Italian job world 24hr champs

I’m sat drinking a protein shake trying to relive an epic experience that I will remember for the rest of my life.


The first thing that pops into my head is that we really underestimated the travel fatigue
associated with driving 1000 miles each way! The fact we had done a 24hr race in 30
degrees before setting off on the return leg means I am totally destroyed now! We definitely should have gone for the Keith Forsyth approach and made a real holiday of it!
On arrival at Finale we quickly sorted the hotel rooms and parking situation with staff at the Hotel San Giuseppie. I’ve got to say the team there are some of the nicest hotel staff I have ever met, they made sure we had everything we needed and even made us breakfast at 5am on the morning of the race.
Thursday consisted of a ride to the race HQ to register and a recce lap of the course. It was unfinished at that stage but it gave a taste for what looked to be a course that would suit my riding style. I knew the heat would probably be a crucial factor; how many British riders regularly race in 30 degrees? (Don’t all raise your hands at once!) We spent the rest of the afternoon eating as much a possible, including some of the ice cream delights of Finale.

On race day I woke at 5am having had a disturbed night and quickly pulled myself together to get up to the event site before the chaos began. Donna, Deano and I had stayed at the same hotel as Gillian Pratt and we all left together to transport everything to the pits which was a fair task on its own. Offloading everything on the main road outside and carrying it in was the first job of the day! One hour later it was all set up and it was time for some breakfast, it was a chance to take a deep breath and relax for 5mins.
10am and the bikes were setup and waiting in the transition area with a 500m run the only thing in the way! The elites were off bang on 10am and the rest of us had a 5-minute deficit.
I’m no runner but managed to stay in the top 10 as we jumped on the bike. I was quickly
joined by Keith Forsyth who had the same idea as me and we set about riding up into the
elite pack. By halfway round the first lap we had achieved it and we decided to sit up and
knock the pace back. A few laps passed as the heat gradually rose to over 30 degrees and
eventually took its toll on a few riders, but I managed to keep on a reasonable pace and
gradually pick riders off during the daylight. I was so glad to see dusk and the temperature drop, around 8.30pm it was full steam ahead and keep tapping out consistent laps right through till dawn. Eating in such high temperatures was a problem I had not experienced before and I was very aware that my calorie intake was not really enough to sustain a strong pace but luckily everyone’s pace was fading so it was not of great concern.

The bike was totally faultless and handled the technical terrain really well. My lap times were reasonably consistent so as we entered dawn my spirits lifted slightly and I realised I had a little left in the tank so I pushed on! I no real idea how I was doing as the timings were very hit and miss and at one point they had me listed as a 44-year-old! (I’m 38!!)
The only riders I recognised were the Brits and I knew I had passed most of them so this
was a massive confidence boost in the early morning laps.
At 32 laps I had decided it was my last lap and had confirmation that I was comfortably 2nd in category but had very little chance of catching 1st as he had 30 minutes on me!
I wish I had known that I was the leading Brit as this would have given me the drive to go out for another lap. My finish time was 19mins within the 10am deadline so I could have got another lap in. Well done to Carwyn Davies who put the effort in to go through for a 34th lap to become top Brit and World Champion in his category (Under 23’s).
The course was generally dry, dusty and loose with sharp rocks on the technical descents. I’ve been told that it’s probably the hardest 24hr course in the world with almost 1000ft of climbing per lap. I found the last section of technical climbs the most testing and chose to walk a few sections during the race to fend off the impending cramps. A lot of the race became a blur and I had no idea how many laps I had completed until the end. As always our supreme Pit Man, Deano, proved to be the person holding the NIER/Chia charge together with constant food and hydration.

At the finish we had exceeded our expectations and I came away with 2nd in my category (35-39 years) and 14th overall which I am very happy with. Donna had a strong race achieving 4th in her category (40-44 years) and 16th overall which is a great achievement. We were also pleased to see our friend and fellow rider Gillian Pratt achieve 1st place in her age category(world champ) This race will certainly be remembered, it happened to finish on my birthday which meant extra celebrations. All the British riders met up at a local bar and we shared our stories and celebrated our achievements. It was a great atmosphere and one I won’t forget! We are already talking about going to next years, how we can prepare and looking forward to
experiencing Fort William. Next up is Mountain Mayhem where we are competing as a mixed team. Best get those bikes

Thanks also to wembo for making these events possible and Chia charge for the constant support


Better late than never Kielder chiller blog;)

Kielder Chiller 2017

The Kielder Chiller first came onto the team NIER radar towards the end of 2016, when looking for a quad team event to follow-up the solo Strathpuffer. The words ‘it’ll be fun, a bit of a social event’ were mentioned. Well in typically 24hour racing fashion, it was fun and a great team event for all who participated from NIER.



The mid-February 2017 race weekend weather forecast was predicting a mixed bag, unfortunately that bag didn’t contain anything other than rain, hail, snow, and wind! However, those conditions don’t put off a team who’s become very adapt and organised for year round MTB endurance events.

We rolled into the picturesque surroundings of Kielder Castle Visitor Centre early Saturday morning, and were directed to our spot in the top car park. In was raining, which became a common theme for the rest of the weekend. As usual the undeterred dedicated band of fellow racers and support crews were already busy setting their pitches, turning a dull car park into a colourful scene of sponsored vehicles and gazebos.

It didn’t take long before the NIER Team gazebos were erected with our own Chia Charge banners clearly on show. Ever present team pit man Dean built-up a super professional bike rack, and the inside of the gazebo was adorned with the essentials which would help keep the team rolling, notably the old portable gas fire aka ‘the life saver’.

We’d all watched the video posted by the High Fells events team, so had some idea of the course. However, the passage of a couple of weeks and some heavy rain meant the course was now very wet and muddy, a combination which would present some mechanical challenges as the race progressed.

Under damp skies the race started at noon. The course was a mixture of technical single track and fire roads, with some steep climbs thrown into the mix, which made for a challenging lap. Richard went out first and got NIER into second place after the first lap, followed by Nigel, Donna, and Michal, who collectively established us as first mixed quad team throughout the afternoon. The rain never let up and it took a few laps for each rider to workout what clothing would allow them to ride hard and keep their body temperature at an optimum level. Not surprisingly it didn’t take long before the inside of the gazebo resembled a Chinese Laundry, with the little ‘life saver’ working overtime.

Michal went out into the darkness just before 6pm, and 45 minutes later Donna was waiting ready for her next lap. As the minutes ticked by and Michal didn’t appear, we all started to fear something had happened to him. It was over an hour and half before he came running into view, having punctured twice, resulting in him running a number of miles back to base camp. A swift transition saw Donna on her way, NIER still holding first place, but with a much reduced lead.


24 hour endurance are really only made possible with a strong pit team, and NIER have the an awesome team in Dean and Sally. Dean washed, cleaned, and oiled the bikes 30 times. He changed countless sets of brake pads (the wet conditions and sandstone made superb grinding paste), fixed a snapped chain, and sorted out a new set of tyres for Michal. Sally kept us watered and fed, she looked after us and helped us stay organised when our minds were getting tired, and she listened to the many race stories we told after each lap. These tough winter events really do show it’s about a winning ‘team’.

The team continued to ride well throughout the night, even with the weather deteriorating, to a point that saw many competitors retire to their sleeping bags. We noticed the bikes were starting to freeze and the track in places became icy. But spirits remained high, and even in the dark, we focused on the positives, collectively agreeing that the wooded single track sections really were a highlight of the lap, egging-on each rider to push hard and leverage their bike handling skills.

As the dark faded into the first morning light, we’d completed 24 laps and had a lead of over a lap on our nearest mixed quad rivals. Racing being racing though, you can never rest, and none of the team backed off, with the Strathpuffer racers of the team showing their form and fitness levels gained through a winter of hard riding.

Midday Sunday, 28 laps had seen NIER to victory in the Mixed Quad category in the 2017 inaugural Kielder Chiller. We’d survived some tough conditions, many mechanical challenges, and an event which most seasoned racers agreed had been a real challenge.


Team NIER: Sally Hatfield, Dean Tempest-Mitchell, Michal Siemienczuk, Donna Waring, Nigel Smith, and Richard Dobson.

Strathpuffer 2017


Mention the word Strathpuffer to any cyclist who is aware of the event and you will see fear (or horror!) in their eyes! Most are aware of how tough this event is but the problem isn’t always the snowfall.

The NIER team have done a fair few 24hour mountain bike races over the past two years and have achieved great results, but when it comes to solo racing the pressure is really on. It’s all about you and there are so many things that can go wrong, it makes you feel that to some degree there is an element of luck involved!

I wouldn’t say I trained for Strathpuffer as its riding my bike and that’s what I do in my spare time. Calling it training instead of riding makes it sound a bit too formulated and sucks the fun out of it. That being said, whilst most cyclists are taking it easy through the winter, myself and Donna are putting the big miles in over the Christmas and New Year period in preparation for the upcoming event.

The problem with the puffer is how do you prepare for such a brutal event? You can control weight and improve endurance by putting the hours in, and you can ride technical trails with rocks and drops. But then combining both elements and adding sub-zero temperatures, sleep deprivation and fatigue, increased bike weight due to mud that becomes frozen stuck to it (yes, it was that cold!) and 17 hours of darkness is very difficult.

The race winner will cover 180+miles and 28,000ft of climbing on a circuit of approx. 7miles

Well as you may be able to tell already, things did not go as well for me at Puffer as I had hoped. I was riding strong through the daylight hours on my full suspension Pivot429 which smoothed out a lot of the smaller rocks. I was riding in 2nd place for 17laps before I was overtaken and dropped to 3rd. As darkness fell, the sloppy mud on the top moorland sections froze to the rocks creating an additional technical element which progressively got worse as more riders polished off the surface and made the line selection through those rocks very difficult. Bikes were beginning to freeze solid and the solo field began to deplete with mechanical issues and crashes.

At 18 hours in I had just had a break for 15 mins to take on board some hot food and was feeling reasonably well considering the -8c temperatures when a few little mistakes on the rocky moorland section and final decent cost me my podium position! The first crash I had was a straight forward slip on the ice with me landing on my left hip, it wasn’t too severe and once I’d composed myself I carried on with the lap. The second crash I had was the most unexpected and risky situation I could have found myself in! I was descending at about 20 mph when I banked into a corner and the tyres failed to grip, causing me to go down hard on my hip and twist my thumb out of joint. The rest of the lap I could not change gear or pedal effectively, with over 5 hours to go I made the difficult decision that it was over for me! I was still in 3rd place having cover 150miles and 22,000ft of climbing with a 5mins gap on lap 23 but the sight of my bloody hip bulging through a hole in my shorts and swollen thumb joint made me think about the rest of the season and the fact I had to go to work on Tuesday!

I have learnt a lot from riding this event as a soloist and will take this forward to the 2018 Strathpuffer where I will make my second podium attempt at probably the toughest 24hour race in the world!

Donna also had to pull out early on having covered 13 laps with a shoulder injury which had been bothering her for the past few weeks. There was also the small issue of her contact lens freezing in her eye. This was really frustrating for her as she was managing her food intake well, her legs were good and she wasn’t feeling the tiredness.

Over the past few Strathpuffer events we have gained some great friends and would like to thanks all of them for making it such a great experience including the Seipp family and there inspirational young lad Tom. Also Id like to mention the Scottish friends we have gained with the Muckyriders crew Sandy Wallace cycles and Leslies bikes your all stars and make this event my favourite:) thanks Chia charge for your continued support


Team nier 🙂

2016 Review Team Nier

It all started with the Strathpuffer way back at the end of January. The corresponding blog  tells the tail of a epic ride with great support from Dean tempest Mitchell to take the 2016 mixed pairs title. Over the night laps we gained a gap on the 2nd place pair which did come in handy as a puncture on the last lap made it a slow one!

A substantial gap then until the G100 in May where Donna pushed out a exceptional ride to take 3rd female. Then she followed it up in June with a amazing win a Glentress 7 the only female to get out on a 8th lap which was a exceptionally technical lap of sharp climbs and technical rooty descents.

A little alpine holiday / training session with a “Etape the tour” day was a amazing experience and one we will be repeating in the future….


Our next challenge was the biggest 24hr event in the uk Mountain Mayhem

It all began with Ben cooper setting off so fast that we ended up leading the whole event for at least 4hrs !

The male teams eventfully caught up but we maintained  a substantial lead over the other mixed teams so all ended well with a 1st place.( and a Royal presentation )



Next up in July  was my big solo effort at Pivot 24/12 which was a ride in to the unknown!

I rode as hard as I possibly could, Battling it out for a fair few hours until I managed to pull in front and extend my lead over the night laps, this ended in a 1st overall male 24hr win and donna was 1st female also so a really great result for team nier. Again the key to our success was the exceptional efforts of Dean and Sally ….Love you both xxx


Torq 12/12 in August is always a 12hr smash fest and this year was definitely quicker than last year .We all put in a strong effort and Donna got 2nd female 6hr pairs so everything was on track for the October national champs At Relentless 24 in Fort William.


Relentless 24 National Champs

As the name suggests climbing up the Side of Ben Nevis each lap is a bit “Relentless”

Me and my good bud Mitchell Jones put in consistent back to back laps to take 2nd male pairs missing out this time on the jerseys  …we will be back for that

Donna and her super team rode exceptionally to take the UK championship jersey…giving them the title of UK national 24hr champions 2016.

As we head into 2017 we are going to stream line our events calendar and head overseas focusing on mainly 24hr racing and the longer stuff…Thanks for all the support we receive. Chia Charge and Nutrixxion uk

Full Results List




Relentless 24hr Uk Championships 2016


After the disappointment of last year’s event Donna and I both decided to attack things from a different angle. Donna put together a fantastic female quad team of riders who had all previously won individual 24hr races in the UK and knew what to expect. Our thinking was that it would take a super elite female quad team to beat these ladies!


 Donna, Naomi, Kathy, Gillian “girls have no name “

I knew that for myself, riding in the male pairs category would mean facing up to some stiff competition due to the exceptional riders already pairing up for this race. A UK championship win would be hard work!


My partner of choice was my good friend of many years, Mitchell Jones. Mitch has a very similar ‘never give in’ mentality to myself so I knew once he agreed to joining me in the challenge it was certain he would be 100% committed.



Gisburn training ride “Smith&Jones”


I analysed the start sheet the best I could before the race but I wasn’t too sure who would be our main rivals until the gun went off at 12 on Saturday morning. The first twenty riders through for the first lap were not as you’d expect in a 24hr race and consisted mainly of solo riders apart from the extremely fast Jordan Doig who set the fastest lap and turned out to be a member of the ‘Wu tang clan’ pair we would be battling with for the next 24 hours. Jordan was about 2-3 minutes quicker than Mitch and I every time he went out and this meant the gap between us increased lap on lap. About 10 laps into the race it peaked at about 30 minutes difference and then we began to pull it back and gradually Mitch and I wound back a few minutes every lap.

 As we approached midnight our pit man, Dean, broke it to me that Mitch was suffering with some back pain and hinted that doubts were starting to creep in about him maintaining his pace. I told Dean to get some calories down his neck and give him some positive motivation “you’re catching them Mitch, keep going, everyone is suffering, you can do it!”

We both had the odd dip in lap times and the mechanical hitches that come with riding 110miles and 17,000ft each in wet conditions, but overall stayed consistent.


When dawn broke the gap between us and the leaders was down to just over 10 minutes! I knew if team ‘Wu tang clan’ were going to break it would be around the 20 hour mark so I decided to give my next few laps all that I had. This proved quite successful and I managed to pull back a fair few minutes and began lapping quicker than Jordan.

 As the final lap approached I noticed that Jordan’s partner was only 10 minutes in front of me and I had been lapping nearly 15 minutes quicker than him so when we were both out at the same time I gave it everything I possibly could, expecting to catch him on the second loop on the figure of 8 type course but it never happened. Unfortunately for me a change of bike and a bit of a rest seemed to inspire him to pull a quick lap out of the bag and our chance of a win was gone!


We ended up 2nd in the Senior category and 3rd Pairs in the UK  24hour Championships. Now I don’t wish to sound disappointed as that is a great achievement but when first place in your category is so close it’s very difficult not to be a little upset with yourself.


I witnessed some exceptional riding during this event including an outstanding solo win by Matt Jones and a Single speed solo title retaining ride from Saul Muldoon. I also realised that we probably have one of the most inspiring team and a big thanks goes to Dean and Rob for all their help and support, and thanks to Chia Charge for there continued nutritional support . But the most amazing part of this event was the new friends we gained and our shared love of the ‘flat sausage’. I’m sure the girls will have plenty more to say….

 logoTill next time ……


Pivot 2412 1st Overall :)

Here’s my account of a weekend racing my first solo 24hour race, it probably won’t be factually correct and may just be the mumblings of a still fatigued rider!
I’ll start by saying that the Twentyfour12 event is where Team Nier (no idea endurance racing) began in 2015. The atmosphere and fantastic course make for an exceptional event and we are quite happy to make the drive from Leeds to attend as we always know it will be worth it. Team Nier is made up of competitive riders Donna Waring, Michal Siemienczuk and me, and a group of friends from Northern England who support us. Our pit crew Dean Tempest Mitchell and Sally Hatfield are the key to our success and we can never give them enough praise!!

I won’t go on about what a great year of 24hr racing we have had but if you are interested it’s all on our blog.
Getting straight to the point…
The nervous energy kicked in at 10am Saturday morning with a few emergency toilet visits and throughout the next hour all I could say to myself to try to calm things was “do your best” and “don’t take risks”.
At 11.30 I made my way to the start line and tried to visually check out the competition. I could see Russ Welch would be a man to watch but we chatted on the start line and with me being a sub 40 rider there was no real competition between us.
12.00 and we were away with my mind saying “stay safe”.
I had asked my pit not to tell me what position I was in until I had done at least 5laps.
6laps later I was sat in 2nd position and holding a consistent pace taking a bottle of Nutrixxion and a Chia Charge bar each lap.
I selected Twentyfour12 for my first 24 solo as I just really enjoy the course. With its punchy climbs and rapid technical descents it certainly keeps you interested.
I had moved into 1st place within 8hours but as we rode into the darkness my first error occurred!  My light spun round on the handlebars causing me to swerve off line and clip a rock on the Cottage return descent and the tyre was ruined. I wasted loads of time here trying to fix it then decided to run back! I managed to get some air in the tyre on reaching the fire road and this was enough to get me back to my pit for a quick bike swap.
I had now dropped back into 2nd and began my chase again gradually clawing back the lost time to return to the 1st place inside the 12hour mark.
I was feeling very good and generally rode well through the night and as 4am went by I remember asking at the motivation station “what time will the sun come up?” that’s a real motivator!

A fair few laps later my bike of choice for many hours in the saddle (a Pivot429) began to feel the 200miles of off road riding and I knew something was wrong. I stopped halfway up the Clif climb to check my bike as the rear end was moving more sideways than it should be. I noticed a major pivot bolt had fallen out leaving the rear end not properly connected to the main frame!! “Don’t panic!”
I managed to make it back to my pit with the floppy bike and switched onto the hardtail for a lap while my pit man Dean paid an early morning visit to the @Pivotuk stand to acquire a replacement bolt – big thanks to Rory Hitchens for that! I could have finished on the hardtail but comfort is king on a 24solo and the pivot 429 works well for me.
Now all the drama was over and without really realising it I had gone 2 laps up on all the other 24hr solo riders. Time to think about keeping safe and scale it back a bit, I could see some riders were now really suffering and were getting really slow, but then others (including Russ welch and the Isla bikes lads) found some early morning form and began to ride really quick!
This is when the calming words of my pit crew really helped and I just maintained a steady pace, but I was rapidly running out of energy as my body would not take any more food.

So my 2 lap lead was being eaten away but I was safely 1st overall so no panic. As 11.35 approached I decided a steady walk up clif climb was the way to do it, having rode it 33 times and walked the last few. As I approached the final fire road I could hear the spectators shouting words of encouragement to finishers and also “go on – time for another lap” I thought to myself “no thanks” and made my way up the fire road at walking pace.
The twisty section through camp into the finish was full of lurkers and I became one of them at 11.57am, rolling along just fast enough to stay upright. Then I noticed my Nier team mates were waiting for me for the victory roll over the line! At 12.01 Donna and I crossed the line – we were first overall Male and Female! It was such a great feeling to share that moment along with our buddy Ian Priddle
I’ve got so much respect for all the solo 24 riders, it was a tough course!


podium 2412

Male and female solo overall winners :)Donna 22laps Nigel 36laps and 230ish miles later

Mountain Mayhem 2016

When we set off to mountain mayhem this year with our mixed team of 5 I thought to myself “if we don’t win this year we are not going to win”!!


I had been quietly confident of our chances this year as we had the additional recruit of a young lad called Ben Cooper who really knows how to ride a mountain bike fast!



So the fact we had a full five person team this year and we knew what to expect made a difference to our mental focus. The only problem with Mayhem is you don’t really know who you’re against until you hit the start line as bogus team names are used until the last minute. We were unaware that last year’s winners had entered or that Evans cycles had the power of Becky Preece, but we had just decided to go at it full throttle and see what happens…


What happened was we led the whole event for 3hrs! Ben had gone out so quick on the first lap he was first back into transition and we just went with the flow “full throttle”….crazy really when it’s a 24hr event!


The mind set was let’s go quick, then if we have a mechanical we have time to spare. What we did not anticipate was the terrible thick mud on every climb and the slimy bridleways and the additional technical descents that made the lap much harder than last year and it showed in the lap timings. Thinking about this it was harder for everyone so it really made no difference.


The overall lead was never going to last but we soon made a substantial lead on the rest of our category stretching it out to over 3laps in front by midnight the night laps are my favourite there are less people out on the course , its cooler, calmer and often lap times are pretty much the same.  I’m so proud of the whole team no one really lost the plot or had a mental breakdown …  At 23.30hrs I had completed what we decided was our last lap so to stretch the timing out to 24hrs I had a little sit down which lost us a lap but no one felt like doing a lap that didn’t really mean anything so at 24hrs dead I rolled down to the finish with a Yorkshire flag flying in my hand to complete the win for team NIER….boom



Mountain Mayhem is a huge event and the most competitive 24hr team event in the UK. It has a massive following of riders who turn up year after year to get punished for a weekend on the mountain bike!


The Siemienczuk family after Gaby rode the kids race

Massive thanks go out to our sponsors Chia Charge and nutrixxion UK your products made the nutritional difference and we can never forget the pit crew of Dean Tempest Mitchell, Sally hatfield and Monika Siemienczuk top job team


Glentress 7 tweedlove 2016

And so it begins… the road trip to Scotland. From lessons learnt we booked a hotel for the night before!
On the way to the hotel we stopped at Glentress and quickly bagged our solo pitch…next to the toilet. At the time it was the best location in the small area set aside for solos but we hadn’t thought about how we might regret this choice later the next day once the toilets got busy!
So the following morning, I was up bright and early and feeling refreshed… I wish! I didn’t sleep a wink due to a super snorer in the building keeping me awake( he knows who he is ;), and I couldn’t stomach breakfast which wasn’t quite the preparation for a 7 hour race I was hoping for.
We headed back to Glentress and sorted our pitch. Luckily we had already prepared everything and had our own boxes with what we needed to get through the 7 hours. My box consisted of several neatly wrapper Chia Charge peanut butter and jam sandwiches, without the crust of course! Also threw in a couple of gels, a packet of ibuprofen and 6 bottles of water.
gt7 6
On the start line I’d made the decision to try and ride with a friend for as long as I could to get a good start, then try and find my pace and keep pedalling. The first lap started on a fire road climb to string the field out, and my legs felt heavy!
After the first lap my thoughts turned to “where was I in the pack, who was I racing against and how much my legs can take!” On lap 2 I started to find my pace and allocated sections on the course where I would take on fluids, on passing through transition I was informed I had a 2 minute lead.
As the laps went on I started to gain a bigger time gap on second, but you’re always aware that a fall or mechanical could soon change things! I grabbed a sandwich and a 500ml bottle of Nutrixxion each lap, and ate before the first climb.
The weather was amazing, if not a little too warm on the climbs. The laps were around 6.8 miles with 1100ft of climbing, but there was no relief on the descents, these were brutal! My arms were taking a beating on every lap, despite riding my full suss.
In my head I’d pencilled in “ 7 laps” that’s my goal so I’ll be totally honest on laps 6 and 7 I went a little slower, no way did I want to do 8! But as I came through transition at 16:16 the announcement came that the cut off for getting your last lap in is 17:22. Our pit crew aka Deano was waiting for me and quickly updated me, I had won my category but if I went back out I would win overall female solo, …so I thought “what the hell! I’ll give it a go”.
Soon my thoughts turned to “do I have time, what if I don’t make it and my lap doesn’t count”. As I got towards the summit of the trail I kept looking at my garmin for reassurance “tick follows tock”. The marshals were fantastic, really supportive, they also remembered on lap 7 I said “this is my last one!” But here I was again! All the riders still out were very aware that time was running out, no one wanted to do a lap that didn’t count.
As I came along to the final decent I could hear everyone at the finish, quick check on the time and I knew this lap was going to count, bloody hell I’d done 8 laps! As I came in towards transition there were several riders trying to make the cut off, I kept saying “come on let’s make this count keep pedalling”
All my team and friends were there at the end, and through the crowd I could see Nigel’s face, he gave a sigh of relief:)The event and the staff, especially the marshals, were amazing and the support they gave was the best I’ve seen at any event so a huge thank you goes out to the GT7 team, you guys are awesome.

Gorrick 100 2016

May has come around very quickly this year and the events are starting to kick off.

Gorrick 100 is an event we failed to attend last year but it was always on the wishlist, a lot of riders had said the course was exceptional so this year we decided to make the trip.

At 3.30am on Sunday morning we were on our way with our pal Dean Tempest Mitchell on driving duties with a 18-20 hour day ahead of us I didn’t think driving myself and Donna down there was a great idea! The trip down was fine and we made it to Deepcut by 7.30am.

The most surprising thing we noticed on arrival was how dry the trails were and that the temperature was almost 12c. The structure of the event means the 8-lap race started at 8.30am and the other races which ranged from 6 to 1 laps started at intervals throughout the day. So when the race began the regulars went off like it was a short xc race but this was with the intention of getting the gaps in before the other races started.

The top five riders were quickly out of sight and I was left in a small group of riders taping out a more bearable pace, the first few laps I did feel a little out of my comfort zone and cracks were showing! But I managed to pull it back together as we began to catch the 6-lap riders although this caused a few overtaking crashes within our group and became a bit stressful as I was determined to stay with Chris Noble who I know has strong calibre in this type of event.

The course was exceptionally technical for an endurance race and resembled a Nutcracker xc course at Gandale and the constant twists and turns made for a strava feed that looked like a bowl of spaghetti!

I eventually lost contact with Chris and began to question my endurance but my heart rate range was fine, it was just the constant throbbing in my quads that made me think I was pushing the limit.

A few silly crashes later and the last few laps were the most enjoyable as the volume of riders on the course had decreased and my flow over the technical sections had dramatically improved.

The last lap included  another crash on the last single track section before the finish line allowing the 11th rider to pass me so I dug deep for a sprint to clinch 10th …

Donna had a fantastic race achieving 3rd against some strong high calibre competition including Joe Munden (who seems to win every Gorrick event!) and Amanda Brooks who has some exceptional results to her name including a 3rd place at the Cape Epic !



On reflection I was happy with my result as the course was far more technical than any marathon. 10th place on a 63mile xc course in a open male category against National and International champions doesn’t sound that bad!

The race was predominately fuelled by Nutrixxion products to maintain our fluid levels and maintain our mental focus.