Opie Oils sponsor Sam Gilbert round up of the South West Enduro Championship – Grogley Woods round

One of Opie Oils local sponsors Sam Gilbert was in action last Sunday for Round 1 of the South West Enduro Championships at Grogley Woods.  He managed 3rd in the Clubman E3 class on his Gas Gas EC300 2 stroke and provided us with this fantastic update:

It was a really hard event due to the conditions following the recent bad weather, and the fact it was soon after the excesses of the Christmas break.

The course was around 7 miles in length and was very technical, tight and steep in places. With no real open fast flowing bits to let you get your breath back. It took me 4 hours to complete my allocation of laps!Sam Gilbert

The soft boggy mud made it hard work at the start, but that soon gave way so the track became very ‘rutty’ and as the tree roots were exposed the grip levels decreased while the pounding by the bumps increased! The course did take its toll on the bike, as a slow speed off on the second lap saw another competitor ride over my bike and smash the rear mudguard off. This made the rest of the race surprisingly difficult as the mud piled up my seat and I struggled to grip the bike when needed. I also smashed part of the hand guards off on a tree, put several dents back in the exhaust, along with putting a hole in my new race trousers!

The weather did hold out on the whole and it was very rewarding just to finish. Especially after rebuilding the top end of the engine for the first time over the Christmas break, so there was always the worry of a mechanical failure at the back of my mind. That soon disappeared as the motor ran extremely smoothly.

The next round is on 23 February up on Exmoor, so plenty of time to repair the bike and get down the gym.

Good work Sam, we look forward to supporting you through 2014.

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