Monday, November 17, 2008

12hr Wild Wellington Relay swap-meet!

I thought it was time I finished my 12 hour teams relay report.
As in last years event, testing new bikes was what it was all about for the Jville Crew.
The course was massively improved on last years so generally the vibe was heaps better. I started out on my trusty 93 Litespeed hardtail and straight away dropped my chain on the first climb. DOH!
I couldnt match the adrenaline charge pace of that first lap, but after another lap I jumped on Francis's new rig, a Commencal meta-666. This baby had 6 inches at both ends, and was like riding a comfy armchair, and in with the rear shock on "pro-pedal" mode, it was just "point and shoot". Bliss, and easily the most popular bike on loan!
Francis also had an extremely old Scott singlespeed sporting a 32-20 gear set. Apparently too low for this course. Being a singlespeed virgin I was none the wiser and had one of the most enjoyable laps of the race. If you a relative newcomer to the sport, you will not recognise the fork it was equiped with. The ubiquitous AMP fork!!! A whole 57 mms of travel, and half of that was probably pivot slop!! Actually it was surprisingly good.... and check this.... I did EXACTLY the same time as I did on the 28 pound fully.
One of the other guys had a pretty interesting rig which I grabbed next. It was a Jefson 29er. Chrome - moly frame, with Cyclo-cross wheels on it!! I felt like I was flying on this but in actual fact it was a good 20 seconds slower than the previous two bikes. I didnt really notice the larger wheels but did notice the smaller tread on a couple of occasions. So heres the finer detail of some of these laps:
Commencal 28 pound 6 inch fully: 18.48
Retro Scott 32-20 singlespeed with relic amp fork: 18.48
Jefson custom 29er with discs and cross wheels: 19.13
Litespeed Hardtail: 19.00
Commencal 28 pound 6 inch fully: 19.02
Litespeed Hardtail in the dark : 20.30
Does anyone recognise these characters? They were there... Geoff Knotman, these days riding a singlespeed, Jonty Ritchie, riding a Cross bike on the day, and Simon Kennet who with his brother Jonathon was on a tandem. I think these pix are from a North Island Cup round at Dry Creek (Belmont) in around 1992.