Vallåsen Enduro was a perfect way to start of the season, great weather and good times meeting the riding-folks again. With a total time of 12 minutes and 4 seconds divided in 6 special stages I ended up at 7th place in the Elite category. A decent result for the first competition of the season, my main focus is still downhill so for me the enduro races is only a complement.
Over to the real deal, the first downhill race for this season. The European cup in Kranjska Gora, Slovenia. This time I had the opportunity to race for the Swedish National Team. Due to some delays with the flights down we arrived pretty late on Thursday night so it was straight to bed. We had to get up early on Friday morning to assemble the bikes before we had trackwalk. The track was divided in 4 forest sections and they all had lots of roots covering the track. Between the forests we had some jumps and some intense pedal sections. The training started at 12 o clock and went on until 18. It had rained the night before so the track was really slippery and people were crashing a lot all the way down, including me. I was a bit tired and was having problems finding a good pace.
Saturday arrived and it was time for another training session before the qualifications. On this day the track had dried up a lot and I was finally starting to feel comfortable on the bike again. I made some changes to the suspension and Voila, the bike was really good so I started to ride a bit faster. Qualification came and I had a decent run with one mistake at the bottom. 2:39.9 was my time, just 1.9 second away from the top 30 final. I ended up 40th and were happy to have a good and stable first run of the season.
Race day arrived and it had rained the night before so everybody was worried if the track would be slippery. I waited about an hour to see if it would dry up a bit, and it was the right call. The track had dried up a lot and I had a superb practice. The sun kept on shining on us all day and I was ready to race. I gave it my all but got a bit stressed and made a lot of small mistakes in the woods-section and it cost me some time. I got down at 0.2 seconds slower than the qualification run. One positive thing was that I rode better in the lower part of the track but I was 2 seconds slower at the first split which in the end got me downgraded to 45th place. I ended up being the best swede at the scene and in overall I had a really good weekend racing and hanging out with the national team.
I am really proud to be part of the team and I am really looking forward to be racing for them once again in the European Championships in Sestola, Italy on May 28th.