This weekend we returned to Gisburn Forest for the penultimate round of the Empire Cycles PMBA Enduro series, once again sponsored by Escape Bike Shop, Ingleton. We started off the series at Gisburn and, three rounds later, we’re back in the forest. Four courses were set out ready for the 300+ racers to sprint, pump and smash. After last round’s timing issues, for this race we had the excellent EWS standard timing.
Stage one was the well-known red climb up to the top of the Homebaked trail – however to add some zing we went down it instead of up. This made for an incredibly physical stage, with tight flat corners and slow rock gardens. To add a little extra fun there were a few lines made especially for the race, one of which was a flat rock garden that looked like pinch heaven. If you got down stage one successfully you were most likely in high spirits: many riders came down a little bit bruised, or with punctures. Next up, stage two – so another slog back up the hill to the top of Homebaked.
Stage two was down the Homebaked trail itself; a super tight, fast rocky descent with some rather small gaps in between trees. Flat corners made it hard to keep your momentum and maintain your speed – pedalling hard in and out of every corner was key. This was a really fun stage; every corner you took had that ‘will it hold’ feeling, and on a few corners the foot was out and the back end was loose. They couldn’t just use the standard trail down, so at the bottom we had a last, challenging fresh cut section. This had multiple lines, but despite this it was hard to carry your speed to cross the line.
Stage three was the same as round one’s stage two. Starting just above the Leap of Faith, the stage followed the left hand downhill line all the way into the woods, but with a few changes. Two drops had been taken out, and just as you entered the woods the track had been slightly altered to make it super fast and really fun. Once over the fire road, crossing the bottom section was fast and tight, with a few more minor alterations with the same off camber slope, just before we were spat out at the bottom of the wood. Stage three finished.
Back up the hill, it was time for the final stage – the much loved, well known Hope Line. It’s all about flow for this, the final lung-busting stage. Jumps, berms and, of course, some sketchy flat corners. The shortest stage of the day was still one hell of a challenge and it was tough to race. The stage didn’t finish off with the usual bottom tabletops, but took a super tight left hander onto the Push-Up trail instead, a controversial decision for many. What’s an Enduro stage with out a sketchy mud flat corner? So that was it all stages completed and after a short ride back to The Hub it was results time:
|1st||305||Howard Stuttard||RideOn//MucOff, Silverfish.||GVET||10:52.49||135:07.18 (12th)||4:47.20 (2nd)||2:00.51 (1st)||2:11.20 (1st)||1:53.58 (1st)|
|2nd||309||Nick Wilkin||GVET||10:56.44||103:34.17 (3rd)||4:42.73 (1st)||2:03.48 (2nd)||2:16.33 (2nd)||1:53.90 (2nd)|
|3rd||312||Craig Woolley||GVET||11:24.44||142:37.37 (16th)||4:57.65 (3rd)||2:08.01 (3rd)||2:24.25 (3rd)||1:54.53 (3rd)|
|1st||269||Davy Ledgerwood||VET||10:17.45||112:06.19 (19th)||4:34.68 (4th)||1:55.53 (5th)||2:01.81 (1st)||1:45.43 (1st)|
|2nd||278||Andrew Mee||VET||10:25.99||146:25.10 (62nd)||4:30.81 (2nd)||1:55.67 (6th)||2:10.28 (8th)||1:49.23 (4th)|
|3rd||241||Mark Dowson||Thirsk Massive||VET||10:26.65||102:41.61 (6th)||4:33.05 (3rd)||1:54.86 (4th)||2:08.15 (5th)||1:50.59 (10th=)|
|1st||219||Mat Wright||MAS||9:57.93||102:08.80 (8th)||4:19.88 (1st)||1:50.96 (3rd)||2:03.18 (4th)||1:43.91 (2nd)|
|2nd||142||Jan Czugalinski||RideOn Bike Shop||MAS||10:03.14||133:45.16 (78th)||4:25.38 (3rd)||1:54.36 (8th)||1:59.77 (1st)||1:43.63 (1st)|
|3rd||179||Oliver Mckenna||Freedom Bikes||MAS||10:04.68||80:00.50 (2nd)||4:26.48 (4th)||1:50.70 (2nd)||2:00.35 (2nd)||1:47.16 (7th)|
|1st||96||Paul Pickup||Delta Bikes||SEN||9:42.73||116:15.11 (22nd)||4:18.32 (3rd)||1:45.45 (2nd)||1:55.74 (1st)||1:43.21 (5th)|
|2nd||41||Chris Boak||SEN||9:46.62||124:49.42 (46th)||4:18.18 (2nd)||1:45.18 (1st)||2:00.69 (6th)||1:42.57 (4th)|
|3rd||91||James Metcalfe||SEN||9:47.28||125:48.18 (51st)||4:17.83 (1st)||1:50.54 (6th)||1:57.23 (3rd)||1:41.68 (2nd)|
|1st||20||Joe Harrison||Marin Bikes||MU18||9:49.07||123:05.44 (11th)||4:21.44 (1st)||1:46.48 (1st)||1:59.50 (1st)||1:41.66 (1st)|
|2nd||28||Lewis Murphy – HT||MU18||10:29.87||H||113:23.65 (7th)||4:39.57 (2nd)||1:55.48 (2nd)||2:07.20 (3rd)||1:47.64 (4th)|
|3rd||15||Rowan Carpenter||All Terrain Cycles||MU18||10:30.99||125:36.43 (14th)||4:40.36 (3rd)||1:59.30 (6th)||2:05.21 (2nd)||1:46.13 (2nd)|
|1st||319||Martha Gill||PH-Mas Cycling Team||WOMEN||11:17.86||125:43.01 (9th)||4:55.83 (1st)||2:05.97 (2nd)||2:19.40 (1st)||1:56.66 (1st)|
|2nd||349||Rachael Walker||Hope Factory Racing||WOMEN||11:24.39||102:21.03 (2nd)||5:01.20 (3rd)||2:04.39 (1st)||2:21.66 (2nd)||1:57.14 (2nd)|
|3rd||313||Sophia Carter||WOMEN||11:45.98||136:38.29 (13th)||5:00.53 (2nd)||2:13.57 (5th)||2:27.94 (3rd)||2:03.93 (5th)|
1. Lewis Murphy
2. Staurt Rider
3. Callum Russel
A fairly good day for the Singletrack Enduro Team riders, we had Richard ‘The Pain Train’ Lane taking a respectable 15th in Masters with a puncture on stage one. Our junior rider Dan ‘So Much More Enduro Than You’ Bladon took 5th spot in the U18 men with a majestic Over The Bars on stage one. Both riders once again reported an amazing day of riding, racing and generally having a reet good time on bikes.
That’s it for another round: next we move onto the final at Lee Quarry/Cockhill. Online entries are up now, so what are you waiting for? Get entered for your last chance of the year to ride some awesome enduro trails with a bunch of your mates!