UK Gravity Enduro, Round 2 Eastridge - Carrie Poole

June 12, 2018

When Steve Parr announced he was organising the UKGE series again I was quite excited. Even more so when my Dad expressed interest in taking photos of me racing and my folks offered to babysit so that my husband and I could race. I had competed in almost all of the UKGE races since they started in 2011 and ended in 2015, before taking a break to have a baby. I really enjoyed the races and it was a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and make new ones.

Eastridge was always a great race venue. Being one of the shortest rounds at only 20km loop along with my comparative lack of fitness, I thought this was a good round to start on. I was really looking forward to a fun weekend camping with friends in the sunshine that we had been spoilt with all month. However, the forecast soon changed to heavy rain on Friday and thunderstorms over the weekend. It kept changing though so I was optimistic!

We arrived late Friday night in the fog to a wet field. Saturday morning we met up with our friends and set off for practice. Stage 1 was loamy and rooty and it took me a few corners to find my grip in the wet conditions. Stage 2 was short and fast. Steep at first then a pedal to finish. Lots more exposed roots than I seem to remember in previous years. We closely followed each other down, buzzing each other’s back tyres, it was so much fun I was eager for more. Stage 3 was equally as good. Enough steep, rooty, twisty sections to keep you smiling to the end. Stage 4 was a pedal fest. Not my cup of tea and I knew I wasn’t fit enough for this one. Stage 5/Seeding started with rooty tech then out into the open for tight rocky corners, then a pedal across the field to finish. I felt like I’d had a good practice ride with no major errors, the sun was starting to peep through and the trails were drying out.

Saturday afternoon was seeding runs. The nerves hit me as I was waiting to start. I made a mistake early on and got onto a totally different line than I had practiced. My foot came unclipped and I was all over the place. The nerves ramped up which just made it harder to ride and I lost my flow. I was a bit annoyed about the mistakes I made but I finished in 4th.

Saturday night I awoke to a thunderstorm and the rain hammering down on our van. Sunday morning came and it was still pouring down. Gutted! There was so much surface water around, Stage 1 was cancelled. The ladies set off in the torrential rain. It was starting to stop when we got to the top of Stage 2 but we were all soaked through. The stages had huge puddles of water on the flatter sections and the roots were so wet and intimidating. It was so different than Saturday practice and goggles just steamed up whilst racing. Teammate Claire Bennett and I rode up the transitions together chatting about the previous stages. Luckily it wasn’t too cold and we finally started to dry off.

I was happy to finish the race in 4thplace Elite. But mostly it was all about riding my bike on great trails with my husband and my friends, something that is more a luxury than a routine these days with an 18 month old toddler to look after!

Carrie Poole

Size Guide

Women's Tops

UK USA World Bust Hip Length (front)
8 4 X-Small 87-90cm 96-99cm 53cm
10 6 Small 91-94cm 100-103cm 54.5cm
12 8 Medium 95-98cm 104-107cm 56cm
14 10 Large 99-102cm 108-111cm 57.5cm
16 12 X-Large 103-106cm 112-115cm 59cm
18 14 XX-Large 107-112cm 116-121cm 61.5cm
20 16 XXX-Large 113-119cm 122-128cm 65cm

Women's Shorts

UK USA Waist Hip Length (inside)
6 2 70-73cm 84-88cm 34cm
8 4 74-77cm 89-93cm 35cm
10 6 78-81cm 94-98cm 36cm
12 8 82-85cm 99-103cm 37cm
14 10 86-89cm 104-108cm 38cm
16 12 90-93cm 109-115cm 39cm
18 14 94-97cm 116-122cm 40cm
20 16 98-101cm 123-129cm 41cm

Men's Tops

Size Chest Length (front)
X-Small 87-91cm 55cm
Small 92-95cm 56.5cm
Medium 96-99cm 58cm
Large 100-109cm 59.5cm
X-Large 110-119cm 61cm
XX-Large 120-127cm 64.5cm
XXX-Large 128-135cm 66cm

Men's Shorts

Size Size  Waist Hip Length (outside)
28" X-Small 69-73cm 84-88cm 60.5cm
30" Small 74-78cm 89-93cm 61.5cm
32" Medium 79-83cm 94-98cm 63.5cm
34" Large 84-88cm 99-103cm 64.5cm
36" X-Large 89-93cm 104-108cm 65.5cm
38" XX-Large 94-98cm 109-113cm 66.5cm
40" XXX-Large 99-103cm 114-118cm 67.5cm