SummaryRacePrepQualifyingRace1Race2NextRace - Pictures

RACE IN Joure, 3/4-SEPTEMBER 2011

11th out of 72 starters. Quali: 16h. ~3,000 spectators
The race with the most spectators so far, in spite of the weatehr. A rollercoaster race day, qualifying didn't go so well, leaving a bad starting position on a very tight track. So I had to wrestle trhough the first corners. Went well and therefore a good overall 11th position in two turbulent races. This was really for MX specialists as you can see from the videos, so I was really happy with my asphalt performance in both, dry conditions on Saturday and more slippery, wet conditions on Sunday. I just hope that the weather gets better one day, these mixed conditions are challenging for everyone with one bike only ;-)
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Race Prep

Only one week in between races and the bike looked pretty rough after the rain race in Holten. The new rain tire arrived just in time, although I hoped not needing it. Other than that, new front brake pads and air filter, all to be done by Friday already this time since the race started Saturday afternoon with a free practice.
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First there was a free practice and it began with a shock. The bike wouldn't start! After some pushing and trying, finally the e-starter came back to life and I could start the practice. The offroad was really challenging, heavy sand that created deep ruts - and there were some savvy MX riders, so they gained a lot of time in the offroad, which was impossible to compensate on the asphalt. All in all it went ok, but I was concerned about my performance compared to the field.
Qualifying started off ok, the ruts got deeper but I managed to get through it okayish. After a couple of minutes, I was in a good position, top 9 when I went to the pits to clean the rims. The rims picked up dirt and on the straight, this caused sever shattering. Also, light arm pump started, so I wanted to relax a little. With 4:40min left on the clock, I planned another two fast laps. I followed a fast rider to "pul"l me through the offroad and then I fell. After that, I couldn't get into the rhythm again, and my position slipped down to 13 in the session and 16 overall... 6th row at the start, that didn't go all that well.
Quali result: 16th
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Race 1

It was clear that any bigger mistake in the race will cause a significant drop in results for me because it was rather tight behind the riders that were really fast in the offroad. Start went well, very close together everything. As always in such conditions, things happen in the offroad. I stayed clean and got through well, getting passed by one, but also passing a couple of riders. Also in the following asphalt part, I attacked right away and passed a couple of people. So I came out of the first lap on position 12. In lap three, I moved up to position 11 - a pass in the offroad! ;-) And then further up to position 10 in lap 6, this time I used my asphalt speed to go by. In lap eight, I dropped again one position in the offroad section, could easily follow the guy, but didn't get by anymore. 10th would have been the maximum anyhow from the lap times, so 11th is a good result.
Race 1 result: 11th
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Race 2

The race on second day was late in the afternoon, no practice that day. During night and also during the day, it rained and the offroad part was changed and straightened to make it ridable. This was to my advantage, it fit me much better, however the fundamental time difference to the MX specialists remained. Start was not as good as during the first race and in the offroad, someone fell in front of. I got around it well luckily and din't lose much momentum. Again, I passed another rider right away in the first lap on the asphalt part and came out of lap one in 12th position. Second lap I passed one rider and in lap four lost one - some guy with a bad start flew by during the offroad - and I passed then again two more riders in lap five and six, so I was down to 10th position. Then "disaster" struck during last lap. It was indicated to me that the first position rider approached and since I believed there was noone close to me fighting for position, I slowed down and let him by - with the benefit of riding one lap less. But then I got confused. Apparently I slowed down too much and two riders fighting for my position came close again, and I let them also pass by mistake... I started to realize this after the offroad part and was still unsure, so I didn;t dare to ride an attack on the asphalt, were again I was considerably faster. Then after the finish line, it was clear that I just gave away two positions - DAMN IT!! All in all, not so bad after all, but it just also meant that I lose 10th position overall and finished 11th. Lesson learned, never let go and stay focused to the end!
Race 2 result: 12th
Overall: 11th
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Next race

The next race is again next week on 11 September in De Wijk - again, let;s hope for dry weather...
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Check out the web album here