Olivia Johnston smashes a tricky chute into a flat corner. All photos by Matt Feely. 

The Nelson Mountain Bike Club’s Super D Evening World Series continued to up the ante by providing a long and technical course for round three. Held on Thursday the 5th of November, the race had just over 100 participants despite the challenging course. Rain early in the week had people scared, but a couple of hot, clear days left dirt in perfect condition on race day.

Riders had a good slog up to the start of a long course. After dropping in, the track had two distinct personalities. The top half was tricky. The rocks and tree roots wanted blood. Branches snuck into ride lines to clip handlebars and helmets. On the straights there was limitless speed. Tight dropping switchbacks lay in wait; suddenly, that speed was problematic. The diagonal roots didn’t help much either.

Native bush and Mike Anderson charging.

After crossing a river, the track ran out of tightness and gnar. Many were relieved. It was short-lived as racers realised just how much pedal-smashing they were up for. In a train with your buddies, this mellow section of track has plenty of pop and flow. At race pace it buries you alive. Only the fit and strong thrived. It was a perfect Super D course.

At club races, the track’s only part of the story. It’s over a beer and a curry at the bottom that the best bits happen. Nelson has such a strong riding scene and this is never more obvious than at an evening race. The diversity of people sharing their passion always amazes me – it’s great to see the full range of ages, genders and ability levels getting involved. 

Race face from Warren Burgess.

Round four of the series will be on Thursday November 19 at a mystery location to be released the Monday before. I’m sure organiser Loui Harvey and the team will have something special in the works. Only an absolute fool would miss it.

Oh yeah, if you’re all about race results, they can be found here.

Shanine Hermsen shows her renowned perfect bike form.

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