Adam Brayton stormed home to take the win in round 4 of the Halo British Downhill Series at Caersws. The team Banshee rider took his second successive win in the series to put him contention for the overall title.
With ever changing conditions on the shortest track of the season, tyre choice would play a key role for the run times and when heavy rain fell on the latter part of the day the track surface was likened to moss covered tarmac.
It was Santa Cruz Syndicate pairing of Josh Bryceland and Steve Peat who took the top 2 places in the seeding run earlier in the day posting times of 1.45.36 and 1.46.31 respectively with Brayton some 20 seconds behind in 3rd place and it looked as though the 2 team mates would carry their speed through to the timed race but it wasn't going to go as expected.
Chainreactioncycles.com Alex Bond came through the mid way check in 53.019 and at that point had completed the top half of the course in the quickest time but the heavy wet grass coming into the arena was taking its toll and as the elite field was getting down to the final riders the wet conditions were making the going tough.
Bond took the lead but only for a short time when team-mate Joe Smith rode a brilliant second half on the course to post a time of 1.54.79 to go into the lead. Steve Peat took a fine 2nd place overall riding a fast second half of his run to post a time of 1.54.55. Bryceland's race didn't go to plan with a slow run on the open part of the course the fastest rider on the seeded run was well down on the pace but still managed 10th spot.
But it was Brayton who was on fire on the wet track, posting the fastest top half of the run, the Banshee rider flew into the finishing arena to take the applause and a fine victory some 4 seconds to the good of Peat.
Adam Brayton: "I'm stoked with that, 2nd win on the bounce, I'm going to keep pushing now and go for the series overall now, thats the goal for me. I didn't really know what to expect in the race with the rain but I took each section that I knew were going to be dodgy one at a time and the rest I just hammered. I left it wide coming into the arena and it paid off,I'm over the moon with today and coming off the back of the last round at Glencoe, I knew I could win today after that, its about believing in yourself and just going for it."
Steve Peat: "It was pretty tough today in the rain, We rode qualifying and practice in the dry yesterday, it rained then it dried out, it rained overnight so we had a wet practice then it dried again and we finally raced in the wet, its been one of those strange wet Welsh weekends. I took things a little bit cautiously on the top there were a few corners that were a bit dodgy that were catching a lot of riders out, I probably took it a bit to cautious to be honest but Adam(Brayton) just let fly today which he does sometimes and put it all together so fair play to him on this track. Am I happy with second? yeah!"
1.Adam Brayton Banshee 1.50.326
2.Steve Peat Santa Cruz Syndicate 1.54.552
3.Joe Smith Chainreactioncycles.com/Nukeproof 1.54.794
4.Alex Bond Chainreactioncycles.com/Nukeproof 1.55.012
5.Jack Reading O'Neal/Mojo/Schwalbe/DNA 1.55.082
6.Matt Simmonds 1.55.097
7.Lewis Buchannan Chainreactioncycles.com/Nukeproof 1.56.092
8.Bernard Kerr Pivot Cycles 1.56.707
9.Joel Moore Mojo Suspension 1.57.052
10.Josh Bryceland Santa Cruz Syndicate 1.57.340
In the elite women's race Manon Carpenter took her fourth win of the series and secured the overall victory. The Madison Saracen rider beat her nearest rival Monet Adams by a clear 10 seconds to take the race and the series win.
Manon Carpenter: "Today wasn't straight forward, the course was pretty slippy although the rain did hold off for our race,I could see it coming over while i was warming up and thinking I hope that holds off. I do like muddy tracks though but on a track like this it is difficult in places because it does get that you can't brake because the wheels lock up in the wet. This track is fast and short and you have to get everything right because there isn't any time to correct any mistakes you make."
1.Manon Carpenter Madison Saracen Downhill Team 1.58.184
2.Monet Adams 2.08.235
3.Emma Wareham Leisurelakesbikes.com 2.13.624
4.Reanne Atherton Pearce cycles RT/Marmot 2.25.551
The experts race saw 1.2 seconds split the top 3 positions. Team Skene's Nikki Whiles took the honours holding off Jay Williamson (wideopen) by 1.14 seconds and Mathew Stuttard(ride On) by 1.28 seconds. Stuttard came through the mid way time split 2/100s of a second ahead of Whiles but the Team Skene rider found an extra pedal turn in the closing meters to take the win.
Reece Langhorn took a relatively straightforward win in the seniors race crossing the line almost 5 seconds ahead of 2nd place Lewis Mclaughlin. 3rd placed James Marshall(Manx MTB Club) rode a good race to finish on the podium.
The biggest field of the day was the juniors and their race was the closest of the day with less then a second splitting the top 3 places. Will Mapstone came out of the split in 56.22 the slowest time of the top 7 riders but found something in the bottom half of the track to finish 0.80 seconds ahead of Joe Conell(Zerode/Prestige) and 0.84 ahead of Isaac Anderson (Juice Lubes) who crossed the line in 3rd.
Traharn Chidley (KT Girls) romped home almost 6 seconds of 2nd place Rachael Walker (team Hope Factory) in the women's race. Chris Whitfield (All Terrain Cycles) held on to first ranking with a fine win over Neil White by 1.5 seconds in the masters category, Ghost RT's Andrew Titley took the 3rd spot with a time of 1.54.704, 2/10's off White's time.
Chainreactioncycles.com/Nukeproof claimed their first top step of the day when Nigel Page secured victory in the Veterans race with a time of 1,52.38 holding off John Cobb into 2nd spot by 4.858 seconds, Alastair Maclennan came home 3rd. Vernon Taylor took victory in the youth race with a run time of 1.50.728 beating Callum Harvard(Team Skene/Mojo) by a little over 1 second, Laurie Greenland(Orange/One Inds/Psyclewerx) was 3rd.
Meanwhile, in the juvenile category it was Charlie Hatton who took the first win of the day from James Purvis(Team CHR) and Jack Tennyson(Peddlers Cycles/R-Kade/NEFR).
Full results can be found at www.rootsandrain.com