Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Duncan Sparrow RR - Pimbo - 'The Jewel of the North'

Duncan Sparrow RR - Pimbo - 'The Jewel of the North' 

It was inevitable, the first race of the year was going to come round sooner or later, whether you wanted it to or not, whether the legs were spritely or leaden, you were racing!
Its fast becoming a bit of a tradition is Pimbo, as the first race of the season; Clayton Velo has always aroused suspicion with its February date - why would anyone forego a Buckden run over a race? Eddie Soens is too much of a large, mixed variety to take seriously. Plus the commisaires always feel so stern at that race.

It was the first outing on the KTM too, and the very, very eagled eyed ones amongst you will notice the rubber band on the handlebars: we'd run out of electrical tape and didn't check we had any before fitting the Supacaz bartape.
Needless to say, the bike is rapid. I had a good wheelset in and im approaching the lightest I've ever been, but regardless, when the power was applied, the bike duely and eagerly reacted.

So onto the actual race- I was 7th reserve so there was a bit of doubt on whether I'll get to ride, but the poor forecast pointed my chances in the right direction. It rained, and was cold, and I heard it was worse than last year's Tour of the Reservoir, but I've ridden and raced in much worse so didn't think much of it. It was cold though, but I soon warmed up in the car afterwards.

I got onto the start line with 2 minutes to spare as I got ready after a confirmed ride, and off we went! As soon as the first pedal stroke was complete all nervousness had evaporated and I was loving it.
The race was shorted by several laps to account for the weather, but this didn't phase anyone and attacks were thick and fast. The race, however, had a completely different dynamic to last year as there weren't any huge stars that had targets on their backs allowing the lesser known riders to slip away.
With every attack, there was an established team on the front bringing it back. I tried attacking with people from these teams, or from completely unknown local clubs, but alas, everything came back!

The was definitely no lack of trying from myself, or the team, who were participants in most moves.
And so the race came to a bunch sprint, the first for myself at Pimbo and fuck how I love a good argy bargy bunch sprint! Leaning on people, moving them out of the way, finding the lines, mouthing off at people blocking you in. Its great, and all firmly in a racing context. Gets the adrenaline flowing.
Team mate Fraser Rounds led out more or less the entire last lap, thinking he had another teammate on his wheel, but only someone with a similar kit! This rider went on to take a very well deserved win.
Myself, was a a bit further back than I liked and counted around 15 riders in front of me at the finish, but my performance in the race makes me believe I have a half decent season in front of me.
Our next race is the Jim Rodgers memorial at Dolphinholme on Sunday. 

Photos kindly used by permission from PCS Photography.

And as always, none of this would be possible without our sponsors: give Team KTM UK a follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 

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