Onto part 2....
Remember I started the post with a foreign bike, foreign track In a foreign land, well here we are onto the foreign track.
The track I got to experience was something completely different to the tracks back home. Ok that's not completely true, we do have flat tracks, but tracks one can go fast and is all completely single track, well then not at all. The track is situated in a little town called Drunen, about 15 minutes away from the city of s'Hertogenbsch, Holland. I arrived at about 9:30, dressed like a polar bear I might add, in SA people would honestly believe I was heading an expedition to the poles, and it is spring in holland by the way.
I wasn't quite sure what to expect when seeing the track. I had heard there was quite a bit of sand, so I was trying to prepare for that, being Holland and not really renowned for hills, that was not a priority, I was wrong however. The track starts off with a very nice single track through the forest, and you start off with the winding turns, one becomes brave and starts putting down the gas, that would be mistake number one. As it is a sand track and extremely fast, I started to forget that it was about 30 km we were riding, and so the pacing part of my ride was pretty much out the picture. The second mistake was to think that how much sand can there really be, to put it into perspective, we basically rode in dunes, no jokes, dunes!
The course is a very winding and narrow track, with many fast sections, and I can definitely say this area of holland was not flat either. We not talking hills that climb for 1000m but we are talking about short steep climbs which in turn leads to fast climbing, throw in soft sand in the mix and your legs are in for a very strong workout which during a 30 km ride definitely has an affect.
So lets summarize up - its fast, sandy and a few steep sections. What I can say is that this track is simply awesome. The smoothness of the ride, coupled with the surroundings of the forest and the narrow single track. Makes this track really fun, and as seen in part 1 of my foreign riding tour, the bike I had was also pure fun, so what better way to put the two together.
Drunen track falls into the top 5 tracks in Holland and I can see why. It takes a special skill and technique to ride the sand properly and not lose momentum and also a very strong fitness. I said before its an extremely fast track, and that's not being over the top either. The one guy who I ride with, completed the track in an 1:17 for 30 km, no more explaining needed.
Rating the track is a little tricky as if you are intermediate to advanced the track is done purely for fitness and training, for the beginner rider it's perfect as well, as there is some technical riding involved as well as lines that are just fun and enjoyable. Here is an awesome link to give you an idea of what type of riding you are in for: http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=690298