Trans NZ Day 2: Of sheep and men

TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-7.jpg

A very kiwi problem was the only hiccup in a wet and wild Day two of the Trans NZ enduro. 

TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-1.jpg
TransNZ18_Day2_DaneCronin-3.jpg

The morning shuttle to the first transition was interrupted by a mob of sheep strung across the highway, blocking traffic in both directions.

TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-2.jpg

It meant the second half of the field had a long wet wait for the shuttle vans to come back to base, but the delay panned out in their favour as the rain stopped during the transition to stage one.

TransNZ18_Day2_DaneCronin-11.jpg
TNZ Day 2 Digby Shaw-9.jpg

Earlier, riders had woken to a steady rain which caused some nervous chat at the breakfast table.

TransNZ18_Day2_DaneCronin-4.jpg
TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-5.jpg

The same sheep that caused the morning hold up would also see stage three scrapped from the race, as the flock had been moved into the same area the trail ran through. No one wants to come around the corner to hit a bunch of sheep at race pace.

TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-3.jpg

The overnight rain had left its mark. Stage one in particular looking had a small stream was running down sections of the track. Those accustomed to the conditions had a great time bombing into water-filled ruts at full noise, while for the rest it was a good lesson in navigating slop. Either way, riders were all smiles at the bottom.

TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-4.jpg
TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-16.jpg

Getting to stage two was a big haul up the Craigieburn access road, spitting riders out at one of the most iconic trails in the network: The Edge. The sheer exposure was unnerving at race pace but the lower section of Anti Luge was wide open fast and slippery enough for some huge two-wheel drifts. 

TNZ Day 2 Digby Shaw-22 2.jpg
TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-10.jpg
TNZ Day 2 Digby Shaw-14 2.jpg

The final stage was a bit flatter than those before, a nice way to warm down before a seven plus hour transfer to Queenstown, and the final three days riding. 

 Jonas Meier's cheeky high lines helped him to victory.

Jonas Meier's cheeky high lines helped him to victory.

TNZ Day 2 Digby Shaw-4 2.jpg

Jonas Meier maintained his lead, his day two time of 16 mins 38secs adding three seconds to his advantage over Jerome Clementz.

TNZ Day 2 Renee Digby Shaw-1.jpg
TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-9.jpg

Renee Wilson was fastest woman on day two, her time of 21mins 47secs putting her 25 seconds ahead of yesterday's winner Emily Slaco. The battle between these two is heating up, with Slaco's lead down to only a few seconds. 

TNZ Day 2 Digby Shaw-13.jpg

Day three takes riders up Coronet Peak for another big day of descending on rad trails. 

TransNZ18_Day2_DaneCronin-7.jpg
TranzNZ-2018-Day2-MattWood-15.jpg