Last weekend marked the event on everyone’s calendar, National champs and what better venue to hold it than the steep and technical Llangollen.
Racers arrived to sunshine and there was a great atmosphere with everyone getting very excited by the new modification to the course.
The track was extremely dry and within no time racers were hammering down it and the new sections of track were taking a beating. The best description given by most racers for the whole track was “blown out” it was loved by all as the turns rutted up and dust flew everywhere through the steep corners Llangollen had to offer.
With practice done and some smooth uplifting allowing for a good amount of practice runs racers were hoping the rain forecast over night would settle the track down a little come racing.
With little rain over night and the track staying very much the same with a few spots of track maintenance practice began on Sunday. It was noticeably more focused on the Sunday with it being a championship race as the racers tried to find the edge with some of them getting pretty loose towards the end of practice.
Seeding runs went off and in the Women’s category Rachel Atherton Went into the lead with Tahnee and Manon not far behind. In the men’s Sam Dale came down with a great time into first with Danny hart and Jack reading sitting in second and third.
With the track getting rougher and rougher race runs were going to be very tiring and all eyes were on the finish line to see who could take the Win. In the Elite Women’s Rachel Atherton continued her seeding dominance to take her fourth consecutive National Champ title with Manon in second and Katy Curd in third.
In the elite men’s it was extremely close racing with Danny hart taking the win by just 0.6 of a second to Sam dale and Ruaridh Cunningham in a close third.
A great weekend had by all and the weather held out which left smiles on everyone’s faces Well done to Mike Marsden for putting on a great race.
Words By Fergus Ryan
Photos By Sarah Barrett Photography