The NDH TT track is not a technical race as such but a mighty good test of fitness and peddle power. This weekend was the third year that I’ve participated in this event and this time there was a pretty awesome turn out for the women’s category than seen previously. It’s always a reach for a podium. In practice Saturday and Sunday I felt fast and confident, despite the late night socialising with friends! I enjoyed the buzz of being able to clear the jumps on Transmission, tho not always an advantage in terms of carrying speed but a definite exhilarating feeling of being on my bike, with a grin from ear to ear and the sound of dry dusty trails beneath my wheels. I found some satisfaction in making some progress from last year. I wanted some light rain like it did earlier in the morning to give the track some grip. Something I’d forgot on my first race run as I came out the wooded section into the final section far too hot, in the blink of an eye I slammed like a dainty wrestler in the grit and onto the fire road! What a fool I’d been to think I could have cornered so tightly! After my Mighty Mouse scream, it felt like I took forever and a day to back up on my feet. I held back before joining back behind Helen Gaskell to complete my run in a disappointing 5.36?
With a little pep talk from myself in between runs, (by the process of thinking!!!) I considered why not have best of three runs for a brief wasted moment…..but for my second race run I mainly focused on staying on my bike and being smooth, how it’s supposed to be. I loved every minute of it, had fun but couldn’t find my pace I knew I was capable of and was cautious not to make the same mistake again in other areas which considered of grit sized marbles. not quite feeling I’d done enough, I crossed the line with a time of 4.12 and settling with 5th place. So…for me it’s a fact fitness is key to reducing injury and racing faster as I remember both Peaty and Atherton once staying. I managed 8 loops of the fire road hill climb to the top over the course of the weekend, awesome crowd of new and old friends, I’ve got a massive bruiser on my hip and a swollen wrist but I’m feeling stronger and fitter ahead of Steel City!
Cath Tilford 5th Master Ladies
Ben Tilford 15th Vets
Well this was it, time to see if the winter training really has payed off. TRG Racing were fired up and ready to hit round 1 of the British Downhill Series last weekend at Ae Forest. The first big race of the season is always a funny one, it gives you that insight into who has been putting in the training and it’s always interesting to know what bikes people are riding.
Here at trg had put in the training and we were definitely on the right bikes. Our Gt Furys have been riding great through the winter months so to say the least we was looking forward to racing them. Friday tea time we arrived at the track but unfortunately the weather wasn’t looking too cracking, with cars and caravans getting towed into the field we thought parking on the carpark near the cafe would be a sensible idea, so we put up the Gt bicycle tent and headed off up the track. On track we spotted TRG’S super stoked youth rider Henry Giles along with his dad steve and brother Robbie from ‘RobbieGilesMedia’ The track had been taped differently to last year which looked good.
There were some sweet rooty corners and off camber high lines, which was a huge change from the previous year. Further up track not much had changed untill we reached the final section towards the start where you was chucked through a wood section which at the time seemed like a rocky river. After the track walk we headed to the b&b to get freshened up and hit the town, okay so maybe we shouldnt have gone to the karaoke at the pub because that later found us in one of the 3 local night clubs in Dumfries. After me throwing down some shapes and rich and mick reliving their youth we thought it would be best to head back and get some kip. We arrived at the track around 08:30 the following day to be soon met by team riders micheal Coupe and mick hill along with seb frost from ‘roots&rain’ and his lovely girlfriend jo.
The TRG crew headed up track for the first practice run of the weekend and I loved it! The track was awesome! not only that, the sun was also shining. As the day went on my riding was spot on and the GT was living upto our expectations. I’ve never been on a bike before that I can trust as much as the fury. With this in mind I had a good feeling that I was going to do well this weekend. Due to the uplift been quite stretched out we only caught up with Henry a few times but it was good to hear that he was doing well. Untill the back end of the day, Henry took a tumble over the bars breaking his wrist and collarbone.
We was absolutely gutted for him! With all the bad luck from the previous weekend at Innerleithen we hoped that was all in the past. As henry was sat in a&e we called it a day and headed back to the b&b. Sunday morning I was feeling fresh after a good early night but with chance to only fit in one practice run seesing runs were soon underway. All the teams seesing runs went really well, Molloy 15th vets, Waudy 3rd grand vets, coupes 10th masters and me 12th experts. I was buzzing about qualifying 12th and was determined to get a top ten. On my race run I had a good run up untill the last woods, on one corner that I have been nailing all weekend I caught my front wheel on a root which send me over the bars. As soon as I his the floor I was gutted! That was the top ten gone and I crosses the line with my head hung low with a 28th place finish in experts. I was soon met by my team and Molloy finished 16th Waudy 3rd and coupes 12th. I was dead chuffed for mick finishing 3rd in grand vets and getting on the podium, the old git didn’t do too bad I guess. Next stop is steve peats steal city race to warm up up for bds round 2 at fortwilliam, now that is one I am looking forward to. Thanks to all our sponsors for getting us off to a flying start and we will see you at the next round.
Henry Giles Race report – I arrived to a sunny Innerleithen on Friday evening to find a track that I was super stoked to ride, after walking it I realised that I thought I could be on for a good one this weekend.
Waking up to a soaking car park on Saturday morning was a massive let down but we cracked on and practice was amazing, despite the late start because of a shortage in marshals. I took to the track quick and was nailing my lines within a few runs but towards the end of the day the middle section of the track became sloppy and slow I thought.
Waking up to yet more rain on Sunday wasn’t such a bad thing, it washed the track out a bit but it was still pretty greasy! I only managed to fit in one practice run but I felt like that was enough, I felt calm at the top but was rushed to the start hut with 30 seconds to get ready because I wasn’t put in order, I set off and couldn’t get clipped in on one foot for the first straight, I think I lost a lot of time really but I managed an average run which placed me in 10th and I felt like I had a lot lot more to give. in my second race run I was ready to push and try to get further into that top 10 but unfortunately after steaming top section I hit the deck pretty hard and lost a load of time, I carried on but pulled over to let the rider behind me go past. I finished 15th in the finals which is not what I wanted but I’m happy with how I was riding, I just need to put it all together and find a good balance.
I’m now hoping to carry this momentum onto the Ae Forest BDS next weekend.
Jamie Scott 12th Experts
Liam McDermott 13th Experts
Henry Giles 15th Youth
Richie Molloy 17th Vets