So once again the BUCS rolls around, this time the DH event was held at the BDS track at Combe Sydenham in Somerset, not far from where a certain Wizard lives, not that that was any advantage; I'd only ridden it once or twice in years gone by.
The track had been ridden the weekend before by a lot of people a lot faster than us lot for the first round of the BDS, and as it'd been wet, it was fairly thoroughly wrecked. This meant the track builder had taped in a bunch of new lines for us for a lot of the length of the track so we got to cut in some stuff on fresh loam. Combining this with the original open field section (with plenty of jumps) and the normal techy bottom section and it was all in all a really fun track, with plenty of scope for making time up on the other racers, and plenty of potential for messing it up.
The event was the now-typical format for DH BUCS, with friday practise, and saturday hosting a bit of practise, followed by a 'qualification' run for all riders, and the top 100 times going through to the 'race' run proper.
The club worked well together, scouting lines and talking through options, but of course when it came down to it it was all about beating each other! I know three of us had decided to forget everyone else and just race against each other, and the rest of us weren't happy to let ourselves be humbled by the guys we ride with all the time!
Qualification runs went down, with some winners and some losers. Three of us; Bill, Chode and Chris, qualified for the race run, Tom Bower came in after those three and before me, James Burrows had a good stab at it, even after missing his race slot because he was trying to help... Rowan Griffin, who had decided to try and change his tyres with not enough time to spare and ended up pinching his tube and missing out completely! Rowan wasn't alone with mechanicals, poor Pascal got a flat in his run, and had to walk pretty much the whole way down!
Race runs turned up some decent results, with Chris coming in a very impressive 7th overall, and managing to not crack his frame in half which we were all expecting. Chode came in 33rd, and Bill had a mechanical and ended up 96th.
Overall, mixed results aside, I think everyone enjoyed themselves, and those of us who get to do it again will likely be looking forward to next year! Can't say I'm not a little sad that this was my last!