SingleTrack Mind RD2

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When you think single track riding can’t get any better the Chocolate Foot Promoters add a completely new venue into their series. “Mogo”

Photo: http://www.batemansbaypost.com.au/

Mogo is 12 km in length of fast, flowing with long tempo climbs around 300vm per lap and super fast decents with high, long berms in every corner leaving you smiling from ear to ear. The surface is hard packed with what looks like kitty litter spread on top which almost left the coarse in the exact same condition from start to finish after 200 competitors had been ripping around it for 7 hours.

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Jason English defends solo title at James Estate

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Jason English defends solo title at James Estate: fifth consecutive elite victory at JetBlack 12 Hour

 

Port Macquarie’s 24 Hour Solo MTB World Champion remains the JetBlack 12 Hour elite champion after claiming the title for the fifth time in a row at the event held at the James Estate Winery on the weekend. Andrew Lloyd from Newcastle was second ahead of Michal Kafka from Sydney. The fastest woman overall was master winner Meredith Quinlan ahead of elite female winner Wendy Stevenson. It was the first time the long-standing endurance event had been held at the unique venue in the Upper Hunter Valley.

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JetBlack 12 Hour

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Once a year Rockytrail Entertainment host a 12 hour mountain bike race. Previous years the event was held at Dargle Farm Western Sydney, 2014 was held at a new location 2 hours west of newcastle at James Estate Winery. The forecast was predicted clear skies with 25km westerly winds. The track consisted of 50% tight dry and very slippery single trail with small pinch climbs and large rocks and as the 350 competitors circulated the course it became very rough and bull dusty. The remaining 50% was a lot faster and more scenic as it wound through the vineyard with a few longer climbs.

The large mass start had some hot contenders mixing it up throughout all the categories, making for tight racing no matter what class you desired to race. The solos had a huge roll out with 30 competitors and Quantum racers Michal Kafka, Jingra Knot, Jason Pearce, Michal Burda and myself making up five of them. The 24 hour world champion Jason English, Apollo’s Grant Webster and On The Go rider James Ross also lined up in the solo category.

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Port 2 Port – Race Report 2

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With a very late decision to race the Port 2 Port held basically in my back yard it would have to be one of my best decisions yet with a smile from ear to ear at the end of each day.

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Port 2 Port – Race Report 1

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I am in my garage late at night pulling apart my bike after 4 days of hard racing in all sorts of conditions; it’s time for new bottom bracket bearings and a thorough clean!

As I do this I am thinking of the weekend just past and remembering the race that was.  Strangely enough it’s not the “easy” sections of the race I am recalling, it’s not the flat fire road or awesome 70kph descents, or even the crossing the finish line moments.

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Port to Port Day 4

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Port to Port – Stage 4

Cam’s Wharf to Nobby’s Beach Newcastle

45km

 

The final day.  Some serious logistical issues to drop cars and get to a remote start line, requiring a 5am wakeup, together with a dire weather forecast and the promise of ‘beach riding’, had the quantum team and most of the peloton sitting at the start line ready to get it over and done with.

 

The reality turned out much different however as the weather stayed sunny and the days racing along the picturesque Newcastle coast and was pretty enjoyable, apart from maybe the beach……

 

We need to talk first about the beach section as it dominates all thoughts about the stage.  About 15km in after some fast riding thru the burbs, we are directed onto Blackman’s beach for a 2km transit along the waterline, at high tide.  Whilst it is great for the photos, the reality is it was tough, kills the bikes and not something you would do by choice, i.e. pointless.  Quote of the day from unnamed source, ‘suffer boys, I’ve got a demo bike’.  The measure of toughness to ride it was Pete Selkrig who was doing 7kph pulling 400W whilst just Steve just ran beside him at the same speed.  Not sure who got the best deal.

 

Moving on, the long section after the beach was eons of open cycle path, shared with dogs, kids etc which whilst convenient, was pretty dangerous for all concerned with some pace lines clocking around 35-40km/hr.  We then pitched into Glenrock and had some dry single track to enjoy, the first time for this race!!!  It was great fun although most people were so crossed eyed with exertion just to get there, that few were pulling smooth lines through the ST.

 

Post Glenrock we traversed a few headlands along the coast and ended up sprinting to the line at Nobby’s, which was a great finish location.  The Quantum team put in a really solid performance over the 4 days, representing at all levels.  Jindra finished the highest in open male at 12th, with Andrew, Jason, Michal and Scott all putting in solid performances.  Up the categories, Steve grabbed a couple of 3rd place finishes in M1 and finish 2nd overall in GC for M1 which he was stoked about.  Alex was also getting stronger day by day and only just got pipped for 4th in GC.  Angelique was fantastic, finishing 3rd in M1 ladies, and Paul also proved very consistent and enjoyed being able to participate in the event with his son Jacob.

 

The Quantum team would like to our sponsors TWE, whose bikes and wheels proved very dependable and infallible in some of the most testing conditions ever experienced, Rubeena tyres with their wide range of options that could address every condition we experienced and EBL importers; with beer like Bakalar, how can you be unhappy?

 

In summary, Port to Port v1 was a great experience and whilst first year teething problems were evident, there is plenty of potential and we look forward to the improvements next year!

 

 

Port to Port Day 3

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Saturday, and it was the 3rd stage of the Port-to-Port 2014. The first non-loop format stage of the event added to the pre-race agenda as we tried to coordinate an adequate number of vehicles at the start and finish to transport team members to the start and from the finish of Saturday’s Stage. Similarly to earlier stages, stage 3 consisted of a large climb relatively close to the start of the trail. The 2.8km, 8% average, 230m, mix of both bitumen and dirt road, rose quickly and effectively sorted riders before hitting sections of dual track at the top of the ridgeline where bunch riding would have been less than ideal. From the get go Jindra, Michal and Jacob were out the front closely followed by Steve, Alex, James, Michael, Paul and Angelique. However Quantum racers became spread over a further distance following a sizable descent from the ridgeline and after a stint on the road.

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Port to Port Day 2

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Port to Port Stage 2 Race Report


Arriving late last night to a quiet country manor, the base of the Quantum Racing team for the inaugural Port to Port stage race. I could tell the first day had been a hard stage as the house was a sleep and silent at a mere 10:30pm – with the exception of Steve who was tapping out a regular rhythm with his nasal cavity.

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Port to Port Day 1

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Port to Port – Stage 1

Nelson Bay – 34km

 

The inaugural running of the Port to Port, from the same people who run the highly successful Cape to Cape in WA had many people excited, finally we will have a stage race on the east coast.

 

The start / finish line of the first stage was on the shoreline of Nelson Bay, looking out over the very picturesque bay.  The weather was gorgeous and the starting list of 192 riders was full of glamour with many of the high profile teams like, Swell Specialised, TORQ and Quantum represented in numbers.

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Shimano Rockytrail RD2

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Leading up to the James Estate round of the rocky trail series I have been enjoying as much riding as possible, being new to the sport and recovering from a broken neck every ride and race I’ve completed has been a learning experience. Coming from a moto racing back ground Riding the TWE bikes and being part of the Quantum team is has been the perfect opportunity for me to develop my skills into the mountain bike racing scene. After receiving some good rain Friday morning before the event I knew that the normal dry loose terrain of James Estate circuit would be perfect for the event on Saturday. After finishing a 7hr event at Dungog 2 weeks earlier, some words of advice from team mate Andy, and with the perfect track conditions in mind I decided to change classes from the 4hr to 7hr.

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