With the XC race season far from over here’s another great article about some of our racers’ experiences slightly further afield…



Aske Estate was my very first BMBS race apart from the Nationals last year. Aske Estate was a very nice area in Yorkshire, but it didn’t seem that nice after a race there…

Early on Saturday morning, Dad and I got picked up by Sander and Mieke to drive down to Yorkshire to take part in Round 3 of the BMBS Series. We went to do some practice laps before we went to the B&B. Mieke got told it was a really hilly course and we looked around in confusion; no hills… anywhere. Gregor had turned up a few minutes before us so we all ate our lunch then got on our bikes. We got invited to get taken round the course by Paul Newnham and the rest of the Scotland kids, so we met at the Scottish Cycling tent and started the lap. I take back everything about Aske Estate not being a hilly course! The course was quite different to any SXC’s; there was a lot of gravel and different kinds of obstacles. The first lap we did made the course seem incredibly long and my legs felt so sore after the long drive. After that lap we split up into 2 groups to practice at our own pace, So Mieke, Emily and I went with Jason for the practice and after we did everything with a bit more speed the course seemed so much shorter. After that we all met up again to have a session learning about brakes. We all learnt how to change brake pads and to know when they need changed. Paddy took us all over to the under 12 course which was ridiculous! It was literally a circle that took 19 seconds for him to ride. We all thought the under 12s would be capable to do most of our course but only the Scottish were completely shocked at this attempt of a course!

After we went back to the B&B, we realised Mieke, Gregor, Paddy and I were all staying in the same place. We walked to a nearby village for dinner and when we ordered we all left the adults inside and found some rope swings. After we ate dinner we went back to the rope swings but were too tired so we just sat on a bench and played music!

The next day was race day. I was getting quite worried about it because it was a new experience for me racing with people I didn’t know. We all warmed up at the Scottish Cycling tent which was quite cool getting to feel like a big team! We all went over to the gridding area for the start, I was at the back of the grid because this was my first race of the season. So when they blew the whistle I had to wiggle my way up the group. My first lap is never really strong because I swear there is a brain in my legs that tells me to save some energy. On the 2nd lap I managed to get into 10th place but she managed to pass me going up he last hill so I ended up coming 11th. I definitely could’ve pushed myself more in the first lap and I could’ve been in the top 10 for a British race. Dad was to race next and he got an amazing start and was looking pretty strong. Mieke, Paddy and I were waiting in the pits for him to come round we realised something must have happened when Jason came round for his second lap and Dad hadn’t come through for his first! Mieke went down to ask the commissaries if he had stopped. They told her about 4 minutes in he crashed and he had hurt his nose pretty badly. Mieke ran back up to tell me this and that he was getting brought down by the Mountain Rescue Team. We waited forever at the MR tent for him to come back down. When he turned up he said he was okay but his face and hand was sore but that’s understandable when you have taken a tree down with your nose! Lets just say he looked ridiculous. His nose was all swollen making it look really squinty when it really wasn’t that bad. He was okay but we packed up the car and headed back home. We dropped him off at A&E but he decided not to ask about his pinky that could be broken. It’s now the weekend after and he’s decided now he needs to go back and get it checked out.


It was a brilliant weekend away and I will definitely do some more BMBS races! Dalby’s next and I can’t wait!





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