Photo by Bart de Jong
After months of hard work repairing winter damage and the ever growing grass and weeds at the trails it was time for the first session of the year at the Helm Trails in Helmond, Netherlands. And not just a session. Team France, lead by Patrick Guimez, were in town for the C1 comp in Eindhoven and had a session in the morning at the park but they were not done yet for the day. A 20 minute drive East and they had arrived at the Helm trails. With some help from the entire French squad the tarps were removed and the jumps were watered and swept to get them in perfect shape for the maiden session of 2022. Some sections were rebuilt and were tested at the same time but it appeared to be no problem for the French to get through. Istvan Caillet actually completed the 'middle line' first try but he was the only one to do that. It took others a bit longer but personal goals were reached like at all new spots that you visit. The youngsters did well and did not stop.
Quintin Morien started pulling tricks left and right as did Istvan and Thibaut Panaville. Also legendary team coach Patrick Guimez himself showed that at age 44 you can still ride trails and throw some tricks in there also. It is great to see that the freestyle squad is in the hands of someone who has been there and done that. Patrick passes on his experience and has educated the French riders on trails etiquette as well. You case, you repair the damage. You help watering the jumps. You help cover the jumps after the session. You get beer as a thank you to the locals for the session. ;-) even though some of it was radler and 0.0% stuff. It didn't really matter, it's the guesture that counts.