Well two weekends of fun and racing, at Antur this weekend on the beast my first Borderline Events race so I hope all goes well, been there a couple of times with James and Richard so I will hopefully know where I’m going and have a lot of fun.
The weekend after it’s Conquer The Cliff at Aberystwyth I’m going to ride my Stance there as it’s not a full on downhill course, so this week dad has fitted New tyres ( thanks Continental) new chain, new stainless steel suspension bearings and given it a good going over, mind I think it needed it and to be fair it feels like new bike now.
Not sure how long chains should last, but I’m really light and the chain has been on around a year and it was quite shocking that it had stretched half a link in that time, so new KMC X9 .93 chain was put on.
All the bearings have been replaced with new stainless ones and some white marine grease to keep the water out, well fingers crossed.
My new tyres are Continental Mountain King II’s not ridden on them yet but been very impressed with everything I have tried of Conti so far so these shouldn’t disappoint, they do come up slightly narrower for a 2.2 than the old Trail Kings but hopefully roll faster ( well faster than everyone else in the race )
Playing up Henblas tonight, since fitting the lighter shock spring when hitting the ramp of a jump hard the rear tyre would buzz on the saddle, so dad had a fettle with the bottom out control to ramp the shock up a bit on the final part of the stroke, which helped a lot but I could feel the rear kick up as I left the lip of the ramp, so more fiddling backed off the LS 3 clicks and increased the rebound 3 clicks harder and all seemed good no buzz, no kick back and the ride felt smooth.
As we aren’t suspension experts I hope we are heading in the right direction !!
Went for a ride up at Hopton Castle today, the sun was out and it was HOT, hot and sweaty, quite a few riders up there but once out on the trails you hardly saw a soul, the trails were bone dry and very dusty.
I’ve seen the castle a few times as we drove by and from the trails on the lower side of the woods so we thought we would have a look to see what it’s like.
Well tried the Saracen Myst out at Antur and it’s amazing even with the wrong spring on the back, the bike is so smooth compared to my Mega and the weight difference isn’t that noticeable which is good as well.
James and Richard came along as well to make for a perfect day, well almost the wind on the top and open areas was horrible, but still didn’t spoil my day, one strange thing I’ve done Black Powder quite a few times and thought the Double black route called “The Black” would be really hard but I found it easier than the Black Powder, mind it was a lot less windy.
Dry and dusty at Caersws today but great fun tracks all running fast, I rode Welsh, English and NPS, NPS is my favourite of all the tracks, first time trying the Conti Kaisers in the dry and dusty conditions and as always they worked perfect.
Great day if a little of an early start 4am out of bed to go to the Onza Mini Downhill series in the Forest Of Dean, we did get there a little early but it made parking easy and could chill before the races.
Dad went and signed on for me at 8am and then we pushed up to the start of the course but still had to hang about for a short while as the first aid people hadn’t turned up yet so I had a bit of a walk of the track, eventually we could start to ride the track, it was a bit of a shame as we only had one and three quarters of an hour to practise which by the time you had pushed back up amounted to two full runs so not a huge amount of time to session the track.
Racing was supposed to start at 11am and my first race run at 11.42am but some more delays and some sitting around at the top but eventually I was away the top section was quite pedaly with some jumps, then down a bank onto a fire road and into a lot rougher/techie/rooty section, then into a slippy turn down to the finish, this turn had caught quite a few people out and gone straight through the tapes, the run went well if a little slow I had a 1min 16sec run I was slightly disappointed but thought I would try harder next run.
Time for a chill and something to eat back down at the car, they said my next run should be at around 1.30pm so we pushed back up to the top a little early so I could have a blow before my run but yet again some more delays and I think it was around 2.30pm before it was game on, this run seemed a little smoother and I managed to knock off another 2 seconds which put me in 23rd out of 26 riders in my class, not as good as I would have liked but it could have been worse and I did beat 25 other riders in all the other catorgries, it was quite an eye opener how fast some of the riders are in juvenile mind give me something to aim for.
First proper pair of MTB shoes Shimano AM 41, been riding in trainers and high tops but these should help with grip on the pedals and also a lot stiffer in the sole so should also help when pedalling, going to give them a go at Llandegla tomorrow lets hope the weather is ok.
Well tried my new shoes out and fair play they are brilliant great grip on the pedals, keep you feet warm and dry ( yes it did rain a bit ) so well pleased with them.