Friday, February 26, 2016

The one where Chris sells his soul: UK Enduro launch

Anyone know where to source cheap needles now I’ve gone pro? Oh yes, it’s official, at long last my prodigious mountain biking talents have been recognised. I’ve only gone and been snapped up by Britain’s hottest, coolest and sexiest enduro race team: Team UK Enduro!

When UK Enduro series organiser Neil Delafield started singing down the phone, “Boys, do you wanna be in my gang, my gang, my gang?”, naturally we told the old perv to sod off. “What, even if you get a load of free shit?” Free shit? Oh, all right then.

And thus Team UK Enduro was born: the world’s tallest person (Ben Jones), the world’s fastest talker (Ceri Lewis) and the eye candy (me, obvs), plus Mr Wheelies (Dawie Davies) and a possible token female to be announced later. Needless to say, I’m super stoked to be hitting the dirt with such a sick crew. My special role will be to do the race reports, as I’m the only one who can spel.

Chasing down teammate Ceri (photo: Dan Wyre Photography)

We’ll be ripping up a whole heap of events this year, with the focus on the UK’s premier national enduro series – you guessed it – UK Enduro. Hitting the sweet spot between XC and DH, enduro is the race format that’s taking the world by storm because it actually makes racing fun, and the UK Enduro series will be enduro at its finest, with no fewer than seven races this year at venues across Britain (yes, they’ve even managed to find some hills in England). I’m especially looking forward to being crowned national champ at Revolution Bike Park in September.

Yesterday was the big UK Enduro press launch bash, with journalists, sponsors, forestry bigwigs and top Welsh Assembly totty gathering for nibbles and a good schmooze at the Drover’s Rest in Llanwrtyd Wells before heading out to test a selection of hand-crafted stages set to feature in the first round.

I don't remember it being that green (Photo: Dan Wyre Photography)

The tracks were the usual challenging-but-rideable fare familiar from Neil’s previous events, but longer and running faster thanks to more support on the corners. If loamy, rooty, twisty, steep, techy, off-camber, all-natural hooning about in the woods with mates is your bag, you really must come to the Crychan Forest on 19-20 March. Be there or be square.

To finish, I’d like to say a quick thanks to God and my family for making it all possible, but most of all to the sponsors for the free shit:
  • UK Enduro – purveyors of the finest mountain bike events this side of the EWS
  • Wheelies – purveyors of the finest bikes and stuff in South Wales if not the Universe
  • Flare Clothing – purveyors of the finest MTB clothing
  • Julbo – purveyors of the finest eyeware
  • Sealskinz – purveyors of the finest gloves and socks
  • RRP – purveyors of the finest lightweight mudguards
  • Absolute Black – purveyors of the finest oval chain rings 
  • Airshot – purveyors of the finest tubeless tyre inflators 
  • Dan Wyre Photography – purveyors of the finest action photography
  • Sixth Element – purveyors of the finest carbon wheels
  • Rocky Mountain – purveyors of the finest mountain bikes
(I should add that I haven’t actually had any freebies from the last two yet. Get your fingers out, boys. What's a few grand between friends?)

You know, yesterday's ride just wouldn't have been the same without my Absolute Black chainring, RRP mudguard, Julbo goggles and Flare Clothing top! Or my Mondraker bike, for that matter, but I had to pay for that so they don't get a link.

Also a special shout out to Drover Cycles, purveyors of the finest mechanical assistance and lentil dishes, for lending me various bouncy bikes over the years until I finally stumped up for one of my own.

No comments:

Post a Comment