Red Bull x Charge Bikes Weavers was a dual slalom downhill bike race like no other; it put rider’s skills and precision to the ultimate test. The course was cut into the shoulder-high wheat crop, and featured steep declines, blind corners and tight-lines to test the mettle of the competitors. With all of the bikes having the same simple spec and gearing, we stripped back off-road racing to its roots with equipment playing no part in rider advantage. With riders reaching speeds of 40mph, the stage was set for one of the most adrenaline fuelled downhill bike events to date.
Charge Bikes assembled 12 Custom bikes with the help of SRAM and Rockshox. The idea was to strip back the bikes to the bare minimum and specify competitors must either meet the specification criteria of: one standardised gear, 29″ wheels, rear brake only and only rigid or front suspension…. or use one of the 12 Charge Bikes available for anyone to use. These bikes were custom painted 2013 Cooker single speed frames that used custom 60mm Reba Rockshox forks and SRAM / Truvativ build kit, the perfect tools for the job.
The original event date had to be postponed due to horrendous weather, so we were over the moon to see just under 70 competitors turn up on a gloriously sunny weekday some four days later in the heart of the Somerset countryside.
70 riders were whittled down to 32 in a series of timed qualifying runs and the final 32 seeded on their runs. Amongst the lucky finalists were professional trials riders Chris Akrigg and Chris Doney, downhillers Neil Donaghue, Dave Wardell, Joshua Bryceland, dirt jumpers Ollie Fielder and Ollie Wilkins, BMX riders Kye and Leo Forte and Lewis Lacey.
These professionals were joined by a good contingent of local heroes and amateur riders that had posted impressive qualifying times. In quick fire knockout rounds, the final 4 riders were determined for the semi finals. Lewis Lacey took on GT’s Dave Wardell who crashed near the finish line putting Lacey through to the final. The other semis final saw Santa Cruz’s Josh Bryceland knock out Red Bull’s Kye Forte.
In the final Josh and Lewis battled it out as the sun set over the field of corn. Josh took the win, the custom Charge gold bike and £1000 to the delight of the sun kissed crowd.
1ST Josh Bryceland
2nd Lewis Lacey
3rd Dave Wardell
4th Kye Forte