Logan Sewell and Helena Newboult ushered in the new season of the Ambition GBR Outdoor series with comprehensive wins in the opening round at Norwich. With good conditions for racing, Norwich provided new series sponsors, Ambition Racing, with a great opportunity to usher in a new dawn. There was a time when the GBR, or Grand Prix Series as it used to be called, would attract large fields of aspiring racers from across the country. Times have changed and now the GBR Series struggles to attract the numbers. Make no mistake, the racers were there looking for the win.
The first run, set by a previous racer winner, Gerard Flahive, saw a number of racers not quite read the line and ski out. More attention on course inspection could have rectified this for some of the aspiring racers. It was a mistake of a much more basic nature, however, that saw one of the genuine race contenders drop out of contention: Nicole Shering was expected to challenge for the race win but mistakenly took her training skis up to the start rather than her race skis and as a result she dropped over eight tenths behind first run leader, Midlands Ski Club’s Helena Newboult.
Newboult is a quiet yet determined racer that lets her racing do the talking. A knee injury has hampered her progress over the years but this was a performance that she can be proud of. With four tenths separating the leading four after the first run, Newboult lead from the current zero point racer, Jenny Davies with Bella Hathaway in third and Georgia Hallett in fourth. I was all to race for.
With her race skis on Shering put down a marker to the rest of the field to show what she is capable of to take the lead, bettering the combined times of first Megan Skipper and then Lauren Vale. While Hallett and then Hathaway could not match the second run time of Shering, both had enough of a lead from the first run to push the Snowtrax racer down to third with two to go.
Jenny Davies is part of one of the strongest dry slope clubs in the country and without the support of Aldershot, the entry list would have been even smaller. Davies suffered from breaking her stick half way down and was unable to use the power from one stick to stay on the podium and dropped to third with still Newboult to go. Shering’s time still held as the fastest on the run.
Newboult made the rest of the field take note of her intentions on the Outdoor Series this year with another outstanding time that bettered that posted by Shering. The two were the only two to go under 15 seconds for the run in the girls race. Not making sure she had the right skis will not be a mistake Shering will make again!
For Newboult, this was a clear sign of her intentions for the season. If number 13 is unlucky, then it was unlucky for the rest of the field! Victory by almost seven tenths of a second was a very impressive performance. Bella Hathaway and Georgia Hallett joined Newboult on the podium with Davies and Shering rounding out the top five.
The age group wins were taken by Eleanor Eaves (under 14); Lauren Vale (Under 16, 6th Overall) Nicole Shering (Under 18, 5th Overall); Helena Newboult (Under 21, race winner) and Melissa Sampson won the Master’s age group.
Picture – Helena Newboult credit Racer Ready – all rights reserved