New Zealand Trials News
1st January 2015
Please refer to the FB link on the right hand column as this is where most of our news is now posted. I have general daily news on my personal FB page under Stephen Oliver and we also have the Nonstop Adventure FB page and an additional NZ Ihatove FB page. I invite you to check out all three. Thank you for following the Nonstop Team.
13th May 2014
I spent this weekend with Tim. This was a Nonstop Adventure Ltd coaching weekend. Tim had this to say.
"Thanks for a stunning weekend
I learnt heaps and this will fast track my riding. I will be back again soon."
23rd August 2013
The two youngest Oliver Boys Nick and Peter have arrived safely in Japan. They are looking forward to a couple of days of competition and some fun riding. This is another opportunity to catch up with existing friends and have chance to make new ones.
This is not the first time that the boys have had the opportunity to be part of Japan's most popular trials. By the share numbers of entrants, the event is the World biggest.
Nick and Peter are representing Nonstop Adventure Ltd / Jotagas New Zealand and are the guests for this the 37th Idemitsu Ihatove Trial.
The boys are keen to catch up with Yasuo Manazawa and Shozo Narita who are both Co founders of this event. They are also hoping to meet up with Takumi Narita and Hiroshi Kondo and their very good friend Ishi.
Here is a photo of the boys arriving in Japan with big smiles in the anticipation of a fun weekend
11th July 2013
|Jotagas 2014 Model|
Here we have the first photo released of the 2014 Jotagas trials machine. That's Joan Freixas - Montesa , Merlin and GasGas factory rider on the left. Marc Arano - Ex GasGas and Piaggio, World wide sales manager on the right.
The newest bike in the trials world is the creation of 7 times world champion Jordi Tarres. This model has had a lot of input from the Jotagas importers all around the world, many Champions in their own right which is evident in the final result. Jotagas is now attracting a lot of interest and is set for a bright future.
Goldpine / NonStop Jotagas Display Team in action
30th June 2013
|Nick and his Jotagas|
At the recent 2013 Mystery Creek National Field Days, attended by over 125,000 people, the Goldpine / NonStop Jotagas Display team were once again hot property.
The Oliver brothers have become great entertainers and there is a lot of banter going on during this class act. Nick and Peter love to get the crowd involved which adds to the success of the show.
They have gained a reputation over the years of inspiring the spectators with their technical skills during their hourly performances - jumping up vertical faces, riding the back wheel over multiple piles of Goldpine posts, leaping through the air across jumps, with the addition of the two brothers racing each other over obstacles side by side, which adds to the excitement.
The new Jotagas trials bikes which the Team are using, created a lot of interest from the visiting public and have proven to be the ideal machine for the job, being very light, manoeuvrable, powerful and above all reliable.
This year's week of display riding was once again highly successful for all parties concerned. Photos which were sent to Japan appeared the next day on the Japanese Ihatove website, where the boys will be guest riders in the 2013 Idemitsu Ihatove Trial. The Japanese riders are looking forward to seeing Nick & Peter again after they became popular during their last attendance in 2008. The Oliver boys first took part in this event back in 2006, when a team of six NonStop riders were the special guests invited to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the trial.
The NonStop training academy motto is " Providing Challenge, Encouraging Confidence, Building Character and is aimed, in particular, at the Youth market but caters for all riding abilities and ages.
Goldpine (a NZ wide Outdoor Timber Specialist) have been involved with NonStop since 2004 and Goldpine have played a big part in both the setting up of the NonStop Adventure Trials Academy and NonStop Team X-treme Display team.
We oh so LOVE our Jotagas
29th June 2013
|We oh so love our Jotagas|
Some of the NZ Jotagas Racing Team headed out for an afternoon of riding. The sun was shining, although now being winter the terrain is slippery and temperature chilly especially in the shade.
The Jotagas makes easy work of it as they are starting to earn a name for themselves in its ability to find traction when most others struggle, thank you Jordi T.
Today John Shand our Jotagas operations manager threw a leg over one of the bikes and survived the day and went home unscathed and with a big happy smile on his face.
Great riding and plenty of fun had by all, John really fits in well with the Oliver Clan as he is always good for a laugh.
Family Day Out
4th April 2013
|And the wee fellas are off|
Making the most of the long hot summer the Oliver clan had a family day out at the Trials Park. Stephen, Deborah, Nick & Andrew and families headed out for another great day's riding.
With the addition of Charlie and Logan life has become even more interesting when visiting the Park as the wee men are the first to head off on their trikes, while their Dads and Granddad get their riding gear on to catch up. When the Oliver seniors stop for any reason the grandsons are all over them for a ride on the "big" bikes.
Granddad always seems to be the soft touch so Logan manages to get a repeat turn after Dad has dropped him off; they would go on all day if they got their way.
Stephen's boys are now experiencing what it is like to have to cater for their boys as well as trying to ride themselves, all good fun though and future NonStop display riders in the making.
2013 NZ Ihatove Advenure Trial
15th March 2013
|Happy faces = fun times|
This is the third time I have traveled from Auckland to Nelson, to ride the annual NZ Ihatove Adventure Trial Event.
That's a 2000km round trip crossing the Cook Straight by Ferry.
After coming back last year and waxing lyrical about how much fun it was, several of my fellow Auckland Trials riders made the pledge to join me.
This time I was in fact lighter and fitter and riding my own bike!
What made this trip different was the fact that we all committed to it early on and I undertook to take everyone's bikes down, rather than the usual fly in and fly out deal. No one pulled out and in fact the group grew as the event came closer.
Always having something to look forward to, is one of those important things in life, and personal coaches extol the virtues of booking your next holiday/event immediately after you have finished the current one. It gives focus and purpose and makes sure those "Yeah I might do that" comments become "I am doing it"
So how good is this Ihatove event and why?
Well if the 5 guys that made the trip this year came back and immediately re booked for next year, you get the sense that it was very, very good, and definitely worth the logistical effort and cost involved.
*Excellent riding with challenges to cater for all the skill levels, from near new, to fully expert.
*Competitive yet Fun
*Great people with attitudes of "we are here to really enjoy ourselves"
*Smiles are everywhere
For our group we aren't seriously competitive, except amongst ourselves, and all have competing interests in our lives that suck up precious personal time, so we get few opportunities to ride our trials bikes for 6 hours a day, let alone for 3 days on end (and in my case 4 days!)
Lets talk about the trip
We started with a group of 3, maybe 4, from Auckland but that soon grew to 5, so I loaded up the mighty Santa Fe and the trailer with 5 bikes and all the gear.
It wouldn't be an Ihatove adventure for me if something didn't go wrong, (last year I missed the plane) and of course the wonderful ferry company rang to say they had cancelled my crossing, less than 36 hours out. You have to love the lack of customer service where no alternatives, suggestions or anything else are given, in fact I taped the phone call in the end and played it back to our staff as an example of how not to treat a customer. Incredible. They refunded a full two weeks later...
Some scratching around saw me catch another boat- thank you Interislander, you saved our bacon.
That meant another day off work and early start, but alls-well-that-ends-well and I hit Nelson at 2 am on the Thursday, about 14 hours ahead of when I originally had planned.
That gave me the chance to help the Oliver family, who organise the event, with some final touch ups plus get in a sneaky half days warm up ride before my rivals from Auckland arrived.
It was great to this time be on my own bike, my mighty Repsol 4RT. The trailer was loaded with 3 4RT's a Scorpa 250 and the latest Ossa 280i
The boys flew in all fresh and keen to go and I collected them from the airport. After setting up in the motor camp, off we went for some much needed riding and planned coaching.
I watched their faces in the mirror with interest, as we drove into the venue and as expected, I wasn't disappointed because within seconds they all had smiles at what a stunning property for bike riding it truly is. The same reaction I have had for the past 3 years.
Friday was pretty laid back, free riding, a bit of coaching with Stephen's sons and simply having fun and then we had a cracker of a session with the master himself- Stephen Oliver, who took a group of about 10 of us and gave us some real "basics" and then some challenging stuff. It was also a chance to try the impressive Jotagas 300 (way too much power for me- but oh so stable and easy to ride-cant wait to try a 250)
Smiles a plenty that night with expectations high for Saturday
[Saturday Day 1 - Ihatove]
Stephen is constantly looking for ways to fine tune and improve the event and unlike a lot of organisers he encourages feedback and then sets about implementing it. That is so refreshing.
Day 1 consisted of a pretty long loop with about 18 trials sections on it, followed by 10 more sections in and around the carpark.
These were to be ridden in a non-stop fashion and you could tell immediately that hours of work had gone into planning out the sections to cater for everyone. The first thing we all appreciated was the marking, very clear; the second was the section length. They were on average 3 - 4 times longer than anything we normally get at home. Again for those of us advancing in age, if it weren't for the brilliant marking it was possible to get totally lost in a section, they were that long.
Nothing was dangerous and most were straight forward, with many looking much worse than they actually were. Riding as a group of 6 with one person keeping all the score cards, meant everyone watched each other like a hawk to see who dropped what. The 1,2,3,4 and 5 scoring system really keeps you trying. Lots of encouragement, but a great deal of competitive banter.
Every now and then the Oliver boys showed up and showed us how to ride the grades above us - they make it look ridiculously easy
There was a mixture of old classic bikes; some home made specials, up to the very latest trials machinery. Ages ranged from 14 to 65!
The views were spectacular, but I knew that day 2 held even better ones
Scores in our group were amazingly close, with each of us having a silly mistake or two that really cost us.
We simply didn't want to stop riding and after the event we were the last group to stop playing, pack up and get to the closest pub for a beer, despite the incredible weather and the thirst that had built up.
On the Saturday evening all the riders get together at the Waimea Club for dinner and to swap stories, watch videos of ourselves and have a good old fashioned catch up. With another big day the next day and for me, a long drive back to Auckland, no one gets too carried away, well certainly not in our older age group.
[Sunday Day 2 - Ihatove]
A different loop, with climbs and views that stay permanently etched in your mind; another 18-20 sections out on the trail; with a second chance at the same excellent 10 sections by the carpark, with lots of spectators to keep you focused.
Stephen started us all a bit earlier to cater for all the out-of-towners; Christchurch and all of us from Auckland- thank you
A mixture of dry rocky climbs, slippery riverbeds, steep banks and tight turns, logs and hillclimbs- everything a trials rider wants and more.
Our group, down to its core of 5 riders, had rivalry going from the first section. For me it was another of life's lessons; rode too nervously, didn't scan far enough ahead and made a hash of it. Non-stop rules sometimes catch you out if you don"t scan far enough ahead as the obstacles come up quickly and you can't simply stop, balance and re-gather yourself.
Three dabs later on a section everyone else cleaned, I had lost my advantage from the previous day. It was the only time I forgot what we were there for- fun and I have to say it took a couple of spirited good rides to get back on the right page and then everything was right with the world again.
I've said before that trials is so much like another of my sports-golf, and it is a good time to list the similarities.
1. Compete against the course designer, fellow competitors, but mostly against yourself
2. Score one another in groups, to keep it honest on paper-based cards
3. Handicap system - different grades catered for, so you can enjoy the event all together
4. Have to forget a bad ride/hole- you can't carry on a bad score to the next hole/section
5. The equipment's important, but nowhere near as much as the skill level. A good player/ rider can make old gear talk, as much as a poor rider can't extract much out of the latest gear
6. Marvellous sense of achievement when you do what you aimed to do. Could be a par or a clean
7. Get to wear silly clothing but no one laughs at you
8. Everyone thinks that buying the latest gear improves your ability; in fact, what happens is with new gear you practice more, so of course you improve
9. If you have a dollar to spend, spend it on coaching ahead of bling
10. They both started in the British Isles (if you count Scotland as British isles) and have passionate English followers.
The real difference is that Trials requires two balls whereas golf requires one!
(Apologies to Steph Downes (riding expert) who was as ever masterful)
Some of the trail on day 2 was more challenging, with a little bit of pushing required if you didn't carry enough speed on the shale hill climbs, but it wasn't beyond anyone with a little help.
Again the views were spectacular and blue skies reigned supreme.
The battle in our group was fantastic, with some riders excelling at different things; Ross Brown's 4rt was beautiful in slippery rock streams; Peter Elliott's Ossa 280 was sublime in tight stuff; Andrew Meisner's 4RT, was as ever, as smooth as silk in the slippery bits and Ian Petty was able to glide over the bigger obstacles.
I was so fiercely competitive that I wobbled my way nervously, to have some good rides from time to time. The bikes never missed a stroke.
The Ihatove scores were tallied quickly at the end of the day, with Andrew ahead of me by 1 mark and the rest only a few points behind.
We all knew where we could have improved our riding, but no one could have had more fun.
Loaded up and out of there by 3.30pm, saw a long trip home done in one hit and by 10 am next morning I was back in Auckland, tired but happy. The boys flew home and were safely tucked up in bed at 8pm!!
Every one of us has traded stories and thoughts for weeks afterwards and all are committed to doing it all over again. This time we will drag a few more north islanders along, but truth is if they don't come we are still going to have an absolute blast without them.
Add it to your bucket list and do what we have done, book it in and pay now! Stephen hires bikes but with a big contingent expected from Japan and the UK, it will pay to secure a bike early if you're not taking your own.
See you there in February 2014. It will be the fifth NZ Ihatove Adventure event, and Stephen Oliver and his team have some lovely little touches planned already.
I wouldn't miss it for quids.
Four! (strokes rule supreme)
Great gathering of like minded souls
23rd February 2013
|Ian & Pete & Ross|
Dear Stephen and Deborah,
Firstly I would just like to thank you and your family for the incredible amount of work put into the 2013 Ihatove weekend in 88 Valley.
Every section was clear, beautifully laid out, readable, with pegs and strings ensuring a fully professional look.
On the trails every step of the journey was clearly marked with solid plastic posts which were easy to find making it stress-free.
The weather was the usual Nelson perfect blue skies and sunshine.
And we had an absolute ball.
The five Auckland riders, myself, Andrew Meisner, Ross Brown, Allan Boot and Ian Petty accompanied by my brother Mike worked hard on the first day with Nick doing some coaching in the morning of Friday, then a barbie and burger, and free riding followed by another coaching session with Stephen working on basics which was very worthwhile.
The Saturday touring sections up in the hills afforded views that will remain engraved in memory, with some sections that may do the same!
Then onto set sections in the stream. Brilliant fun and testing for the likes of me.
It was a great gathering of like minded souls and it was terrific to meet other riders from round the country.
On the Sunday we had another loop followed by the sections we rode first day. The little tree-filled valleys and running streams were idyllic.
The entire weekend was a blast, challenging, thrilling and above all, huge fun.
There are 4 more complete converts who will be back next year.
I would recommend this to every trials rider in the country.
Sincere thanks to the whole Oliver Family who fed us, covered us from the sun, set out, marked and made a hugely memorable weekend a truly sensational event which the entire trials community should be proud of. Congratulations.
We'll be back.
We have a "green light"
13th February 2013
|Hard day at the office.|
The 2013 NZ Ihatove preparations are all but completed.
Update from the NonStop Team
Saunders isn't coming this year. 2014 will be his time. Arrangements are being made for a ChCh, Nelson and Auckland based training next year.
The plan for Friday will now be to get out to bike park by 11 with a start at 12 and coaching till about 4- This will be a valued packed day with Stephen, Pete and Nick taking coaching - Not all 35 -40 entries are coming on Friday (probably about half)so good level of 1:1 tuition,"Fantastic".
WE have Friday morning pick up of our overseas riders from the airport; Allan Boot is handling this task. Muck around and then get into it.
The Oliver boys will look after your needs and wants, they will watch, suggest improvements, show and watch again, etc.
Think of a skill area you particularly want to improve upon beforehand. Loading bikes on and off the trailer doesn't count.
Saturday will be fantastic!! The boys have spent 3- 5 hours marking out each section!! They cater for all grades and clearly a lot of thought has gone into it. They can even cater for Jason baker or a Liam if he turns up.
Emphasis for section setting has been for long smooth and flowing using the grounds contour.
There are approximately 12 -15 sections out on day ones trail plus we return to a further 10 near home base that will ridden once on the Saturday.
On the Sunday- a different loop that's a bit shorter, but still the same 10 approx near car park and 12-15 out on the trail
All sections each day counts toward the Ihotave .The ones close to home base which we ride each of sat and sun will also count as a score( a trial within a trial) if you like.
The terrain is so good that everywhere we go there will be a natural section to play on. Don't for an instant think you won't have enough section time!
You can keep together and have some fun, no one needs to disappear off and ride on their own, and time wont be an issue (fitness will)
One of the fantastic things is that you will have picked your own degree of challenge for the weekend, the colour line is your choice and then this will determine the grade that you will be allegeable for.
Its about having a ball, I am certain none of you are riding the Ihatove just for a trophy! The emphasis of this event recaptures the original Ihotave spirit of having Fun. (As opposed to a NZ champs with all the attendant pressure etc)
I believe this change in format (for those of us who have been before) is a good one- It keeps you all riding similar sections. There are not two huge loops on the Sunday- just the one plus the nearby sections we get a second chance at.
We supply the venue and event it is now up to you to have fun and enjoy.
The NonStop Team welcome you.