It feels like a lot has happened since my last column but as most of you already know only one round of the EnduroCross championship has happened. And what you’ll also know is that I didn't win!
After winning every round of the championship in 2011, my win streak finally came to an end in Las Vegas a few weeks ago. Looking back on round one of the season I'm disappointed not to have won but also happy with the outcome of the race as at one point things could have been a lot worse.
Not many people know this but leading into Vegas I was actually riding hurt. I crashed during one of my training sessions in the lead up to the race and went down hard on my shoulder. I got it checked out and with nothing serious showing I just tried to shrug it off and focus on the race ahead.
Normally I gel pretty quick with a track during practice, but for some reason I couldn't find my groove in Vegas. Added to that bad starts held me back all night. I missed a direct transfer in the heat race and had to qualify through the semi, which put me in an outside position for the main event. I knew I needed a good jump off the gate but as I tried to make the turn I ran out of track and crashed into the logs on the outside of the course. By the time I got back on my bike I was already over 20 seconds down on the leaders. At that moment all I could think about was salvaging points. I just put my head down and charged as hard as I could.
After what could have been a disastrous night I finally finished third, only four seconds behind the leader. I'll take that as a big confidence boost knowing that even though I was in traffic the whole way through the race I was still the fastest guy on track. So at the next round I hope to come out fighting and start winning – I need to start up a new win streak again!
Since Vegas I flew back to my home in Spain. Originally I had planned to move out to Florida but with my schedule being a little mellow I've decided to put it on hold. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to ride a bike for a couple of weeks after Vegas. Aside from injuring my shoulder I also hurt my hand in the crash. At the time I never noticed it as the energy and adrenaline of the race took over but later that evening I began to feel the pain.
Luckily there was nothing broken but I needed to give it time, rest, and lots of physio. I only started riding again ten days ago but I feel good so if everything goes to plan I'll be ready to race at my best at round two.
Unfortunately I won't be at Erzberg this coming weekend. It feels weird saying that because that race has been a major part of my life for the last six years. I'll definitely be following it to check out who will win and take over from me. There's a lot of good guys that can win it but I think if the course is really technical then Grimbo will be the guy to beat, but don't count out Jonny Walker.
That's about all from me for this column. Until next time…