Known by some, to be highlight of the British CX calendar, Thundercross #2 was on fire once again, all be it in cold and wet conditions this time. Bringing in the brave on two wheels it was Fixed Beers turn once again to lead a crew from Blackheath into the depths of suburbia and on to the countryside to join the Thundercats and others in Swanley for the days action.
In the morning the weather was fine, but like the previous year bitterly cold. After a cup of tea and with a crew of ten already assembled, we began the journey. With Vroni up front leading the pack we headed for our first stop near Shooters Hill to pick up Lewis who was joining us from Woolwich. With him on board we continued on, first cutting around Shooters Hill via Westmount Road, Rochester Way and Welling Way and then turning right down Danson Cresent and across Danson Park. With a little wiggled left and right and a swift roll down Midhurst Hill we were at the A2 aka East Rochester Way.
What we love about this route is that it cuts right across the A2 with a bridge which gives you the perfect excuse for a group photo. With the picture taken we rolled out, heading for Bexley town and a little hill on Dartford Rd before jumping back onto the back streets and Tile Kiln Road to see a house straight out of the Tolkien trilogy.
Tile Kiln Road is great, it's one of those dead end passages where you feel slightly vulnerable and exposed, nervously praying that you don't get a puncture. Safely through and a little muddied we crossed Birchwood Road and turned right up Rowhill Road. This road we believe is private as it's clearly not been surfaced for a good while and the residents that live there seem to want it to stay that way to deter people using it. So we cut through to Home Hill and our next stop the shop.
Supplies bagged or devoured we continued, with just a little way to go we pushed on, up Main Road and down Highlands Hill. Then through Swanley Village, past two delightful looking pubs and under the M25 to our destination, THUNDERCROSS!
We arrived around 11am with plenty of time to chill, lock up bikes, and generally get ourselves organised for the days racing and spectating. The course like the year before looked gnarly as hell and soon enough a bunch of us were helping out with marshalling, complete with yellow flags and free t-shirts courtesy of the Thundercats.
This year we had two team members competing. Vroni in the women's cross race on her beautiful Focus and Mitch throwing it down for the Trackcross believers in the open race riding his brakeless BMW with Woundup forks. At around midday and after a thorough track check by Charlie and Mack the open race got underway. Quickly Maxmachanic established a lead while Mitch hurled his Brooklyn around the course like a maniac holding onto 4th place until the bitter end and taking 1st place for the fixed brakeless category!
Next up it was the main race with the men starting first followed by the women's race a few minutes later. In the women's race we had Vroni, riding her Focus and putting a brave face on the fact that this was her first cross race. Holding it together in truly challenging conditions and after two tumbles on the treacherous downhill, she came in 5th in the women's race!
Although it was cold and a bit wet we all had a wicked time, mostly because we had the best spectator position at the top of the hill. With the Minirig soundsystem banging out mental tunes, we watched our friends battle it out around, what is without doubt, the raddest course on the cross circuit. Hats off to all those that competed, especially Wheelfox in his literal skin-suit, Leo with his co-pilot ET up front, and Laner. Glad we could help with that hands-up mate, cheers!