British National MTB Cross Country Series
Jack Richards, March 31, 2012
The British National MTB Cross Country Series kicked off on Sunday at the standard season opening course – Sherwood Pines in the East Midlands. The flat course consisted of large chunks of tight singletrack interspersesed with short fire road sections. A different course to that used in previous years seemed to divide opinions amongst riders. With no big features along the course, there is little to get stuck into or to get too excited about. Whatever you say about the lack of gradient and the tame technical features, it’s a difficult course to ride fast and it promotes very tight racing.
I rode in the Expert race and started with a poor griding. A result of spending last summer gallivanting around Europe resulting lack of racing and building ranking points. After a very eventful start, with a big crash requiring a chopper to lift a rider from the scene, I was away and racing once more. With riders diving up my inside and outside we funnelled into the first singletrack. A constant battle to make overtaking manoeuvres on the long stretches of singeltrack required patience. I moved up through the field and finished 16th, loosing out in a sprint finish for 15th having made several places on the last lap. Plently of room for improvement but just fantastic to be back racing.
MTB XC racing is a great way of going and giving it some for 90 minutes and the British Series is well subscribed resulting in plenty of similar ability riders to have a proper race against. Bring on round 2 at the World Cup course, Dalby.
Sunday 22 April 2012 – Dalby Forest, North Yorkshire
Sunday 27 May 2012 Hopton Woods, Shropshire
Sunday 17 June 2012 – Kirroughtree, Dumfries and Galloway
Sunday 15 July 2012 – Langdon Hills, Essex