Race 4, Exmouth Enduro
Last Saturday was to be a momentous occasion. The last three rounds saw three different riders at the top of the leader board, all with the same last name……DAVIES! What does a rider need to do to climb their way back up the rankings? Put on a gravity enduro event, where gravitational assistance on a body weighing a few extra pounds than it should must surely count for something. The concept of not being timed going up a hill must have been conceived by a middle aged man who’s training regime back in their teenage years was all about eating meat pies and drinking Coke (and probably still is to this day!)
The stage was set with a plethora of safety gear being attached to every part of the body, and in some cases sticky taped down for reinforcement. Four stages were selected for the timed downhill segments, with all trails finishing in the same region but spreading out in opposite directions. There was no room for groomed trails, only loose, sharp, biting stones. You know the ones I mean, the ones that have in the past, jumped up and split hydraulic brake cables in half on a steep decent, only offering a soft bed a spinifex to cushion a fall on the side of the trail.
Stage 1 was extremely loose, where speed was not a benefit, only tyres that stayed on the trail with a clear head. Bo took the lead of the day, considering he was the first rider, but missing the A line cost him the lead by the very next rider. The first casualty was Tango with a broken chain out of the starting block, trying to conjure up Aaron Gwin’s spirit to put in a performance reminiscent of Leogang in the 2015 World Cup. The A line was there for the taking, with the drop counting for valuable seconds on the clock. Dan Davies put in a winning effort to take stage 1 with a time of 1.30.38.
Stage 2 took on the steepest and gnarliest downhill we have. All competitors took a shine to this track and it’s fast rugged terrain. A KOM was on offer on Strava, but one of our fastest riders didn’t quite ride far enough to record their time properly, ending up with a time of 2.30 min, instead of a sub 35 sec. One of the coolest riders under stress was Jamie Tsangaris who was heard chatting away going down this behemoth whilst other riders were going down white knuckled. Again, Dan Davies taking the win at 0.45.53.
Stage 3 was more like a slip and slide event without dad’s old black plastic from the shed and a bucket load of suds. The name of the game was to get to the bottom in one piece and possibly have both feet on the pedals for at least 80% of the trail. The tail end of the trail finished with a shoot registering an approximate 25% gradient to the finish line. Somehow Andy managed to endo the entire shoot due to an over zealous front brake. Again, our aging superheroes could not catch the young upstart, Dan Davies, for the win, taking it with a time of 0.40.53.
The final stage took on the ultimate Picket Line, with all bragging rights hinging on this stage. Will the young Dan Davies take a clean sweep of all the stages, or could Christmas come early for our hardened warriors who have toiled their entire life to get down these trails without the aid of their stabilizers. This trail likes to take no prisoners, and today was no exception. Andy came down, losing a chain on the way. Daz broke almost every spoke on his rear wheel, taking on a jingle resembling spokey dokeys. Tango pushed to the limit, taking a KOM with riders still remaining. Then disaster struck. Dan completed his race with a massive OTB, damaging his leg in the process, and opening up a slight window of opportunity. Not knowing the result, Phil put down a super human effort in what would be considered his favourite trail, to record a time 17 seconds faster than his standing record, coming in at 2.03.31.
The final wrap up saw excited, and fatigued, riders enjoying a lot of laughs and a well deserved breakfast. The final result did not, however, benefit our aging fleet of riders, still taking on those meat pies for gravitational advantage, but the win going to our aging Phil Davies who leap frogged Dan in to first place on the last stage of the day after Dan had been dominating all day. Such is life! Congratulations to all the riders who competed, it was a great day had by all.