Two weeks back from TransAlp and you would think that the last thing on my mind would be considering racing another marathon…. you are so WRONG! Well not really, when I entered Deswick Logans Run it seemed like a really good idea, a chance to race my beautiful Bianchi Methanol 29er on what are rumoured to be some of the most amazing trails in SE QLD (Mt Joyce Recreational Park). This decision was definitely pre Transalp with a grave underestimation of the flogging Subaru-MarathonMTB.com team manager Mike Blewitt was going to inflict over the 8 days of Transalp.
This year is the first Deswick Logans Run and I believe only the second year for Tailwind Promotions but with an experienced event organiser like Peter Creagh at the helm they are destined to go from strength to strength. The race started and finished at the Lilybrook Homestead at the Mt Joyce Recreational Park’s Western Trailhead. The ride is made up of three stages: the ride from Lilybrook to the Mt Joyce MTB Park (24km), the single track stage (23km) and the return leg to Lilybrook(24km). The event offers two distances: the 70km Deswik Logan’s Run marathon and 44km Base Camp Blast. The Mt Joyce Recreation Park, is gaining momentum and building a reputation as Queensland’s most exciting mountain bike park, conveniently located only 60-90 minutes from Brisbane.
So, with visions of amazing single track only slightly greyed by the memory of what is involved mentally and physically in racing a MTB marathon, I dragged Andy (my super support guy) and our two sausage dogs (Donni and Buster) out to the Lilybrook Homestead at the crack of dawn Sunday morning. We arrived at the Homestead and I honestly believe we could not have asked for a colder morning, rumour has it Beaudesert was somewhere between -1 and +1 degree Celsius that morning, respect to the riders that camped on the property overnight! Fortunately for us, we were racing in Queensland so as soon as the sun rose over the fence post the temperature soared and by race start we were in jersey and bibs with no need for extra warming attire. Typical for Queensland we had a paddock start but I must say I was extremely impressed that Pete Creagh managed to iron out the cow hoof prints and sweep away the water from the start of course, the paddock start was an absolute dream and, considering the recent rain, relatively mud-free!
I raced as hard as I could from the chute knowing that I has some kilometres of double trail to put some daylight between me and the single track goddesses like Kylie Maduna, Anna Beck and Imogen Smith. I love riding double track and this double track was both particularly nice and 24km long with several undulations that made me very happy. I reached the single track section in 15th place overall and leading the women, then something super special happened, I rode the single track without fear or hesitation. This is a completely foreign feeling for me and there are several factors which I could contribute to my new found single track prowess, not that I am an expert but I have officially retired my zimmer frame!.
- Factor 1: My amazing Bianchi Methanol 29er with a wheel base only 2cm longer than the Bianchi 26er (a fact I discovered on Sunday).
- Factor 2: Mike encouraged me to run lower tire pressures so Sunday I was riding on 20psi (Maxxis IKON of course).
- Factor 3. I spent 8 days chasing Mike in Transalp on some really gnarly trails.
- Factor 4. The single trail was amazing
Needless to say I managed to maintain my lead in the womens race from start to finish and really enjoyed 55-60km of the 70km course, the last 10-15km was a little bit of a brain fart, purely self inflicted and nutrition based. The overall womens podium was rounded up with Kylie Maduna in second and Imogen Smith in third. The mens overall podium saw Ben Forbes ahead of Michael Illing and Mark Frendo in third.
Complete results are available on the Tailwind promotions website.