Anton Cooper was one of the keynote speakers present at the NZ Bike Expo in Christchurch at the end of October. In the inaugural running of the event he was able to not just play a role supporting the weekend but also experience it for himself. We wanted to get his thoughts on his time at the Wigram Airforce Museum for those two days in October.
RC: First of all tell us about your experience of the NZ Bike Expo weekend. What did you do there? What did you see? What did you try out?
Anton: I was there on behalf of Cycling NZ, helping out with some of the Watt Bikes they had set up there and just having a presence and socialising there. And I had a wee Q&A session on Saturday. There was plenty of Modern tech on display, different carbon components, tyres, E-Bikes etc along with some cool old bikes for nostalgia. There were also some trucks and a bus that you could sit in to get a feel for a big vehicle’s blind spots and a driving simulator, however I spent most of my time there probably on the Christchurch Adventure Park’s CAP Lap. They had a short timed track set up that you had to complete on a small 16 inch wheeled kids bike with just a back pedal brake. It was great fun and took me back to my childhood!
RC: How impressed were you with the way the weekend unfolded?
Anton: It was a great weekend with plenty of people showing up and lot’s of familiar faces. It was very well run for a first time event and I’m sure with more exhibitors in the future there will be even more reason to attend.
RC: Tell us about your Q&A session and making the jump from being on the bike to talking about being on the bike and how you adjusted to the public speaking.
Anton: I’ve never had an issue with public speaking so that’s not something that phased me. To be honest I don’t talk too much so being able to tell my story to a room full of people is a lot easier than one at a time! It was a great Q&A session with a packed room and there were some good questions at the end which makes it all worthwhile.
RC: What kind of future do you see the NZ Bike Expo having in New Zealand and how much does New Zealand need this?
Anton: I’m certain it will only grow from here as more brands and manufacturers seize the opportunity to showcase their technology in one place. The whole concept makes so much sense and it is great that NZ has caught onto the idea.