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Northern DH Rd4 Ramsgill

Last weekend saw 160 riders racing at the new venue at Ramsgill. This is the first race to return to Nidderdale since the now vintage NAMBS series nearly a decade ago.

The track

On the pedals through the beam pumping the ground and dodging the odd pedal sniper rock for as long as you dared before springing off rocks onto a downslope of rushes. Stray to far right and your bog diving.
First right, then left with some awkward rocks in the middle to negotiate and a bog just where you need to turn out. How to get through:

1 – Stay with the worn deep middle and battle with the bog at the bottom. Fast in slow out.
2 – Inside right to inside left cutting over the main bog line getting high left for the next right. Slow in but fast out.
3 – Or the outside, hop off, to land 50/50 on the lower rock/stake, risky but fast and taken only by the brave.

On the pedals again across the hill stay high left to tip in right, straight down hill, through the wall to hit the only berm on the hill which spat you uphill, ready for the left rock berm drop, thingy.


Lee Bains over the rock drop thingy

The next right, left corners were very off camber and flat grass very slippy first thing Sunday morning, after the heavy rain overnight. Having the back end out, was as fun as it gets whilst laughing at mates crashing in front. Basically you needed to carry speed here before the stream jump. To much speed and you were off line too low to get the jump and left with no alternative but crossing the stream which was basically a wet rock garden and caught many out.
First impression of the jump was that it looked wrongly position off camber. Once up to speed, I was eating my words. Yes it was perfect jumping diagonally across the stream.
If you were to look to your left, you would see Henman Hill with a good number of friends and family enjoying the great view, action and atmosphere in the sunshine.


Jump over the stream with Henman Hill to your left

Pedal again up to a flat grass left and the ride the penis! Basically a flat ramp with penis graffiti, bounced you up, manhandle your bike to keep in a good shape at the same time trying to keep it low whichever way a forever downslope awaited your landing. Try to stay high left to straighten the next right. Or risk stopping on the next right.
Pedal back up to speed down an old cart track. Pass the barn and next up is an awkward left which couldn’t be straighten due to boggyness on the right. Back onto pasture and another tight flat right
Followed by a long left double step down across a track and back into open pasture with more pedals up to speed. Technique was to cut tight, glancing your knuckles off the stakes. Through the gate and left on another off camber left corner with the odd cobble poking through the grass for good measure.
Pedal up to and through a chicane manual the road and pump the next hole or launch the whole lot off the road onto the down slope and cross the line.


Russ Harland 1st place in a strong masters class

The track dried during the afternoon and by the second race runs the track was bone dry again resulting in most second run times being faster. If you got your head around no berms and mastered flat corners then you couldn’t fail to have fun. Spikes were the tyre of choice for most of the weekend although a few changed to minions for there second race run. Liams Little’s star jump warm up seemed to do the job taking him to first place in the experts and fastest time of the day of 1.23.829. Ian Campbell Cole had a bad off over the bars ploughing his head and shoulders into the rocks near the start. Luckily Super Dave English just happened to be on the scene to take charge before the medics got to him. I hear Ian has broken a vertebrae in his back but luckily no nerve damage. Get well soon mate.


Heading for a mud bath

The uplift route was straight up a steep grass field and the tractors were soon up to speed after a few early glitches where traction was an issue due to the steepness. I think everyone had guessed that the uplift would be off due to the amount of rain that had fallen overnight. New venues come with new problems and I think most can see past this and make the most of it. I did overhear a negative comment regarding the uplift. “Do they not have a back up plan”. It seems a few think we have a fleet of helicopters on standby for such occasions. Maybe Carl could consider it with millions he has made from the race. Most others got on with the push and were rewarded with some seriously fun sliding around on the wet grass. Tame courses bring tighter time margins which is evident in the full results.


Liam Little getting the fastest time of the day

Riders that usually do well on the knarley NDH tracks that haven’t here, should practice flat cornering and fitness which are all essential skills, if you are taking it serious. Big thanks James Wilson, Blake Waldon and no doubt family and friends that scoped the hill and helped pull the event together.
We have maps for most of the Pennines, Cheviots and the Lakes and know the potential the north holds. These boys have shown their local knowledge and found a willing farmer with a venue with potential, thanks.

1st Alex Florian 1.25.345
2nd Alasdair Maclennan 1.26.894
3rd Brad Illingworth 1.27.704
1st Liam Little 1.23.829 Fastest time of the day
2nd James Swinden 1.25.439 Yorkshire Champion
3rd Tom Kelly 1.25.906
1st Rowan Carpenter 1.33.161 Yorkshire Champion
2nd Bradley Swinbank 1.33.568
3rd Andrew Dorritt 1.34.614
1st Peter Hook 1.28.568
2nd Robert Pickard 1.29.928 Yorkshire Champion
3rd Liam McDermott 1.30.529
1st Billy Matthews 1.27.658 Yorkshire Champion
2nd James Wilson 1.28.526
3rd Mike Newbould 1.29.542
1st James Risker 1.26.685
2nd Jamie Scott 1.27.460
3rd Calum McRitchie 1.28.064
James Metcalf 1.29.235 Yorkshire Champion
1st Russ Harland 1.25.730
2nd Russ Clark 1.29.486
3rd Mark Weightman 1.29.652
Chris Lazenby 1.29.911 Yorkshire Champion
1st Daren Howarth 1.28.876
2nd Pete Hoggan 1.31.259
3rd Lee Podmore 1.35.315
Richie Malloy 1.46.281 Yorkshire Champion
Grand Veteran
1st Alan Turnbull 1.40.791
1st Angela Coats 1.41.911
2nd Esther Sands 1.48.272
3rd Janine Wolstenholme 1.53.322
Emma Whitaker 1.56.520 Yorkshire Champion

Next up we are back to Alwinton on 24th-25th September

See you there Phil NDH

Full results are here on rootsandrain
Thanks to:
Rich Easton for the photos
All marshalls
Brian Whitfield and Ian Jones Commissionaires
Usual squad of Carls friends and family
Farmer Don for having us.
Stif Cycles for the prizes and promotion
Hope for the prizes.

Ramsgill 2011 Northern Downhill Round 4 from Michael Strangeways on Vimeo.

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3 comments on “Northern DH Rd4 Ramsgill

  1. Hope have provided some series prizes and therfore deserve a mention. No Hope gear was given out on the day!
    Stif Cycles provided the prizes on the day which was greatly appeciated.
    If any other companies want to help suport the series with prizes we would be more than happy to give them a mention
    Phil NDH

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