The day dawned bright, crisp and frosty for the second billing of the Merida Brass Monkeys, an enduro series hosted by the Gorrick organisers and now in its third year.
As such, the 500 competitors spread over two and four hour categories and split into age groups, were faced with the big dilemma of what clothing to wear: how many layers, long sleeve base layer or short sleeve, gilet, big winter gloves or risk regular long finger gloves, the list seemingly endless.
And it was clear everyone had reached different conclusions. There were even people wearing shorts! Madness. But whatever clothing people had opted for on this cold day, everyone seemed to be embracing the conditions, and not letting it deter them from racing.
The course the organisers had laid out at the Tunnel Hill venue measured about 7.5 miles in length and featured an impressively high ratio of singletrack to fireroad. According to Gorrick, “there was a good mix of the classic old trails such as P45, Deja Vue and Sleeping Squaddies plus some newbies; such as the as yet unnamed bottle losing descent to the railway bridge”.
Full race report soon.