National Series Round 1&2 - Orange
First round of the National Series, always a good way to see where your legs are at and this year Orange did exactly that!
After 6hrs of straight roads and red dirt, we made it to Orange for some practice laps. Saturdays loop was very similar to last year, smoother and simpler. Sunday however was a little more challenging, with some steep climbs and a fun dusty descent ( my preferred course).
We had Friday to chill out a little and do a few more laps to get the course in our heads. Out at the Torq farm there was some skilful curry making going down with Tas and Ryan brewing up a nice spicy curry... the spicier the curry the faster you race the next day, it's a proven fact.
Saturday morning was relaxed, I find racing at 10.30am perfect. Saturday was my first day testing out my SRAM race kit, baggies included!
The start loop went straight up a nasty fire road and once the gun went I couldn't slow my racing baggies down. I gapped the field for the first couple of hundred metre's until .. my lack of race fitness tapped me on the shoulder and reminded me I was going too fast. Unfortunately, it was too late, I'd blown myself into a million pieces 5minutes into the race. Samara rode off into the sunset and I grovelled to stay in second, which I was happy with as it showed me all the things I have to work on..
Sunday morning there was a little more pain in the legs, but I had a plan this time. Try not to blow myself up on the start loop. Goal achieved, I won the start jump but pulled in the reins and put myself on Samara's wheel, my new goal was to hang there for as long as I could. Half way around the lap I was still on her wheel somehow and was feeling awesome on the descent's. I think this might have had something to do with my brand new Reverb dropper post, making my new Team Ninety Six an absolute weapon.
We came to a little huck/roll with an A and a B line, I took the A and found myself in the lead. I dangled on the front burning all my Cookies for a lap then Samara attacked up the single track climb and I dragged myself around for the last two laps, holding on for my second silver for the weekend.
Massive thanks to the Two Wheel guys for the best cheer squad going around, Richard App's for making sure I was well hydrated for my races. Orange MTB Club you did an awesome job as always and thanks to the Torq team for putting up with me over the weekend!