Western Leader : January 27th 2012
www.westernleader.co.nz 11 WESTERN LEADER, JANUARY 27, 2012 SPORT For more information and to have your say, go to www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/bylaws Submissions open Thursday, 26 January and close Monday, 27 February 2012. Have your say on the new dog rules Aucklanders are spoilt for choice with amazing places to have fun with family, friends and dogs. Keeping dogs as a positive part of Auckland life and promoting responsible dog ownership is the focus of the proposed dog policy and bylaw for the Auckland region. We are aiming to make it simpler for everyone by harmonising dog rules across the region. Now we want your views. Copies of the full proposal, summary and submission form are available at council libraries, service centres and online. OG_AC0616_SUB Broken bones all part of Dakar Rally By TUREI MACKEY Mission accomplished: Chris Birch at the finish line of the Dakar Rally in Lima, Peru. Go to www.western leader.co.nz to watch a review of the bike category in the 2012 Dakar Rally. Motorbike rider Chris Birch survived a crash which broke his ankle to complete the Dakar Rally. The Waimauku resident finished 27th out of 178 riders in the motorbike category when he crossed the finish line in Lima, Peru, on January 15. But there will be no rest for Birch. He is already pre- paring for his next race, the South African Endurance Championships in early March. I will be heading over to South Africa soon since I manage a team over there. Anyway, I should only be limping around for two more weeks. Birch was stunned by the magnitude of the Dakar Rally. Coming into Peru was amazing. It actually took three security guards to get me into my hotel because of the crowds -- they just sort of picked me up while another pushed his way through the people. Birch, who appeared in the Western Leader on December 29, returned to New Zealand on the weekend and has since been resting the ankle he broke on the penultimate stage. The 31-year-old enduro rider was trying to navigate his way through sand dunes when he dropped four metres. The fall left him with a gash on his head and two broken bones in his ankle. When I went to the medi- cal team to get stitches they asked about my foot so I just said I had sprained it five days earlier. Medical crews can with- draw any rider from the rally if they have broken bones. I got the ankle checked out when I came back to New Zealand and now have the cast which is annoying. And a serious crash with another rider occurred on the third day of the 15-day rally. While Birch escaped un- harmed, his KTM motorbike did not. It was quite a big accident and I was all by myself in the middle of the desert trying to fix my bike until a teammate came along. The one scary moment was when the car category caught up. Those guys are lunatics and I had to hide to get out of their way. Most of Birch s Dakar expenses have been covered by a successful TradeMe auc- tion of a KTM 300EXC bike selling for $15,700. Birch has yet to decide if he will race in the event next year. It is bloody dangerous and expensive so I will need to build a bigger budget if I want a top 10 finish. I m going to give it a month so I can make a proper decision. But yeah, I probably will have another go. The Dakar Rally has been held in South America since 2009 because of security con- cerns in Africa. Bay win: Hawkes Bay's Tom Biss, left, and Shaun Peta celebrate. Photo: KERRY MARSHALL/PHOTOSPORT Upset for Waitakere Waitakere United was on the receiving end of an upset against lower ranked Hawkes Bay United in the national premiership fixture last weekend. Hawkes Bay de- feated the high-flying Waitakere team 1-0 with a 78th-minute goal from Conor Tin- nion. Head coach Neil Emblen was frus- trated because the loss means the Whenua- pai-based club hasn t closed the gap on league leaders Auck- land City FC. That was not a good performance, the worst we ve played under my manage- ment, he says. Hawke s Bay coach Chris Greatholder was happy with his first win as head coach. It is a big three points for us and we will kick on from here. Waitakere is now tied for second place with Team Wellington and Canterbury United on 15 points, four points behind Auckland City. Auckland City drew 0-0 in their match against Waikato FC.
January 26th 2012
January 31st 2012