England rebounding to have a great year on bike
MOUNTAIN BIKING: Leading Gladstone rider Mick England said success in this Sunday's Willo Enduro in New South Wales will be the forerunner to a strong 2017.
Injuries derailed England last year where he competed in just the back half of last year.
The Australian Elite rider aims to have high finishes across all seven 2017 National Cross Country Marathon series and the Willo marks round one.
"I'm hoping for top five in each of these events,” England said.
"The main thing is to accumulate points as the season goes on and also mid-way this year they select an Australian team.
"That is based on getting solid results from the seven-part series and the national championships.”
He is back to full fitness after months of training.
"It's been four months of solid training and a lot of strength and endurance-type training,” England said.
"Speed comes coming into it as you race more and more.”
He said without the support network, he would not be where he is now.
"Obviously I want to thanks my wife Imogene and two kids Matilda and Yosseph as well as my sponsors,” England said.
"It wouldn't happen without them with my travel and equipment.”
Sunday's race also holds a special significance because it is to honour the late James Williamson who tragically passed away from an undisclosed heart condition on March 23, 2010.
Williamson made a huge impact in the Australian mountain bike landscape and won the Sydney Solo 12 Hour race in 1999 at just 19 years of age.
He also took out the World Solo 24 Hour Mountain Bike Championship in Canada in 2008.
Williamson went on to win many eight and twelve-hour races and he became the 2006 Australian Solo 24 Hour Mountain Bike Champion.