BOOM, BOOM, POW! British Downhill Series Finals at Caersws!!!
We arrived late on Friday it was pitch black, that's the damned winter coming in! Obviously didn't walk the track, just set up camp and went to bed. Up early on the Saturday and went for a wander up the course and it was the first time in ages that a big jacket was needed it was 2 degrees, brrrrr. The track was pretty simillar to last year minus the trees which made the track feel so much faster and appear a lot steeper. The only thing that I wasnt a fan of was the field finish, it was a lot longer then normal not to mention flatter, which come to race day I just knew was going to be agony!
The great thing about this place is althought the track isnt the longest on the calender the uplifts are really quick where you can squeeze extra runs in if you want or just chill out a bit more. On my first practice run right from the start ramp was a small kicker then a wee drop off. The idea was to huck the lot!!! A bit daunting hitting it first time as you can't see where you're landing on the steep slope leading bang into a left hander with a small berm.
First run down and I was a right girl's blouse, completely bottled it (I blame the gentle breeze, quite!) Any 'ow I hit it the next time I hasten to add!! The track continued through some pretty drifty corners, a minefield of stumps with tree debris on either side of the track, almost post apocalyptic if you want me to be dramatic! More so you wanted to be pretty damn careful coming through this section! Not long until you dropped down a steep shoot with a really soft landing which was a tad sketchy and into a section lined with trees which was was flat out with a hip jump coming out from a tree stump which you were jumping close to make the next corner. A few jumps followed and then you made your way down onto the finishing field. Paced myself on the Saturday to keep my energy for race day. Practice day went really well the bike was riding great.
On the Sunday I put in two practice runs before the quali's. My qualifying run went pretty well, knew there wasnt a lot more I could make on the top of the track, however the bottom section was where I lost some time. I really 'felt' the end sprint and could have done with a slightly bigger chainring if I'm honest, was spinning out way too early and could have achieved more drive with a 40 tooth. Mental note made for next time.
I was pretty hyped for my race run, the track was dry, there was no wind and I was ready. Drifted a fair bit at the top of the course, over cooked some corners which I knew cost me enough seconds. Pushed harder at the bottom but the mistakes at the top cost me too much time, bugger!
Winter training has begun in earnest already, determined to get my sprinting back up to par.