If you've been keeping an eye on 'Tour Divide' discussion on the excellent Bikepacking site, you'll have seen some heavy debate about the optimum size of the event. Looks like they are heading towards 100 riders this year or next, which puts pressure on facilities and changes the nature of the event. This got me thinking again about the best size for the Kiwi Brevet. If it were the only brevet on offer, I'd feel obliged to accept all comers, but that's not the case.
This November will see the second Le Petit Brevet run. Dan Roberts is considering running a tawhio/touring style event in Otago, and then there's the Great Southern Brevet
(of similar length and style to the Kiwi Brevet). I'd hoped the last one of those events would be run in odd-numbered years, but it's not a big deal. While not ideal, it could even be seen as a sign of the success of the dirt brevet format that we already have conflicting events.
With plenty to choose from (and talk of one or two other events in the pipeline in the future) I feel comfortable limiting the 2012 Kiwi Brevet to 80 riders. If fewer turn up, that's fine. More than 80 riders would result in overcrowding of huts and backpackers, not to mention a shortage of bananas and chocolate milk in small towns along the route.
I'll make an announcement in a few weeks about how to get on the start list. We're clearly a looooonnnggggg way off from next summer. With all the rotton weather, I hope you're enjoying a little well-earnt hibernation.