Monday, 21 July 2008

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Enter Sandman

Today's plan was to head down to Weston on the Pugsley. The aim was to play about in the sand. Thankfully, just before I left I saw an advert for T4 on the Beach. Seeing as the beach is due to be filled with McFly fans I think I'll head to the woods instead...

Saturday, 19 July 2008

Ten at Kirroughtree

Last weekend was due to be a, much needed, chance to catch up on some chores and sleep. That was until a 10pm decision to head up to Ten at Kirroughtree . We grabbed little more than our tent, sleeping bags, my 69er and our new Alpkit down jackets, and then jumped in Mel’s car. 4:30 am we finally hit the campsite. It was time to get up at 7:30, to attempted to find a race entry. Luckily for me Andy from Alpine had been dropped in it by his partner so I landed a place in pairs.

Andy headed out to ride a double but turned up after an hour having managed to snap his chain in two places simultaneously and being made to walk back down the course. I left him to sort it out as I headed out. The course was great, very singletrack heavy and relentless. The climbing was broken in to small chunks and hardly noticeable but the payback was a long fast decent at the end of the lap. When I got back from my second lap Andy wasn’t in the handover. I headed back to the camp to see where he was. I wasn’t expecting the answer to be "hospital". Apparently he had fixed his chain, then, while riding on the gravel car park, snapped it again and thrown himself over the handlebars. Everyone knows car park injuries are the worst, and it turned out his knee was pretty battered. I headed out again for another couple. The atmosphere was great but by now I was looking forward to a cold beer so I joined dR j0n and Marty from the TSPC as well as Damo (all the way over from Aus) who were "recuperating". As the afternoon drew on some went out for more laps while others joined us for more r&r. Andy got back from hospital but wasn’t up to riding.

As the race ended Phil and Anja took the mixed pairs easily and Jac won Solo. This, along with Phil’s birthday, gave us a good excuse to celebrate. Late in to the night.

The drive home was less pleasant but all in it was a top event and I certainly hope to be back next year.

Pic of Mr The Horse by Trina

Thursday, 10 July 2008

"What is this doost?!"

For some reason dust doesn't stick to the scars on my legs.

Bottom right: Wildcat gap, State College, PA. 2005
Top left: Ford Ka, Gloucester Road, Bristol, 2007

Monday, 7 July 2008

A Long Good Saturday

A few months back the the 69er Collective made a trip to the first round of the G2 Revolver series. A good time was had by all. I don’t think there was any way I was going to miss the second round, especially as our friend Ian was designing the course in Brighton.

In the week leading up to the event the forecast was for torrential rain. Matt, an ex-pat Brightonian told me “the course will be fun in the dry”, the lack of information telling me exactly what I didn't want to know. I packed the Mud Xs, left the Dry Xs at home and generally prepared for trench warfare...

Friday night Gooner and Anne joined us and we all crammed ourselves in to Mel’s little car. The drive down was a boring one but thankfully we made it there with just enough time for some Thai food and a few beers.

We woke Saturday morning to a pleasant surprise- bright sunshine. We headed over to the race site and got set up. I kitted up and lined up for the first lap. I had a solid start, out climbing most of the field and settled in to my rhythm a solid 3rd place overall. Unfortunately I missed a marker and didn't realise I was of course until I got to a road. As I pushed back up the hill I stopped Phil The Horse and a few others who made the same mistake. We rode the rest of the lap together, gradually picking of the riders who had slipped past. Goon headed out for his lap and I retired to the shade, in an attempt to protect my pasty skin. It was really noticeable that this race had a very chilled atmosphere and everyone was friendly- the banter in the handover area was top notch. Every lap I had a dilemma- I didn't want to go out and miss the chat but the course was too fun to not ride…

Ah, the course… As expected it was very good. Fast and twisty with a very high percentage of singletrack. Two climbs were tricky, but I managed one clean lap, which was nice. As the race went on the amount of dust grew, and in places it was hard to slow down in to corners, cue much sideways action. All fun. Come 8 hours I didn't want to stop riding, but there was beer to be drunk, so what do you do. Now’s the time for chat!

In the end Phil and Oli Pepper took the Male pairs category, on single speeds naturally. We managed 4th- a few minutes down. Party boy and his girlfriend took the mixed.

To round off the day pretty much all the racers re-convened in a pub in town. Fisher had put money behind the bar and it was good to see that serious racers cant resist a free bar either. Saturday blended in to Sunday but the chat continued. All in: A Long Good Saturday was just that. I'll be back next year.

Friday, 4 July 2008

And so it begins...

I've been talking about riding the Iditarod trail for more than a decade now. Looks like it's finally happening. This blog is going to follow my build up to the 2009 Iditarod Invitational.
More links and info about me should turn up over the next few weeks so keep 'em pealed
Pic by Steve Makin. Cheers.