As the pre-season races really start to heat up, the team headed to Seia for the second round of the Portugal Cup, and everyone was excited to visit a new venue. Especially after three days at our training venue, Ventoso Gravity Park, where everyone was feeling fast, and hungry to get back between the tape. Here is our team video, check out how the team got on:
The weather on Friday for track walk was wet, and everyone was hoping it would improve for the weekend. Us Brits don’t travel to Portugal for the same weather we get at home that’s for sure. The track looked fast and fairly simple. There was a short technical section in the bottom woods, but there wasn’t going to be a lot to separate riders and times were definitely going to be very tight come racing! Saturday was cloudy, with rain on and off throughout the day. The guys enjoyed practice and the track was really fun to lap, despite it being slippery in places. Jack had a massive crash on his fourth run, washing his front wheel out the top of a berm on the fastest part of the track. You can see the crash in our team video. Thankfully, he didn’t suffer any serious injuries, and despite lots of superficial cuts and grazes, he was able to continue with his race weekend.
Racing got started and Owen was first up in the junior category. After feeling great in practice, he had pushed a bit hard at the start of his seeding run and crashed big. He rode smart in his race run, putting down a solid time of 2:22.9 taking the win in junior and 11th fastest time of the day. He was a bit disappointed that he hadn’t gone slightly faster, feeling he’d ridden a bit safe in the race run after the crash in seeding, but we feel he should be really happy with the smart ride, 1st place junior result and very solid overall position. Well done Owen on your first junior win representing the team!
Rueben had been riding really well all weekend, building his speed and enjoying following Jack in practice. He really liked the high speed track was looking very comfortable on his V10 which was working so well with his SR Suntour suspension. He raced well to 20th place in the elite category with a 2:26.9.
Dan and Jack were always going to be super close on a track this simple, and in seeding Dan finished 0.3 ahead of Jack. The guys were both in top 10 spots, but were keen to push hard in race runs to try and break into the top 5, and hopefully get at least one of them on the podium. Dan raced to 8th place, only half a second back from 4th, with a 2:19.7.
Jack edged out ahead of Dan this time, by only 0.28! We know from our timed testing this is less than a bike length. Jack finished in 7th place and was happy with how he rode in his race run. Both Jack and Dan were frustrated with their finishing positions as they felt they had had better race runs than the time suggested. However they are both happy to be riding well and hope to have slightly better luck when the times are so tight next time!
The team is now home for 3 weeks before heading back to Portugal in April for another training camp and round 3 of the Portugal Cup. Again thanks to our amazing sponsors for their support:
SR Suntour, ONeal, Schwalbe Tyres, Halo Wheels, Gusset Components, Kingud Products, Trail Tools, Works Components, Stif Mountain Bikes, Crank Brothers, TY Bike products and Freelap.”