Monday, 15 May 2017

Race Report: British Downhill Series Round 2: Fort William – Mille 1st, Luke 3rd and Muddy 6th but Gee crashes out badly

This weekend at Fort William proved a real mixed bag for the team with big crashes for Gee, Kade and Luke but also some strong results – a win for Mille, a 3rd place for Luke and a 6th for Graeme Mudd.

The weekend’s course is 90% identical to the World Cup track but there are some changes in the woods section, and the big road gap is kept exclusively for the World Cup. Dry weather leading up to practice left the track extremely loose so the riders welcomed the overnight rain to help the track settle.

Gee seeded first in the Men’s Elite proving that he is firmly back on the pace this season but tragedy swiftly followed as he crashed out in his Finals run with a massive OTB at the top of the course. As we write this report Gee is in the hospital awaiting X-ray results.

Kade also seeded strongly, in second place for the Junior Men but went down hard in his Finals run when he clipped a pedal and went over the bars. He’s “a bit concussed” but he’s going to be fine.

Rachel didn’t race, satisfied with four days of smashing out runs but her Atherton Academy protégée Mille Johnset did us all proud with wins in both seeding (5.35) and Finals (5.50) She was 3.94 seconds clear of Valentina Holl. Mille said “ My race run felt so good, I felt in total control and really confident, 15 seconds faster than my qualifying time. The whole weekend has been so much fun.”

And in the end it was a good weekend for our youngest Atherton Academy rider Luke Williamson who also crashed hard in practice. He grazed his side and hurt his wrist but he showed the kind of guts that make him a great fit for the team, strapping his wrist and seeding 3rd on Sunday morning. A good race run saw him 3rd in Finals for Youth at his first Fort William race.

Muddy’s previous best result here was in 2016 as a privateer when he finished 24th in the BDS so he was pleased to seed 4th in 4.43. He said “ It has been mega dry and slippery for practise, it always catches you out when you come to Fort William, you never remember how fast and rough it is! I’m glad it rained, it’s good to experience both wet and dry before the World Cup! Come Finals he went a full five seconds faster (4.38) enough for 6th place and to feel stoked with the progress that he and mechanic Sam had made between them.
Results

Youth Men 

1. Thibaut Daprela LaPierre / Gravity Racing / 4.52.744
2. Jamie Edmondson / FMD Racing/Transition Factory Racing / 5.03.432 + 0.10.68
3. Luke Williamson / Atherton Academy / 5.06.284 + 0.13.54

Youth Women

1. Mille Johnset / Atherton Academy / 5.35.253
2. Valentina Holl / SRAM Racing / 5.39.202 + 0.03.94
3. Maya Atkinson / Rose Biks Facotry Racing / 6.36.331 + 1.01.07

Junior Men 

1. Finn Iles / Specialized Gravity Racing / 4.40.401
2. Joe Breeden / Intense Racing UK / 4.47.553 + 0.07.15
3. Kaos Seagrave / FMD Factory Racing / Transition Bikes / 4.48.84 + 0.08.44

Elite Women 

1. Manon Carpenter / Radon / 5.07.514
2. Tahnee Seagrave / FMD Racing / Transition Factory Racing / 5.08.565 + 0.01.05
3. Lucy Drees / RAD Orange Factory Racing / 6.09.370 + 1.01.85

Elite Men 

1. Danny Hart / MS Mondraker / 4.31.807
2. Loic Bruni / Specialized Gravity Racing / 4.33.487 + 0.01.68
3. Greg Williamson / Cube Global Squad / 4.36.092 + 0.04.28
4. Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas / Giant Factory Off Road Team / 4.36.510 + 0.04.70
5. Adam Brayton / Hope Technology / 4.37.495 + 0.05.68
6. Graeme Mudd / Trek Factory Racing / 4.38.292 + 0.06.48

Pictures: Dan Hearn 

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Race Report: 2017 World Cup Round 1, Lourdes: FINALS

Race Report: 2017 World Cup Round 1, Lourdes: FINALS 

Rachel takes her 14th consecutive World Cup win, Gee grabs 10th despite a storm and Kade is 5th in his first ever World Cup!

For the third time in three years Lourdes hosted the World Cup Finals on Sunday. The weather was sunny for Juniors and Women but the wind got pretty rowdy during the Women's Finals - by the time the men came on the track rain was looking very likely so most riders were heading up the hill with two sets of wheels, and the levels of uncertainty that's abound when practice has been in the dry and then the storm comes!

Young Kade Edwards was first up in his first ever World Cup Final. His run was nerve-wracking but he stayed on board slotting into 3rd place with just 3 riders left on track. The team were biting their nails as Finn Iles and Kaos Seagrave both went faster. Would faster qualifier Matt Walker deprive our boy of his top 5? Matt punctured, and the race was done. 

Junior Men Final Results 
1. Finn Iles / Specialized Gravity / 2.56.93
2. Kaos Seagrave / Tranition bikes/FMD Factory Racing / 3.00.44+3.5
3. Sylvian Cougoureux Les Gets / Intense Team / 3.04.18+7.24
4. Moritz Ribarich / NS-Bike Factory Racing / 3.04.89+7.96
5. Kade Edwards / Trek Factory Racing / 3.05.44+8.5

Rachel loves the steep and brutal course at Lourdes but she came into the women's race extremely nervous. The track was pretty blown out but it had been drying out for the three days so times started to run faster. Fifth place qualifier Myriam Nicole was the first to go faster than Tahnee's fastest qualifying time of 3.28.98, crossing into the hotseat in 3.27.

4th qualifier Tracy Hannah was very fast on the top jumps, she lost a little time on the technical sections but it was a strong run, 2.5 seconds up by split four, crossing 3.7 seconds up!

Brit Manon Carpenter couldn’t get into contention, she didn’t seem to make any mistakes but was a little more on the brakes crossing into 3rd place.

Then Rachel was on course. Could she do it?

Rach was clearly 110 % committed from the minute she left the start gate, carrying tremendous pace over the wall  to go 2.9 seconds  up by split 1. She had extended her lead to 3.5 seconds by split 2, and 3.8 by split 3. She lost a bit of time by split 4  (about 100th of a second) but she was starting to fade. With super-human effort she came into the finish with a time of 3.21.4 a whole 2.5 seconds clear of Tracy Hannah.

Only Tahnee Seagrave was left on course. Tahnee looked focused as she tackled the difficult top section, she lost a bit of speed in a corner to show 2.6 seconds back on Rachel by split 2 but there was still opportunity on the bottom section where she had been super-fast in qualifying. She pulled back to 1.94 seconds off the pace by split 3 but took a safer line than Rachel between split 3 and 4 losing more time. She was 3.07 back by split 4 and crossed into 3rd place. 2.7 back from Rachel and 0.15 back from Tracy.

Immediately after the race Rachel said: “I can’t believe it, the track is so rough and I’ve been watching Tahnee training so hard all winter, I’ve been literally sick with nerves, throwing up all morning, then smashing the Revels and the Haribos for some energy! I don’t know how much longer I can do this, the pressure is just mounting and mounting but at the end of the day I love racing!"

Women’s  Elite  Finals Results 
1 Rachel Atherton / Trek Factory Racing DH / 3.21.43
2 Tracy Hannah / Polygon UR / 3.24.00 +2.58
3 Tahnee Seagrave / Transition bikes/FMD Factory Racing / 3. 24.16 +2.73
4 Myriam Nicole / Commencal/Vallnord / 3.27.78 +6.35
5 Manon Carpenter / Radon Factory Downhill / 3.30.02 + 8.59

In the Men’s race 52nd qualifier Alexander Fayolle took an early lead. By the time 15th qualifier Brendan Fairclough came on track there was a weather warning in place with high winds and lashing rain ready to completely change the nature of the track. 

Gee had qualified 12th and when he came on track the storm was in full swing and the start hut was barely visible through the rain. Despite being buffeted by the wind he was fully committed but nature was stronger. Gee was fourth fastest through split 2 but he was already 1.5 seconds back showing how tough conditions had got, and just how fast Fayolle must have been. By Split 3 he was 2.9 back, crossing into 8th.

Gee said: “That was as awful as it looked up there in the top section. We weren’t ready for it, I set off strong but all the way down the wind was stopping me, pushing me back.” 

The final 15 riders rode an entirely different race. None of them could get close to contention with the previous riders, many of the top 10 were 30 seconds off the pace and Aaron Gwin and Danny Hart both went down hard as the track became impossible to ride. So the lower qualifiers took the glory today and Fayolle his first ever World Cup win.

Our Muddy didn’t have the greatest run, enough for and eventual 56th place.

Men’s Elite Finals Results 
1 Alexander Fayolle / Polygon UR / 2.52.75
2 Mark Wallace / 2.56.08 +3.32
3 Marcelo Villegas Gutierrez / 2.56.19 +3.44
4 Florent Payet / 2.56. 55 +3.79
5 Connor Fearon / 2.56.96 +4.20
10 Gee Atherton / Trek Factory Racing DH / 2.57.48 +4.27
56 Graeme Mudd / Trek Factory Racing DH / 3.07.73  + 14.97
Images: Sven Martin 

Thursday, 27 April 2017

WIN tickets to NASS Festival 2017

WIN tickets to NASS Festival 2017

We'll be giving away tickets across all Silverline social platforms: Facebook, Instagram & Twitter

Terms and Conditions:


1. Powerbox Limited reserves the right to publish the names of all winners. All winners are required to give their full co-operation to all requests by Powerbox Limited or a promoter in connection with publicity for the competition, their entry, the prize or otherwise

2. Employees and family and friends of Powerbox Limited or any third party involved are not permitted to enter the competition

3. Winners will be chosen at random and are non-negotiable

4. Winners will be notified by 5pm BST on Friday 9th June 2017

5. All winners must be following Silverline Tools on their chosen platform of entry (Facebook, Instagram or Twitter)

6. No winner shall be chosen more than once

7. The competition runs from Friday 12th May until Friday 9th June 2017

8. No cash alternative for any prize will be offered and prizes are non-transferable

9. Travel and accommodation costs are not covered as part of the prize - all winners are responsible for arranging and funding these costs.

10. Each prize will include a pair of weekend camping tickets to NASS Festival 2017. 

11. Winners chosen at random may be offered a VIP upgrade (travel and accommodation costs not included)

12. The promoter is not responsible for inaccurate prize details supplied to any entrant by any third party connected with this competition

13.The competition is open to all residents of the European Union

14. The winner agrees to the use of his/her name and image in any publicity material. Any personal data relating to the winner or any other entrants will be used solely in accordance with current (UK) Data Protection Legislation and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant's prior consent.

15. By entering this competition, the entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions

16. If any winner of a competition is unable to take up a prize for any reason, or if Powerbox Limited has not been able, after making reasonable efforts, to make contact with the winner, Powerbox Limited reserve the right to award the prize (without notice to the first winner chosen) to an alternative winner. In this case the original winner will not be eligible for any share of the prize. Powerbox Limited shall not have any liability in such eventuality. 

17.Entries must be made in accordance with the competition instructions and are invalid if received any later than the specified closing time (which shall be BST date and time)



Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Rach takes the win and Gee and Mille 2nds. British Downhill Series 2017 Round 1 Nant Gwrythern

The 2017 season is on and it was podiums for all this weekend with first for Rachel, 2nd for Gee, 4th for Kade and the fastest speed-trap for Muddy. For the Atherton Academy it was 2nd for Mille despite a painful crash and a 5th for Luke. 

Saturday's practice saw a water-logged track, drizzly weather and loads of crashes but the riders loved being back on track and spirits were super-high as the season kicked off in earnest, even the constant Welsh drizzle couldn't dampen the riders spirits. 

Saturday was gorgeous! The sun shone and the pits basked in the spring warmth but track conditions became much more unpredictable as the trail started to dry out - mainly in the muddy pedal section!

It was hard to find much positive feedback from the riders after some very sticky seeding runs. Mille Johnset was first up riding for the Atherton Academy in the Junior Women's category. She seeded 2nd despite a crash at the bottom of the track. Mille said: "It's not so hard to ride here but it's hard to keep the speed up". 

In the Men's Youth race, Academy rider Luke Williamson struggled with coming constantly unclipped, ending up in 15th. 

In the Juniors and in his first race for Trek Factory Racing DH, Kade Edwards crashed out twice. Once getting hooked up at a steep corner at the top of the track and then running into a tree in the first wooden section. 

In the Women's Elite, Rachel didn't enjoy her seeding run, saying: "I was still playing around with my bike set up, there was literally nowhere you could push on, you were going so slow."

In his first race on Welsh soil, Muddy said: "It's fighting you every inch of the way! I had a lot of moments that made me step back a gear, I felt so awkward."

Before Finals kicked off there was an hour and a quarter delay. Waiting at the top in the sun played havoc with Mille's nerves and left her feeling pretty drained, she took a hard fall in the rock garden and struggled down the rest of the course -- still good enough for 2nd place but the young rider was disappointed. 

Luke managed to improve on his seeding run to take 5th place - he was pleased to podium and felt that he had learnt from the experience but admitted that he had struggled with this unfamiliar style of track. 

In the Junior Men Kade podiumed with 4th but he was far from pleased with his run. Kade said: "The top part of the track was so beaten up and different from seeding, and I didn't ride it well, I pretty much stopped on every turn in the top section, I made up a lot on the bottom but it wasn't enough."

Then Rachel was on track. Manon Carpenter crossed the line into 3rd and the crowd waited for second seed Tahnee Seagrave  to appear, but it was Rachel who crossed next a massive 10.1 seconds clear of the field! Rachel said: "Gutted for Tahnee to crash out, but that was a mint run, this is such a hard track to race, you have to be really calm, more delicate than aggressive. The bike felt great for this Finals run, we made some good changes to the suspension after qualies - thanks Joe!"

In the Men's Finals, Danny Hart smashed it in 2.05.92 with Gee a very respectable 2nd in 2.07.62. Gee said: "There was nowhere that you could smash it, I'm happy with 2nd today - and so good to be back racing."

Muddy said: "I'm happy with that - I've learnt so much this weekend about riding in the mud, the roots and the slick- so even though it's not a result that i'd aim for it seemed like I could ride a bike at last on that Finals run - I feel like I'm going to give myself the "most improved award!" 

Finals Results 

Junior Women 
1. Megan James / T-Mo Racing 2.49.48
2. Mille Johnset / Atherton Academy 2.55.28 + 5.8
3. Rosy Monaghan / TCH Factory Racing 3.03.39 + 13.9

Youth Men
1. Jamie Edmonson / FMD Racing 2.23.82
2. Morgan Tyrell / Wideopenmag 2.26.82 + 2.9
3. Luke mumford / Cyclefix Ltd 2.27.984 + 4.16
4. Chris Cumming / Nukeproof 2.30.46+6.

Junior Men
1. Joe Breeden / Intense 2.10.59
2. Matt Walker / Madison Saracen Factory Racing 2.12.35 + 1.76
3. Kaos Seagrave / FMD Racing 2.15.19 + 4.6
4. Kade Edwards / Trek Factory Racing 
5. Conor Bate / Madison / Shimano / P&O Ferries 2.19.20 + 8.61

Elite Women 
1. Rachel Atherton / Trek Factory Racing DH 2

.28.22
2. Manon Carpenter 2.38.403 + 10.18
3. Veronique Sadler 2.53.516 + 25.29
4. Sophia Paull 2.58.329 + 30.1
5. Deborah Primrose 3.02.17 + 33.95

Elite Men 
1. Danny Hart 2.05.922
2. Gee Atherton / Trek Factory Racing DH 2.07.625 + 1.7
3. Matt Simmonds / Madison Saracen Factory Racing 2.09.219 + 3.29 
4. Mike Jones / Chain Reaction Cycles Mavic 2.09.227 + 3.3
5. Charlie Hatton / Intense Racing UK 2.09.602 + 3.68 

Brits going for gold in Palma

Friday brought the last chance for Britain's sailors to qualify for medal races and grand final positions at the 48th Princess Sofia Trophy, with James Peters-Fynn Sterritt in the 49er and rising Laser star Elliot Hanson set to go for Palma gold tomorrow (Saturday 1st April).

On a challenging day in light breeze, which saw a number of classes held on shore for most of the morning, Hanson stormed to the top of the Laser leaderboard thanks to a second and first and heads into the medal race seven points clear of Italy's Franceso Marrai, bidding to claim his first senior gold medal.  

Nick Thompson will have his eyes set on a podium finish having moved back up to third. Lorenzo Chiavarini, who wrapped up his opening series in seventh, also secured his place in tomorrow's medal race. 

Hanson said: "I had a really solid day. I just have to try and finish it off tomorrow. I've made a few mistakes during the regatta, I'm sure everyone has, but I've remained one of the most consistent sailors all week. 

"Whilst there are a few of the top guys missing, it's a strong fleet and it's been really good racing. I need to have a good race and hopefully I'll come away with a win."

Peters-Steeitt, meanwhile, stay perched at the top of the 49er table. The pair start Saturday medal races one point ahead of Spanish duo Diego Botin Le Chever-lago Lopez Marra. 

Despite their lead having narrowed, Peters said: "Our week's been really good and we've put in lots of consistent results. We're really happy with how the regatta has gone so far."

Sterritt admits the pair have still needed to be at the top of their game to have maneuvered  themselves into this position with one day of racing to come.

He added: "The conditions have been tricky. We've had some classic Palma conditions mixed with some unexpected scenarios, so it's not all been plain sailing. 

Also in the 49er medal mix are Dylan Fletcher-Stuart Bithell, who are currently third after a strong final two days of fleet racing. 

Reflecting between races two and three, Bithell commented: "There wasn't much wind this morning so we had a short postponement ashore. It clouded over for the first time all week, but once we got going we had a really nice breeze on the water.

"It was eight to 10 knots so we had some difficult racing as usual, with marginal gains around the course."

Looking ahead to the medal races, Fletcher added: "I think it could be quite tricky to get ahead of the boats in front, but ultimately we will do everything we can to try and win the regatta. If there is an opportunity to win, that is what we will be looking to do."

In the Men's RS:X Kieran Martin pumped his way into the quarter-final after finishing the opening series in sixth. Young gun Emma Wilson also secured her quarter-final place in the Women's event, qualifying in 11th. 

With the qualifying series over, the scores are reset to zero and the windsurfers need to progress through to the semi-final before they get the chance to secure a medal in the three-board grand final. With maximum 10-minute races it will be intense racing. 

"Today has gone very well, I had one really good race which was enough to put me into finals day," Martin said. "The new format means i will essentially start Saturday in the same position as those ranked third to 12th. It'll be interesting to see how it plays out as anyone can win. It's all new and pretty cool."

After a long wait ashore, it was a challenging day with a late finish for the Nacra fleet.  

Despite adding a 2,4 to their scoreline, a poor final race result saw John Gimson-Anna Burnett slip into second. The Brits remain in gold medal contention but, with a 16-point gap, between them and leaders Fernado Echavarri-Tara Pacheco, Gimson-Burnett will have a challenge on their hands.

With Tom Phipps-Nikki Boniface still firmly in medal contention in fourth and Ben Saxton-Steph Orton also securing a place in their first medal race together in sixth, it has been a positive regatta for the British Nacras.

Having narrowly missed out on the medal races at their debut event at January’s Miami World Cup, 49er FX pairing Charlotte Dobson-Saskia Tidey are through to their first medal races together in sixth place.

But following a challenging final race, Alison Young will miss out on the Laser Radial medal race by two points. Young, along with Finn sailor Ben Cornish, both wrapped up their regattas in 11th place.


For all the latest news from the British Sailing Team, follow us at www.britishsailingteam.com, on Facebook, on Twitter @BritishSailing and on Instagram @BritishSailing. 




Monday, 27 March 2017

Top tips for a Spring garden

Now the clocks have gone forward and the days are getting sunnier, we will all be spending a lot more time in our gardens! We've put together three jobs that are perfect for this time of year. We'd love to hear what you are up to in the garden this month, share your top tips in the comments box below! 

1. Edging
If the edges on your borders are overgrown and uneven, now is a good time to re-cut them as the ground will still be damp from the winter months. 

You can easily re-cut and neaten the edges using an edging iron. If your edges are still nice and neat from the last time they were cut, you can just trim the grass with a pair of edging shears!

Top Tip: Always pick up the clippings to avoid attracting slugs and other garden pests. 

Tools you need:
2. Planting Spuds
If you would like to see some early new potatoes, encourage seed potatoes to sprout by placing them on a warm window ledge indoors. Planting them deep into large pots against a warm south-facing wall will also encourage healthy growth. Remember to top the pot up with compost as they grow. 

3. Sowing Broad Beans 
Broad beans can be sown in the greenhouse or on the window sill. Once they reach around 6 inches (150mm) they are ready to plant outside. 

In well-prepared soil, plant them in rows roughly 12 inches (300mm) apart. Alternatively, they will do well planted in a grid with a support frame. This method of plantation improves pollination and will provide good support as they grow. 

You can protect the young plants with small split canes until they reach the support frame. 

Top Tip:  When the plants start to show beans at about 2.5ft tall, nip out the tips to reduce the effect of aphids (plant lice). 

Tools you need:






Thursday, 23 March 2017

NASS Festival appoints Silverline as official tool partner

Somerset-based Silverline Tools is to become the official tool partner of the popular action sports and music festival 2017.

NASS is four days of raw skateboarding, BMX, music and street culture. Held every summer at the Bath & West Showground, the festival is dedicated to highlighting a core action sports lifestyle, attracting the best international skate and BMX athletes and top billing artists. The event is expected to draw a crowd of up to 20,000 festival goers. 

Rob Henry, Silverline Brand Manager commented: "Silverline Tools are super-excited to be partnering with NASS Festival! We're not your ordinary tool brand, and love to get involved with unique events and projects like NASS. Silverline sponsors a number of action sports and high performance teams, and we think this is an unmissable opportunity for the brand to connect with our younger audience. The skate and BMX elements are a great match for our award-winning tools, which I'm sure, will also be put to good use building the park."

Silverline is a leading industry manufacturer and supplier of more than 5,000 hand and power tools across the UK and Europe. As official tool partner to NASS Festival, the brand will be supplying hand and power tools for use across the build of the festival village and skate parks. The Silverline events team will also be at the event with giveaways and goody bags for festival goers. NASS Festival runs from 6-9th July with ticket prices starting at £39. 

Image credit: Lewis Royden (NASS Festival)