Joe Barnes’ Danger in Europe : Part 1
July 09 2012
The winding down of the Fort William World Cup is the standard marker for The Dudes of Hazzard and the Landship Mk. 2 to truck south for a summer of rear wheel steering, hucking bridges, smashing enduros and general tomfoolery.
Here's the trip so far through Joey Baey's eyes:
After a good start to the race season with a 1st at the Irish Enduro round 1, 1st at the Macavalanche and 3rd at a British Gravity Enduro it was good times. Becoming an enduro wepon is becoming a reality. Making the switch from DH has been easy and it feels like a good progression that I could have done before now. Before our departure from bonny Scotland I had one last DH race to take care of. The Fort William World Cup. A good chance to get up to speed and race the big boys on a fast loose course. I kept it in my pants and put in a solid result of 52nd also gaining good UCI DH points for next year.
The Baeys ready to rock for a summer of good times.
The new Landship is a beauty, decked out with a fine pine finish, teak oiled, subtle lighting, bright lightning, armchair, beds, kitchen, garage. Pretty much business time. Myself, Liam and Jamesy boy loaded up the 'ship with our Fives, and a load of stuff. This is the first time we have left home without DH bikes so a very scary prospect but we havn't gone mad yet, just send it for the boys on the Fives instead. Unless your racing DH I think they're ample.
First port of call was Dublin for the Irish Gravity Enduro round 2. We had ridden the trails before on our last visit so knew we were in for a great weekend. It didn't disapoint and apart from the persistant rain and muddy conditions the event was a great success. I felt good on all the stages and apart from a nasty wee crash on the final stage I had a cleanish days racing. I was over the moon to take all the stage wins and also the overall by 52 seconds. A good enduro name to claim with Rene Wildhaber in seconed and also Jerome Clementz coming second behind myself at round 1, I have taken some confidence from the sweet victories.
Huck it baeys!
Next up we trucked over to Britain and then cruised down to Dover, across to France and made it about 300 miles south. Then the bloomin fan belt drive pully shat its pants. Disaster strikes. After a 10k drive on the scooter to the nearest town we ordered a new one, returning to play football for 2 days untill it arived. A swifty fix in the services and we trucked down to Alp D' Huez. Oh dear, disaster strikes again. The lifts aren't open until july. Feeling disaster might strike around any corner we had a lenthy stay in MacyDees sessioning the googles and found our best options for some lift assisted biking.
Fan belt disaster again for Landship Mk. 2, less of a wait for new parts this time.
La Clusaz lured us in with a ticket price of 11euros and some DH runs under the lift, it looked prime. Jamesy Boy sustained a sore back after a unfortunate belly flop incident so myself and Liam smashed the trails alone. A great place to ride with a couple of cool runs giving us suitable sore hands after a first day riding in the Alps. Day two took us to Les Gets for some good times from the old times. I have probably ridden the main line every year since I was 15 but it lures you back every time and a good camp spot by the lake for a swim seals the deal nicely. Day 3 and 4 were similar to day 2 and then the sad departure of James happened. A sore back has no place in the Alps so a wee flight home for more productive recovery had to happen before returning for the Mega in 3 weeks.
Poor Wee Joe....
We are down to two in the Landship now and reside in Les 2 Alps, getting in the big decents before the races start coming in thick and fast. Stokometers are as always red lining and we can't wait for the next race in Cervinia in a weeks time.
Joe caning the trails in Le Clusaz.
bye bye for now