2008 has come round even quicker this year with January being a very busy month for us with both Si and Daryl changing bikes Si riding the new 450 and Daryl on the 250 4 stroke so they needed to start training as soon as possible so the team including Gav and Vince Harker who joined us at the last minute with Rhenailt having to stay at home to finish his exams.
We headed to Sol Moto near Puerto Lumbreras in Spain, a Trail , Enduro and MX centre run by Yorkshire family Steve, Debbie, Ben and Emma who’s hospitality was first class Steve a Chef by trade fed us Debbie mothered us and Ben entertained us and took us on enduro trails and MX tracks
Our training has gone very well with every one of us benefiting from the dry weather and being able to put in good hours on the bikes, our very own ‘motocross Mick’ was the first casualty when he decided to crash on the first day, first lap of a local motocross track and had to sit the rest of the rest of the day out due to bending his thumb back! The rest of the team got on well with everybody adapting to the hard pack track and the big jumps.
With everybody warmed up we headed from sol moto on the bikes into the mountains where we pick up the world championship course from last year and continued to practice on the small, rock littered bike tracks. With everybody gaining in confidence day by day we headed to the ‘infamous’ rock step, it’s a rock step of about 5 feet with no run up and covered in football sized rocks, with the experience gained everybody with one or two attempts manage to get up and over it, with Gav making it look easy, and Ben taking the chicken route!
Rest day, or so we thought! Mick decided we should to go for a mountain bike ride down the dried up river bed to Puerto lumbreras and back, a ride of about 20 miles, we set off and it was all downhill with a tailwind, was a brilliant ride down, a spot of lunch and then the return journey, at this point we all realised it was all uphill and now with an even stronger head wind , what took half an hour to get down was about to turn into a two hour fight with nature, the wind being so strong that if you stopped pedaling you stopped dead, eventually we all returned to sol moto feeling like we had just done a stage of the tour de France.
Back to a motocross track where we met up with one of Bens friends, ‘GP Dave’, another lad out in Spain training for the fore coming season, were he found out that enduro riders were also very quick MX riders, the rest of the 2 weeks was spent alternating between enduro training around Sol Moto and Mx training on the many tracks within an hour of our base then relaxing in the hot tub afterwards.
On the Thursday of the second week it was time for Vince and Gav to head home (reluctantly) and leave us for another day after which we caught a plane to the UK to attend the ACU dinner so that Si and Daryl could collect their awards for winning European championships and Daryl’s British championship but then it was back to Spain Sunday morning we traveled north to Gerona and met up with Husky rider Mark Puigimont who found us a small castle to stay in with an extreme enduro track out front we stayed here for 3 days practising and preparing the bikes for the WEC preview and Genoa indoor enduro.
Arrived in San Remo for the preview and met up with the other Brits David Knight , Tom Sagar and Greg Evans the preview was well attended by all the teams and we all had photos taken and were introduced to the press and the factory tams put on a show round a test on the beach ( we didn't want to get our bikes dirty ) from there we headed up to Genoa for the indoor enduro thankfully it was indoor as the weather had turned wet and cold ,practice went well with Si qualifying 9th then 4th in his heat and a hard earned 5th in the final( hope you all saw Si Wakey and Tommy Cigar on Eurosport 2 ).
Congratulations to Meo on his Husqvarna TE 450 who won the event and good to see 3 Husky’s in the final!
Were back in the UK now and looking forward to the first event the GBXC race at Matchams with Daryl, Si and Gav looking forward to good results
Congratulations to Rheinallt Davies and David Lloyd – Jones on winning their classes at the Snowrun.