By GUY WILLIAMS
He calls it the ‘‘Rod Drury effect’’.
That’s the best way Queenstown Mountain Bike Club president Pete McInally can explain why it’s been able to afford to get proper maintenance carried out on the most popular trails at Queenstown Bike Park over the winter.
He won’t disclose exactly how much Drury — club member and billionaire philanthropist —
has given to the club to enable the revamp, but says it’s in the ‘‘few hundreds of thousands’’.
‘‘It’s a not-insignificant amount.’’
The work, carried out by four contractors and Skyline Queenstown, started soon after gondola access to the park closed for the season in May.
Continuing throughout winter, except during the Level 4 lockdown, the work’s given 10 of the park’s most popular trails a refresh, with some of them substantially improved, he says.
Gondola access to the park reopened on Thursday, with eight of the refreshed trails ready for action, weather permitting.
They include such riding institutions as Hammy’s, Squid Run, Huck Yeah and Original, and cover all trail grades.
Work will continue on the other two trails for another month before they’re opened up for riders.
McInally says he’s already been on Original for ‘‘a sneaky ride under the guise of testing’’
and likes what he’s seen.