'Stunning Result Unbelievable Impossible Brilliant
Compliments received from race organisers and commentators on Richard's riding this weekend.
FRIDAY 27.08.11 - Relaxed holiday feel to Welsh National Championships 2011 run by MIJ Downhill Events at Caersws, Mid Wales. The event is growing in popularity and this year attracted a good field of riders including many experts and elites.
Having checked weather forecast it was going to be showery on Saturday but fine on Sunday so good selection of tyres needed. Track consisted of three main sections including fast open top section, off camber and woody middle section and twisty run across field lower section.
SATURDAY 28.08.11 - Good practise day checking out lines, other rider techniques, and testing different bike set ups. Looking at entry list I could see top riders present so this was going to be a fast paced competitive event.
My last run of day showed a brake issue and testimony to simplicity of TEKTRO disc brakes managed to strip and bleed brakes in field in dark very quickly ready for morning.
SUNDAY 29.08.11 - Race day. Bike ran well in early morning practise and everything set ready for dry race. Sunshine but ominous black rain clouds. Loaded bike into uplift vehicle for first run and heavens opened. Torrential rain for about twenty minutes. Track became as slippy as ice skating and there would be carnage for riders starting after the rain.
First run I posted time of 3mins.02.019seconds which was only two hundredths of a second behind the leader. All hardtail riders including myself had slipped or crashed because of wet conditions.
Two hours later and sun had returned to dry track and it was my second run. I knew that I stood good chance of win if I could hit my chosen lines. I had ridden well and quickly checked my times, then checked again - 2.19.636
FANTASTIC - WELSH NATIONAL DOWNHILL CHAMPION 2011
Race Statistics: 1st in Hardtail category. 14 second margin over second place. The equivalent time would have put me 4th in Senior category and 24th overall out of 199 riders. 2nd overall in North Wales series. DMR Omen hardtail taken to new limits.
Many thanks to my wonderful sponsors for support DMR Bikes /Tektro/ YBN Chains/ Madison/ KIK clothing