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When the taking part is all that matters. Nichola Johnson

Well it’s been an eventful few weeks since my last blog and I’ve had some great rides out on the bike.

The SDA at Ae went really well it was an awesome track and I managed to improve on my time from last year and hit a few sections of the track I hadn’t done before (not the massive step down). I had a two good runs and managed to take 20 seconds off 2013 time and finished in a reasonable 5th place. In another first, I decided to go with spd’s for this race and I think it made a big difference. I’ll be selective about what track I use them on but if it’s pedally or really rough where a foot could get popped off the pedal I’ll have them on.

first

Next stop was the dual slalom at the Tweedlove festival, wowzers what a course that was. Last year it was all pretty mellow and good fun with some wee tricky rollers in there but nothing too hard. Not this year, Ruriadh Cunnigham had been let loose in the field with a JCB and had created a monster of a track. I eventually took third after being narrowly beaten (in my dreams) by current 4 cross world champion Katy Curd.  Katy went on to win, with Peebles local Lucy Grant taking a very creditable 2nd. Oh well 3rd again for me, I’ll have to go back next year and see if I can take another step up that podium.

I followed up this lunacy with a trip back to Peebles for the womens road crit, hmm I got my legs ripped off big time. I’m afraid I was dead last but I got a good cheer and loads of support from the crowds who had turned out on a glorious night to watch the racing. Thanks to Ian Linton for the photo.

second

My epic weekend of racing up at 10 under the Ben and Scottish DH champs was somewhat thwarted by a pulled neck (I should know better at my age sleeping in my car!!) so no racing but lots of fun supporting friends. If you can’t ride yourself there is nothing more satisfying than supporting your friends and watching them doing well in their race.

Fortunately this weekend the neck had improved sufficiently to let me get out on the bike and race. Hilarious weekend with so many good people, not the midges they were as anticipated awful :0( Another really great course layout from the guys at No Fuss Events and Innerleithen MTB racing meant a great mix of natural stages and trail centre stuff. It was a physical couple of stages to start with, Stage 1 was a combo of the main climb reversed and the red, stage 2 was straight down the black, with some big pedals in there it got the heart thumping. Stages 4 and 5 were steep natural and mercifully dry, I have no idea how you could have ridden them if it had been wet! Stage 5 was straight down the freeride section at Laggan.

third

Here I am realising that none of my lottery numbers had come up again, damn it!!!!

Unfortunately I dropped my chain on stage 1 and spent the rest of the day trying to make up for a couple of minutes lost, this possibly made me a little rash in places and a few more mistakes added more time to my total. In the end I finished in 10th place with some very close racing between 6th and 11th places its great to see the womens field expanding. In total we had 22 women in the race this weekend which is fantastic, well done all the girls :0)

Next stop for me Scottish Enduro Series Round 4 down at Ae then some downhill racing back at Innerleithen.

 

Have fun riding your bikes.


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