Sunday August 1st and it was time for the biggest domestic race of the year. The 4X National Championships is the event that we focus on every year. This year it was extra special as Scott was looking to secure his 10th Elite Men’s National Championship title.
Redhill in Gloucestershire is a fantastic track and very fitting that the Championships would be held here. Practice took place in the morning and Scott looked good. Rain throughout the weekend had however made the track very wet. During practice Scott changed his Schwalbe tyres 4 times as the track evolved and dried out. He was chasing the perfect set up as this was going to be key to winning the championship.
After practice it was qualifying. 1 lap no crap. There is zero room for error or mistakes. The gate dropped and Scott looked good until the huge step up – step off. He had to hit the brakes and was unable to jump the step off. It lost him a lot of time. Crossing the finish line his time was good for 2nd position. Knowing he made a huge mistake, the team remained very positive about the way he was riding.
In the quarter final, he chose gate 1. Making a great gate he took the holeshot, but on the exit of turn 1 another rider got inside of him. Scott was shuffled back to 2nd. He rode a great lap and sat in 2nd to secure his place in the semi final.
In the semi final, he again made a great start and led the race into turn 1. This time though he protected the inside well and checked out, taking the win by a big margin. He was into the final and the pressure on all 4 riders in the final was clear to see.
Scott chose gate 1. The traffic lights lit up and Scott rocketed out of the start. Protecting the inside again he was leading. Setting off down the fast motorway section Scott increased his lead, then crucially hit the step up – step off. By the finish line Scott was clear and crossed the line with a huge yesssssss!
The emotion hit him. The achievement was huge and his team ran down to celebrate with him. 10 Elite National Championship wins has never been done in any mountain bike discipline so Scott was elated.
Podiums took place, then it was on to the interviews with PinkBike and British Cycling.
A fantastic day for Scott and the team. Thank you to everyone for the support.
All photos by Charles Robertson.