The NZ Schools Cycling Association (NZSCA) was established in 1968, to address the decreasing numbers of cyclists participating in the sport.
An idea was formalised to introduce cycling into secondary schools across New Zealand in the hope this would help the development of cycling. An event consisting of a 16km Team Time Trial was scheduled and the NZSCA approached former Governor General, Sir Bernard Fergusson to have a cup bear his name, which he readily agreed to. This event, now known as the National Schools Road Cycling Championships is often referred to as the Sir Bernard Ferguson weekend. This event was held in the Levin/Manawatu region from 1968 until 2018 where the event was moved to the South Island as a trial to encourage more South Island representation. From its inception events and age groups have been added as demand required:
- The HA Joli Cup for Team Time Trial reserves from introduced in 1971
- In 1979 a points race was introduced, and is still held
- In 1986 a girls grade was introduced
- Due to the increasing numbers an Under 15 grade for the team time trial was introduced in 1993
- 2000 saw the introduction of racing for year 7 & 8 pupils
This event is now held in the Term 3 School Holidays on a rotation basis between North and South Islands.
NZSCA, now known as Cycling New Zealand Schools, has now grown to include 13 sanctioned events across Road, Track, MTB and Cyclo Cross operating under its umbrella.
In 2016, Schools Cycling and Cycling New Zealand signed a memorandum of understanding to recognise their shared ambition of maximising the growth in participation of competitive cycling in schools ( intermediate and secondary schools), and intend to use the knowledge, skills, expertise and resources collectively across our organisations to achieve this outcome. Through this partnership, it will be possible to further connect the competition pathways, enhance best practice event delivery, and increase and build stronger relationships with schools and their riders.
Likewise, it is envisaged that through this partnership where Cycling New Zealand integrates Schools Cycling activity into the current Cycling New Zealand framework, there will be notable increased efficiently and reduce administration and operational workload for Cycling New Zealand Schools Executive.
What is the Role of Cycling New Zealand Schools?
- To promote the enjoyment, participation and competition on bicycles for all school-age children in New Zealand
- To create and govern competitive cycling opportunities for School age participants.
- To regulate cycling competition between schools and establish fair rules of competition.
- To ensure a consistent standard of quality and safety is achieved and to meet the requirements of Schools Sport NZ (NZSSSC)
- To hold, approve or endorse New Zealand National Schools Cycling National Championships or Events, North and South Island Schools Cycling Championships or Events and approve or endorse regional level Schools Cycling events.
- To be a Member Organisation of Cycling New Zealand and to comply with the rules of Cycling New Zealand as they affect the Association
- To maintain consistency and alignment with the aims of School Sport NZ (NZSSSC).
- To advocate for the rights and interests of schools cycling at the appropriate levels.