Sunday, May 29, 2011

Another Muddy Sunday

Winter Series XC racing at Beaconsfield. Its been a wet week but the forecast was for a clear saturday arvo and no rain sunday. The decision was made late saturday night to head on over and have a crack... Mel decided to race as well. Show off the new bike.

Beaconsfield scout camp has an awesome network of trails and the organisers put together a great little loop with a good mix of single track and short fire road links to pass on plus a couple of muddy bogs just to make it interesting...

The laps were short so A grade ended up with 7 laps. I had no expectations looking to have a consistent ride and hopefully keep the power on for all 7 laps. Mel entered B grade and had 6 laps.

Looking around on the startline i guessed i'd be out of the top 5 but i'd have a crack anyway. The muddy trails would be awesome and suit my style.

Off and Racing and after slipping my foot twice on the pedal i finally clipped in and we were into single track. Feeling strong I kept the pressure on the rider in front and after a lap i realised we were in 4th and 5th. 3rd place was just up ahead and we were catching. Weaving through the trail we popped out onto a short fireroad climb and both attacked passing 3rd place.
At the halfway mark it was AJ and Rohin way out in front. Steve Cusworth 3rd, Me 4th and Peter Kutschera in 5th.

I thought Steve and I had left Peter behind but like the silent assassin he was always there, we'd get away only to be roped back in somehow. Every time i was sure we'd gapped him i'd take a quick glance over the shoulder only to see him still there.

After a few more laps and some heavy traffic on course we finally got a decent gap on him and with one lap to go it was Steve still in 3rd and me in 4th. I'd ridden hard for 6 laps and was feeling it on the climbs. Through some last lap traffic i lost steve's wheel and that was it. Crossed the line in 4th happy with the day.

Mel had a good ride too, first female across the line and some prize money too. A stick in the gears and small get off slowed her down near the end but the new bike is working well.
Finished. Not as muddy as last week thankfully. Note the lack of bottle, i ditched it on my last lap to save weight.....

Another sunday arvo cleanup.... wouldn't have it any other way.

Mel out on the new bike.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Monday, May 23, 2011

Bendigo 6 Hour

Depending on what forecast you listened to, race day would be rain, passing showers or the Rapture. So we packed extra gear just in case.
Hangin out in the tent before the race
Weapons of choice in the background and the approaching weather..... it would be a muddy one.
For the first time in a 6hour we had a gas heater, thanks to Rich who also brought the tent, we were ready for riding.
Ryan was on start duties and kitted up in a rain jacket.
Lead moto for a controlled start, ryan is on the right, elbows out...
First transition, clean kit. Didn't last long. The passing showers kept passing and there was plenty of muddy water and clay to blast through.
After a few laps to sort out the field we were in Second having a good battle with team Catch Us If You Can. They had setup an early lead with some smokin laps(one of which was the fastest lap overall for the day) but we clawed our way back with consistent riding. I was getting my riding mojo on and having a ball on course. Slick trails, rocks, great singletrack and not too many sharp climbs. Laps were being knocked over in a bit under half an hour, i was covered in mud and didn't care. It was great fun out there.
Sadly we never quite got a gap on the Catch Us team and with our brake pads failing and fatigue setting in we settled in second and raced for the finish.
Pretty muddy out there.
Last lap. Brown shoes. They should be white...
The aftermath. Mine was the same. Needed 2 washes to get it clean again.
6 hours of sitting between muddy laps..... Ryans chair copped it.
Cleanup aside we had a great day. Mel took her new ASR our for its maiden voyage and with Aleisha they Won Female Pairs! Great stuff! New bike obviously working well even in the mud.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

More Pump Track action

Another clip, solo run around the pump track. complete with transfer line. Camera phones are awesome....


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Beechworth 6 Hour

Cruized upto Beechworth with Mel on friday for the S.H.I.T.S. A 6 hour i've missed every year for some reason or another. This year i can tick it off the list and can confirm its a ripper!

Friday night we stayed in a B&B with Rhino, Marnie, Rich, Aleisha, Jack, Will and Andrew. In whats becoming a tradition we got a bit loose....
not the best prep for a 6 hour but we had a great night.

Next morning i solved the Heineken puzzle. Although i needed some help with the correct spelling.... Heinekin is not correct apparently
So we headed to the race site. Bit cold but it was lookin to be a clear day. I was on first lap dutys and suspected i might still be a bit "under the weather" from friday night....

Carbon ASR ready to rock. New wheels from Yeti Australia with some new tyres were pimpin and made me look super pro. Dont normally run the saddlebag but with no pockets on the skinsuit i didn't want to be caught out. Its happened before...

The first bit of the race was up a fireroad climb. That slowly got steeper till we turned into the bike park. I wasn't ready for anything and suffered my way up the climb and into the bike park.
First lap was tough. Stuck in a conga line of riders and not moving forward i rolled along with a good group but was thinking we were way off the pace. Into transition and Rhino went out. Time to pull myself together, water, eat, check bike, focus... Think my hangover is going..
Rhino smashed out an awesome lap and launched us into a great position, we were back in the race!! Next lap i was back in the zone. We managed to sneak up into 2nd place. Duelling with Team Wombat.
Sadly Team Wombat got past us and gained a good gap that we couldn't get back, i was loving the track and the ASR was on fire, all traces of the hangover gone but tired legs were starting to show on the last climb back to the transition area.

Watching the laptimes i could see that Giant Bikes was catching us. Dig deep was the order of the day. I gave it all on my last lap, smashing the singletrack to maximise the time cause i knew the last climb would be where i'd need everything i could get.
I knew it would be close, i'd seen the flash of a giant jersey behind me in the weaving trails. With 200m to go the course does 2 switchbacks and he was right there, in a world of hurt i just had to dig deeper. Up the small ppinch to the finish i clicked from the 42/36 down to 42/32 and left it all on the track...... To cross 15 seconds up. We stayed in 3rd!!

Great day, great result. Mel and Aleisha raced in Female pairs and had a great battle going with Trailmix and Gemma and Alice swapping the lead around all day. Yeti Spaghetti ended up in second place! Another great result.

Think the skinsuit tradition may continue..... getting hammered the night before may not...

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Early Morning Pump Track Session

7:30am start at Lysterfield. I rolled in to find Ash busy sweeping the berms.

this was a great idea. gravel in the berms wasn't fun, we chased each other around the track progressivly getting faster and more confident until our ability levels were exceeded and down i went....

The shoulder breaking DJ was rockin. Heaps rad fun...

YouTube clip from the morning.

It sure felt faster when i was riding it and i sure ain't no pump track champ... we figured a transfer line too but a small amount of digging is required to make it rock. Plenty good times.

The DJ is now out of the dog house...

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Bike for Sale

Hard decisions have to be made. With the arrival of a new Carbon ASR something has to go... Sadly it is the BigTop.

Keep an eye on it. Well looked after. Raced but maintained well. Totally awesome bike but i cannot afford to keep it.