Friday 17 August 2012

Hungarian MTBO event

This past weekend I raced at a local mtbo event in the northwestern part of Erd. Erd is just SW of Budapest. (mtbo stands for mountain bike orienteering).

On Saturday it was an individual race. It was a good navigation training event for me since my last navigation was back home on one of Phil's awesome homemade suburban maps and at the Vegas Vindaloo event in Rotorua in July.

The first thing of note, was my need to write 'keep right' on my arm! Obviously on tracks the local road rules apply. When I started riding to the start line I found myself on the left so I went back to the vehicle and wrote on my arm.

There were a lot of international competitors there preparing for the worlds. The terrain was fairly flat with some wide and single track options, forest and open scrubby areas. It was dry and dusty. One part took us into a hillside residential area with narrow unsealed roads. I particularly enjoyed that part because it was evident I was in a foreign country since it was just so different to home. I had to use my compass in this part since I missed a turnoff and had to figure out where I was since I'd gone too far.

At one point in the race I heard a woman yelling something presumably in Hungarian. She sounded a little distressed as riders in front of me went past her. I stopped to let her and her party of children riding horses past understanding through her tone what she was expecting from these zooming cyclists. It took me 87min to finish.

Rob and Michael (NZers) came in 1st and 2nd in their age grade.

On Sunday, we had a relay. Marquita and I teamed up and did alternate legs. My 2nd leg was much quicker as I started to get more into the swing of things.

I had a significant 'near miss' (for those who understand safety speak :) )
I was riding along a narrow but two bike-wide track looking at my map (which is on a map board on my handlebars). Suddenly a fast young male rider came round the corner towards me. I found that under the sudden need to instigate anti-crash mode, my instinct was to go left. A split second later I had to go further left because I was then in line for a direct hit. So I sent myself into the bushes on my left to avoid a head on collision!

As you may have read, my bike needed some repairs out of the bike box before it could be ridden. It did seem to function okay at this event. There's a couple of noises to investigate though.

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