WK director Neil Sinclair has taken his passion for mountain biking to the next level by gaining his qualification as a registered mountain biking coach.
Neil was one of the drivers behind getting Krankin Kids to Blenheim, a mountain bike coaching club for youth which was founded in Nelson.
The step to become a registered coach with the Professional Mountain Bike Instructor Association (PMBIA) was a natural progression for Neil.
“Emma, who owns Krankin Kids talked me into it. I think Emma felt it would be good to have one of the Marlborough Krankin Kids coaches qualified, and to be fair it did not take much convincing,” Neil says.
“I would love to see a huge increase in the number of Marlborough girls considering mountain biking as a sport.”
Neil’s daughter, Maddy, enjoys mountain biking but has few girl friends to go riding with.
“My aim is to really use the new skills and knowledge that I have got to help the local girls through Krankin Kids to become awesome shredders,” Neil says.
In order to gain the first level of the qualification, Neil had to undertake a three day course and assessment which looked at his ability to skilfully teach and guide beginner to intermediate mountain bikers both cross country and downhill.
The practical work was supported with reading and theory.
As well as supporting Krankin Kids to set up in Marlborough, WK has provided sponsorship for the development of a new mountain bike track on Jentree, a 100 acre property on the Taylor Pass.
Sponsoring the WK Wonder Trail at Jentree was a logical step for WK after sponsoring the establishment of Krankin Kids in Marlborough, Neil says.
“Coaching through Krankin Kids initially, and then once they get to a certain skill level, being able to pass them onto Jentree for their expert coaching I think provides the ultimate opportunity for the girls; and of course it’s not limited just to the girls, boys get that same awesome opportunity too.”
Jentree owners Justin and Victoria Leov have plans to develop the property into a world-class riding destination.
“Neil gaining his PMBI means that we have another string to the bow of what Marlborough has on offer to support upcoming riders,” Victoria says.
“The more people who are passionate for mountain biking the better, the ability to encourage and support future riders is crucial for the sport.”
Becoming certified has given Neil confidence in his work as a coach and his role of encouraging youth into the sport of mountain biking.
“It just means that I know when I can help out coaching the kids, I have confidence in the instruction I am giving,” he says.