The 3rd round of the UCI World Cup was held at Vallnord bike park with the race track finishing in the town of La Massana. It was my 1st time in Andorra and I was blow away at how nice the place was. I decided to head out a little early to do some practice on the track. The event started on Wednesday which was just sign on and track walk. I took a quick walk down the track to see how they had taped it. It was cool to see the amount of effort went into the track with two massive bridges being built to cross over the road.
I was really excited to get riding on Thursday for the 1st day of practice. With so many riders on it new lines were appearing nearly every run. The track had it all, a few jumps, plenty of technical off camber and some really steep sections, it was fair to say I was grinning ear to ear all day! The track was drying up really fast after the rain it had at the start of the week and after the Top 80 had their extra practice session I headed up to walk it again to check out the new lines.
The day of qualifying rolled up and I was feeling really confident. I did a few runs in the morning to get my lines dialed and then I chilled out back at my apartment until my run. I headed up to the pits to do my warm up with Chris Kilmurray from Point1 Athletic Development and then I was ready to go. My run went really well, I hit all my lines and rode solid the whole way to the bottom. I came across the line with a time of 4.37 and ended up in 37th position. This was my best qualifying position to date so I was really looking forward to finals to try and do the same.
Saturday’s practice was going great, I did a few runs with CRC/Nukeproof rider Matt Simmonds and was feeling great on the track. Unfortunately on the last run down I had a big crash and landed hard on my right arm. I felt pretty busted up and got some Ice on my wrist straight away. After a quick trip to Martin the masseur and some great advice I was feeling better and just hoped I could hold on for finals the following day.
It was race day and I was still quite sore from my crash the day before, I did two runs early in the morning and was struggling to hold on so decided to take it easy for the rest of the day before finals. My race run went pretty descent, I felt like I had a good top half of the track but really started to struggle on the lower half of the track barley able to hold on. I got down a few seconds quicker than my qualifying time which was good enough for 54th place on the day. I was happy with this considering the circumstances and now sit in 52nd position overall in the world cup standings.
The next race will be the 4th round of the UCI World Cup in Mont Sainte Anne.
Thanks again to all my amazing sponsors for all their support – Chain Reaction Cycles, Nukeproof, Schwalbe, Contour, 100% Eyewear, Crank Brothers & Mucky Nutz.