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Criterium

Getting into my first Red Hook Crit

July 26, 2016 | By | No Comments

I heart trying new types of bike riding. So when the topic of Red Hook Crit London came up, I was like “hells yeah”!

hangs

Nerves were high, but team mate tips and chatting with friends put me at ease. Gear ratio decisions dominated.

qualifiers

Qualifiers were weird, there were a number of crashes meaning a lot of stop and go. As a newbie I didn’t quite get how fast you could take those corners.

pizza

Between qualifiers and warm ups, there’s hanging out. Papa brings lunch for the team from Santa Maria Pizzeria. Friends call to say hi and give words of encouragement. Tactics are hashed out.

George

Everyone form 5th is decently placed after the qualifiers. Go team!

Dani + Aoife

Race time, it crept up quickly. I line up next to Dani King. Hero!

Field

And it begins, holy f**k, we’re going into those corners so fast. The crowds were immense. It felt like there was someone shouting for me the whole way round. It takes a few laps for me to relax into it, it’s just riding a bike.

Field

Mental check, I got this. I start moving up the field. A few places each lap. Legs are feeling good, so knew I could get to the front of the group for a good position going into the spring.

Dani wins

And then suddenly we’ve been lapped by Dani, we’re being pulled. The whole field is pulled apart from 3 riders. After the shock that our race is over settles, we cheer Dani to a stunning win.

Alex Reece George

Next up the boys. We’re shouting like crazy, they’re doing awesome. At one point we lost it, “they’re all together”. George, Reece and Alex, all positioned nicely at the sharp end of the race. With what’s left of our voices we go mental for the last laps.

Field

And then it’s over. Warm-down. And with racing there’s disappointments and adrenaline highs. But there’s always another race.

Field

Big up to the organisers for putting on a really awesome event and the insane crowds. I’ve never experienced anything like it, it was ace. Bring on the next one!

Words: Aoife Doherty
Photos: Jon Baines + Angus Sung

Nocturne Elite Women’s Race

June 7, 2016 | By | No Comments

Hammering past the pitts into that first main right – the outside line slow, the inside line dicing with cutters. Then sweeping into the first left – nice and wide and smooth. On into the Love Lane chicane and over that smooth turquoise cobbled dial. Followed by the third consecutive right hander, past the huge white banner and blur of faces. And cowbells, so many cowbells. Left, right, into the back straight – maybe a slight drag I don’t know. That lead up to the finish line felt like it went on for an eternity but was over in a flash. The red numbers of the race clock taking longer to come into focus with every approach. Each lap was vying for it’s own title making us play with the different wheels, lines, drains, effort.

Pulling out of the final corner, in the drops, elbow feeling like it was a hairs breadth from the barrier. Senses going crazy and the tones of familiar voices dotted everywhere. We rode our socks off and loved every second of it. You have to, it’s the Nocturne it never fails to deliver.

Words: Sophie Edmondson
Photos: Jon Baines

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London Nocturne 2016 by Alex Blomeley – Photos by J.Baines

June 7, 2016 | By | No Comments

London Nocturne 2016 and from our perspective the best one yet. A few gripes about the organisation, the lack of pubs surrounding the course and what classes as a critical mechanical failure but on the whole a super successful day. We really liked the St.Pauls circuit it being narrow, technical and flat which makes for fast, heart poppingly strung out racing. The stuff we love and your friendly neighbourhood team in green were out en masse being strongly represented in the LeighDay, Mango Bikes and both the headline Elite races.

LeighDay
Miscommunication from organisers the race started 10 or maybe 15 minutes early (depending on which start sheet you were looking at) and right away there’s a crash. True to form I’m in the middle of it. Cut knee and elbows, bars bent out of alignment and some guys brake lever had pieced my jersey.



This was unusual and we were dumbfounded as to how to remedy the situation whilst everyone else scrambled for their bikes. Neil (racing buddy from team Kibosh) and I regained our composure and after a bit of yelling at whoever would take it we got round to the pits to take the rest of the lap out and rejoin the race. We joined in near the front and anyone who had anything to say about that quickly shut-up when Neil did nearly 4 laps on the front and I stuck a break-away with two other guys halfway through the race. We raced hard, set the pace and earned our position up there. I managed to finish 6th with Neil puncturing on the penultimate lap. The rest of the 5th boys, Reece, George and Raffa, rolled in with the pack.

 

Mango Bikes Track Crit

After a race that good i’m not gonna bother with being modest, we owned it. LaClassica (2/3’s of their team racing Nocturne are also 5th Floor) boys and us set the pace from the first to the very last lap. The two teams both worked with and attacked each other, and our lead group shelled more and more riders throughout the race. It was a hell of a lot of fun. Props to everyone racing and we imagine next year will be a very different scenario but this time it was ours. Raffa made a superhuman effort to bridge from what was nearly 20seconds back in the 2nd group to lead us all out in the last lap ensuring a safe sprint.

It was quick and Alec fairly comfortably took the win with me coming in just behind for 2nd and George for 3rd, Reece 7th and Raffa 8th. In our eyes thats a 5th 1/2/3!

 

Elite Mens/Womens
I hit the booze pretty hard after the Mango Crit. I got handed a bottle of Proscecco and something dubbed a ’street martini’ (a thermos full of frozen Greygoose with a thimbleful of local hackney vermouth) so my memories are a little vague of the racing.

What I know is that I lost my voice from shouting encouragement to the 5th’s racing somewhere between seeing Soph drilling the front of the 2nd group in her race and Alec making what was to be the race winning break in his (later being forced to retire due to a mechanical). What a show!

 

Crit racing is such a good spectator sport and the Nocturne offers the broadest spectacle of that sort of racing anywhere. After a good day racing myself I had a fucking rad time! Finally and as usual with this sort of event I want to thank any and everyone who came to support, get drunk and shout at us. The crowds and the enthusiasm make these events what they are. Be it encouragement or abuse it all works, more so than I ever come to expect. So thank you!

Words: Alex Blomeley
Photos: Jon Baines

Thundercrit Men’s Race Report

May 18, 2016 | By | No Comments

Firstly, NLTCBMBC outdid themselves. With some great planning and organisation everything went their way on Sunday and we’re stoked for them. The format worked as everyone got some good qualification times and everyone got to race the main event (fastest riders from qualifying at the front). Chapeau guys, it was a great day.
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Thundercrit Women’s Race Report

May 17, 2016 | By | No Comments

Adeline
Two weeks ago, everyone this side of the pond woke up to the videos of RHC. There’s a motorbike and then everything goes real real wrong. Somewhere at the bottom of that pile are our teammates Alex, Reece and George. We’re in Aoife’s flat, getting ready for a big chiltern ride and swallowing porridge isn’t easy that morning.

At some point, Aoife turned to me: “I want to race Thundercrit, do you want to race with me?”
My mouth says “Yeah cool, let’s do it”
But my brain is like “WTF ARE YOU MAD?!”
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Red Hook Crit Milan 6 ‘The Hard Way’

October 14, 2015 | By | One Comment

My 5th Red Hook and by far the most eventful yet and this is really saying something because I’m still shouting about the last 4 races to anyone who’ll give me an audience.

The events surrounding the race like the pre-party, the after party, transportation, accommodation, food, weather and people was just smooth sailing. The racing on the other hand was off the hook fast, furious and so much ‘fun’. How I’d really describe it is that its one of those things that at the beginning there’s apprehension, a worry and a ‘should I really do this’. Then after the actual event it’s that total, unequivocal, full and freeing ‘HELL YEAH!!!’ succeeded by the understanding that it was the one and only decision you could have made and the adrenaline and experience will be with you from that point through to the next pant filling and life affirming thing you want to do.

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Red Hook Crit BCN 3 by Alex Blomeley

September 29, 2015 | By | No Comments

Theres always a lot of stories that come out of crit week. Most of which are super positive. You can’t avoid breaks, bruises and all sorts in racing like this but everyone comes away with something and no matter what it is you always want to go back. Red Hook Crit Barcelona 3 really had everything, even tears (quickly followed by some serious dancing) and we weren’t without our fair share… Read More

14 Jul

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Red Hook Crit London by Sam Dunn

July 14, 2015 | By | No Comments

Artist Sam Dunn took some lovely photo, catching some great moments from the weekend’s Red Hook Crit race. Click read more to check them out.  Read More

Red Hook Crit London 1 by Jon Baines

July 13, 2015 | By | No Comments

After a long time waiting (over 2 years) the famous Red Hook Crit was finally held in London. You never know what the 1st time in a new city is going to be like, but RHC LDN 1 was very successful. Huge congratulations to David Trimble, from RHC/Trimble Racing and Rockstar Games for throwing an amazing event in our home turf.

We had Reece Wood, George Garnier, Alex Blomeley and Rudy Melo from the #5thLDN taking part on London’s round

We had a team plan for the qualifying round and had a really good run, but unfortunately our fastest lap was neutralised just before we made it across the start/finish line due to a crash. We were told that our hot lap would have put us all in the top 20 on the grid for the main race. But we strongly managed to qualify to the final with our second fastest lap, Reece 45th, George 47th, Alex 53rd & Rudy 81st.

After an unlucky start for Rudy, having to avoid 2 riders that crashed into each other at the start line, he spent half of the race trying to get back into it, while George, Reece and Alex were having a really strong race with all 3 riders in the main group.

George was strongly sitting in the top 20 before he got taken out in one of the corners, unfortunately similar thing happened to Reece on the same corner, but that didn’t stop them to get back up and finish. Alex was having a really good race, moving up places and staying out of trouble.

The first Red Hook Crit London was won by William Guzman with Mario Paz Duque in second and Thibaud Lhenry in 3rd, Alex came in a few seconds later, in the same group with a strong 25th placing while George and Reece recovered to finish in 35th and 41st with Rudy stopping and finishing 78th.

Photographer and friend Jon Baines from Roadbook Britannia was there covering the race. Click read more below for his gallery and head over to Roadbook Britannia for deeper race report and more photos. Read More

08 Jun

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London Nocturne 2015 by Jon Baines

June 8, 2015 | By | No Comments

Click read more below to see the London Nocturne photos from our good friend and photographer Jon Baines Read More