Me, Mona, William and Stuart were blessed with gorgeous sunshine and despite the heavy rain in the previous week the trails had dried up quite nicely. Mona had decided to start mountain biking again after a long break as she found her favourite sport, running, was starting to cause wear and tear on her knees. I don't like to draw attention to peoples bikes much as it is the technique of the rider that is the most important. However, Mona's bike lacked front suspension and had exceptionally narrow bars which is typical for the era the bike was from and it was important that she tried to compensate for these things by staying as relaxed as possible on the bike to avoid the shock of every lump and bump traveling through her arms. Despite at one point having come off the bike due to panic breaking she suddenly plucked up courage and road the really rocky sections of trail really well!
William was also what you would call a proper beginner at mountain biking having not even tried out his new bike before coming on the course. He had done some road cycling in the past and had therefore opted for the SPD pedals on his bike. Getting used to the SPDs again took a little while but thankfully he seemed to bounce pretty well! Maybe it was due to being experienced at sports in general such as kayaking, karate and climbing he had very good control and balance, he picked up all the skills and tricks really quickly.
Stuart was the only one who had been out riding regularly off road before coming on the course and was already familiar with most of the trails. This showed as he was very confident and tackled everything with speed and no hesitation. The only thing needed in his case was to try and move slightly more with his bike to allow to be balanced through out especially for the drops. He had a remarkable ability to stay on the bike even in the most frightening situation but to not make the others feel bad he took a dive in the mud on the very last obstacle!
Great day, lovely people, what more can you ask for!