Half way through the season already! Its hard to believe it goes so quickly… which is a good thing, as it means it will soon be Summer, the nights will be long and the sun will shine for days on end. We can live in hope ehContinue reading
Twas the night before Christmas, well about a week actually, and the 3 wise men were no where to be seen. Well, maybe they were tucked up warm and dry in bed or perhaps having a pint with some dry friends. Because, there were certainly no wisemen present in the Park last night.Continue reading
That was the most mental dual ever. Last night, we raced dual in a blizzard, with temperatures well below zero, with gusting winds and the sloppiest of mud. We were all wet, cold and grinning. There were a couple of cases of near hypothermia, many hands didnt work well enough to pull brake levers let alone hold on to bars. The chattering of teeth could be just about heard over the wind and there were many shouts of “Cant we just go home now?”.
WE LOVED IT.
This was a race which had to be seen to be believed. The move from our loamy home turf over to the close horse cropped grass of Farmer Jacks field was a real eye opener to all who raced. The Speed was unbelievable! So So fast. Scary fast. But the grass was gripper that you could believe, but those that believed cornered like nothing else. Truly amazing to watch.
The cold and foggy winters night added to the atmosphere and the steep push up was enough to keep everyone warm. The grip lasted only so long though. Soon enough it began to give way and not always in a predictable manner with some brilliant crashes as a result.
Duncan’s edit goes a long way to explaining the evening. Shot by him and part time pro tog’ Josh Lewis you can start to get an idea of the speed and some of the crashes. Joe Bowman goes down hard in the semi final against Chay at 45 seconds after a lovely big tank slapper (those are loose dogs girly screams). Joe had been on fire all night and had the right hand lined totally wired (see 54 seconds). The final big right hander was just the fastest and driftiest corner. Loosedog also suffered the same fate after look hot in practice, however he went down in the first round.
Did John Lawlor cut the course at 23 seconds? He was certainly on it throughout the night but lost his back end in one run on the last corner and couldn’t quite run across this line in time. His #WontBackDown partner Clay porter made a mistake in his first run and Ruari punished him for it. Peaty showed him how it was done though and was just screaming through that last right hander and took the overall win on the night against Chay.
Massive thanks for Farmer Jack for the use of his field, it really is perfect for Dual. Thanks also to our inimitable timing lady Steph Anderson and her assistants for the night, Dave Camus and Joe Spivey.
So Timmy Dared to miss a round, its this because he has it sewn up already?
I was told last week that Winter doesn’t officially start until the end of December, however Dual has begun and it’ll be going on all winter long. It was with some trepidation I got all the posts and paraphernalia together as its been so long that I was bound to forget something. However, once we were in the park with everyone’s lights on posts, course marked out and bikes going sideways I breathed a sigh of relief and got down to practise. What made it even better was the Izzie and Steph were there to take care of the timing and keep us in check. They do such a good job, it just leaves me to shout at the rabble at the top and get them in to the gate. Thankyou ladies!
The racing was brilliant, the conditions perfect. Grippier than we’re used to and usually dry it was really fast, however the corners soon got blown out and back ends broke loose. Some kids had been in our usual spot building shady kickers over logs, perfect fodder to add interest and injury. They corner in to the first one was the wettest on track and caught out many but only Will Swinden head butted the second. I fell foul to the fast traverse loosing both wheels quickly and landing on my shoulder hard enough to pop a rib. The following corner was quite a revelation as it was the first where line choice came in to play, outside and too fast in to the next or slow and tight in but with an awkward setup for the next.
With 26 racing I decided that Quali’s werent in order, 10 people not getting a race wasn’t on. Therefore, we raced a 32 person grid with two riders getting a by through a couple of rounds. Not ideal, but a better compromise and we’ll be running this for the season. The Pearson’s cursed me loudly as they were randomly drawn against each other in the first round with Timmy getting the better of Chris by 0.01 seconds. Gutted. Will Swinden was also out in the first round after a tumble as was Steve ‘Roadie’ Taylor who didnt quite get the whistle start. Good to see him back on a proper bike though. Bowman and Philpott were out first round two due to snapped chains! Too much power lads. They raced chainless against their opponents with a no pedalling agreement but couldnt get the better of them.
The finals came down to Chay Granby and Rob Campbell in the small final with Chay taking 3rd overall and Ruari and Timmy in the big final. Timmy squeezed out Ruari by less than half a second overall and took a well deserved win although there is an investigation in to his rear ‘spiked’ tyre.
It was great to be back in the woods, can’t wait for the rest of the season. Again massive thanks to Isabel and Steph! Also big thanks to Marco Wood-Bonelli for the photos, hope you can ride again soon.
25th January 2011
Cycling home from work in the drizzle my hood was up and my head was down to hide from the drizzle. Bugger. We haven’t had a wet dual since the first round of the winter series in Swinny’s field. Having spent half an hour securing new Slap Wraps (many thanks Henry) to the poles with a mile of tape I headed over to the park to get setup. Having a bit of time on my hands (not having to wait for Bowman to turn up with the poles “I maybe late, but I’ve never actually missed anything that important”) a slightly more imaginative line was carved out of the hillside. Round 6 had highlighted the value of a few more natural features in the course to stop creative cornering, with fallen branches and plenty of trees around this wasn’t a problem.