DMR DirtWars UK Round 1 – Chicksands Bike Park

May 20, 2017

The DMR DirtWars UK 2017 season kicked off at Chicksands Bikepark playing host for the first round. With all riders on course brushing off the cobwebs after a long off-season and getting acquainted with each jump, it wasn’t long before the growing number of spectators were given a taster of what to expect once the competition kicked off. The riders were eager to show off what they had been working on and as bigger and bigger tricks started to get thrown it was time to get things started.

First up was the combined ‘open’ and ‘amature’ classes, unfortunately, the off season had claimed a few injuries which saw some familiar competitors relegated to spectating, (we wish them all a speedy recovery). But it was good to see a few fresh faces entering and ready to challenge the familiar faces of the scene. After three runs, the judges tallied up their scores and the riders were put into reverse order to drop in for finals; Aiden McMillan, Andrew Alexander, Larn Baldwin, Josh Venamode, Vitalious, Zac Rainbow, Jack Cardy and taking the top spot Marcel Hunt.

Next it was time for the Pros to take to the course, this year the veterans of the category had a few new challengers for podium spots with Harry Campbell, Cameron Crozier and Ben Nolan all moving up from competing in last years open category. Qualification would see 11 riders cut down to 7. With all the riders completing their qualification runs, it was time for the judges to add up the scores and in reverse order, the seven riders that had made it through were: Clinton Jones, Tom Reynolds, Matt Scott, Cameron Crozier, Tom Isted, Harry Cambell and Daryl Brown.

After a short lunch break and some time to chill out, it was time to get going with the Open finals. With podium spots and prizes on offer, it would be interesting to see how much the standard would be raised form the seeding runs earlier. New comer to the scene Vatalious was keen to prove he could mix it with the best, putting down stylish, fully clicked one-foot x-ups and tuck no-handers before throwing the dice in his last run and attempting a back-flip, which is one of the most impressive bails I’ve seen in a long time. After missing all of last season due to shoulder injury, crowd favourite and Holdshott Local Andrew Alexander was keen to lay down a clean run, throwing down a 360 in his second run only to up it with a 360 tyre grab/ slap in his final run. In the end, it came down to two riders fighting it out, with both Jack Cardy and Marcel Hunt separating themselves from the field by adding a trick on the small wedge feature and pumping out combo tricks on multiple hits. With Zac Rainbow taking the last spot of the podium with a couple of solid back flip combinations.

Winning Runs – Open Round

Marcel Hunt: Bar Spin, Tuck No-Hander, 360 Table, Double Truck

Jack Cardy: Bar Spin, Suicide, Tuck No-Hander, Double Truck

Zac Rainbow: —, Flip Table, Tuck No-Hander, Flip Tuck

After the dust had settled and the course had been patched up, it was time for the 7 Pros to fight it out for the 3 podium spots and a cash prizes. After a few years out after knee surgery, Clinton Jones was back to his old ways, wowing the crowd with his crazy slow and stretched out super whips. Cameron Crozier was also keen to prove that he could mix it up with the pros, sending stylish 360 x-ups and finishing his 1st run with a double tail whip. Unfortunately he came up short on a midget F-bomb attempt in his second run and didn’t take his 3rd run.

After putting a down a solid first run, Harry Campbell looked to up his score in his second run with a no-handed front flip, just missing the bar and taking a hard slam, but this guy is hard as nail and soldiered on laying down his best score in his final run, but just missing out on a podium position. Tom Isted raised the bar on what was possible on the little wedge and getting a #minflipmonday insta clip in the process. Unfortunately he wasn’t able to build on his first run score, crashing on a big F-bomb attempt on the final jump, he would have to settle for 3rd. Tom Reynolds was keen to improve on his 6th place qualification and wasted no time in doing it, pulling out all the stops and laying down a banger first run. Rolling the dice and trying to up his score for the next two runs didn’t quite work out and he would have to settle for a well deserved second place. So Sharky B, the man to beat manages to not be beaten for another year. With a perfect display of both flip and spin combinations he earns himself the elusive 3peat at Chicksands and takes the first round of the DMR Dirtwars series.

Winning Runs – Pro Round

Daryl Brown: 360, Flip Tuck, Double Truck, 360 Tuck

Tom Reynolds: 360, Flip Table, 360 1-foot Table, Double Tail Whip

Tom Isted: Flip, Flip Tuck, Truck Driver, Superman

So with round one done and dusted, its just left to say a massive thank you to all the riders for showing up and competing and putting on an entertaining day for all the spectators. The Chicksands Bikepark crew and especially Ali Dunn for all the hours spent preparing the jumps and making sure everything is running perfectly for the competition. And finally Cliff and the rest of the DMR DirtWars team for all of the unseen time and effort spent organising the series and setting up and taking down all the equipment needed to run the show.

The next round will be at the series favourite Holdshott Trails in Hampshire on the 4th June. As always spectating is free and we welcome you all down to see some of the UK’s best Dirt Jumpers fight it out in round 2 on the purpose built slopestyle course. Check out the National Series standings here.

Words and images: Chris Greenwood  (@cagreenwood)

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