Friday 27th March
It's Friday, school's out for two weeks and I'm about to set off on the 4 hour drive to Castlewellan Forest Park, Co.Down for the first round of the Vitus First Tracks Enduro Cup. With a long, busy week at school and my hectic training schedule, Friday has come too fast and my plan to head off in the van early afternoon is not happening. I yet again, underestimated the length of time it takes to pack up the van for a weekend of camping and don't set off until 7pm. The decision then was to stay in Dublin with the folks that night and set off at the crack of dawn on the Saturday morning to Castlewellan.
Arriving in Castlewellan at about 11am, we were welcomed by the melodic tune of the Northern Irish accent and the super friendly campsite staff. We were blown away by the top class campsite which was part of the grounds of Castlewellan Forest Park.The stunning grounds surrounding a large lake that was bustling with activities such as kayaking, biking and walkers. We got settled at our pitch and rustled up our first meal in the van, enough to keep us going on our bikes for the rest of the day!
After a long day on the bike, we were treated to hot showers and free (non-alcoholic I might add) Erdinger. Presentations were at 4.30pm so we had lots of time to relax and replenish ourselves.
Although I didn't achieve my goal of making the podium, I was really happy with my 'progression' and with 4th place. All four of us finished within 24 minutes so it was tight racing! My result has shown that my winter training programme with Colin Ross, aka ROSCOLINES, is paying off and I'm feeling stronger and fitter than this time last year. It was a great weekend and a really well run event by Glyn O'Brien and his First Tracks crew. What better way to prepare for the first round of the Irish Gravity Enduro in two weeks time! Bring on the schlomp!
The next day we decided to hit Bigwood as it was on our way home. This place is a bikers playground. Although it was pissing rain, we still managed to have an absolute blast on the bikes and sink our teeth into the new downhill runs there. Recovery day skids!
Irish Female Enduro Racer Flow MTB Team Rider