Home town advantage certainly played a part as Newcastle’s Jason English claimed his hat trick of victories at Glenrock State Conservation Area.
The Novocastrian rider topped the past two Shimano MTB GPs that were hosted at the local national park, and his determination to add a third straight to his record paid off.
English, who was one of the main seven-hour competitors, also joked about the ‘loneliness’ of the extended events, especially when the four-hour competitors finished their laps.
“It got quite lonely,” he said. “It was great to have such a big amount of riders here today, it felt like you were really racing.”
His positives in the victory far outweighed the negatives of the gruelling seven hours however, and the Novocastrian was pleased to have navigated the course so cleanly.
There was an added element to overcome at the Glenrock event – the conditions were varied between wet and dry tracks due to the changing weather on the day.
“I felt like I finally had the last few corners dialled after the seven hours,” English joked.
In the end, English’s 15 laps – completed in 7:01:44 – was the fourth outright for the entire seven-hour field, and although he topped the placings it was Matt Vassilieff and Craig Gordon that claimed line honours with an additional lap and a 7:11:33 finish.
Elsewhere in the event, which boasted more than 300 riders across both the four and seven-hour offerings, the women’s defending champion Brodie Chapman claimed the solo women’s division.
Endurance newcomer and Canberra representative Gwynn Le Maitre was the best of the seven-hour women’s competitors.