Gordon has been coached by us before and this time he returned with Ollie, Dave and Shane from his cycling club. The skills check revealed I needed to work on their looking and body positioning as well as their mental skills. We began with applying the skills sets to drops and using the techniques that we teach. All sailed into the air with far less effort than before and they all rode the largest drop with ease.
We then moved to cornering and the all important positioning whilst doing it. This found us on a trail working on absorbing and pumping sections to maintain speed and then developing speed through three berms. We moved to the singletrack and worked on linking the 14 sections contained within it and applying the techniques there. Flat, bermed, off camber and switchback turns were linked to pumping, rock gardens, steps, drops, jumps and drop offs. Line choice and braking areas were all identified and soon they were linking the whole trail together smoothly and faster as a result.
Onto steeper terrain and they were surprised how controlled riding down a steep section could be and at how simple a near vertical drop off now was. I then moved to jumping tabletops and used a 6ft tabletop for this. One by one they sailed over it as their newly embedded skills sets started to gel. I could see they were tiring but we had time to move to the first trail again and work on adding jumping sections on the trail or pumping and what is best in a given situation. They were loving it but I could see unforced errors creeping so I suggested stopping and a crash by Ollie confirmed this to them. Happy but tired they parted ways with me with hand shakes and big grins.