Tuesday, 9 June 2015

British Downhill Series, Round 3 - Llangollen, 30th & 31st May 2015


Tom Newrick: We arrived at the venue early on Friday morning and set up the tents, even at that hour there were some murmurings about the course and the track-walk proved it to be true, it was steep, very, very steep!  

I knew then that it was going to be a struggle on the track. Headed up for my first practice run on Saturday morning and came off twice, each further run I was still coming off my bike and my body was starting to hurt.

Come Sunday morning I headed back up for my first practice run and landed really hard after being catapulted over the bars.  Being completely battered and bruised I could not justify racing on the course and sadly pulled out of the event.

Lee here: I fully understand the position Tom Newrick had been placed in, the course was very controversial, although it's a UCi sanctioned event and needs to challenge riders, this track may have exceeded the limit. I mean it says a lot when the pro riders are in agreement with how punishing the course was. I don't blame Tom for pulling out of the event at all as he could have had a serious injury.

This now leads me to what happened with the team's Tom Nelson.

Nelly made the ultimate mistake of not signing on in the morning before his practise runs, that is his own mistake and he knows it was wrong (and hopefully he's learned from it and won't do it again!).  I fully understand and appreciate his mother's anger after the event, and indeed must admit to being pretty angry with the carry on myself.

My question was in regards to how Nelly managed to have four practice runs without being pulled up by the start line commissaire in regards to not signing on.

The commissaire notes the rider numbers down however he can't check those against the start sheet until the Saturday evening as this is when the timing company collate the sign on sheets and produce the seeding list.  Nelly had tried to sign on at the end of the day however by this time the commissaires had left the venue.  One of the arguments was that some other riders had got late entries however those riders signed on before the commissaires had left.  Nelly however was too late and Si Paton was sadly placed in an unfortunate position, he could only say no, the BDS are sanctioned UCi events and his hands are tied to that, so unfortunately Nelly was unable to race.

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