// Images by Ian Lean and Jim Smith // Words by Jamie Edwards
We’re just back from our first race of the year – the 1st round of the British Downhill Series (click to see our complete 2015 coverage of the series) and the official launch of our new-look, new line-up race team. It was an awesome weekend for the team with Kye Forte winning the master category, Rich landing 14th in Elite and Charlie and Joe both bagging really solid results.
The team will be racing the Nukeproof Pulse for downhill and the Mega for Enduro.
But before we talk downhill … Let’s go enduro with Mark Scott
Our top elite rider is Mark Scott. Mark joined us in 2014, scored world-class results and is back for ’15. We’re investing more into Mark this year and helping him build his career as a force at World Enduro Series level.
Look out for Mark at the World Enduro Series, UK Gravity Enduro Series, Mega Avalanche, Trans Savoie and loads of international videos.
And this weekend’s main event – the downhill.
This year we’re focusing on what we do best – helping UK riders get faster, have fun and build careers in bike racing. We’ve rejigged the team slightly to focus more on up-and-coming riders. We’re spending more time and energy than ever on UK racing and building UK racers.
Leading the charge … is Charlie Hatton
Charlie has joined the team and will take the lead as our main UK racer. He’ll race junior World Cups and the British Downhill Series. He’s off to Lourdes World Cup right now and couldn’t be more stoked.
Charlie’s weekend at the BDS was his first on Team Wideopenmag and went well until a crash in his final run. He had a full over-the-bars in his run and still managed a 15th place in Junior. How good is that?!
Kye is back and – building on his career as a BMX pro – is looking to dominate masters at the BDS, World Champs and create loads of great video edits. Kye is fast, insanely stylish and absolutely talented on two wheels – whether they’re on his Nukeproof, his BMX or his moto!
This weekend’s BDS was a big one for Kye, with his first ever British Downhill Series win. He narrowly missed out on the top-step through all of 2014 but finally made it happen. We’re absolutely stoked for him.
Joe is also back and getting faster and stronger. He’s our youngest rider but has spent the winter in the gym like a seasoned pro, done a million laps on his dad’s uplift and is aiming to step up in his 2nd youth year.
Joe had a bit of a wobble at the BDS this weekend and lost a cleat in in his race run … but still hit Ae forest’s gnarly stump gap, rock garden and step-down nonetheless! Even without both feet clipped in he scored a 6th place in the super competitive youth category. There’s big things to come for little Parff.
Last but not least, Rich Thomas
Rich will race elite at the British Downhill Series and Fort William World Cup. His main job this year is as team coach and to help our riders go faster and score great results. He’s a natural coach and will use his 10 years of racing experience to make that happen.
If coaching the riders wasn’t enough, Rich stomped out an awesome 14th in Elite. Not bloody bad Richard!
And behind the scenes
Holding it all together are our hard-working race support team. That’s Chaz Curry and Ryan Stiling wielding the spanners and Jeff Parfitt who sorts out whatever, whenever. They’re the back bone of the team and sort everything from changing tires, to tuning bikes to cooking! Shooting beautiful images of the team is of course Ian Lean … and sorting out the admin is yours truly, Jamie Edwards and Jim Smith.
Come see us at the races this year or look out for us online!
Thanks to all of the following for their amazing support in 2015: