The hottest day of the year marked a first Cross Country Mountain Bike win for Sotonia’s Tom Budden in the Sport Category at Wasing Park in West Berkshire. A big event turnout of around 350 riders raced round three of the Southern XC MTB park and hilly woodland course in the sunshine. A challenging and technical course with A, B and C lines for some steep, technical drop offs (A-line for the very brave only) were complemented by woodland scenery stuffed full of bluebells, sharp climbs and descents on the flowing and mainly single track course.
Off the back of his highly successful cyclocross season where he finished 4th Senior in the Wessex League, Tom has quickly found his feet in MTB racing. After a good start on the long open field and tarmac sections, Tom settled into a lead group of three riders. By lap three of four, he found himself out front alone and never looked back from there, finishing a minute ahead of Nicholas Try (West Drayton MBC).
Tom told us how the race unfolded:
I really enjoyed that today. Great course, very technical in places with some pretty nasty drop offs (which maybe didn't suit me). But then a few tough climbs which did work well for me! I was with a group of three for the first lap, one of them punctured at end of the lap. Then I worked with the other guy for the second lap, he tried to make a move then blew up so left me out by myself for the last two laps... just had to not make any mistakes!