Karapoti classic 2011- Who wants to race?

Pretty much one of the most gruelling mtb races in the Southern Hemisphere with 50km of massive hills, river crossings, rock gardens and ass spanking terrain. They also have a category for unicycles which is nice. Sound fun?

If so come join in on the fun. I’m finally in a position where i can make it over for this and am really looking forward to the challenge. I know Ken Looi is going to be doing it as well but it would be great to get some more Aussie, NZer and maybe international riders out there on the course. (Hoovers, Munisano, Tony Melton, Martin, Will, KH, etc i’m looking in your direction)

The previous race record is held by Ken with a time of 4hr 11min which is a red hot time. Anyone keen on trying to set a new one next year? (I know i am!) Time to get training.


I have entered Karapoti Classic 2011 in the Muni class. I have raced on two wheels for the last 6 years and its had work climbing the hills with a bicycle on your back! looking forward to riding My ? 26" Schlumpf if I’m still in New Zealand? Planing a overseas trip at the same time :thinking:

I’m not sure I’ll be able to get fit enough to handle it by then. Right now I doubt I could do more than an hour or less of painfully slow riding off road before throwing up and then passing out :stuck_out_tongue:

Do you guys think 6 months is long enough to get fit enough to do the 20k without seriously damaging myself? Bear in mind that I’m less fit than you’ve probably been in your entire life. It might be a stupid question, but I know nothing of sports science and fitness as far as time frames go, having never been fit to speak of. Would it be better to do something else first? I’ll be getting a KH29 soonish. That said I’m not overweight at all.

Also, is there a separate limit for entries to the unicycle category, or can it be filled up by cyclists? I’m just wondering whether I have to get in early.

@ vijil- I think with 6 months you would be able to increase your fitness to a level where the 20km loop is achievable. You might still hurt at the end but thats the point of these types of events. From the website you can get some good maps and info on altitude gain etc that will help you gear your training to the terrain, and the other health and fitness info is freely available on the web (try the Australian Institute of sport website- its got lots of good free resources on all that kind of jazz)

A PeterG- don’t go double booking yourself out of such a great race- do your other trip a slightly different time and have 2 adventures in 2011!

I’ll be riding my GMuni 24" with 3" duro on 125mm cranks for this one methinks. Bring on the hills!


Yes you are right, But the 2nd adventure starts in January and finish’s in May!
So I may be at Karapoti next year if not i will be at the start line in 2012 :astonished:

Ken set that record on an ungeared 29er with 150s if I recall correctly.

Good luck trying to beat his record, I wonder if Ken will still be using an ungeared uni, or if he will try out a geared muni this time around.

Had a talk to ken recently and it looks like he will have a 26" Gmuni for the event. Im not sure how much gears would be advantageous on this course- i find it is really hard to ride in sloppy and muddy conditions in high gear.

Just an interesting note for those that are interested, when ken and i raced against each other in the XC event at unicon he was on his ungeared ti 29er and i was on my Gmuni 24" and we were neck and neck for the whole race. He even overtook me for a bit on the last lap about 1km from the finish. I only just pipped him in the final straight. It is true that i’m better at riding in high gear in technical terrain now then i was- but on a fairly technical course having a geared muni did not make one rider specifically faster than the other.


Of course I’m doing it again! It’s one race I don’t miss.

For the record, it has had a Unicycle category since 2003, which makes it one of the oldest MUni races anywhere.

I did indeed set my PB on an Unguni 29’er back in 2004. This year I used a geared 29’er, and was on track to just beat my old record until I blew up spectacularly on the final climb up Dopers. I did my slowest time ever. The only thing that got me to the finish was the jelly planes at the top of the climb, even though all the other cyclists had already dunked their grubby fingers into them…it was pure sugary goodness, garnished with mud.

I reckon the geared 29’er is a little too big a gear for Karapoti- unless you are super fit the ideal would be a geared 26" or 24". The Ungeared 29’er was ok, but very slow going up the Karapoti Gorge.

The 20km is on the ‘easier’ and flatter section of the course. You still start on the river and head up the gorge, but it’s basically straight up and down the gorge. You have several stream crossings, a couple of river crossings, and maybe some boulders to dodge, but it’s mostly singletrack. You miss the three big hills (Deadwood, Devils Staircase and Dopers).

Michael Jacques the organiser is usually pretty keen for unicyclists to take part. That said, there’s a 1000 rider limit. I’m sure you’ll be able to get in though.

I know John and Sean from Brisbane are usually pretty keen to do the karapoti, im not sure how many times they have both been. They have been nagging me for years to go over so I might as well do it next year!

It is looking like I’ll be home in New Zealand.
So I will be at Karapoti Classic next year on the start line (and finishing last) ?
But will be having fun climbing the Hills with out the spare wheel.
O and the down hills will be so much fun!

Count me in! I’m not 100% sure yet but it is on my to do list and thinking the time is now. Hopefully I’ll have a geared uni by then so I can try keeping up with y’all. If not I will just have to try and beat the ungeared record. I will post again when I have registered.

A Taupo Unicyclist we call the Fly (because he goes flying off his Uni) is looking to race in the 20km and is looking for some more to race the 20km too so he can race and we hope NOT fly :astonished: If more entry there will be a Uni class in the 20km too! :roll_eyes:

I’ve been doing a whole bunch of research and there’s really nowhere in my area where I can train unfortunately. The roads around here are dangerous as heck due to being skinny, winding, blind and most often very fast drivers. The footpath doesn’t go more than a few k’s. Also, there are no mtb or even walking tracks to speak of within riding/walking distance.

Because of that I’ve decided it’s not practical for me to do it this coming year. Instead of buying the 29er muni I was planning on I’ve instead bought a trials uni that I can muck around on locally without breaking it (my 24 isn’t handling what I throw at it these days). The idea is that the skills and control I gain from doing trials and street/flatland stuff over the next year will give me a good base from which to get into muni next year, when I’ll have a car :smiley:

Thanks heaps to those who have given advice both in the thread and via PM - I’ll be keeping it saved 'til I actually do the race :slight_smile:

Yes, I think so too - on my 29er I used the high gear not very much - a bit on the downhills, but even there I’d rather have had a proper muni.

When I did it it was pretty dry, there was nothing you wouldn’t happily ride down on a 24" muni, and loads of stuff I can see being great in high gear on a 24" geared muni.


Just booked my flights and accommodation for this event so i thought i’d give this thread a little bumpity bump to try and see if anyone else can be convinced to come race.


See You at Karapoti Start Line 2011.

Woot! So I know of 3 definite riders- Ken, myself and you Peter. Hopefully some more will get in on the action. Calling mr Melton? Tom Trevor?..

That would really be awesome to come race this with you guys. I have talked to Ken about it several times and it sounds great. I have made some changes recently (like changing to a non-paying job) that makes this type of thing pretty unlikely…at least until my new company takes off and starts paying a salary.


I’m pretty keen, I haven’t booked anything though…