Off-Road Stalwarts Represent Wheelers in Sligo

Post date: Apr 24, 2016 9:40:18 PM

(By Pete Rimmer - Sun 24th April 2016)

Lakeside Wheelers were well represented in the first round of the Irish Mountain Bike Cross Country series in Sligo two weeks ago. Flying the club colours were off-road stalwarts, Pete Rimmer, Richie Lenihan and Paul Crowley. Pete sent the following report of their eventful day...

Round 1 of the Mountain Bike Cross Country Series was held in Union Woods in Sligo on Sunday, 17th April. After several years of road racing this was a bit of a wake-up call for me! The circuit started on a section called “The Fence” trail which dropped at a steep angle from the “Fire” road through a rooted section which really challenged my rusty MTB skills.

Even Richie found this section challenging and he became unstuck, getting fired out the front door, drawing blood from his leg on the third lap. Following this we had to negotiate a section of “Rock Gardens” and beamed corners which gave way to a tough climb up the aforementioned “Fire” road. In this section I was able to really open the taps and make up good time on the other competitors. At the top of this climb there was a technical section which involved an ascent of some loose rock up to 'The Field'. In the centre of this “Field” was a lump of slick rock offering a faster route up a rock face for the more skilled riders, not me, I took the easier, but slower and safer route to the top.

The circuit then went onto “Lemonade” trail which was an off-camber, loose, dirt trail with slippery roots for good measure. Paul decided that dabbing his inside foot all the way down through this section was the way to go. The result being, he resembled a rag doll on a buckaroo by the time he was finished, providing some unwanted entertainment for the spectators.

After another ascent of “Fire” road it was onto “Wildlife” trail which consisted of a number of rock drop-offs with slippery and uneven landing spots, one of which had me over the bars on the second lap. Luckily, only my pride was damaged and I carried on, only a little worse for wear. The circuit finished off with “Tunnel Vision” trail, so called because of the V-shape which pushed you along the centre of it over three jumps and then onto a tricky off-camber rock slab, where line selection made the difference for the last climb to the start/finish line. Paul and I did three laps in the S3 race while Richie completed four laps to complete the S2 race.

Thankfully, we all finished in one piece with Richie getting a good top 20 position in the S2 race, Paul doing very well despite the numbness in his legs and me, well I was happy with a top 10 in the S2. Thanks for reading!