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Words by Brendan Brown:

It was early Saturday morning when we rolled through the small Welsh village of Cwmcarn for rounds 8 and 9 of the Dragon Downhill series, eager to ride one of the most anticipated tracks of the year.

The Mojo Mountain, or Mynydd Mojo as it would be known in Welsh is at least a 3 minute long track for most of us mere mortals, with riders reaching speeds in excess of 30mph in some areas. The course was littered with massive jumps, drops, berms and roots, and in combination with the clear skies, gentle breezes and the promise of a fast efficient uplift this time round, it looked set to be a great weekend unlike the nationals held here earlier this year.

Our first runs started off with a short blast down the gravely car park, practising cutties on the loose stones like the best of fundamentalism then back up the hefty push to the uplifts. (Quite a few riders were taking a shortcut and pushing up the footpath, I know its all too easy to do as it makes the push so much easier... but please, please don't do it in future, we've already had a few complaints from locals about bikers at this venue and any more could jeopardise events in future).

Once we got to the box vans that were ferrying us to the top, with a few skirmishes for the best seats in the cab, (ever noticed Si Paton always travels Business
Class?) we were away up the hill. The closed rear of the vans and dust and exhaust fumes made everyone either sleepy or ill, not the best start for such a tough course as this.

Shred's Ashley Mullane

And what a tough course it was, starting off with a steep sharp slope that managed to catch one or two people out by itself on the race day. Step forward Masters rider Craig Sheffield who dug his pedal into the ground on Sun run 1 and slammed himself into the floor, nice.. into a flat out pedally section that had you hammering so hard the rear wheel started to drift.

Powering into the forest between tight trees and slight off camber sections at warp factor left grins on everyone’s faces, flowing a small step-down into a berm and between more tight trees. Then riders were faced with a tricky cluster of trees, the quickest line was staying high, around the first then cutting through the middle and into the next switchback bashing your bash guard into all sorts of shapes.

Next up was another pedally trail cut into the side of the hill, before a choice of lines, left up high over the massive crater, stay right and roll down over the rocks, or for the suicidal and Dan Stanbridge, jump over the whole thing. Through some more trees then a pair of switchbacks, then alongside the fire road and dropping down underground.

Wall riding out of the tunnel then straight down a rocky chute into another couple of bus stops with massive rocks forcing you to get the line right, then a tight twisty off camber sections, keep your elbows in and your legs bent and hammer through this section, then down another chute, into another bus stop and down into the mother of all rock gardens. Stay to the right where its smoother, drop off the steps and around an S bend made out with more huge rocks. For those that weren't blind, ignore the last bit and go top the left and miss the step rock drops completely and cut back into the last step and pop the stegosaurus jump, missing the "S" bend and saving 2secs at least!

Rowan Sorrell

Yet another massive bus stop, flying up the side of an almost vertical cliff before dropping back down and off a big wide drop off seemingly made out of looted railway sleepers (well it is Wales). A couple of super fast off camber turns separated by a step-down saw everyone drifting on two wheels, before rattling over a cattle grid, over a step up into a berm and then into the big mother.

A choice of two step-downs, a small low one or a long kicky takeoff spat riders under the bridge and round Cwmcarn’s signature feature, a massive 15 foot berm that held bike and rider at ridiculous speeds and kicked you out even faster. Over another step-downs, pedalling like mad, before taking the faster line left to hit a massive tabletop, followed sharply by a hip.

How many cleared the tabletop smoothly this weekend?
Not many if I'm any judge, but dry conditions and hard ground saw a lot more riders clearing it than the muddy nationals previously.

Dropping off the bridge and into a berm at Mach 5, before taking the stylish line over the big finishing jump or the low fast rolling double. Just note the likes of Hornton Hills Haines who whipped it right out here as he did on the hip jump. Forget the race times, enjoy yourself and please the crowd as Superfly would have you know.

Carving around a grassy bumpy corner put bikers over the finish lane next to Jason in the Dragon Downhill van, big smiles all round and ready to do it again.

Everyone I spoke to had a thoroughly good time, some more than others, the big berm claimed two riders on separate days, Alex Evans concussing himself on the Sunday after loosing his back wheel to gravity. When asked where he was and if he was ok, he responded with 'Yeah I’m fine, I'm in Caersws'. CLOWN.

Lee Pincher

Feats of bravery and down right stupidity were being undertaken all weekend, 223 rider Andy Cooper breaking his little finger, bruising ribs and falling victim to another concussion on his first race run, then going back up to do his second against medical advice. As always happens with a good atmosphere and great course, limits were being pushed, bikes and riders tested to the extreme, and a great weekend had by all.

Many thanks to go to Jason and family for putting on a great weekend, all the marshals, sponsors, organisers and the FC for making it happen.

Dan Stanbridge won the Marzocchi 888s, is that not the 4th time? For getting the fastest overall combined times of the weekend. If you want to ask Stanny any questions, go onto Bish Bosh on our forum and post a question. He's next up for an interview. Chris Barnard won the Tank Cycles Hard tail in the Hard Tail category funnily enough.

Everyone drank their Fenwick’s cleaner on the podium. not really, only joking kids.

1/2 way through seniors it started to rain lightly and greased it out a little. Luckily and timed so well, the expected downpour came as we were all exiting the once dusty car park. Meaning the car was almost clean once home in North Wales.

As there’s two days worth of results, don't be lazy like us, go checkout the full results on

James Marples
Mullane | Stanbridge | Critchlow

The next race is at Abercarn on the 8th and 9th. Another quality track, get there, get booked on now via Paypal if you so wish..

Check this out! The Dragons legendary chainless race took part Sat eve and Vets winner Jerry Twigg who's fast as you like beat his race time with a chain. What does that tell you about pedalling and even more importantly, clipping in?

It's all about flat pedals.

- Hornton Hill is re-opening, no racing but riding again, watch this space!

- Remember Tredegar BMX track is open and is AWESOME

- Birmingham Wheels is on it, call Mark Slay on 0121 771 0725

- Brendan Fairclough's interview will be up shortly.

Descent-Gear's Sale at Fort William. Go see your Gran and tell her you passed your exams! Deals on Going Native, MRP, Romic, SPY, Toy Lee, SIC, Maxxis, SRAM, Arrow, Fenwick’s etc..

Plus come and get one of the new and very limited Descent-World stickers.

Stay off the brakes..


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