Welcome to Round 4 of the Cannondale British Enduro Series in Shropshire, just one hour west of Birmingham.
Eastridge Woods are nestled amongst a hilltop woodland setting in the Shropshire Hills near the small town of Pontesbury. Eastridge was a famous and regular venue for downhill racing in the late 90's with Steve Peat racing here for the 1999 UK National Championships, where he won with a time of 2:00:27 beating Scotland's Crawford Carrick-Anderson.
The terrain is rocky with exposed roots littering the tracks here from top to bottom, luckily the riders have been blessed with dusty dry conditions. Over the winter, it has undergone a facelift after substantial tree felling work meaning there are a good mix of trails from dense woodland to open hillside. All thanks to the Eastridge Trail Partnership headed up by Andy Woodvine and his team of trail diggers and sculptors.
For Round 4 this weekend we saw riders practice and race stages 1 to 3 with practice in the morning and racing commencing at 14:00. This gave riders ample time to dial the tracks in as well as head back to the pits to get their bikes serviced from the likes of Shimano, SRAM and Crankbrothers.
Everyone woke to spots of light rain this morning, the clouds dispersed and British summer time finally arrived. To say the conditions were dry was an understatement, for any rider following another would most definitely have eaten dust for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The weather forecast for Sunday is looking even better for the three stages on offer from the tried and trusted BES team.
Stages 4, 5 and 6 practice starts at 09:00 on Sunday morning with racing starting at 13:00, stay tuned for a photo fest tomorrow evening and to see if Tracy Moseley and Leigh Johnson maintain their leads come the final stages.