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Sophie Corbidge wearing Orca Alpha wetsuit at Mount Maunganui


October 28, 2015

Tri Training Spotlight on Cambridge with Sophie Corbidge


Location: Cambridge, North Island, New Zealand

Why do you head here? 

It’s where I live when I’m based in New Zealand, and where the NZ High Performance Triathlon Team calls home. The training is the best in the country, in my opinion! No traffic, small proximity to all terrains, and full of other high performance athletes to train & socialize with. Many groups of athletes visit Cambridge for training camps, regardless of their ability or age.

What time of year is best to be here and why?

New Zealand summer season! Between November & March. The weather is primo in New Zealand over summer.

Where do you recommend to swim? 

We swim at the local school swimming facilities. They have an indoor & outdoor pool, both 25m but both in really good condition. Cambridge also has a public outdoor 50m pool, naturally heated by the sun! For open water sessions, we go to Lake Karapiro, (where the NZ rowers train), and our coach kayaks beside us. For surf practice, we sometimes travel to Mount Maunganui, which is on the East Coast & often gets good waves.

Sophie Corbidge wearing Orca Alpha wetsuit

Where do you stay when you’re there? Why would you recommend this place?

I live at home, with two other NZ triathletes and a NZ track cyclist… and of course our pet dog, Pedro! I love everything about the small town of Cambridge. It is where I feel safe and where I am the happiest. When I am happy, my training is the best. There are many nice motels and homestays available in Cambridge too for those coming to visit.

Where do you head for tri-related help while there? Any good tri/bike shops to recommend?

HP Triathlon NZ is based out of the Avantidrome (World Class Velodrome) in Cambridge, and all our coaches/physios/psychologists work there. There is a local bike shop called Spoken Cycles which is our port of call – they are really friendly and know their stuff.

Where can someone get the best coffee here?

Paddock Café is our port of call for the best coffee in town! We make a trip to Paddock at least 3 times a week – they have great good, great coffee and a really friendly atmosphere. Rouge café also has good coffee, and Punnet café is a bit out of town, but shouldn’t be missed for those post-ride feeds!

How easy is it to get around here? Would someone need their own car or public transportation is good?

There is a public bus service, but Cambridge is such a small town that cycling is the best option! Cambridge is renowned for it’s bike paths that link up to Hamilton (the closest city). Most things are within walking distance of each other in Cambridge, which is ideal!

Bike Paths Cambridge New Zealand

Where’s your favourite spot to head to treat yourself after a long day of training?

Paddock Café and Punnet Café – they have fantastic healthy & hearty food options! I love the raw cakes offered at Punnet – gluten free heaven!

Any other tips to add if someone was thinking of heading to this location for some training time?

Give me a call! Haha. Local knowledge is key for finding out the best bike routes.