Via Wide Open.co.nz: After crashing out at the Fort William World Cup a couple of weeks ago I was pretty pissed as I had a not too bad qualifying run,22nd, and I was feeling good on the track, so I was pretty motivated to get a result at the next round in Leogang, Austria. We arrived in Leogang on Wednesday night after about 10 hours of driving in the team truck. Thursday was rego and track walk and the sun was shining so we decided to get a bit of a cricket international going in the pits, after getting half the pits in on it and showing some Euros which way to hold a cricket bat it was off to go check out the track. The track looked pretty good, it was already super rough and rutted up top and had a bit of a pedal and some fun jumps in the middle then into some more technical and steep sections in the bottom woods.
Friday was first day of practice, the track was riding pretty well and the rain hadn’t come yet so the flat sections were pretty fast although the trees were still a bit slick! After Friday practice I was feeling pretty average on the track and couldn’t really link anything up so me Cam and Rankin went up and walked the track after practice to see what lines had cut in and try find some lines out of the holes and ruts.
After some more rain on Friday night the track for Saturday qualifying was cutting up heaps in practice in the morning, after getting three runs in before qualifying I had changed up a couple of lines, but was still feeling a bit awkward on some parts of the track, and it was pretty hard to have a clean run with the condition that the track was now in.
After a bit of a lie down in the bottom trees in my qualy run I ended up in 59th so I had some work to do. Then the rain came! It pissed down all Saturday night and in the morning for practice so the track got a hiding and there were now even bigger ruts and some bog sections so the track slowed down a bit and you needed about 20 tear-offs a run.
After getting some pretty good runs in the track finally started to click for me. Race run time and luckily the rain had died off, but it was still pretty nippy! My race run ended up going not too bad, had a few mistakes in the bottom trees, but I think that was pretty much standard for everyone. I came down and into the hot seat, knocking George Brannigan(1st junior)off, and hung out there until the man himself Steve Peat came down and kicked me off.
I ended up in 14th so was pretty happy with that, and was sick to see Sam and Cam back on the podium.
Next up I’ve got a couple of Italian Cups so they should be a bit of fun.
Big thanks to my team Cingolani Protone for their help and Trek and Marzocchi.