The Brighton Big Dog has earnt itself a big reputation in a short space of time. It helps to have a vibrant riding scene based around tight woodland singletrack, a good few characters and an enthusiastic event team. All sounds very much like
, even down to the special guest appearances: Big Dog had Big Maggy Backstedt in 2009; Bikefest is to feature Steve Peat later this year. Bristol
STW Weekender I had barely touched the bike due to injuries, social commitments and an uncomfortable mix of the two (drinking on a moving bus hurts:( To further excuse myself for the poor lap times I was coming in to the Big Dog off the back of a hedonistic 10 days in . Russia
No worries, I was riding the Mixed Team category with term-time local Euan Adams (Red Kite Cycles) and Sarah Turner (Charge Bikes, girlfriend of fellow Elite racer Trev Allen). Whilst bimbling around on our practice lap Euan was forced to press on in order to make it in time for the start. Glad he did cos I wouldn't have made it. After his strong first lap we stayed out in front all day, ending with a comfortable margin which excused us from a 9th lap.
The course itself was a meandering sprawl through the
woods with a cute detour over the dual carriageway. The marshals were really encouraging and the weather was fine. Having driven to and from the event on the day it certainly had a high drive to ride ratio of about 3:1. It was well worth it for the jovial podium ceremony and the neat prizes (Exposure lights and chamois cream!). Props to the event team for getting a host of supporters on board. Stanmer Park
Thanks to Euan, Sarah, the organisers and everyone else. Sorry to the camera man for spraying his lens.
|Picture courtesy of Dave Hayward|