Gawton Gravity Hub, the British Cycling affiliated club run by volunteers and the people behind the Gawton and Tavi Woods downhill tracks in Devon, ran the UK’s first Go-Ride Gravity race and coaching session during the final round of their successful Woodland Riders Racing Winter Series last Sunday.
The club is committed to developing both the best permanent downhill mountain bike tracks and facilities in England and providing opportunities for youngsters to enter the sport and to support and develop promising youngsters and elite athletes.
Offering youngsters the opportunity to experience what racing against the clock is like, while at the same time receiving expert coaching in a controlled setting means that they can make rapid progress in their levels of skill and confidence.
With the support of British Cycling and the Tamar Valley AONB, Gawton Gravity Hub was able to provide coaching by World Cup rider, Rich Thomas, to 10 boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 14. This was followed by an exciting short course race in the lunch break of the main race program. As usual, the south west downhill fans gave the young rippers the same volume of support with air horns and cowbells that they normally reserve for the fastest elite racers!
Rich Thomas commented after the day: “These kids have come on amazingly with just a few hours training, there are some real pinners in this group with some amazing natural talent!” Could the south west produce the next Danny Hart or Manon Carpenter?
To ensure this program continues, volunteers from the club are undertaking British Cycling coaching training, again supported by the Tamar Valley AONB Mountain Bike Development Project, to develop the frequency and scope of training available to youngsters. This will run in parallel with a permanent professional coach based at Gawton Gravity Hub, offering courses to adults from beginners to aspiring expert downhill racers.
As further developments, such as a new trail centre hut and uplift service, are opened later this season, all members young and old, new and experienced, as well as those visiting to ride our amazing tracks from further afield, will benefit from the hard work put in by our dedicated team of volunteers.
Subscribe to our Facebook page to be the first to find out about the opening dates of our new facilities and details of further training, events and racing taking place on our sites. The next Go-Ride Gravity race is planned for our ‘Summer Gravity Jam’ weekend, which includes the Club Championships on the 23 and 24 June.
You must be a day or year member to ride at Gawton Gravity Hub and Tavi Woods. The tracks are open dawn till dusk, 365 days a year. Membership can be purchased online at www.gawtongravityhub.co.uk or from Dartmoor Cycles in Tavistock (www.dartmoorcycles.co.uk).