Enduring #4 – Winter

Alas it is that time of year when commitments in a big city mean riding has to take a back seat. A fairly prominent back seat but a back seat none the less. Whilst rides have been had, photos and stories have been sacrificed for just being out and getting on, oh, and the odd bit of racing and with it, the birth of the West Cheshire Massif

HOPTON – Two races and to wildly different, yet similar experiences. Two Enduros that very much got the point of what mountain bike racing should be. First came the late Autumn, Pearce organised race at Hopton. 8-10 minute, awesome weather, excellent in all ways, as it seems most Pearce events turn out. They even had the forethought to have a hardtail cat. Gloriously crashing my way out of podium contention on the final stage meant a fairly distant 4th out of 15, but a top half overall meant an excellent day was topped of by a result that I may even have been pleased with. It is a good feeling that, especially when the evening light made for a beautiful trip home up the A49.

West Cheshire Massif – DM: 97th /200

INNERLEITHEN  – The first weekend of Febuary brought the first round of the Innerduro series. West Cheshire’s finest racers (Josh, Tim and I) spent a weekend mincing our way into the bottom half of the leader board. At least we looked good. Whilst the results once again exposed my inability to ride a bicycle in and around Peebles, it told little of the story. Three of the most brutal, and I don’t use that term lightly, stages I have ever encountered, more so than the national round last year. There cannot be many hills that can provide such consitently challenging, in places crazily steep stages that last for well over the 10 minute mark. An Innerleithen enduro race is a on another level. Either way, an awesome weekend was had. Whilst Enduro may be the activity du joir at the minute, I can think of little better way to spend a cold, dark weekend in the borders than racing mates down terrifying Scottish hills.

WCM – Josh D: 104th DM:126th Tim W: DNF heartbreak /161