Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sunny Bournemouth

After flying into Manchester from Switzerland on friday afternoon, Shanaze and me trekked down to bournemouth in the post van for the UK Nationals. It was a pretty good journey (apart from getting lost from Manchester to Crewe!) but pretty tiring as we had been travelling the whole day, 8am until 11.30pm.

When the rowdy boys of the campsite finally shut up I slept pretty good, right through until 8am....where were all the kids playing swingball and shouting at 6am like they normally do?!! It was deathly silent, very strange. Weather was not bad, a bit of sun, not too much wind, perfect temperature for riding. It was good to see the kids allowed on the track in the morning, just like I used to do. I had fun practicing in the afternoon, it was good to be back at a UK race with my friends. I did find it hard getting used to the little start hill though after riding the Supercross hill! At the end of practice there was a bit of a session going on on the third straight, it was pretty cool to watch.

I hung about to watch the no clips race, caught up with some old buddies, chilled out and had a BBQ. It had been a good day. It was at this point I felt my body go into shut down!! I think the week had caught up with me but it least it would mean I would get to sleep easy in the tent!

Sunday morning I woke up at 6am to the pitter patter of rain on the tent. Hmmm nice. I had only registered for monday due to my tiredness and the weather forcast so I lay in bed snoozing on and off, until I was really busting for a pee and couldn't defer the long walk in the rain to the porta bogs any longer. When I got back the long grass had already soaked my vans and got through to my feet. Don't you just love camping.

Just as I was looking forward to a day of feeling smug under my umbrella while everone else raced in the mud and got soaked, the race got cancelled. I have never ever known a race to be cancelled! However, if I was down to race that day, I would be glad! In 22 years of BMX I have done more than my fair share of wet nationals and I'm over it. I hoped it would stay dry enough on monday so that at least if the track was a bit muddy we could race without getting soaked through. It wasn't to be. Sunday evening, rain heavy as ever I knew I wouldn't be racing. Gutted. Monday morning, the track was water logged, everyone packed up and left early. It was STILL raining.

It was such a shame after the club have worked so hard to prepare the race and the track, I really feel for Geoff Routledge and crew. We all look forward to Bournemouth as one of the best events of the year but you can't control the weather.

Oh well On the bright side, the trails back home were in desperate need of some rain and we can now start on our master plan!


Euro BMX

Well no updates for a while but I've been away a lot!

Last week I was in Switzerland with team GB. First stop was the Euro BMX race in Winterthur. The track was pretty cool, much better than the first rounds in Belguim and Czech, I really had fun on this track. It snaked downhill was fast and flowing and had plenty of room to pass. The 4th straight was the one everyone was talking about, a tough rhythm section with two sets steep like trails. I really enjoyed riding this straight at trails speed but going faster was a bit scary, not ideal for racing. Anyway, I had some good races making the semis both days, but my gates let me down so I'll be working on those and aiming for the finals! A good weekend for the team with shanaze winning and Liam riding a great final on sunday getting 2nd.

After the race we headed to the UCI centre in Switzerland to ride and train at the Olympic replica track. I have never ridden a supercross start hill before it was pretty daunting, looks like a rollercoaster! Rolling off it is no problem but it takes a little while to crank down it full on! Especially considering the jump at the bottom can be cleared without pedalling... Kelvin showed us how it was done within mintues of getting on the track, he was looking super quick.

The track wasn't as good as we expected but we made the most of it and got a lot out of it. Shanaze and me moved on to the mens mens sections pretty quick as the girls sections weren't great. We hit up the gap double out the first corner but the 10m jump into the second turn we left to the boys! The mens 3rd straight was quite challenging, it was good to get through that.

All in all it was a good week apart from the crappy rules at the hostel, I am 26 but I felt like I was back at school! check out www.andersgronsund.com for Kelvins updates from the week...


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