Southern XC Round 1 20/03/16- Race Report by Seb Price
The Southern XC series kicked off at Black Park. Under new organisation, the very popular series saw 116 riders under 16years old. Great stuff!
Fred and Xavier turned up to race the u9’s race for Pedal 2 Pedal. Both got some practice in and were happy with the course. The course had plenty of singletrack, a few dips, logs and lots of tight turns.
The kids seemed to be lined up with about 15mins to go, meaning Fred and Xavier were on the 2nd row. Not ideal, but both felt confident of getting a good start, especially since we’d been practising starts and sprints.
But disaster on the start! When the race was started, the kid immediately in front of Fred and Xavier fell over, tangling them all up! Both eventually got going but were well behind the main pack. Fred and Xavier chased hard with Fred passing the whole field bar the top 3 boys for a 4th place result. Xavier also rode strongly passing lots of kids to eventually finish a commendable 11th. Well done both of you!
I raced the 5 lap vet race (Seb). Not sure how this would stand in speed compared to the Gorrick, I thought I’d give it a go anyway. I was in for a shock! Off the line I was dropped by the main fast vets but gapped the slower 2nd group to leave me in no-mans land chasing riders as they slipped off the main pack. Riding the A-line bombholes saw me gaining a few places and after lap 1 I felt good and hopeful that sustaining my pace would see me reeling in a few more riders. This continued for lap 2, and then at some point in lap 3 I hit the saddle hard pushing it back a long way. Not wanting to stop I carried on, but soon got back pain. Laps 4 and 5 were slower and I came in 30th of 43 starters, and with a very sore back. Ouch! I learnt a few lessons from this. Firstly – the saddle wasn’t tightened up enough. Secondly – a regional vet race is much faster than a local vets race. I have some work to do!
My first open race! (Phil) As I looked around I felt considerably less athletic than my fellow racers! Thankfully Seb had taken me for a lap of the course so I knew what to expect and which B lines to take (the A lines looked far too scary :-)! Off the start I felt OK and strong holding my place in the pack on the fire roads and the first couple of sections of single track, however at the first bomb holes disaster, I went in too nervously stalled on the exit then tumbled back, cue a gashed leg and me far far far at the back of the race! From then on it became a fast training ride with my aims being to get better at each bomb hole section! By the end I was enjoying myself and somehow wasn’t last! One course of antibiotics later and I am raring to go at rd 2 in Checkendon, my fitness is ok but technique……….some work still required me thinks
It was a great morning out – well done all, and well done to the new Southern XC team.