s top domestic based riders overseas pros who are in New Zealand at the time”.
The event has proved a successful breeding ground for many of the country’s top cyclists including George Bennett and recently crowned world champion Southlander Corbin Strong who had won several rounds of the series in the past, he said.
The event showcased some of New Zealand’s best riders and teams going head-to-head over the five-race series throughout the South Island between March and May.
“Well-performed masters, fulltime career cyclists and age group get to race against our top domestic-based cyclists.”
McKenzie said Southlander Steve Keast was pivotal in getting the series to Southland.
“I think it’s awesome to have it down in Southland. Southland has such a strong and iconic cycling history with the likes of the Tour of Southland being the oldest tour, Kew Bowl and now the velodrome.
“It’s fantastic we’re now going to have this first round in Southland.”
Racing will start at Wyndham at 9.30am with the men’s race, with masters and women starting at 9.50am.
Masters and women competitors will complete one and three-quarter laps of the circuit with the men racing two and three-quarter laps.