After attempting and secretly enjoying my 1st one hour mtb race two weeks ago at a rather damp Clayton Vale, as part of the Midweek MTB Madness series I decided I needed to have another go and entered round two at Chorlton Water Park.

On a very warm and sunny Thursday evening I struggled through the Manchester rush hour traffic to get to Chorlton for a 7.15pm start. On arrival it was clear that the weather had brought out a few more lycra clad elite riders.

We lined up at the start, with the racers at the front and the “enthusiasts” towards the rear. After my 1st event I knew my race pace was more tortoise than hare, so decided I would start at the back of the 100+ riders and see what happened. My race plan was to go flat for as long as possible to try and get 5 laps in. The racers would do 6.

The first half a lap was quite slow with people jostling for position, a couple of crashes and some stopping on the short climbs. I eventually got behind a small group clipping along at a pace I could keep with. We became a group of 5 with a lot of switching of positions for the next 4 laps.

The course was fantastic, fast and dusty with a couple of steep climbs and short fast descents, with plenty of room for overtaking.

I managed my goal of 5 laps, doing 25 kilometres with an average speed of almost 18km per hour in a time of approx. 1hr 20mins, finishing 38th in the enthusiast class.