Race report from the First round of the Mountain Bike World Cup Series Albstadt, Germany. Eventful!

At the first round of the World Cup Mountain Bike Series here in Abstadt, Germany, the best riders in the world gathered and jangling their nerves.
The course was tough. Elite women had 6 laps taking 15 mins each and with each lap including 200m of climbing!
I was gridded 43rd which meant that when the gun went I only had to hold my position to stay out of the carnage happening at the back of the 70 strong field. There was still some queuing on the first descent but I managed to move up a few places and rode the first couple of laps steady being concerned I might pop on the steep climbs later on if I rode flat out.
However, during lap 3 my quads said no more and I had to play a clever trick to convince them I would only use my glutes and hamstrings from then on. Stupid quads. They totally fell for it and
I hung in to complete the race riding the climbs steady and consolidating on the technical descents including a big drop off and numerous tight greasy corners.
On the final lap I found I still had a bit in reserve so gave it all I had left overtaking 3 riders on the climb. Then the rain came on. Lee didn’t take this into consideration (stupid Lee, so like her quads) and descended like she had in the previous 5 laps therefore binning it hard 3 times and losing all those hard won places. And most of the skin on one elbow and both knees.
Finished 42. Up a place on my start position! Yay. And 14 mins down on the winner Eva Lechner which made my time of 1 hour 48mins 1.5 mins out with the commonwealth games qualification criteria. Boo.
While sitting in first aid getting my elbow stitched up I calculated this must have been about the time I lost on that final disastrous descent. Bit hard to bear but if you don’t adapt to changing course conditions that’s what happens. Happy enough with my performance as a World Cup opener.
Tomorrow we drive to the Czech Rep for round 2 and another chance at Commonwealth qualification next weekend. A 7 hour road trip with Rab Wardell (who rode a stormer from 111th on the grid to 64th) in the men’s race which saw his Trek teammate Dan McConnell take his first World Cup victory. Gareth Montgomerie couldn’t quite find his rhythm today but can’t wait for the 7 hour drive he assures me and Coach/ mechanic/ bottler/ all round helper Paul Newnham doing the driving. (“Are we there yet?)
My Cannonale Flash (Gordon) needs a wee bit of love now. It’s been all take and no give for poor Gordon. Wonder if that’s why he spilled me. Nothing a bit of sweet talking and polish wont fix. My elbow on the other hand might need a little more than that!

2 thoughts on “Race report from the First round of the Mountain Bike World Cup Series Albstadt, Germany. Eventful!

    • It was not as bad for us as for the men. It started to rain on our sixth lap (hence the 3 crashes I had in 3 mins!) then they closed the big drop to stop the boys from killing themselves! Off to Czech rep now. Can you come to Ferga’s 40th on 22nd and 23rd June in north of Scotland? Xx

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