Wideopenmag’s newest team member reports on his first race of the year. Introducing Laurie Greenland folks …
Last weekend was my first race of the season. It was the Forest of Dean Mini-Downhill and with all new kit and new bike I was eager to get out and put it all to the test!
Turning up on the day at a push up race on a new bike was pretty hard, but we had a mint day on Saturday doing uplifts in South Wales with the legends Jeff and Joe Parfitt, getting the bike set up sweet and knocking out plenty of runs. It didn’t take long before I was buzzing and definitely felt that I could race it! It felt smooth and stable and I was surprised how quickly I felt at home on it (big thanks to Psyclewerx and TF Tuned for helping us get the bike up and running so quickly!)
Arriving on Sunday it really reminded me of my first ever race there back in rippers category and was the first time I had raced there since. There were loads of people and loads of different bikes, big or small travel each had advantages on this classic FOD track. The Pulse was getting loads of attention and questions. The new Nukeproof is a bike that people are really interested in!
It was real nice to see loads of mates again after the off season and feeling the race atmosphere again! The event ran smoothly and everyone looked like they were enjoying themselves.
I needed to get a move on as there was little time to learn the track, being a push up race a lot of people were scattered about the track and was hard to hit a section clean. I had just got the top section OK and a marshal said me and some mates needed to go down the fire road and get our number boards. The course was closed so we slammed some food and headed up for race runs!
At the top I was surprised about how serious everyone was! I had kind of thought it would be relaxed being a push up race but there was warm ups on the go and everything. I guess everyone was having fun but a race is a race and everyone gets the competitive buzz on. I pulled up to the start tent feeling stoked at the sight of 30 seconds on the clock until my race season started! I came down into 2nd and was a little annoyed about my run, mainly from not knowing the track and hitting my hand on a tree but I was impressed by Charlie Hatton’s time (first year youth). Second runs soon came around and I knew the track a bit better and felt confident to race and push it to the end of the track. Soon I was waiting at the top again shouting encouragement at some friends as they came out the start tent, doing a little warm up, it doesn’t matter if it’s a national or a mates race, its best to try and cross the line feeling you have given everything!
So I crossed the line with what the timer reckoned was 14 hours and so and so minutes! wooo! 5 minutes of total suspense later it turned out that I had won and was super happy to start the season in such a way with a win for the team! I was also massively relieved that the new bike felt so good even on such a pedally track. The season is looking good and I can’t wait to get to some races with all of the team getting to know them all better.
As it’s a grass roots race the Rippers category need a mention so well done all the guys doing their first races, Dennis Luffman looked awesome and well done to the top 3 Jamie Emmet, Sebastian Revell and Morgan Tyrell who put in great rides to get on the podium!
Next up is the MIJ race at Taff Buggy, can’t wait!
Laurie rides for the Wideopenmag team. He’s supported by Nukeproof, Fox Europe, Fenwicks, Action Cameras, TFTuned, Conti Tyres, RoostDH and Five Ten.
Big thanks to FoD Fotos for the images. Check out their facebook here.