Western Leader : January 27th 2011
www.westernleader.co.nz Thursday, January 27, 2011 Bid for velodrome Hopeful: Cyclist Jenna Smith is hoping west Auckland will be the home of a new Olympic-standard velodrome. Photo: TUREI MACKEY By TUREI MACKEY A $35 MILLION cycling and sports centre could be built in Henderson if the Trusts Stadium wins its bid to host the development. The Olympic-standard Cyc- ling Centre of Excellence will become the home of Bike New Zealand. West Auckland is vying to have the velodrome against bids from Manawatu, Hawke s Bay, Christchurch and Wanganui. It is being created to help advance the country s elite track riders, including Glen Eden resident Stephanie McKenzie who can only train at one indoor velodrome in Invercargill. Massey High School cycling captain Jenna Smith says the velodrome would be great for elite riders but important for budding ones as well. I have always had the goal of competing at the Common- wealth or Olympic Games, so having an indoor velodrome would be pretty helpful, she says. The 16-year-old says Auck- land needs a new facility because Manukau s velo- drome -- used at the 1990 Commonwealth Games -- is dilapidated. It is a concrete track with no roof so if it rains we can t ride because it s too slippery. There seems to be bird s nests nearby and they sometimes swoop down while we re training which isn t good. Trusts Stadium chief executive Brian Blake says their proposal will see the venue serve as an elite train- ing facility and also cater for community and school sports like netball, basketball and tennis. We are looking at using a surface that will allow us to play a sport like tennis on it, he says. We have a design that would have three courts in the middle so we could have three or four sports happen- ing in the building at the same time when it isn t being used for high performance cycling. Mr Blake says Trusts Stadium was chosen as the location for Auckland s bid because of its governance, track record of successful fundraising and proven funding model. The venue would need to raise $9m for the project and Mr Blake is confident of achieving it. We are hoping to get more, but that is what we think is a conservative estimation of what our contribution should be. Sport and Recreation New Zealand will stump up $7m while local government would pay the remaining $19m. Bids close next month and Sparc and Bike NZ will announce the winner in April. Optimism on seal's recovery In recovery: The beaten seal pup is being cared for at Auckland Zoo. A baby seal bashed at the Henderson Creek may never be released into the wild again. The one-year-old fur seal has been cared for at Auck- land Zoo since it was found with serious injuries on Monday night. Zoo vet Nic Masters says the seal has a fractured cranium. It s holding its head in a funny position and it doesn t appear to be able to see out of its left eye, he says. It would be nice to be able to take an x-ray, but it s still in some pain. We don t want to sedate it because it has a head injury. I m cautiously optimistic that it will survive. But I don t know if it will be released into the wild. Mr Masters says after 48 hours in captivity the seal will become used to being fed by humans and it will be more difficult to release him. He says finding a long- term home hasn t been dis- cussed. Police were called to Hen- derson Creek when members of the public reported seeing two men beating the seal pup after it became caught in their fishing net. Department of Conser- vation marine ranger Martin Stanley says the seal was bleeding from the nose and muzzle and had extensive bruising to one side of his head. DOC biodiversity pro- gramme manager Phil Brown says the department is working with police and plans to lay charges under the Marine Mammals Pro- tection Act. People found guilty face fines of up to $250,000 and six months jail.
January 25th 2011
January 28th 2011