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PNP my ride

Posted in General, Racing by brettok on September 21, 2009

See, that’s supposed to be an analogy of ‘Pimp My Ride’.  

Bottomed out on Bee Line.  Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Bottomed out on Bee Line. Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Because I rode the PNP race on the pimped out GT Marathon.

Not good, I know.  

But race day was a good one, with sunny skies and a fun course set in the sleepy hamlet of Wainuiomata.  There was still a slight chill in the air as we set off, but the imminent onset of 2km’s of climbing soon warmed us all up.  There’s a good amount of top-quality singletrack nestled up in the hills where madmen once roamed, thanks to the efforts of Tryphan and his crew.

3rd time up Jungle Gym and hurting.  Photo: Nige Sanders.

3rd time up Jungle Gym and hurting. Photo: Nige Sanders.

The XX-shod GT  was certainly garnering a fair amount of attention before the race, and I was getting a little embarrassed to be riding such a high-end package with my mid-range abilities.  I wiped the drool from the top tube and headed to the start line.

With no riding on the bike and a limited set-up, it was interesting trying to focus on the performance of the gears, brakes and fork while red-lining the heart rate chasing Ratas and Co.  But despite the excess of air in the fork, and a slipping seatpost, I eventually got into something of a rhythm and enjoyed the course and the bike.

How did the XX perform?  Well, it’s too early to say, but first impressions are fairly good. Using a 2-ring setup took a little bit of mind and trigger-finger re-adjustment, but I can see some of the benefits once said re-programming is undertaken.  More saddle time is in order to appreciate and assess it fully.

How did I perform?  As well as expected.  Ratas is the man in our senior citizens class at the moment, and took his second win from two starts.  Love your work Karl.

Photo:  Nige Sanders

Ratas (R) and Brett the 29er guy, 1st climb. Photo: Nige Sanders

There were a couple of other guys in there I’d never seen or heard of before, and they gave Karl a good run for his money from all accounts, with Matt right there in the mix as usual.  I was happy enough to follow them in for 5th.

Josh on the charge.  Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Josh hardtailin' it to the podium. Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Josh continued his rich vein of form in M1, moving up a step on the podium with a fine 2nd.  His age group is one of the strongest fields outside of Pro/Elite, and he’s schooling some well-pedigreed riders.

Marj on the charge and goin' large.  Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Marj on the charge and goin' large. Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Marjolein won her class too, although a lack of competition meant she stood alone on the podium.  But she would have been there anyway, she’s a machine is our Marj.

 

JJ, wishing he had another lap to do.  Photo: Nige Sanders.

JJ, wishing he had another lap to do. Photo: Nige Sanders.

 And young JJ got the better of Caleb in a battle we’d been hyping up for a laugh during the week, pitting them against each other for reasons unbeknownst to them or us. 

Caleb using all 6 inches in the rear.  Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

Caleb using all 6 inches in the rear. Photo: http://www.cycl1n.com/

It was time for a photo shoot with Caleb for the XX test article this afternoon, and always the perfectionist, he had me riding a challenging, steep, rooty uphill section for what seemed like a hundred times.  I was also goaded into attempting (and cleaning) a tricky, downhill stair section that he “has always wanted to shoot” and which I would normally steer well clear of.  But the results are looking good, and you’ll be able to see and read all about them in the next issue of SPOKE.

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