Northern Downhill Rd 3 Kidlandlee Alwinton
The track headed from the fire road straight into the trees with some dusty turns, before heading out into the open, with fine views across the Cheviots. Unfortunately the track headed straight down and there was no chance to enjoy the view, due to the flat out speed heading straight down the gradient onto a ripped grass right requiring full concentration, then left. If you go through the tapes here you were up to your helmet in nettles and looking for doc leaves.
Next up, the steepest section of the track with a choice of 3 lines:
Left was the chicken line but probably the most used and roughest chicken line come the rain on Sunday with again helmet deep nettles if you where through the tapes.
The middle line was a straight starting with a roll-able rock step followed by a shoot straight down the gradient for just enough time to build up too much speed to make you panic onto a tight right hand ledge which shot you out nice for the following stone drop left.
The right was the most favoured by the top boys which seemed to be slow in with a traverse then a rock drop which shot you towards the next left stone drop with way too much speed to feel comfortable.
Breaking here was the issue as to fast and the next right after the left had few spots to break with a polished root coming out on the Sunday it made things very tricky. Ask Peter Williams!
Next up was the ledge right followed by a flat left which went from being flat to having a slippy shoot in. If you came out of the shoot you could be greeted with a few extra drops over rock ledges. Matty Leggett was a victim here and I would not have been brave enough to do my second run after breaking those rocks. This section definitely was the spot everyone struggled and we will be making some line changes before the next race.
The track now headed off left back into the trees with a drifty mud corner left which were no brakes, loose and back end out. Huggy and Chris Foster showed most of the boys how to go on. In the trees the corners where gravel flat and loose with the outside building up with gravel it was either a cut to straighten the corner or rail the loose gravel outside risking your front wheel blowing out. It has to be said this was fun all weekend!
With a log drop before hitting the fallen tree jump which was best jumped to the right again to help straighten the next left across the hill. Head right, down again then right left over another log drop often with only one foot on the pedals. Onwards into some dense trees here the visibility was poor and you had to trust your instinct.
Another left then right led you into a straight which dropped down onto the bridge, pedal the bridge before a uphill which could be rolled if your speed was right.
Next up was a awkward traverse across the tree planting wibbles (technical term) before a tight right then right, left snake hips hugging a tree before dropping into the final shoot which accelerated you to hyper speed in a second, hitting the timber bridge and the valley bottom and hard across the line.
Saturday saw the biggest injury of the weekend with Wayne Smith being peeled off the hill and evacuated in a RAF Sea King helicopter. Thanks to everyone that helped to get Wayne off the hill this was our first test and it went well. Wayne tells me he is feeling a lot better.
The final practice run saw Russ Harland manage to loose power in his back brake resulting in him trying to roll the steepest slippiest hardest corner of the track with only his front brake resulting in an off over the bars and folding his front wheel. Did this stop Russ NO, next time we saw him he was at the top on board his hard tail. Fair play Russ that was a well earned 3rd place.
Juvenile William Hugill took the win. We intend to make track changes to encourage more juvenile entries for the next round.
Youth Win was claimed by Blake Walden with a 2.42.69 with Matthew Downes in 2nd and Jack Walker 3rd
NEFR rider Joe Young was riding well all weekend and took the win in the Juniors with 2.04.17 with Brett Cloonan in 2nd and Rowan Buckley 3rd.
Team CHR gents came up trumps in veterans with Michael Strangeways and Alan Turnbull taking 1st and 2nd with Shaun Kelly 3rd. The boys are looking forward to the Dunkeld SDA next weekend which should be a walk in the park, after this weekend.
James Dalleywatertook the masters win with a winning time of 1.56.21 with Lee Baxter 2nd and Russ Harland 3rd on his little bike
Seniors win was taken by Team CHR Steven Turnbull with an impressive time of 1.51.57 with Chris Foster 2nd and Andrew Weeding 3rd. Sorry about the podium mix up!
Expert Liam Little took the expert win with the fastest time of the day of 1.41.53 with Ben Hall just over a second slower and Nick Turner in 3rd.
Peter William took the elite win
Yes the conditions where poor but they were ride-able as many riders proved. I would like to thank the Gentlemen who stuck with it and got on with the race especially Juvenile William Hugill who really does deserve a pat on the back well done mate.
I am sure many riders are influenced by the top riders and this was the reason that one young rider had decided not to bother doing his race runs, Personally I don’t think this is in the spirit of racing and shouting and balling that the track is un-ride able because you mess up is childish. You know who you are. Get a grip.
Generally the lack of litter and tidying was a credit to you all. We did get feedback that the parking could have been better and that people had used the access road as a rally stage, remember this will be the type of behaviour that winds people up and could ultimately loose the venue.
• Usual suspects for helping out marshalling or organising. We have gathered a good crew of friends, family riders family who are doing a great job and we appreciate it.
• Land owner’s and David, Richard and Alan from UPM Tilhill for giving us the permission and trusting us enough to hold the event.
• The Great North Air Ambulance and the Rescue crew from RAF Boulmer.
• www.hopetech.com for their prize support
• www.Switch-backs.com for their prize support.
• www.olivercoats.co.uk for the race photos.
• The guys that loaned me the body armour and gloves which saved me a trip home and sorry about handing them back dirty.
Keep an eye out for updates on track build days and bedding in uplift days on the forum and www.northerndownhill.co.uk
Hope to see more of you at the next round.
1st William Hugill 3.57.31
1st Blake Walden 2.42.69
2nd Matthew Downes 2.46.30
3rd Jack Walker 2.50.27
1st Joe Young 2.04.17
2nd Brett Cloonan 2.05.39
3rd Rowan Buckley 2.13.44
1st Michael Strangeways 2.43.53
2nd Alan Turnbul 2.46.71
3rd Shaun Kelly 3.23.82
1st James Dalleywater 1.56.21
2nd Lee Baxter 2.32.62
3rd Russ Harland 3.09.56
1st Steve Turnbul 1.51.57
2nd Chris Foster 2.04.39
3rd Andrew Weeding 2.05.70
1st Liam Little 1.41.53 (fastest time of the day)
2nd Ben Hall 1.42.76
3rd Nick Turner 2.11.18
1st Peter Williams 2.59.18