Sunday the 23rd saw two Echuca College students compete in the Cycling Victoria Schools Mountain Bike Racing (MTB) at Dromana Secondary College. After a fogy start the day brightened up to make a great day for racing.

The school chosen for the race was very well equipped for mountain bike racing and Dromana College has its own MTB Track that wraps its way around the school (with one section even going through a school hallway). The track was very technically challenging with Log rides (where riders are required to along the log), Log jumps, rock sections, water crossings and pits of muddy sludge which, after the recent rain, was made even slippier. The Dromana even has its own warm up track and shed for their team, with stationary rollers for warm up/down.

Riders could ride tracks with varying degrees of difficulty depending on their skill. The track was marked very well with signs indicating the varying degrees of difficultly with the options of hard and easy (or as the students call them ‘chicken tracks’) sections. The harder sections were marked with a single arrow and were a much faster route around the track, while the easier two arrowed sections would be easier but would take more time to complete.

Martyn Currey (Y7) completed competed in the under 15 novice section and was able to complete the two laps, a total of about 7.5km, and finished the course in about 40min. This age group had about 18 other riders, and due to the condition of the track it made it quite hard.
Martyn commented that:

“I realise that regular training is required to compete, but every track will be different so you never know what you might have to come up against”.

Liam Clohosey (Y10) competed in the under 17 novice race over three laps. He was going well and on his third, and last lap, when his chain broke 9km into the ride.

‘I completed two and a half laps till my chain snapped on the last lap, with a total distance of 9kms. it’s hard going up against under 17 even though you’re a novice for the first race of the year, the condition made it harder when there’s lots mud involved no traction at all. If we want to do well at these races we need to train harder and do more of it. Cause every track and every race will be different. The track organisers and Marshalls are great very helpful with everything that happens. Every person on and off the track has great team sportsmanship.’ Liam Clohosey

All the different school teams showed great sportsmanship and encouragement of each other. It was a very well organised event, with local food vans and Dromana’s fundraising team having a sausage sizzle.

The next event is 28th July at Lysterfield. Any interested participants please see Mrs Currey or Mr Duffy.