The weekend before last, saw the first of the 2015 TORQ Fuelled, Scott Marathon Series – this round being held at Builth Wells in Mid Wales. As well as all the usual great thrills & spills of The Scott Marathon Ride (on the Sunday), the Saturday night also saw the incorporation of Exposure Light’s sponsored Big Night Out. With nearly a 1000 riders in attendance and great conditions, the weekend was set to be a good one.
As one of The Midlands XC events were also on this same weekend, the TORQ team split themselves between the two great rides. See here for the full report from the Midlands XC Series. At the Scott Marathon, the TORQ team was represented by Carla Haines and Lee Westwood, with TORQ’s Director Matt Hart also putting in a ride in the 50km event on the Sunday. Here are Lee and Carla’s reports from the event, from their own perspectives.
Carla Haines: The first round of the marathon series came around very quickly. Having thoroughly enjoyed riding the series in 2014, I was really looking forward to the weekend. On the Saturday, I entered the brand new, slightly shorter 20km Exposure Lights Big Night Out. I opted for the slightly shorter distance, to try and limit the fatigue for the Marathon on the Sunday. It was colder than I anticipated, so I layered up a little; but once getting into it, I found I was rather hot. There was a long climb out the back of Builth Wells, which really warmed the legs up. After that, we hit the moorland, which had some pretty cool and fast single track. For the last part of the ride, I found myself riding with two other guys, which was nice. We all worked together to the end and I rolled in 4th overall and 1st woman on the 20km Night Ride, ready to get fuelled up and ready for the Sunday.
On the Sunday, I entered the 50km; overall I’m glad I did! The winds were so strong, that they really made you work hard to fight against them. Even descending downhill was hard at times! Thankfully, Tom from USE caught me and we rode together. Then whilst we were at the final feed station, we were joined by fellow team mate Lydia Gould.
Knowing that I was near the end of my ride, I had a rush of energy, so I cranked up the pace to the finish. It was a very tough day out, but was very much worth it and I really enjoyed the experience. A huge thanks to the MTB Marathon guys for a great first round and to everyone who supported it. I’m already looking forward to the next one!
Lee Westwood: For the past few years, this has been my season opener and 2015 was no different. I opted for the Full Marathon on the Sunday and was joined on the start line by a massive turnout, but nothing quite prepared me for the conditions we were about to face! After a strong start, I found myself sitting in a good bunch until we approached the final major climb of the day (around the 50k mark). I became distanced from the group and was left facing one of the strongest head winds that I’ve ever faced alone and subsequently lost time. I was pleased with the early part of this marathon and as the season progresses, I am looking to build on this further. Thanks to all the Scott Marathon Team for putting on another quality event!
A huge thank you to the organisers for putting on a great event, we are really looking forward to getting along to all the other rounds this year, so look out for more of the team at the future rounds of the Series.
Thank you also to Rob Barker of www.robbarkerimages.co.uk for the fantastic images in this report. Rob is the official Series’ photographer, so for all the images from the event head to his website.
As always, a big thank you to all the team sponsors. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do: