Tributes have been paid to a former Taranaki man with a passion for biking and a love of journey following his death on the age of fifty seven. Leigh Chapman, who turned into born in Stratford and schooled in Waitara, cycled professionally within the United States and Europe and also represented New Zealand in the game. Chapman died on February 26 after a quick warfare with bone marrow most cancers. Despite his long absence from his domestic province, his achievements within the international of avenue racing had been widely recognized. Sport Taranaki leader executive Howie Tamati first met Chapman once they worked on the ground at Waitara’s freezing works.
He had a character all right. He turned into a hard case.” Tamati said Chapman’s ability at the motorcycle changed into additionally prominent. “As a bike owner he become renowned for his capacity at the hills. He was a first rate climber,” he said. “He become probable one who flew underneath the radar for Taranaki.” As a part of his biking CV, Chapman represented New Zealand between 1981-1989 in competitions inside the United States, Tasmania and Europe, which include the 1987 World Championships in Austria and in the equal opposition years later, which became held in France. He additionally rode for professional teams in France and Switzerland. He lived the final 25 years of his life in Queenstown, where he persisted to ride. During his time there he also worked in the adventure tourism enterprise as a rafting and canyoning guide. Jack Swart, a former New Zealand cyclist who represented the usa on the Commonwealth Games, stated Chapman made a “quite desirable fist” of competing overseas. “In biking circles we all knew what he did. We knew what he turned into capable of,” he stated. Chapman would additionally be remembered for his comradeship with different cyclists. “He helped so many people out alongside the way. He changed into only a actual likeable person,” Swart stated. “He turned into a notable competitor to head training with, just an extraordinary man.” Former expert bicycle owner Stephen Swart, who’s Jack’s brother, stated Chapman “left an impact” on riders during his stint racing in America, especially together with his climbing capability on the motorbike. The had saved in contact over time through their shared interest in biking. Although he was unable to attend Chapman’s funeral service, Stephen Swart stated he visited him some days before he died to mention their very last goodbyes. Chapman’s dying got here ten months after he had a kidney transplant, which had freed him from desiring daily dialysis. His mother Val Chapman, who lives in Brisbane, said the excessive regard to which her son changed into held become obtrusive through the support and generosity proven to the circle of relatives following his passing. “He turned into a very, very popular guy, he had a remarkable persona.” Asides from biking, she stated his different exceptional love become snowboarding. “He become known as ‘Adventure Leigh’ a bit,” she stated. Chapman is survived by his mom, his two sisters Darrel and Vicki and their families.