We are finally at the halfway point of the Australian Off-road Championships. The racing was intense and Murray Bridge was no exception for rounds 5 and 6.
The track was a wide-open 2-day sprint format along side the Murray River, which consisted mostly of grass tracks. Gardiner found the tracks difficult to push hard on, as the texture of the ground was unusually slippery.
Gardiner came into Round 5 on Saturday a little bit off the pace although by the end of the sprints, she started to find her rhythm again although remained in 2nd place to finish the day.
“ I was off the pace at the start of the day and was really trying to get my head around this unusual terrain, it was fun although a bit of a learning experience at the same time.”
On Sunday all riders changed tracks with one another. The Women ended up racing on the junior track which seemed to suit Gardiner’s riding style more.
“ I felt much better today, I pushed a little too hard in the first sprint coming down hard when the front wheel washed out on the slippery terrain. With this crash I was motivated to get back to winning contention, I had a lot of sprint wins then it came down to the last sprint where I was still down 1.2 seconds for the top step. I pushed hard in the last sprint although with a couple of small mistakes I finished 1 second from the fastest time. It was great to push hard all day and create some intense racing which kept everyone on their toes”.
Gardiner clenched another 2nd place at Round 6 missing out on the top step by a mere 3 seconds for the day.
Gardiner’s next race will be on the 28/29th May at Dungog for the NSW Off-road Championships.
Photo Credit: Mad Dog Images