Winter Dual – Round 6
Its hard to believe we are already in the closing half of the dual season, but this was race 6 of 10 and Farmer Jacks dual track was the venue. Last time we raced there it was dual 2 and conditions were less than ideal. We affectionately refer to it as ‘the snow dual’ and say things like “it can never be that bad again”. Maybe we spoke too soon. I thought racing in those conditions had left the track in less than prime conditions so I organised a working party on the sunday before race day to fettle the berms and lips. Tim Pearson, Duncan Philpott, Danny Owen, John Paul Jones, Will and Joel Blomfield all turned out armed with spades and we spent a great couple of hours tarting up the berms, digging in ruts and adding drainage. Thank you so much lads, your help was hugely appreciated!
The end result was brilliant and actually the track was so well built by Cheg’s in the first place that it had held up very well and we just polished it up.
Timmy spent a lot of time making the first big right hander “look pretty” which had a rather detrimental effect on his virgin B&Q spade. Thankfully, their returns policy was great and he ended up with free spade hire.
So to the racing itself. As has been typical all season the weather forecast was brilliant… right up until the wednesday night.
There was much dissenting amongst the ranks with odd talk of ‘bad conditions, unmotivated’ or ‘staying at home in front of the fire’. Not BlueSteel at all. Farmer Jack’s misses, Anna, had kindly promised to lay on hot soup to warm our cockles during the race and she was good to her word. So really, there was no excuse at all. However, it was the smallest dual turn out for years with only 10 brave souls facing the elements. And the elements, they were biblical! With driving rain most of the night we got very wet and the track was super sloppy. Mud flew everywhere and tyres didn’t really grip, it was just a case of finding a rut and trusting it. The biggest obstacle though was the wind. It was howling and gale force at times. To the point where it was bringing riders to a stop going downhill and blowing them completely off track.
With the wind howling so hard we had no way to communicate between the top and bottom of the track so riders just set themselves off in pairs and we recorded the difference rather than the total times. The racing was fast and furious with no one wanting to hang around for any longer than was necessary. The brave tried to send the final table, most just cased.
We cracked through the rounds in a record 45 minutes before retiring back to Krads van to enjoy bowls of Anna’s delicious Celeriac soup. Thank you Anna!
As quick as we could we then decamped to Jack’s barn where he lit a life preserving fire to dry our weary bones and take the edge off for the prize giving.
So massive thanks to them what turned out. You’re all heros you crazy fools! You deserve extra points for making the effort: Richard Baybutt, Tim Pearson, Joe Bowman, Duncan Philpott, Robert Jolley, James Irwin, Shane Townsend, Lee Hawden, and Steve Peat. The aftermath was pretty horrendous, as illustrated by Baybutt
So to the results. Things are hotting up in the top ten and the best of points tell a slightly different story. They are what will count at the end of the series.
Fingers crossed for next week…