5th June 2011
Innerleithen MTB Orienteering Results
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Race report courtesy of Rosemary Byde from Edinburgh Road Club:
Last weekend I found myself blearily getting out of bed for yet another early start and the 3rd event in the Scottish MBO score series. This one was based at Traquair village hall near Innerleithen. I was treating it as a good training race for the upcoming Polaris Challenge and an opportunity to race with ‘new partner’ of the year number 2
Despite taking the scenic route to the event centre we arrived in plenty of time to study the map and compare notes for strategy. Luckily we were largely in agreement, so the only disputes before the start were over who was going to carry the shared kit. I did detect a hint of a suggestion that I was being over-meticulous with the number of plans for different race scenarios, but decided this was ridiculous and just ignored it!
We shot off at high speed for the first checkpoint. It really was high speed, so I was lucky that the second checkpoint we were aiming for was up a hill. A chance to catch up and give Dan a lecture on the benefits of letting me draft on the road sections! Half an hour in to a 3 hour race and my legs were getting that same feeling as they have on a 10 mile time trial.
Me: “Um, this is somewhat quicker than I’d normally go …”
Dan: “Yeah, me too, but it’s only 3 hours so it’s supposed to be like that”
Me: (doubtfully) “I suppose ….”
The race went pretty well, notable moments being:
– A scramble up a rather steep embankment to get to a fort we’d approached from the wrong side
– The internal battle I had with myself to stop wasting time and just trust Dan’s navigation when I was confused
– Me trying to keep up on the downhills and a switch in my brain going ‘fun’ / ‘scary’ / ‘fun’ / ‘scary’
– Dan’s pinch puncture – just after the comment “this downhill’s going to be full-on!”
– Following a line only to find myself heading straight for overhanging tree branches – twice
Turns out Dan was right about the speed – I didn’t fade, yet finished the race with very little left and that wibbly-wobbly worked-hard sensation – just as it should be. Not sure if Dan agreed with himself though, since he had a sudden drop-off-a-cliff-like decline about 40 minutes from the end (his
excusereasoning was a recent cold taking its toll). I tried everything to keep us going fast, including goading (‘don’t let a girl beat you’), encouragement (‘let’s go! last push!’), fear (‘we’re going to be LATE!’) and eventually physical pushing (sorry Dan – but it happened!)
Great race, great result as we won the mixed pairs and were 3rd placed overall. Jon, who I raced with in Wales last month, was 1st, just 24 points ahead of us . Other club members competing included Rachel Henderson and Jayden, in what must be almost his last appearance before jetting back to a life in sunnier climes.
I learnt I can go faster in shorter races, that I can ride down hills faster and not die, and that Dan wasn’t so bad as a race partner. Even if he did try and swindle me out of my share of the prizes at the end
Race report from Richie from www.mtb-borders.com:
Yes this was my first time and boy did i make hard work of it
I left bang on ten so i could watch my time easier but before i had started i should of looked at the map given and plotted a reasonable route. I should of also checked both sets of clues given and not put them under the map which was wrapped around my arm and held on with elastic bands. Still i was there to learn and Russ, Lynne and Keith gave me loads of good advice which went in one ear and out the other
I raced out of the car park and went the wrong way or was it the right way so i turned around and raced the other way just as my chain snappedso after fixing that i forged ahead and on my first trail choice i took the wrong one and headed up and out and away from traquair. So after much humming and scratching of butt i checked the map and realized that i should be “down there” so i made my peace with God and started my adventure for real.
With nearly one hour gone and not a dibber in sight i found my first one with a help from a Dutch walker. As i was only looking at one side of the clues due to the other side being covered by my creased map. Number16 was described as being ” at the edge of the forest” so there i am stumbling about , sweating and swearing out aloud about “how can it be at the edge of the forest as the forest boundaries are hugewhen out of the red fog a voice of a angel gets my attention and points to a gate ” is this what you are looking for”
I thank him and explain what i am doing then jump on my bike and head for the farthest point that i could find???? Why……………………..because i can and remember i had no plan
That whole episode from the start to me finding my first dibber had taken almost a hour and several big unnecessary climbs but still i plodded on eager for my second hit of a flashing light and a beep.
So my quest took me on a whirlwind tour of traquair , i even sneaked in some of the red but my fun was soon to be quashed as i took another wrong turning( it’s getting quite repetitive that saying) and followed a fire road for what seemed like a age to reveal at the end just a boring old turning point. Bu**er
After That my only aim was to get in back before my three hours was up as i knew i had a very low score and if i got any penalty’s i would be nil points.
So i got back in the three hours allotted and seen Russ and Gary who were in early due to Russ not being able to tell the big hand from the small hand( i might get him one of those big clocks with a nice big gold chain like Flav a Flav from Public Enemy and hang it around his neck ) i dibbed out and got my results.
“any good Russ”
“s****” was the reply.
” the clues were kind of crap were they not” i explained.
” what both of them” Russ looked puzzled.
“ahh” my silence spoke volumes as Russ and Gary shook there heads
Still i really enjoyed the day and had a excellent workout on the bike. I learned a lot and was glad i made all the mistakes that only i could make AND i will be back as it is great fun and as it has been mentioned on these boards, everyone should give it a go