Mountain bike art set to impress at Crankworx Rotorua

Encapsulating speed, acceleration and Rotorua’s dirt gold, FOX Racing have teamed up with Te Puia l NZMACI to create a custom helmet.

What: FOX Racing custom Profame helmet
Who: Designed by Te Puia | New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts (NZMACI) and handpainted by FOX Racing
Where: Showcased at Crankworx Rotorua and held permanently at Te Puia l NZMACI

Encapsulating speed, acceleration and Rotorua’s dirt gold, FOX Racing have teamed up with Te Puia l New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute (NZMACI) to create a custom Profame helmet inspired by Crankworx Rotorua.

Designed by NZMACI, and hand painted at FOX headquarters in the USA, the helmet was displayed at Crankworx throughout the nine-day festival, and was the winning prize of a FOX competition held for Crankworx spectators.

A second replica of the helmet was also crafted and has taken pride of place at NZMACI for visitors to view.

Te Puia general manager sales and marketing, Kiri Atkinson-Crean says Crankworx has quickly become one of the key highlights on Rotorua and New Zealand’s events calendar, attracting thousands of national and international guests each year.

“Te Arawa people have been welcoming visitors to Rotorua since the late 1800s, and more than a century later, Māori arts, crafts and culture are incorporated in everything that we do today – it is our identity and it is what defines us.

“Applying our uniquely Māori concepts to this fresh, contemporary medium is an innovative way to profile Māori culture and values and traditions in today’s world.”

FOX international marketing manager, Maria Pando says FOX Racing have worked closely with Te Puia l NZMACI to create a Māori motif that is a true representation of Rotorua, New Zealand, their people and their culture.”

The design

Designed by NZMACI Tohunga Whakairo (master carver), Clive Fugill, the design represents everything that is unique and special about Crankworx Rotorua, with a design motif that is distinctly Māori and Te Arawa.

Inspired by two concepts, the pūhoro design represents speed and acceleration, while the kōwhaiwhai design represents the natural outdoor environment that Crankworx athletes compete in.

Mr Fugill says the pūhoro design is reflective of the ripple effect produced by a river’s water current, symbolising power, strength, stamina and speed.

“Traditionally, the design was placed on the thighs of ‘Toa’ or ‘Māori warriors’ to harness the power of flowing water and to capture it within the thighs of a fighter during warfare.

“The kōwhaiwhai design is a representation of the natural world. Whereas whakairo rākau (wood carving) was used to capture the tangible and what can clearly be seen (usually an ancestor), kōwhaiwhai were used to capture the intangible and the unseen.

“The colours – red, white and black – are time-honoured colours used in pre-European times. Red represents papatūānuku (mother earth), white symbolises the domain of lo (the penultimate being) who resides among the heavens, while black is a reference to Te Kore (the void). 

“It was within Te Kore where the seeds of creation were sown by lo and life began. From Te Kore came Te Pō, and from Te Pō came Te Ao Mārama (world of light). It was in Te Ao Mārama that life could thrive and prosper.”

About Te Puia

Situated five minutes from central Rotorua, Te Puia is an iconic destination for visitors featuring the world famous Pōhutu Geyser, Māori cultural performances, kiwi birds, boiling mud pools, and native bush.

Te Puia is also the home of the New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, and acts as a kaitiaki (guardian) of the traditional Māori skills of carving and weaving for future generations.

What is Crankworx?

Through dirt, sweat and cheers, Crankworx celebrates the epic endurance, supreme flow, monster air and heart-stopping drops of gravity mountain biking.

The defining celebration of world-class mountain biking, Crankworx Rotorua, is ramping up this year, expanding to nine days from 25 March to 2 April. The first weekend features the season starter for the eight-stop Enduro World Series with the GIANT Toa Enduro in Whakarewarewa Forest, before the event descends on Skyline Rotorua Gravity Park where the competition will be on to fight for King and Queen of Crankworx 2017.

Crankworx Rotorua is the first stop on the Crankworx World Tour which features four locations – Les Gets, France; Innsbruck, Austria; and its home base Whistler, Canada.

Travel tips

Rotorua is centrally located at the heart of the North Island. The city is a three-hour drive from Auckland or a 45 minute flight.

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