Ten times 2

Thursday 15th July 2010

by MikeC

My bike racing this year has been approached from a slightly different angle to previous years, for a start I’m a lot more relaxed and have more fun and as I love all areas of cycling I try to ride a wide variety of events, from flat crit races, to hilly road races, to short xc races, to cross races, to endurance mtb races. The 2 ten hour endurance mtb races that I’ve done are part of the ’10 series’ organised by no fuss events. The main goal is for everyone to have fun and there is a category to suit almost every type of rider. The format follows a common theme, pick a team of 1, 2, 3 or for and do as many laps as possible in ten hours……..simples. As I’ve yet to convince my Velo 29 team mates of the immense fun you can have on fat tyres off-road my good friend and mtb training partner Jason Hynd stepped in to pair up with me for ’10 at Kiroughtree’. Having raced the event 2 years ago Jason knew what he was letting himself in for.

We arrived on the Friday to heavy rain and set up camp with local North East riders and good friends ‘Treadhunters’. A course pre-ride revealed an 8.5 mile course with 1200ft of climbing, steep, muddy descents with off-camber roots, fast, snaking, rocky, super fun singletrack pieced together with short fireroad sections. A good challenging course made more technical by the rain and mud. After sign-on we all settled down in our mini-race village for tea and a chat about the event to come. As the rain came down on the Saturday morning I decided on a fairly short warm-up before sneaking in behind the lead-out car. I knew that getting into the singletrack near the front was important to avoid the bottlenecks, so I latched onto Ian Nimmos wheel and stayed there. I knew there was a potential to ride 6 laps each so I chose a pace that would allow me to do just that. I came into transition 1 minute behind the leader, whipped the transponder off my ankle and onto Jason’s for him to head out. Our friend Kev had come over from Selkirk to help us out which made a hugh difference. Kev would clean and lube the bike whilst we got clean, changed, fed and stretched ready to go out again. This was the set-up for ten hours of racing. The rain fell for most of the day making the course very muddy while we focussed on riding consistent laps and not making mistakes. Our mini-race village was great as there was always someone to talk to between laps. I must say that Clair’s banana bread is one of the best pick-me-ups for a long race, I will be putting an order in for more when I’m heading to a long race. I decided not to check the leader board when I heard the mc announce that we were in the lead by some 12 minutes. When I asked Kev he was rather sheepish and came out with his trademark saying for the weekend ‘anything can happen’. After hearing about his experiences and misfortunes (broken bikes, snapped seatposts, dead night lights, unreliable team-mates) in long endurance races I would definitely say that I agree. After my 5th lap I was especially tired and heard the news that due to the conditions of the course and the fading light the event was being shortened by 1 hour. Relief flooded through me and then I realised that if Jason had no problems on his final lap we would win. We headed over to greet him joking that we might strap my head with a bandage and send him out on another lap…….evil I know J Like a deer in the headlights he didn’t know what was going on, looking around confused before we could get the message across that it was all over. The prize presentation was completed after some ‘music artist’ had destroyed some well-liked songs. We stoked up the bbq and sat under the e-z-up sheltering from the wind and rain and downed a few well deserved beers.

Big thanks to no fuss for an excellent course and event, a great ride from my team-mate Jason and flawless support from Big Kev (he’s 6 foot 7).

2 Responses to “Ten times 2”

  1. Dan Says:

    My gawd, he’s bigger than me!

  2. MikeC Says:

    Yea but not nearly as annoying 😉

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