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Author: Jack Biddle

Transportation on the move

He seems energized to get on with implementing the coalitions promise of doing a U-turn on many of the previous Governments Transport agenda. He is also looking like a minister not afraid to stand up and answer his critics with a no nonsense and direct approach when questioned or challenged. I can’t say I fully agree with some of his comments and actions to date, especially the handbrake being applied to many local authority projects moving forward, designed to encourage cycling and walking especially.  As a keen cyclist, I have seen the benefits of safer and far more enjoyable cycling with...

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Local surfers earn NZ team selection

New Zealand will be represented with a very talented and strong team of 12 surfers from around the country and will include 15-year-old Onemana based Harrison Biddle and 13-year-old Lola Groube from Pauanui. The championship is limited to two age group and gender categories with the male and female surfers chasing their own individual championship glory. The younger surfers or groms (short for grommets) as they are often referred to in the wider surfing community, will all be under 16 while the older surfers will all be under 18 when the competition kicks off. Both Harrison (Year 11) and Lola...

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Invercargill – where dreams are formed and come true… and a great road trip

The “water” reference, some humourists have suggested, comes from the notorious horizontal, driving rain in high winds, where the two main streets meet. In 2017 our southernmost city looked to change its image and came up with a new slogan “Dream Big” which is far more appropriate and a better reflection on the city’s current focus and past history. Some of that past history is still very much alive and kicking today. For example, the film, “The World’s Fastest Indian” released in 2005 and starring Anthony Hopkins as the legendary local Invercargill lad and motorbike racer Burt Munro, was...

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Big flip in new vehicle sales numbers to start the New Year

With the dollar driven Clean Car Discount now gone, the sales of petrol and diesel vehicles surged to a staggering 96.2% of the January figures. According to the sales figures released by the Motor Industry Association (MIA), BEV only managed to secure a rather sad looking 2% market share which equated to just 274 registrations. The top three models were the BYD SEAL (31 units, 12.7% share), followed by Tesla Model Y (25 units, 10.2% share) and the Toyota BZ4X (23 units, 9.4% share). The PHEV range didn’t do much better either gaining a paltry 1.6% market share with their 202 registrations....

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Our local Speedway Champion in Dunedin and Christchurch

At the other end of the sporting scale Whitianga based speedway driver Bodie Abrahamson also crossed the Cook Strait in January to compete in the highly competitive NZ Super Saloon Championships held at the Central Motor Speedway track in Cromwell.  It’s a long way to tow a race car but Bodie, along with his local crew of Craig and Jason Richards and Darren Hartley, were focused on a top performance after what has been a very successful season in a new car to date.   The two-night meeting didn’t go without its issues for the team however, which meant a start from almost the...

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Coromandel locals out and about as far as Dunedin

With SH25A back up and running and a hot summer on offer to welcome visitors back to the beautiful Coromandel to enjoy their summer break, the diehard locals are well and truly back believing they do really live in a slice of New Zealand paradise.  Some no doubt even wonder why they would ever think about moving too far away when everything is already on their doorstep. For others however, the Coromandel is still a long way away especially those wanting to compete in national sporting competitions which they have trained and prepared hard for in their home environment. Many of them are...

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2023 record year for low emission vehicles.

With the Clean Car Discount scheme on the chopping block, December was the last chance for consumers wanting to take advantage of the previous Government’s financial handout.  The end result was a staggering 72.5% market share of the total registrations for the month going to the LEV corner.    In comparison but once again unsurprisingly, the Light Commercial sector took something of a beating with December registrations plummeting to a grand total of just 624 units, 63.9% lower (2,131 units) than December 2022 and 73.5% lower than December 2021.  The obvious reason for the...

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FIVE Most enjoyable bike rides

Sadly, you wouldn’t call Whitianga an overly friendly cycling town, because there is a lack of a dedicated joined cycling network to cater for those who simply enjoy a cycle outing ridden on a well-maintained pathway and separated from an ever-increasing vehicle traffic count. Obviously, over the holiday periods that traffic flow only gets heavier, so one tip from the outset is to always ride in single file and if you are new to cycling, stay away from the main roads especially if you are riding with the company of young children.     1.Relax at Cooks Beach For a nice...

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One of the great industry comebacks

ANCAP is an independent, non-regulatory, consumer information programme that publishes safety ratings for a range of new vehicles entering the Australian and New Zealand markets.  The Chinese designed and manufactured the V240 ute, introduced to the Australasian market as a cheap alternative to the more well established and popular brands such as Toyota, Ford, Nissan, Isuzu and Mitsubishi which have dominated the new vehicle ute market for many years. Toyota in particular have also always had a good reputation for being in high demand on the second-hand market and retain high...

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