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FatPom

First proper MTB ride, eek!

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A work mate and I are heading here tomorrow. He's very good at MTB racing and I'm a complete novice, ugh.  I'm hiring a DS mtb from the park (I think it's a Marin BU17 or summat like that). Forecast is for hurricane like winds and rain, what could possibly go wrong? :lol:

https://www.redbull.com/gb-en/swinley-forest-mtb-everything-you-need-to-know

 

Edited by FatPom
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Farken harden up mate :D

 

And I want to see some serious air....cos I can get at least 6 inches worth.

Edited by ComfortablyNumb

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7 hours ago, ComfortablyNumb said:

Farken harden up mate :D

 

And I want to see some serious air....cos I can get at least 6 inches worth.

Not sure what I'm meant to be hardening up to? 😎

To day was torrential rain all morning and 8C but we rocked up and had a ball.  The guy I was with is a pretty accomplished mob race (XC mostly) and I followed his lines.  It was very cold and we when we started but soon warmed up.

Started with a green trail about 1.5kms which was fine, then about 40mins on a blue, then straight to red :lol:  I really enjoyed it, got used to the bike moving around a lot and after a while sussed that using the correct part of a berm to scrub speed is much more  efficient than braking.  Ground was sandy gravel, so a bit of a nightmare in this weather.

Found the hardest part was technical climbing where tree roots are across the whole trail, as they seemed to either end of the bike slide. Got caught out a couple of times by pedalling over small humps and hitting the pedal.  The bike had flat pedals, which were fine, except for descending, I found my trainers slipping forwards, which didn't give me the control I was after.

Anyway, my mate was very impressed with ability to keep up. (I'm sure he was going very easy) and the amount of standing water and tricky surface basically had him saying 'If you didn't crash today, you'll be flying on other days'.

Great fun, glad I could hand the bike back, but fcuk me dead, that washing machine will be surrendering from the mud!:surrender:

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Yup Ian, technical climbing on rough or slippery surfaces is the hardest part of mtb I find.  Being clipped in helps a lot there....until you need to get your feet out in a hurry & can't, though I find my mtb cleats pop out much easier than road bike shoes.  Sometimes, they seem to know you are about to bite the dust & just come out without conscious effort.

Riding single track in the wet sucks.  Seriously slippery & everything gets trashed.

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Had my second session today, there were 4 of us. We went to the same park and I hired the same bike.  We had rain driving to the park, so the trails were mostly wet but it didn't rain whilst we were there.

I'm the fittest, certainly endurance wise out of the group (despite being the oldest by more than 10yrs!) but the other three were mtb  riders. Anyway, my XC mate led out and I followed him and it quickly became apparent that we would be 'two groups of two' as the others were behind a bit. I probably had the heaviest bike but also had the most up to date on, as everyone else were on HTs.

I'd been doing a LOT of research since my last trip, mostly watching GMTBN and other channels. I knew I had the fitness and some cornering skill from my Moto and cycle racing exploits. What I was looking for was a way to convert this into MTB progression.  My viewing had impressed on me two things, the importance/technique of pumping and sighting the right line.

With this 'knowledge' I had a firm plan of what I wanted to concentrate on and the result was that this session was like chalk and cheese compared to the last.  I felt like I was anticipating things better, linking up sections and I was definitely pumping to get the bike to do the flowing instead of my quads.

My XC mate said he was really impressed with my riding this time and was surprised how much my confidence had grown but he was unhappy about not being able to put huge gaps into me like last time and muttered something about 'effin roadies':lol:

I still made a load of mistakes, pedal strike being one. Must remember to disengage TT brain and not pedal all the time. I covered the brakes with my fingers more this time but would sometimes forget, especially after a climb. When it was really tight, had the odd instance of target fixation (trees).

Overall though, brilliant, loved it. Think I'm getting hooked!

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Coasting into things was one pointer from my coached sessions. Even just a brief pedals flat, think about what you’re doing before an obstacle. 

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On 22/09/2018 at 5:35 PM, FatPom said:

 He's very good at MTB racing and I'm a complete novice, ugh.  

I know the feeling

My second outing was with a mate from work who finished fourth in the hellfire cup in tassie last weekend

More than a little bit humbling

Edited by IronJimbo
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