Thetford Winter – Tunstall – First race slop fest!

Quick change from the initial shake down build ready to race. 29 ring on the front matched with the 18 rear is all I have for now, it’s to high for a sloppy Tunstall course. The forecast is dire but it’s worth ago.

BigRing donated a lovely 90mm Ritchy WCS stem at 103 grams seems the perfect size for me at a seat/bar distance of 29″. 8 links off the chain from the 44 T and fitting the 4Ti eggbeater race pedals finishes the prep.

18lb on the button, superb!  Maxxis Crossmarks at 24 PSI (crap for the conditions but all I’ve got)

The race started ok, insanely wet and sloppy the initial surge through the dambuster like sprint seemed amazingly stable compared to others but the track soon disintegrated into a brake destroying grinding bucket of slop.

Lessons learned Mk1;

  • 29-16 is way to high for round here.
  • Momentum is everything with the bigger front wheel
  • Poor tyre choice with bigger wheel works really well on the rear
  • Front crossmark has no sidegrip what so ever
  • Hope XC2 brakes are shit out of the box. Need serious bleeding and the pads, even though they look like sintered are toast.
  • Those bars are huge, plenty of knotches left on trees. 
  • Single lock on grips on a shiny new bar needs a bit more prep.
  • Frame fork combination seems pretty comfortable
  • Rigid forks don’t roll over square edges, being thrown forward with slipping grips leads to some comedy moments.
  • This bike cleans up a treat.

Could be new bike syndrome, but I was possibly the only one who enjoyed today. Despite the poor gearing which led to me taking a tactical dismount at the end of lap three with 10 mins to the shortened 2.5 hr race time. In 5th at that time I only lost two places, and I’d had enough of grinding at about 30rpm by then. Looking good so far.

[update] Just checked the excellant lap by lap analysis tool that some guy has applied to the results. LINKY   Pleased with that first lap especially without warmup, felt great and could have been top 4 with lower gearing I reckon. Did indeed lose 2 places for my early bath, Result!

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