La Thuile was an amazing place to ride my enduro bike, we arrived on Friday night since the training was to start on Saturday according to the schedule. Apparently the tracks were open for training on Friday, which I wasn’t aware of, it was too bad I missed out on one day’s training. Well, I had really fun on Saturday’s training and I managed to do all stages one time and one extra run on the first stage. On Sunday it was race time and my main focus was to try to keep it smooth through all of the tracks. Stage one felt really good, I passed almost ten people on the way down though. Since this was my first enduro race abroad I had no rakning and therefor started way back in line. They start us riders with a 20 second interval and the track was almost eleven minutes long and it was really technical. On the second stage I had written in my notes from the day before that I could go much faster on the upper part of the track, obviously that did not work out because I got a flat at the end of the upper part. By then I knew the race was over in general but I decided to make the best of the situation and I still rode the last two stages as planned, focused but with a smile on my face 🙂
Here is the full result of the competition and some pictures from Linn Hollanti. SS1: 34th 10:53 SS2: 324th 30:32 (puncture, would probably been 6:40 something) SS3: 42th 10:16 SS4: 47th 10:17
My final result was 299th place but it would have been around 35th if I hadn´t had a puncture.
The race in Brandnertal turned out to be a mudrace this year as well. I had time to walk the track on Thursday night and it looked really good. On Fridays training I felt confident on the track and I had really fun all the way down. The track was really muddy but I felt like I knew where I could ride fast without taking too many risks. Saturday’s training was the opposite, the surface of the roots had been torn away and they were even more slippery. I struggled all day with riding the track, I crashed 4 times during training and one of them was really hard. For the qualification run I had to take some painkillers to get through because my back hurt. During the quali-run I made one really big mistake, both of my feet slipped of my pedals just before a big drop so I did not have the speed to pull of the drop and had to take the chicken run around. This cost me about almost 10 seconds, otherwise the run was pretty good. I was surprised to see that I ended up 5th place with the time 3:25:3.
Picture from the quali-run
I woke up on raceday with a sore back and swollen wrist. The crash from the day before was really bad, but it wasn’t going to stop me from racing. I taped the wrist to stabilize it and I took some more painkillers for my back. This day the track was even more slippery, the recent days it had rained only in the morning so the mud stayed pretty thick but this day it rained the whole day through so it got thin and heavy rolled. I had 3 decent training runs in the morning, and I was ready for the final-run. Due to all the rain, the track got slower than before. For example, my finalrun was only 0.3 seconds faster than my quali-run, and as I mentioned earlier I did a very big mistake in my quali-run – thats how much slower Sundays track really was. Despite all of this I was pretty satisfied with my final-run and with my 5th placement.
This is how I looked after one run on Sundays training
After the weekend in Brandnertal we went to Portes Du Soleil for some training-days before the boys flew home. Instead I got accompanied by my girlfriend. We decided to take a few days for touristing in Toscana, Italy, and now we are on our way to Pila for some more training. This weekend it’s race time again, this time it’s the Super Enduro/ Italian Enduro series in La Thuile. It´s going to be really fun to try out an enduro race abroad.
The first 4 weeks of the European trip Hampus and Adam is living with me in the bus and the first stop was the European downhill cup, Schladming.We arrived about five days before the competition so we had some extra days to practice on the track. Once the competition started on Friday I felt like I was riding fast and stable. Saturday came and I did some timed runs in the morning that felt good. My qualifying run felt like a good run and that put me in 40th position, just 1,5 second away from the top 30 (super final). Sunday came around and I was ready to pin it, by this time the track was really beaten up. There were more brake bumps and deeper ones so it was hard to keep the same pace as the days before. I thought I did a pretty strategic run but it was not good at all, I should have taken more risks because I got a worse time by 5 seconds. I got pushed back to 55th place. Not the result I was looking for, but at least it got me to think about my run and reflect a bit more than I usually do. I took my experience from this race and was looking forward to the next race.
Next stop on the tour was Innsbruck, this time in the Crankworx cup. This is a cup that only has four competitions but they are worldwide so the standard is really high. The track was newly made just for this occasion and it looked really good. It was an all-natural trail that was really dusty and had big roots on the top, high speed sections in the middle and some tight turns in the end. I was really stoked and I had so much fun training on the track. Three days of training passed and the track got really beaten up but it was still really fun to ride, it was a proper downhill track in my opinion. Usually there is a seeding run and one final run but this competition only had one final run and nothing more. The final run was on Saturday and I was prepared since I had did some timed runs earlier in the training sessions so I knew what I could do. I had a decent run in overall but I had two big mistakes that cost me some time, I miscalculated how dusty it was at two sections and had to brake real hard. I finished with a time of 3:04 and ended up at 37th place, about 14 seconds behind the winner, the current World champion Danny Hart. I could have moved up in the result if I hadn’t made those mistakes but at least I did a proper race run at this race, and it paid of more than riding strategic so I am happy with the weekend.
Now we are at Brandnertal, Austria to compete in the german downhill cup this weekend and the track is looking really good! This time I am racing with the number one plate, that means that I am the best ranked rider at this race so the pressure is on.
I met up with the Swedish National Team on the Airport on Wednesday morning and everything was going pretty smooth, until we landed in Milan. Somehow SAS managed to lose 5 out of 6 bikes so by the time we arrived at Milan SAS had no idea where our bikes were. After some time at the airport we went to our hotel in Sestola, without our bikes, hoping that they somehow would arrive before Friday. Thursday passed and still no information, instead the team did the trackwalk which I must say looked really good and got me really excited just by watching it. Overall the track was steep and had some tight turns and ended with some hand build berms.
Friday came and still no information, which ment time for plan B, rental bikes… We tried to make the best out of the situation but the bikes were beyond rescue. We did some runs but everything felt awkward and it was really hard to ride such a demanding track with bikes that were shit.
Saturday, qualification day and I was mentally prepared to ride on a rental bike with hopes that my own bike would arrive for Sunday. Luckily Canyon Bikes came to rescue, they were able to lend us three bikes that were race ready. They had two large bikes and one medium and since we have two taller guys on the team it was obvious that they would have the bigger bikes which ment that I got a size Medium bike. It felt a bit too short for me but it was still way better than the rental bike. I did three runs with the bike and then it was time for lunch. By then Oscar had decided not to race at all, he thought that the suspension on the Canyon bike was too soft for him to be able to do a good race run. I took the opportunity and upgraded from medium to large. I had time do to two runs on a freeride track to adjust the bike before it was time for the qualification run. My first run on the competition track with the bike became the qualification run, but it felt good. The suspension was also a bit too soft for me as well but I still made it down as 33th with the time 2:43:9.
Sunday finally arrived and I did four training runs in the morning and felt more comfortable on the bike. My race run felt alright, had two skids were I lost some time, otherwise it was good. I improved my time and finished 27th with the time 2:40:2. A time I was happy with considering I was not racing on my own bike. I want to thank both Canyon bikes and Swecycling for keeping the spirit high at all time and making this a great weekend after all. And an extra thumbs up for Annie, our team manager, for the hard work trying to get our bikes back. I am pleased to say, now 5 days after I got home, that SAS finally have FOUND our bikes. Such a relief! Too bad they’re 5 days to late..
Next up will be the European cup in Schladming in almost two weeks. That will be the first stop of my 7 week European trip this summer. For now you can enjoy some pictures from Petri Paananen when we were at the season opening of Järvsö bike park.
Thanks to Mabi Rentalcars Gävle I had the pleasure to drive a BMW 520D down to this race I figured it would be smoother instead of camping in central Gothenburg. On Saturday I rode all the seven stages two times and felt pretty comfortable. Some of the tracks I really enjoyed but most of them was a bit to flat for my taste, since you had to pedal a lot. Unfortunately it started to rain Sunday and the stages became even more commanding. I had some big mistakes and could not find a good flow throughout the whole competition so I ended up 12th place. Not the result I was looking for but I still had a good weekend overall. I got some really nice photos from both Jon Bokrantz and Petri Paananen, Enjoy!
Photo by: Jon Bokrantz
Sweden Enduro Series in Gothenburg. Photo by: Jon Bokrantz
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.
Last weekend I were on a 4 day training camp down in Vallåsen with the National development team. It was a good camp with lots of riding and reflective talk with the Cross country crew. Each day had a special theme, the first day we focused on technique and on Sunday the focus was on racing. With the mixed weather that went from sunny and 8 degrees to snow and 3 degrees the riding got challenging with all the mud. At the moment I am still a nit used to a dusty Spain, but it was all good fun.
After the camp I had 4 days of working and now I am driving down to Vallåsen once again but this time for the first competition for the season, Vallåsen Enduro. It has been a lot of driving the last two weeks, but to me it´s still worth it, because it is so damn fun to ride my bike! Enjoy some pictures from the training camp taken by Niklas Wallner.
I just got back from a two week training camp in Malaga together with Idrottsgruppen Dalarna and Cykelgymnasiet Vansbro. We have been riding our downhill bikes and dirt jump bikes for two weeks straight. The usual scheme we followed was downhill in the morning and dirt jumping in the afternoon, but we also had three full days with only downhill. Those days we visited El Chorro, La Zubia and Motril. I’ve been feeling really comfortable on the bike and have been delivering good and stable timed runs. It has been a really good trip with lots of hours on the bike, It has been the perfect way to start this season. On this trip I also had the opportunity to try out Vibex vibration damping systems. It is a thick fluid that you put in both ends of your handlebar to reduce all the small vibrations you get when you ride. With this product my arms have been feeling a lot fresher than recent years during similar trips. In other words my arm pump have been reduced.
Now I am going to stay home for one more day before I go to Vallåsen for a four day training camp with SweCycling. The weekend after that it’s time for the first competition this year, Vallåsen Enduro.
The 5-7 May I have another competition that has been added to my race season. I have been choosen to ride for the Swedish National Team in Kranjska Gora. I am really excited to see what this season has in store, I am so grateful for all these places my bike takes me to!
Here comes a gallery with pictures from the Malaga trip, Enjoy!
The 2017 season is finally coming together. I will be starting the season in Spain in the end of March for a two week long training camp. I will go there with the Bike academy students and members of Idrottsgruppen. I am so excited to go ride my bike again in the mountains. Due to a cold I have been resting for almost three weeks now, so I am pretty eager to get back to my workout schedule and especially to ride my bike.
Below here you can see my racing plans for 2017. The light blue text indicates this years European trip.
Enduro Sweden Series
Enduro Sweden Series
Scandinavian DH Cup
iXS Swiss DH Cup
iXS European DH Cup
Crankworx DH Cup
iXS German DH Cup
UCI World Cup
Super Enduro Cup
iXs European DH Cup
Scandinavian DH Cup
Scandinavian DH Cup
Scandinavian DH Cup
Enduro Sweden Series
My own Company
Another fun thing this year is that I, from 1th of january, started my own company focusing on bike technique and skills in mountain biking. The name of the company is Hedman Racing & Coaching.
If you click on the sign ”Coaching & Guide” in the menu tab up top you will be transferred to my company web site. So if you are interested in getting a better technique on the trails don´t hesitate to contact me!
I am really excited to see what 2017 have in store for me!
As i’m getting ready for the next season I have decided to make some changes with some of my sponsors. First up, my longtime partnership with Gson’s Motor is coming to an end, meaning that I will no longer race in Knobby apparel. My cooperation with Gson extends back to 2008 when I started racing downhill. I really appreciate all that he has done for me, but now it is time for us to part ways and welcome Szamer Sport as the new sponsor for my racing clothes.
Szamer Sport is located outside Gothenburg and is the Swedish dealer for Dakine and Billabong. I am going to race in Dakine biking clothes.
Another sponsor that is new for 2017 is Emuge-Franken AB. It´s a company that specializes in cutting tools for CNC machines such as mills and lathes. They are going to help me out financially. I am really thankful to get more support for the upcoming season and if everything goes as planned I will do some more races next year thank to my sponsors.
I wish you all a Happy New Year.
Once again I want to thank all my sponsors for your support, without you I would not be racing at this level!!