The second round of this season’s dual was a bit too popular. After having spent 10 minutes figuring out how to frig a 32 person gird for 26 the week before I’d come prepared, but then 36 racers turned up and we had to run a qualification. As these races go on, things do get smoother as the way they’re organised evolves. However, that week only Steph was hardy enough to come along and do the timing, which meant that I was on the second stop watch for the first time in a long time. After eventually remembering how it worked, I also remembered just what a job timing is and just how essential it is to everything these races are about. So again, a massive thank you to Steph for coming along and timing for us and also thank you to everyone else that helps out, Izzie, Laura, Mari, Henry. You’re absolute gems and we truly couldn’t race without you. Thankyou. Anyone racing should also pay big thanks to these wonderful people, hugs are free!
I’d introduced a new feature in to this track which proved to be a bit of a leveller. After a short run in from the start line, there was a triangle of posts with tape around. The rider had to loop around them once before continuing on down the hill. The softness of the ground meant that it was actually impossible to pedal back up the slope. It turned in to a demonstration of cyclocross dismounting and remounting techniques with some much more successful than others. Both riders had to start the loop through the small gap in between the two triangles which did make for some good elbow actions. Once Quali’s were done, we got down to racing. Dunc had a bad loop and couldn’t get back on his bike meaning that he was beaten by two children to a place in the finals even on his brand new 5, courtesy of Orange!
The first round saw Steve Hardcastle’s return to dual short lived, as was my own, being taken out by Dave Camus. Jim Norton faced Will Swinden but couldn’t match his speed. Ruari very narrowly missed out on a hugely humiliating defeat at the hands of Oscar Monk after a fall in his first run left him need to make up over a second. Luckily he held in together and advanced through.
The second round saw the departure of Tom Duncan to the very on form Danger Green who advanced to the quarters for the first time in a while. There was a real nail biter between Chris Pearson and Will Swinden with Chris taking the win by only two tenths. The Quarters saw Chay put out Danger and Craig dispatch Ruari. Luke Meredith missed a post in his second run after a closely fought battle with Chris, setup up a semi again Timmy. Tim’s victory saw him in an incredibly close Big final against Craig Evans who was riding at Whistler speeds. Their first round was too close to call and Tim’s dual expertise and questionable rear tyre were not enough to hold off Craig who got the win. Chay and Chris were equally close in the small final but Chay just took 3rd place by half a second.
Massive thanks also to Marco Wood-Bonelli for coming along with his camera and documenting the action. Another great round of dual, I don’t think we’ll be seeing the loop the loops again anytime soon but you never know until you try.