I’d been over on the Saturday to help set up the track and its main feature is the big straight running up the far side; its the only place I’d got the bike into fourth gear all season and it made for an entertaining days racing. That other parts of the track were both lumpy and tight, each lap was varied and tiring.
For the first time all season, I could safely say that it was the rider not the bike, who was the problem. After around 8 laps of practice I was absolutely knackered and my right wrist, still hurting after my off on the road , was pretty painful. Keeping the bike in gear up the main straight was problematic as it was jumping out and also out of the powerband. The really rough section up the second climb didn’t really improve much all day and all the power came off the bike if you hit it wrong. All a bit of a lottery, though a line through the centre appeared later on.
My first race was good and overall was one of my better ones all season, fighting it out mid table early on, before losing gears (and places) later on. The late Saturday night field tests on the MX paid off, as the power delivery and top end running were the best they had been all season, as I finally put in an old main jet (with no markings) as things came together. The rugged parts of the track were the most challenging (for me anyway) and trying to keep the bike in the powerband, something I didn’t always manage to achieve.
Mark’s first twinshock race saw him get a great start and keep all but 3 of the field behind him for the first lap. He lost a few more places but managed 8th out of a field of 15.
Race two for me was a bit of disaster, with a poor start and then off the pace after that, struggling each lap with the rough section up the second hill. That said, the performance improvement in race 1 had set some higher expectations for me, so therefore race 3 was a welcome return to some sort of form, but again a poor start, but managed to be pretty competitive. Sam Gittoes took a dive on the rough sections and I managed to avoid him as I cam over the hill from the bottom corner. Couple of other fallers and finished the race fairly strongly, just managing to hold off a guy behind me on the line.
Mark’s showing in race 2 was also not so good as race 1, however due to the prompt and efficient organisation, he missed the start of race 3, for which he was gutted. He did however make it for the start of the twinshock grand slam and had a good end
With the end-of-the-season nearly here, this was probably my last race (though there is Abbeycwmhir next weekend), and potentially time to fire up the trials bike for the winter and set to work on improving the MX250 in time for next season. I’ll add some more video later this week and also think about a season write-up. Also, look out for the DVD of the season, which will be available in a couple of weeks. Not sure why you’d want images of us, with some very drool commentary.
26 Sept. Added a video to youtube, showing some of the race action including the sidecars….