Tuesday, 25 November 2008
What can I say - I helped the guys from Addiscombe CC to set up the course last Saturday. It was mainly dry and 99% rideable...............we were even worried about the course not being interesting enough !
But what a difference 24 hours makes ! Snow, sleet, rain and every other type of precipitation dumped itself on the grounds at the Penshurst Off Road Cycling Centre.
So by lunchtime on Sunday everything was nicely muddied up ready for our race in these scenic grounds in the heart of the Kent hills.
It was tough just ploughing through thick mud the whole time. The course, which is essentially on the side of hill was tricky. The descents gave a bit of respite, but demanded concentration as there were some gravelly corners which interspersed the very muddy corners.
Going around the corners sent you and your bike all over the place. One particular 180 degree turn was the scene of a 1 hour long crash fest - great entertainment for the race marshals !
Once you'd negotiated the downhill, you then had a long slog back up the various muddy switchbacks to reach the start line.
Oh, and if that wasn't enough, there was also a mini BMX circuit thrown in for good measure.
Anyone who moans about racing around wide open fields that don't have much variety should get down and do a cyclo cross race at Penshurst. Well, you'll have to wait until next year now. Sunday was the one and only round happening there this year.
Pictures by Marky Mark of Addiscombe CC (www.addiscombe.org)