The Manawatu region in the north island of New Zealand, is well known for hosting enduring sporting events. The annual Gravel and Tar Classic for professional male cyclists introduced two new events this year - Gravel and Tar La Femme (for professional women cyclists) and the Manawatu Slicks and Stones 100 for amateur cyclists. The Manawatū Slicks and Stones 100 is steering to become an illustrious event on the NZ national sporting calendar. It is open for amateur cyclists on the same day as the professional races, and travels over a similar gravel and tar circuit. Already touted as ‘one of the toughest events in the Southern Hemisphere’ – it’s expected to become a ‘mark your calendar’ event for amateur cyclists seeking the ultimate sporting challenge. A participant in this year’s Slicks and Stones commented afterwards that the event was excellent with a fantastic group of riders who were friendly and helpful.