It was the first race of 2012 that we did as a team with Rizal being able to join us last minute. Check out the video below for what we did to his bike! The track at sebex this year was the same as the one used for SEA games last year and shared the same bottom section as last year's APDC track too. It was a pretty tame track, no big drops or jumps, all the risky lines were taped off, word from the organisers is that they didn't want people to start the first race of the season by getting big injuries. There is no two ways about this track, you have to be fit and powerful, its one of those tracks where you have loads of fun in practice but loath it when it comes to racing. Due to the gentle gradient of the track, quick times require a lot of pedaling.
As usual, Aaron, Ian and me were the only 3 riders in elite category on flat pedals. No surprise there as the Indonesian riders have some power in their legs and aren't shy to use it. Practice for me and Ian was pretty relaxed as we knew the track quite well from SEA games last year, nothing really changed since then. We both knew that we just had to let it all hang out and embrace the pain in our legs when it comes time for finals. Aaron and Rizal were getting as much practice as they could and managed to do 8 runs on friday.
So its just been a week since i have been back in Malaysia, and yet again I am reporting from LCCT in KL. This time we are off to Sebex, Indonesia for the first round of the Indonesian national series (UKDI).
Its been a lovely few days back in Malaysia, after being away and on the road for 5 weeks its nice to sleep in your own bed again even if it was for 3 days. Much needed down time was spent in Penang, two days rebuilding my DH bike, couple of rides at mt Erskine to get my sprinting legs going and a gym session on Monday night.
Rizal is already waiting for us in Indonesia, due to some last minute travel mix ups, i am carrying his bike along with his riding gear. A total of 76kg i had to check in, that's the most i have ever done and managed to go with without any overweight charges. Air Asia is awesome, we really wouldn't be able to race around the region like this with out them.
The race track at Sebex is going to be a mixture of the APDC track and the SEA games track, should be good fun but how much you pedal is really going to determine the end result. Fingers crossed my little chopstick legs will put out some power!
Adam never got to find out his time and overall standing in today's UCI Oceania Continental MTB (DHI) Championships in Rotorua, New Zealand. He raced down the hill, right out of the race track to his youth hostel to pack his bike and bags for his trip home.
He had a good feeling about his final run because he was "focused like a hawk".
All the "focus" paid off.. he came in 10th, +0:12.97 behind the Winner Carl Edmonson from New Zealand, to finish at 3:36.14.
We always feel special when a rider owned company comes forward and sponsor another rider owned company. It shows tremendous affirmation and support of our objectives.
This shout out goes to Unsprung who brought in top notch Deity components which any team would be proud to have on board.
You've been with us for 3 years and that says heck a lot. We love ya and hope for many years of fruitful partnership.
In today's world it is easy to put a price tag to everything and forgetting our humble values. But DVTeq Fakawi would sincerely thank Ayam Brand for your very generous sponsorship of our team for the coming season. More so being this is the second season you have continued with the partnership and it really means a lot to us. Your support will open many new opportunities for our aspiring riders as well as help develop the mechanics necessary to enhance their skills.
So week 4 went past pretty quick, sorry for the lack of updates but there was just too much going on at the time. We did the last round at napier, then headed up to Auckland so Aaron could fly back to Malaysia and I stayed on in Auckland to sell the car. Well the good news is that we sold the car, so the trip is on budget and all is well. I was originally supposed to fly back tomorrow but since there were no races going on back home, I decided to change my flights so I could attend Oceania's in Rotorua this weekend.
Long Gulley, Wellington - Second race for the DVteq FakawiBanshee team in New Zealand and the 5th race of the season. The track wasn't as long as the previous track in Rotorua but the track was warp speed! Some bits were narrow and one small mistake and you're falling down a 50 foot cliff.
It was an open track, barely any trees so we had a bit of a problem with the strong wind especially on the jumps. There was a huge step up on the track, the ever famous Long Gulley step up, a really steep shoot about 60 metres that went into an almost vertical that shot you over the back of a hill. I didn't manage to get much practice done on practice day because I had a really stiff neck from a few days before, popped a few painkillers but didn't work as well. Adam managed to get in 8 practice runs and got up to speed with ease. Seeding run - I didn't do well on my seeding run because I had a small problem with my brakes. Seeded 3 from last. Adam seeded 10th and was happy with it. Final run - it was a huge mistake seeding towards the back of the category to my realization. I got held up on the upper sections with a rider in front of me. After over taking him, I thought I'd still be able to make up some time with pinning it harder but I overcooked a corner and washed out. Finished 25th, with a time of 2.43.
Adam however managed to dial a clean run down all the way with a time of 2.26 that put him in 13th place. It was a good race for the both of us as we learnt quite abit from this race. I definitely came out of the race with a lot more balls, having to deal with the speeds and huge jumps on the track. Hoping for better luck next time around at the next race in Napier this coming weekend. Stay tunes for more updates!
click "read more" for more pics, vids and full results (in pdf)..
Malaysia vs Japan: race video editing. Big thanks to the jpn riders Junya Nagata and gang for putting up with a place to stay tonight, some internet and power to do the video too!
That's one big ass kiwi bird!
Second week in Middle Earth, did our first race, slowly getting used to the weather and no more jet lag. Been heading down to Lake Taupo after practice days at Rotorua, there is a hot beach where hot water seeps out of the sand. Was amazing, dug our own little hot pools. When you get too warm you just jump into the cold lake, was the ultimate game of hot cold hot cold, great for aching bodies too!
The lake is amazing, clear water like I have never seen before. The lake is the size of Singapore and all of it is drinking water, in the video below you can see the locks opening to realise water to hydro-electric powers stations down stream. Aaron being quite scared of the cold was not man enough to get into the lake, all the action is caught in the video.
One thing in common the woods here have with Malaysian rain forest is the cicadas, but man are they loud here! All that background hissing in the videos you can hear is from them. Kept my ears ringing even after I get back home.
So this is going to be the last you hear from us for the next week or so, we will be soon driving down to wellington so no more internet connection from casa del grig. Will be living out of our car for the next few days, we took out the rear seats to leave more space for the bikes and being able to recline the front seats flat to sleep in. There is a short segment in the video showing our sleeping arrangement for the past week, has been great being able to sleep on beds, bikes in the same room, perfect. Big thanks to Greg Larsen for putting us up, we will be heading back to Greg's after Wellington.
Enjoy the video below and till next time!
So we have just done out first race of 2012 and first race in New Zealand. I finished 17th place in men's open and Aaron had some bad luck and crashed in the final. It's been a very steep learning curve for us, luckily one of our biggest worries with the cold weather turned out to be a non issue. Sure its not as warm as we would like it to be but it's not killing us tropical boys either.
The race weekends here are run a bit differently to what we are used to back home, with only one day of practice and straight into racing the next day. With a track as high speed and full on as Rotorua it was obvious that knowing the track inside out would be a huge advantage. This was evident with many of the local riders taking podium spots in most of the categories. Nothing in Malaysia has really prepared us for the tracks here, but then again that's why we are here to learn. Besides being high speed and rough, they are technical too, not in the same way we are used to back home tho. Things like having to set up for a particular corner 4 corners before you get to it, just so you can get a wide line and carry speed through it.
All and all we had a great time and are looking forward to the next round in Wellington. In the mean time check out the video we put together from the race.
Till next time!
First ride out at Rotorua after driving 800km from the south island.Enjoy the video! (at the bottom of this page)