Event Info

Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge

Event Information

Welcome to the Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge

Nelson Tasman cyclist's favourite roads have been linked together to create the Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge event. At just under 160km the course will reward cyclists with world-class views of Mountain Ranges, Rivers, Streams, National Parks, Tidal Estuaries and Golden Sand Beaches. We welcome all cyclists to enter the second edition of this event and to discover why this region is the true Centre of Cycling in New Zealand. Golden weather, Golden scenery and Golden cycling roads, welcome to the Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge.

Nelson Tasman is one of only six Gold Level Mountain Biking areas in the world. In 2017 MTB riders will be able to join in on our event with a 4 lap Super Time Trial held in the Silvan Forest Mountain Bike Park. These level 2 and 3 trails will be linked together in a unique format, creating a loop track that will test the endurance of all riders. You will start and finish on Champion Road, joining in on the event festivities with all Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge riders.

Event HQ Location

Champion Road, Richmond Nelson New Zealand


Nelson Tasman
'Why not make the most of your stay in Nelson Tasman by enjoying one of the accommodation and activity packages put together by the friendly and knowledgeable i-SITE team especially for you. Find out more here.'

Travel by Air

By Air you are spoiled for choice with over 480 flights a week in and out of Nelson from 5 destinations.  We have bike assembly points and Rental Car partners on Airport to make your trip a seamless one.  For more information on our Airline carriers, our route map and Rental Car hire click here

Important Information for those Flying to Nelson Airport for the event

Turn up early to ensure you have your bike packed and ready to go, check in for Jetstar opens 90 minutes prior to your flight and Air NZ between 30- 60 minutes. 

Air NZ - Packing bikes

Apart from children's bikes with no chain, all bicycles must be correctly packed in a bike box or bike bag. Bike boxes are sold at New Zealand airports for NZD $25.00, subject to availability.

You don't have to deflate the tyres, but packed bicycles can only be accepted as checked-in luggage if:

  • Handle bars are removed or turned sideways
  • Pedals are removed or turned in
  • The pressure of any nitrogen gas in mountain bike struts is no more than 200 kPa (kilopascal) or 29 PSI (pounds per square inch)
  • Any cartridges for inflating tyres are small (less than 50 ml) and contain a non-flammable gas

Remember to:

  • Place any loose accessories into a bag then place in the box
  • Seal the box and label with your name and phone number
  • Ensure no part of the bike is protruding from the box



If you're flying with Jetstar please bring your own bike box.  They don't supply bike boxes so you will need to keep your box when you arrive. See 'bring my bike' info here for Jetstar. - 


Travel by Car

BlueBridge Ferry Special Discount Offer

If you are crossing the Cook straight from the North Island for the event, the Bluebridge Ferry service has a special offer. Abel Tasman Challenge competitors and their crew will receive 50% off Bluebridge's flexi-fare when travelling Wellington to Picton (and back). 

Fares are valid for travel between 15 November to 21 November 2017 only.

Official Abel Tasman Race registration confirmation upon check-in. Failure to do so will result in the fare difference being required to be paid prior to departure.

These discounted rates are only available to registered participants, and their crew members travelling in the same vehicle. We suggest appointing a single team coordinator to handle ferry bookings with us.

Payment must be made at time of booking.

These discounted fares are non-refundable and non-transferable to another date unless still with-in the valid travel period 15 November to 21 November 2017.

To make a booking call 0800 844 844 or visit www.bluebridge.co.nz and use the code ABELTAS17.

If you're not already a member of the Bluebridge Bike Club, which offers year round discounts on ferry travel and other goodies for cyclists, you can join at www.bluebridgebikeclub.co.nz or visit Facebook/bluebridgebikeclub.


Travel by Road

Richmond and Nelson are easily accessible by road.

Travel distances


8 KM

by road from Nelson Airport

143 KM

by road from Picton Ferry Terminal

406 KM

by road from Christchurch City

Volunteers Needed

Volunteer for the Day

Join the great team of volunteers for the day and help make the Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge the best it can be! Volunteers are a crucial part of the event and volunteering is a great way to meet like-minded people, gain useful job experience and satisfaction or get the insider experience by being part of an event.

Volunteers are required for marshalling around the 155km course and the MTB event. All volunteers receive a meal voucher and a free cap.

If you are looking for a fundraising opportunity, contact us and we can discuss making a donation to your group in return for volunteers. Marshals are required to have their own transport to their marshalling point and will be on course from between 6.30am and 3.30pm depending on where you are located.  Shifts are no longer than five hours.  You will be supplied with a high visibility vest and a snack.

All volunteers are required to attend a volunteer briefing prior to the event. You will be briefed on Health and Safety requirements and given a job description. Volunteers are encouraged to join us after the event prize giving, to enjoy the free music and share your experiences of the day.

Contact Belinda Crisp on 03 548 8514 / 021 1680 833 or email admin@atcc.nz

Registration/Event Pack Pick Up

Friday November 17 - Time 10.00 AM - 8.00 PM

Saturday November 18 - Time 6.00 AM - 7.30 AM

For those of you who have not been able to register on any of the previous days, you can register prior to the start. Please NOTE, it is strongly advised to register on the previous day to help us with the smooth running of the event.

Printhouse Solo 155 km Event Start

This is a timed event and not a race. 1st, 2nd and 3rd in each category will be acknowledged at the prize giving. 

For those entered in the full course 155km categories, the start will be a rolling wave start.

The start and finish line is on Champion Road Richmond.

6.30 AM - 8000 -  8-hour plus (safety briefing on start line 6:25am)

6.50 AM - rolling start in following order (safety briefing on start line 6:45am)

  • Wave 4000 (4 - 5 hours)
  • Wave 5000 (5 - 6 hours)
  • Wave 6000 (6 - 7 hours)
  • Wave 7000 (7 - 8 hours)

7:15am - E-Bikes Solo (safety briefing on start line 7:10am)

Marahau Mission 73 km Event Start 

For those entered in the Marahau Mission, the start will be by Gun. You will be starting from the 82km mark at the end of stage 2 at Brooklyn School. Your event timing will start on the sound of the gun.

8:20am (safety briefing in car park near start line 8:15am)

Nifty Fifty 47 km Event Start 

For those entered in the Nifty Fifty event, the start will be by Gun. You will be starting from the 108km mark at Riwaka School. (need nifty 50 map)

9:30am (safety briefing in car park beside start line 9:20am)

Shuttle Information 

If you have entered in the following categories and need transport to the start we will have details and an online booking system soon. Email us on admin@atcc.nz to register your interest. There will be an additional cost to participants for the shuttle service. 

  • Marahau Mission (without support vehicle)
  • Nifty 50 (without support vehicle)

ITM Silvan Super TT - MTB Event Start

For the Individual rider or first rider of a Team, you will start on Champion Road in Waves from 8.00am.

Further details will be available for the additional team members and where and when they wait to start their part of the event.

All MTB participants will finish on Champion Road.


All results will be available online on the day of the event. Once you or your team member have crossed the finish line your results will be available to our timing team. From there they will collate the times and post up to our website results page.

Finishers Podium

Everyone who crosses the line and finishes the event will be asked to go to the finisher's podium for a photograph. If you are in a team you will need to meet up with your team member(s) and then present at the finishers podium. A professional photographer will be there to capture the moment and photos will be available for purchase after the event.

Prize giving Party

4.00 PM (provisional)

You've earned it, so lets have some fun. The prize giving will be a buzz with tales of the Abel Tasman Cycle Challenge. There will be plenty on offer for everyone including your family, friends and supporters who get to enjoy the occasion with you. There will be Live Music, Food, Beverages and much more. 

Spot Prizes

To win a spot prize you or your team members must be present at the Prize giving and have your race number(s) with you. 

Category Winners

1st, 2nd and 3rd fastest times in the various categories will be awarded at the prize giving.


We will be updating and confirming the schedule details over the coming months as we draw closer to the event. You will all receive updated information from us in our email publications. 

If you have any further queries about the schedule then please contact us click here.

Athlete Information

Athlete information will be provided closer to the event.

Event Briefing 

Event Briefing will be provided closer to the event.

Important Newsletters for Participants