Newtons was a great weekend for us at Renegade Racing. It was just Lachlan and I (Painey) that made the trip out to Bathurst; leaving an injured Chris back at home. Friday morning and it was go time! We had most things organised all we had to do was throw in the esky and the bikes. After a couple of hours on the road we got to Mt. Panorama, set up our pit area and headed out on the trail. The Newtons track was short but had some really fun jumps, turns and off camber sections. The track was bunted quite wide for line selection although it was pretty much one main fast line the whole way down. A few runs down and we had more than learnt the track and were left to enjoy the great weather that was on hand. I think we punched out about 8 runs on the Friday and still had plenty of time to check out what Newtons Nations had to offer, the downhill skateboarding was a stand out for me.
Saturday was going to be a busy day with Dual Slalom practice, seeding and racing also we had to squeeze out a few more DH runs and seed in that too. First up we did a couple of DH runs before heading over to the Dual Slalom. The DS track was the best I’ve raced on. Laid out down a steep slope with a jump or two thrown in with some berms, it made for some killer racing! Both Lachy and I qualified in the top 8. The racing was really competitive but as soon as you finished there was no tension, everyone from elite to sport categories were there to have a fun time.
After all the Dual Slalom was wrapped up I came away with a 3rd and Lachy had some bad luck falling down a couple of spots. Once the DS was done it was time to go seed in the DH. Pedalling out of the gate it felt like it was going to be a good run, with minimal mistakes I got to the bottom rubber side down. I was pretty happy with the run I’d done and Lachy had put down a good run as well, I seeded 8th with Lachy nipping at my heels. The long day was over and it was time for dinner and an early night.
Race day! Lachy had sorted a really good breakfast so we were fuelled up and good to go. A few more practice runs and we were completely dialled in, knowing where all the rocks are on track, knowing all our lines and knowing what gears to be in out of the turns. There was only one thing to do… lay down the best possible race run and have fun doing it. We watched the different categories descend from the start gate as we warmed up. Lachy took off just before me in the finals and looked to put in a good top section with some strong pedals. Once he had disappeared through the trees I was in the gate. Focused and nervous I left the gate, pedalled as hard as I could through the top and dropped into the first off camber section. Doing all my lines from top to bottom with one mistake, I bettered my time and made the hot seat. I was happy with what I had done. Lachy had also bettered his time but had made one small mistake and on such a short track it was enough to ruin the run. Chris Kovarik was the last to come down as everyone watched, he was fast and loose across the line and taking the win with a 1:17. Monster!. At the end of the day Lachy finished in 10th and I brought home 8th.
We had a great time at Newtons Nations and hope it’s on next year; I’d just like to thank the Organisers/Rocky Trail Entertainment and our sponsors Trek Bikes Australia and Renegade Cycles.
Ed’s note : You can also check out this vid the boys have put together on their pre season planning, training and nutrition.