Summer Swine Stomp 2017, Hog Hill, 22nd – 23rd July

Race Report by Rob Ashby 

Louis Selby on the GS watched by Chris Schutz and Derek Featherstone.
Photo by Alec Brown

Saturday began with Andy and I  loading the ramps under heavy skies, bits of blue were poking through the greyness but a downpour en route did nothing to boost confidence for a good days racing.  On arrival at Hog Hill it was great to welcome Chris Schutz, Ferdinand Lindner and Bob Augustin from Berlin – they preferred to come to London and race at the Hill rather than race in Stuttgart which was also on this weekend. After the usual greetings, banter and coffee we got to work on setting up. Sadly just as everything was about ready the “few spots of rain in the air” turned into a deluge and sent everyone fleeing for the sanctuary of the café; everyone that is bar a few hardy downhillers who where enjoying themselves too much to let a little bit of rain stop them. In the café Ed Brockman was holding court and showing off his vintage stock and tempting punters. There was much eating of cake and drinking hot beverages whilst the assembled throng told tales of yore and watched the rain bouncing up off the track. Sadly that was pretty much the story for Saturday and we left hoping for a better day on Sunday. 

The “Happy Campers” seeking food and shelter in the pub on Saturday evening.
Photo: Rob Ashby

Sunday morning saw a welcome return of the sun. We started the day off with GS and after a few practice runs we were up and running. The smaller than normal field allowed us to let riders take three runs rather than the usual two. The fastest would be the one that counts and determine their place on the now infamous Octane “Top Gear” leader board.
The course was the same as the one used at The Cracking in May. It was still marked and with time a critical factor in getting through the race programme it made sense not setting a new one. However a bit of trouble with the timing gear caused a slight delay in the start. After diagnosing the tape switches as the problem they were both duly replaced and we were soon back in action. The skating was exceptional and there was just over a four second gap separating the top to the bottom of the pack. The changeable head/tailwind could be a deciding factor therefore timing was critical when launching from the ramp. We were ably assisted on the hill by “The Godfather of UK Slalom” Derek Featherstone who took on the role of Chief Marshall, checking on the cone count and signalling any problems. With only a couple of the third runs done we suffered a short rain interlude. Thankfully it was short-lived, there was just time for a quick cuppa and we were ready to continue. The battle for the hallowed top spot on the board was being fought out between Pavel teammates Chris Schutz, Ferdy, Louis and Sam and that was the order at the top of the leader board at the finish, the board belonged to our friends fromBerlin.

 With time of the essence we readied the Hybrid course and timing double quick. We qualified and we bracketed in record time. The cut for the A Group was the top 8 fastest and the remaining riders would form the B Group. The A Group round of 8 was a tall order for four riders as they would each be facing a seasoned Team Pavel racer. Dill hill was up against Chris Schutz, John Nicholas would be racing Sam Gordon, Paul Coupe would race Louis Selby and Paul Taylor Crush would face Ferdinand. Despite valiant efforts especially from Paul Taylor Crush the Pavel Crew blitzed their opposition leaving themselves to fight it out for the top three places. The highlight of the round of 4 were the heats between Louis and Ferdy both were very close with Louis coming out on top as he pumped furiously through the last section of the course.

In the Final Louis would be up against Chris, in their first heat despite hitting two cones to Louis’ one, Chris went into the second run with a 0.29 advantage. Louis made a valiant effort to make up the deficit but it was a too tall an order and he ended incurring 4 cone penalties. Chris was top of the pile by a final margin of 1.2 seconds.

King of The Stomp – Chris Schutz showing off his go faster UKSSA Sticker.
Photo: Rob Ashby

 

With just over an hour of track time left we ran straight into the B Group. There were only six racers to get through so it was achievable providing there were no hold ups or delays.  We ran the round of 8 with Jim Parry Jones and Berliner Bob Augustin going through on byes. Andy Turner raced Trevor Hickey, both riders ran clean but it was Andy that went through to meet Jim. In the other heat Richard Searle was up against Alec Brown. Richard hit cones on his first run but still managed to take the last spot in the round of 4 to face Bob. The first round of 4 heat between Andy and Jim was an incredibly close race, both riders hit a cone a piece but Andy just edged it by 0.06! The second run was almost as close except this time Jim had a bit of a conefest and incurred himself seven cone penalties. Bob had a bit of a nightmare against Richard hitting cones in the first run and DQ’ing his second. His mojo had not been restored in the Consolation Round against Jim either, he DQ’d his first run and hit 7 cones in his second leaving Jim to claim 3rd.
In the first run of the Final Andy took a nasty slam at the end of the course Richard crossing the finish line alone. Shaken and definitely a bit stirred Andy climbed the ramp for the second heat determined to make Richard work for his podium but he had to pull out halfway down the course, he could not swing his arm properly after his fall.
And so another great day of racing at Hog Hill came to an end, prizes were given, stickers handed out, vans were loaded, thanks were thanked and our friends fromBerlin wished Auf Wiedersehen. 

 Thank you once again to Michael and Octane Sport for providing race support, sponsorship and prizes, Kryptonics Wheels, The “Man with the Van” Andy Turner for transporting the ramps up from my sister’s in West Sussex, My sister and RK Case Contractors for providing the ramp storage, Sam Gordon for all of his organisation, sign up assistance and financial administration, Timmy Peters and DAS Industries for organisational shizzle and logistics, Seismic Skate for providing race spreadsheets, and all the UKSSA crew and racers for all mucking in and helping out.

Big thanks to Chris, Ferdy and Bob for coming over for our little race, It’s always fun racing with you guys.

Finally thanks to Ian Coles and all at Redbridge Cycling Centre for putting up with us once again and a special big thank you to Sylvia and her team for sheltering, feeding and watering us.

 Results

Hybrid A Group

 

  1. Chris Schutz
  2. Louis Selby
  3. Ferdinand Lindner
  4. Sam Gordon
  5. John Nicholas
  6. Paul Taylor Crush
  7. Paul Coupe
  8. Dill Hill

 

Hybrid B Group

 

  1. Richard Searle
  2. Andy Turner
  3. Jim Parry Jones
  4. Bob Augustin
  5. Trevor Hickey
  6. Alec Brown

 

Giant Slalom

(Raw times, cones in brackets 0.2 penalty)

 

  1. Chris Schutz             22.05
  2. Ferdinand Lindner  22.11
  3. Louis Selby               22.84 (2)
  4. Sam Gordon             23.13 (2)
  5. Paul Coupe              24.02 (1)
  6. John Nicholas          24.50 (2)
  7. Jim Parry Jones       24.74 (1)
  8. Paul Taylor Crush   24.81 (1)
  9. Andy Turner              25.06
  10. Dill Hill                       24.46 (3)
  11. Lance Martins           25.84
  12. Alec Brown               25.72 (2)
  13. Bob Augustin             25.73 (2)
  14. Trevor Hickey           26.14
  15. Richard Searle         26.17

 

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