Race Report - Mini DH Forest of Dean, Round 3 Feb 24th

Blast from the past Jim Buchanan does a little reminiscing himself…

Well for such a small event, the set up, running and professionalism was brilliant, the event was supported by One Industries and categories (including mine) were filled to bursting point! One of the first things I noticed was although the event was made up of a large proportion of DH bikes, I was not alone on the trail bike, that gave me some piece of mind! The plan for the day was practice from 9 till 10.30 then two timed runs per rider for the rest of the day. You could pay two quid for an uplift, but by the time you’d got to the lift and loaded up you could get half way up the hill anyway, and it was so freakin’ cold that you needed a bit of exercise just to keep the dry biting wind out of your bones! So it was a quick sign on then up the hill me and my mate Al Pugh went, him sporting his very special borrowed (Sandy Plenty’s) Yeti 303WC number 20 of 100 ever made, how much attention did that get!!

There were (as expected) lots of riders there I didn’t know, but I was surprised by the amount I did! I think the biggest shock of the day (although gutted he was in my category) was ex-Animal/Orange world cup rider Tim Ponting, on his first race back after years upon a very bright yellow Orange Patriot, It was great to see old riding buddies of mine Stu Hughes, Andrew Titley, (ex factory GT rider) Pete Crump and Scott Moran.

The track itself was a real blast from the past, the first section was a bit pedally, with a few rocks, but mostly root strewn single-track, really suiting the the little GT, cross the fire road and things started to speed up, the rest of the track consisted of lots more gnarly roots, big holes and some drops and rough sections that did make my little lightweight racer seem a bit inadequate in places! There were a couple of nice double step downs, more off camber roots and finally a bit of a short sloppy section to the end. The whole thing flowed really well, in the old days I hated pedalling and often got myself in trouble for slating tracks that were a tad pedally, but this was an old-skool track and no one seemed to care, people just seemed to be smiling!
Movers and Shakers

Well as for the results, I’m not going to ramble on about them, as you can check the results link here for all the riders, times were close and tight, but big props to my mates in Masters with Titley taking the win, Stu 4th, Pete 7th, Vets saw Ponting 1st and Enduro ace Andy Sadler in 2nd. I was pretty chuffed with 7th Vet too, that’ll do for now!

With, pushing bikes up, the short rooty track and old faces, it gave this event a real feeling of nostalgia for me, it was great, big thanks to Chris Roberts of Naked Racing.

Photos: Eye-Fi images

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