10 women, spread across a novice and intermediate group, came along to the ladies’ skills day held at the Western Sydney Mountain Bike Club’s Yellomundee track on Saturday. We started off the day with some drills in the carpark to build up confidence with balancing, cornering and braking exercises before enjoying a BBQ lunch put on by a similar sized group who were out grooming the track ready for the four hour race the next day.
In the later section of the day we put our skills into practice and had a good look at the track. The course used for the four hour race the next day was quite technical early on with lots of rocky roll-downs and a tough, rocky climb to negotiate before the riding smoothed out. I was blown away with the enthusiasm riders had toward trying some of these sections multiple times and cheering each other on as they suceeded with mastering one obstacle after another. The rest of the track seemed far easier in comparison, the venue proving a great location for building on early drills with flowy singletrack and smooth line choices forcing people to concentrate on looking ahead rather than down at the front wheel.
All in all, the clinics were a big success and we hope to run something like this again soon. Although most of us were pretty tired by the end of the day’s activities, Caty Scott (pictured) backed up the clinic with a ride in the solo women’s category the next day. She finished an impressive fourth place, only one lap short of the women’s winner. I won the award for the most blood spilled after riding into a tree stump in the carpark early on in the day (classy).
Thank you to Ray Rice for the photos.