The 2018 British Cycling 4X National Championships took place at Falmouth in Cornwall last weekend. A track that has always been one of Scott’s favourites, it was the venue where he won this title back in 2014. Scott was obviously looking for the same fortune this year.
We arrived on Friday and set the teams Dethleffs truck and Surf & Turf tent up ready for the weekend. Scott rode in a short practice session and immediately looked fast and comfortable on the track. The team were in good spirits and after a good meal on Friday night we were set to defend the title.
Saturday morning and the sun was shining. The forecast was great and we were in for an amazing day of racing. There was a 2 hour practice session during the morning where Scott was able to fine tune both his qualifying lines and his race options ahead of the event starting at 13.00.
Qualifying started at 13.00 and clearly Scott was in the mood. Focused and ready to lay down a fast lap. As defending Champion Scott was the final rider to qualify. The gate dropped and Scott made his trademark fast start. Railing all the turns he looked quick all the way. Crossing the finish line he took the fastest time by half a second. Scott was very happy to take the fastest time as this gave him the vital gate choice for every race during the day.
By the quarter final stage Scott was looking good but the races were all extremely tough from here to the final. Making a great start, Scott again led his quarter final from start to finish and was able to beat one of his main rivals in the process. On Championship day riders are always looking for every bit of confidence and as the wins continued, Scott was in a great place.
In the semi final Scott again chose gate 1. This semi final could easily have been the final. With another perfect gate Scott lead the race from the front and pulled a decent lead to book his place in the final.
So this was it. Scott was in the final again and looking to win his 9th National Championship and 7th in a row. Again choosing the inside gate Scott got set. The traffic lights came on and Scott blasted out of the gate taking the lead. He rode aggressive and smart through the first three turns, hugging the inside lines and not letting anyone get close to making a dive pass. From there he pulled away and by the finish he was able to take a comfortable win. Punching the air in delight, Scott was absolutely on cloud nine. In a sport where there are so many factors at play in every round of every race, Scott continues to re write the record books and build on his titles year after year.
“That was a tough day, mentally and physically” said Scott in the finish area. “The track was tight and I knew that I was under pressure in every race. Everyone is hungry for this title and I am stoked to be able to win it for my 9th time and 7th in a row. Thank you to everyone for the support”.
Scott will now wear the Union Jack flag on his left sleeve for the next 12 months to represent the National Champion status.
With this win also came enough points to secure the British Cycling National Rankings title – the points system that takes into account all 4X races in the World for UK riders.
There was no time to celebrate though as the next day would see Scott racing in round 5 of the Schwalbe British 4X Series.