Category Archives: Event Report

Event Report – Pen Y Graig 200920

What does a club, which has grown exponentially over a decade, gathered an incredible following and hosted some of the top twinshock events in the country do when Covid hits? Exactly what it should do. It stops competitions, respects the rules and then works silently in the background making sure when it is allowed to recommence, it does it in the best possible way… And what a cracking event it was!

I had to start this report that way, not as a political statement about following the rules but to really show the thanks and gratitude on behalf of the 60 riders who got the chance after 6 months of lock down to get back to the sport we love. With the IOPD attending, it is honest to say that nothing was forced or “for show”, just a bunch of enthusiasts respecting the rules and being grateful to the club team for getting us back riding.

Well enough of that, what of the day? Well Paul, Rob and Elwyn are here to tell you all about it.

Paul Beswick – Pre 65 Novice

The trial was my first with Aqueduct Classics and my first for 2 year’s since moving to Wales. It was a long drive from Aberystwyth, about 2 hour’s which I wasn’t used to having lived in Derbyshire near Matlock all my life and being spoilt for choice never having to drive more than 30 minutes max lol, but well worth the early start and I’ll definitely be back if you’ll have me.

Excellent organisation especially in these difficult times and it made the day so much more enjoyable having every section manned. The sections were nice and flowing, just as I like them, but I was so unfit not having ridden for so long I was glad we were in our “bubble” of six because not only did I have someone to talk to I could have a breather between attempts. I also found that it took me 2 laps to remember where I was going and to remember which flags to follow, totally my fault due to old age and being a bit dim 😅, but the observer’s were so helpful and put me right.

My only bogy section was section 8 when I somehow managed to miss the fact that there was a ruddy great big rock. I might have missed it was there but sadly I didn’t miss it derrrrr. Oh I’ve stopped err might be something to do with this rock I’m wedged on 😂 Really haven’t enjoyed myself so much in year’s loads of laughs and 4 laps flew by in a blur 😳.

Looking forward to the next time and hopefully I will be able to introduce myself to more of the team and other rider’s. As I said before “if Carlsberg did trials they would be Aqueduct Classics ones ” 

Rob Sloggett – Twinshock (Clubman)

Its been a while….. but they say good things come to those who wait, and gosh it was worth the wait. We were lucky to have a training day a few weeks before and I had spent a few hours practicing figure of eights and this did help on a couple of sections (but more on that later). The main event for me of the day though was my rear silencer coming apart and making the newly restored prototype Bultaco sound lounder that is should have. It was my first competion out on Mk3 of its journey and it rides just lovely, shame the rider is not is sync with its capability now!

So what of the sections? As we had not ridden for a while and the revised Bultaco was new to me in competition I rode clubman. A nice steady uneventful start I thought? My “riding bubble” of Ian, Paul, James, Steve and Graham started on Section 1 which was basically an adaptation of the section we used on the training day. I had no excuses not to clean this! but still felt the front wheel pushing away on the 180 turn. A dab could have happened at any time here but I was lucky to carry a clean card on this section.

Turns on cambers have been one of my key weaknesses and a number of sections had these incorporated (at least three from what I can recall) and normally I feel the bike tipping in and would carry a dab. I’m please to say that the teachings of body position and my subsequent practice meant this time out I didn’t drop a single dap on these challenges.

So what of a specific section? Well Russ was on Sec 3 and this dropped down a bank, turned right to snake through some rocks and trees then the final stage was a very slight ride across a camber and climb a small bank to exit. First lap took two silly dabs where it should have been clean and showed that I still wasn’t settled on the bike but the last lap showed that really I should just put the bike on EBay and give up! A simple ride along the camber and up the bank turned into me getting slightly off line and then basically laying the bike down at the base of the banked turn. To this day I can not work out why or even why it didn’t take the dab to save whatever was going on…Oh I love this sport!

My second lap was also interesting as riding to Section 4, the engine note changed. It got louder. Now the Bultaco was being ridden without the clubfoot on for the first time in competition. It was always the aspirational design but the clubfoot had been added to tone it down a bit. I had been practicing with it off and the pick up was so much more peaky and suited how I like the bikes so after doing a Db test and confirming that with it off, it still fell below the ACU 100db at 2m measured 45 deg from the rear spindle (yep I checked the regs) I have kept the bike like that. What I did not realise is that the end cap was a press fit (not the 4 small bolts I thought which purely connect the end cap to the baffle pipe) and as it no longer had the club foot holding it in, you guessed, the pressure of the exhaust popped the end cap off. The baffles now rested part out on the swing arm. Sorry to anyone who thought it was a bit loud, it wont be like that again as its currently being stripped and rebuilt with pop rivets to hold it together.

Another great part of the day was actually riding in groups of 6 and with Graham also riding clubman it was good to have someone riding the same line and actually almost 1 for 1 on the scores. Unfortunately my silly 5 on the last lap pushed me out further but it was interesting to feel that competitive spirit as we completed each section even if it was purely in a fun way!

Elwyn Beedles – Twinshock (Clubman)

Well it finally arrived after months of Covid lockdown and restrictions the Accy team made the decision to organise a trial for our enjoyment. Always ahead of the game we entered via the website and payed via bank transfer. Very bold move when you are dealing with mainly old fossils who don’t know one end of a keyboard from the other !

Limited to a lucky band of 60 riders we were pre selected via email into teams of 6 and allocated a start section. Signing on was by individual pen after using the sanitising station then the girls presented us with coloured laminated numbers one for the bike and one for rear of helmet not the customary bibs for obvious reasons. We had been informed via email prior to the event our riding number !

Masks were mandatory around the paddock including the organising team. Fuel cans were loaded in the back of the pick up as we were not allowed back to the vans during the event. The Accy guys must have spent weeks making and laminating signs so no one could say they were not informed as to what was expected. I did hear a few moans but come on lads if we want to ride we have to adhere to well thought out guidelines.  

After the briefing by Russ and Mark at 10.45am prompt we rode down to the quarry in our group and started at Pauls section 6. Took a little bit of finding initially but we soon got into things. My group had captain Mark along with Neil, Richard and Roly riding intermediate then Graham and myself on the clubman route. I was on the TLR and Graham was on a very trick Cub so it was great comparing notes and watching each other progress especially as he was pre 65 and I was twinshock.

Bit rushed so never really studied the green route to comment on but the yellow route was spot on twisting through the trees then a tricky rooted camber to section ends. We all waited at the end of the section to re assemble into our group then made our way to the next section following the well marked route. At that section we waited behind the yellow line for the section to clear then moved forward into the zone. This was the routine throughout the event with Roly ‘I don’t do hanging about’ Jones leading the way from section to section and Mark ‘can I give you some advice’ Newman taking overall control of the group.

Russ was overseeing section 4 (I think) with the lovely Suzanne. It was good to see Suzie after her recent problems. This was my bogey section when on lap 2 for some unknown reason (oh yes rider error) I found myself on my ear when the front washed out along a loose camber much to the amusement of the observers and a very unnecessary 5 on the card

The evergreen Elwyn Williams was looking after section one. We go back a long way and it was good to have a brief catch-up with him. I think I heard Elwyn shout to one of the lads he was 81 and only stopped riding last year so there is a long way to go for some of us to match that. Tricky turns and cambers were the order on his section but safe and rideable as were all the sections. The one downside of the Group of 6 rule was that I never got to see any experts strut their stuff on the section and come to that I hardly saw another rider all day we were so equally spaced out.

Overall the sections were very sensible given that we had not competed for a long time. Russ commented that from an observers point it was good just having 6 at a time at the section, easier to explain the route initially then a small break as one group left and the next group arrived.

The inspection by IOPD was welcome and they left more than happy with the way things were running. Geoffers and the team have taken on board a bit of feedback that I am sure will be attended to for the next event. It was very enjoyable in a group as we got to know each other a little as we rode around and with no queuing  we travelled at a good pace. Importantly we all finished at the same time with no stragglers keeping the observers waiting at the end which normally happens.

Great event and now roll on 11th October

Before we move into the usual stats, we have to close by once again say a huge thankyou to the club team for all of the effort they put in over the preceding months to make this happen, the observers for still taking the time to support and the land owner as always.

Top Places

Pre 65

  • Expert – Jim Hough (Ariel) 0; Ian Smart (Triumph (6); Darren Walker (11)
  • Intermediate – Jerry Hawker (Francis Barnett) 1; Simon Thornley (BSA) 3; Roly Jones (Dot)3
  • Clubman – Keith Gardner (BSA) 2; Steve Jones (Triumph) 6; Graham Miller (Triumph) 10
  • Novice – Paul Beswick (BSA) 14; Jack Curwell (BSA) 10; Kevin O’Toole (Triumph) 20

Twinshock

  • Expert – Jim Williams (Honda) 14; Steve Williams (Honda) 18; Kev Ellis (Yamaha) 30
  • Intermediate – David Matthews (Bultaco) 11
  • Clubman – Elwyn Beedles (Honda) 9; Graham Pennington (Ossa) 9; Owain Charles (Yamaha) 13
  • Novice – No riders

Air Cooled Mono

  • Expert – Peter Ruscoe (Honda) 6
  • Intermediate – Ian Emery (GasGas) 7 T; Paul Cartwright (GasGas) 7T; James Hornby (Beta)11
  • Clubman – No riders
  • Novice – No riders

Modern Mono

  • Expert – Mark Diggle (Sherco) 15;
  • Intermediate – Steve Sherwin (TRS) 29
  • Clubman – Bobby Chadwick (Beta) 7; Ken Williams (Beta)10; Ade Robinson (GasGas) 15
  • Novice – Chris Matthews (Beta) 30; Tony Williams (Scorpa) 37; Alan Hotchkiss (Beta) 43

Observer List

1 -Elwyn

2 – Dave

3 – Russ

4 – Chris

5 – Gordon

6 – Paul

7 – Mark

8 – Jan

9 – Roger

10 – Izzy

Stats

Bikes Classes

  • Pre 65 – 21
  • Twinshock – 16
  • Air Cooled Mono – 11
  • Modern Mono – 11

Route Classes

  • Expert – 16
  • Intermediate – 17
  • Clubman – 18
  • Novice – 8

Bikes

Pre 65

  • Ariel – 1
  • BSA – 8
  • DOT – 1
  • Francis Barnett – 2
  • James – 1
  • Triumph – 8

Twinshock

  • Bultaco – 2
  • Fantic – 4
  • Honda – 4
  • Majesty – 1
  • Ossa – 1
  • SWM – 1
  • Yamaha – 2

Air Cooled Mono

  • Aprilia – 2
  • Beta – 1
  • Fantic – 1
  • Gas Gas – 3
  • Honda – 4

Modern Mono

  • Beta – 4
  • Gas Gas – 2
  • Scorpa – 1
  • Sherco – 1
  • TRS – 1

Event Report – Training Day 130920

All photos courtesy of Roger Kenyon

Following the very successful and enjoyable training day for Inters and Clubman on the 16th August, the club were able to arrange an additional session for Beginners and Clubman who wanted to improve their skills further.

Below is a set of reports kindly provided by Martyn and Gavin and photos by RogerKenyon.

Martyn Humphreys

I arrived for the Beginners/Novice training day a full 24 hours early, that’s how keen/desperate I was. So having realized my mistake I’d either got a long lonely wait and be very early or I come back tomorrow. I messaged Geoff to explain what a plank I am and that I couldn’t get my bike to the venue on Sunday. No problem says Geoff, come anyway.

I am so glad I turned up, even attending a training day without a bike worked for me; the Aqueduct Team as usual were spot on, ever friendly, welcoming and effortlessly creating a very special environment for those attending their events; people today of all ages and ability.

Pen-Y-Graig has so much to offer, great to build experience. Arriving without a bike turned out not so bad; having the option to sit, listen and watch the delivery and participation of training sessions worked out perfect for me. The size of the groups today certainly seemed beneficial; I think there were two groups of ten-ish. Come the afternoon a bike became available and Russ offered me the use of his Montesa,…

Brilliant. I spent the afternoon learning the Montesa, I think it was a 250, very positive, very forgiving, very different from the TY’s and TLR I’d been using. I went back to the early sections Russ and Mark had laid out and repeated their sessions, starting with the Figure of Eights, by now quite muddy, the Montesa rode very sweet, the front end sometimes gently washing out in the mud, but having listened and watched the mornings sessions it was good to put into practice the body position and balance techniques the guys had spoken about, the front wheel slightly washing out was manageable, another new experience.

Moving on from the Figure of Eights I gave the white sections ago, again I was really surprised how confident you could be with the Montesa, ample power when needed and good useable engine braking. I’m now quite pleased, I’d just completed my first section, albeit White.

Completing the second section as well really boosted my confidence. Back to the beginning and this time giving the yellows ago, again, I am really pleased, another success; the guidance and instruction given by the guys throughout the day had been spot on.

Having just a couple of hours riding in the company of these guys has certainly improved my humble ability, I’m confident others will agree, sitting there at the end of the day watching the last practice session there were beaming tired content faces everywhere, the youngsters were doing laps and loving it, Russ was fine tuning to the end, taking that extra time with the youth riders to hone their skills and provide memorable life experiences.

A Good Day. Many many thanks for your time and patience, just the right pace for me…Oh, and the bike.

Gavin

Arriving at the venue selected for the training day, seeing all the vans and trailers with sweet smell of 2 stroke engines in the air just gets the blood flowing. With it being the first time at a trials event after lock down it just made everything seem back to normal. After signing on and grouping up at the bottom of the quarry, we were asked to ride in a figure of 8 between 2 logs while one of the instructors watched us, this was done to work out the level of the riders abilities as the training day caters for all riders some of which where attending for the first time at an event, as throughout the day it was done in a relaxed and unpressured environment, I feel is consistent within any aspect of trails whether competing or just at a practice day everyone always wants you to enjoy yourself and help you improve.

Once the groups had been figured out we followed the instructors Moz and Jimmy , to the first section of the day we would be working on, the section had been set out with white, yellow, green, blue and red routes, I normally ride the yellow routes so I choose to first have a walk of that, while walking through it with Dave we both started looking at the green route and both switched to ride the green routes, as we were walking through our instructors gave us advice on which lines they would take and which areas to watch out for, as it worked out the two instructors had different lines from each other which I thought was brilliant for learning as everyone is different so to get two opinions helped me see there’s not just one line.  After I had 2 rides though there was one area where I was spinning out on an causing me to either take a dab or completely taking both my feet of the pegs, the area was on a off camber incline straight after a sharp left turn, with the ground in this area being loose stone I was just loosing grip, while I was riding the section Moz had been carefully watching letting me try it twice and then stopping to have a quick chat, he showed me how I needed to slow down take the sharp left at a wider angle in which to give me time to open the throttle to give a little blip before starting the incline, then to roll off the throttle to tickle it up the rest.  

We then moved onto the next section which had some nice features in it, come through the start sharp left, up a short but steep incline to then turn back on yourself back down to then ride over loose stone off camber area, with a slow turn right to the end gate. What I found with all the sections set out was that they all had a lot in such a short area absolutely fantastic, as for me it was taking that next step in my riding having more to remember and link together. Jimmy gave me some great advice he said that within the sections there will always be key areas in which to focus on and then the bits in between you can usually just ride through, this advice made me see the sections in a different light as I had always seen them as one where from Jimmy’s helpful advice it broke it down into more of a slower and manageable area which helps your mind focus instead of thinking of the whole section.

We then all regrouped for a spot of lunch an in which the learning carried on with Jimmy having a quick chat with us asking how we were finding the day and if we had any issues that he could help us with.

After lunch we moved onto the next section had a walk through but this time with all the hints and tips fresh in my mind, myself and Dave started to eye up the blue and red route we both agreed that we might as well have a go as where better to learn than to do it on the training day. The route took a lot more concentration I had to really think on every move I was making, I can’t remember how many times it took me till I was able to clean the section but what I can say is the smile on my face was absolutely huge I was grinning like a cheshire cat.

I was only able to reach being able to clean the red and blue section due to the ever so helpful advice and guidance from the instructors, I would highly recommend for everyone to take part in a training day because you can always learn something new.

Event Report – Pen Y Graig (Mar 20)

Someone did well last year….

Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Elwyn Beddles, Paul Jones, Mark Gaskell and Mark Newman

With the recent poor weather and flooding in the local areas, a number of local trials had been cancelled and with March’s event being in a relatively dry quarry area, as well as guaranteeing the venue integrity we were also expecting another high turn out. A fresh morning greeted the riders who were all asked to turn up a bit earlier to allow last years Championship Trophies to be presented and you can see some of the photos at the end of this report. Whilst having its roots firmly as a Pre 65 and Twinshock Club, Aqueduct has always allowed AC Monos and Modern Monos at the events and runs a Championship Class alongside the Classic Classes. This has always been well supported as the more flowing nature of classic sections lend themselves to people coming back into the support on the more modern bikes but dont want the severity of the way modern clubs mark out their sections or those of us who are in our later years and just don’t want to get injured!

This months event saw 93 riders contest the day with 24 Pre 65’s, 19 Twinshocks, 11 AC Monos and 39 Modern Monos. The split across classes was 15 Experts, 36 Intermediates, 31 Clubman and 10 Novices.

As mentioned above, the event started with a presentation of last years Championship Trophies which this year once again were a very nice style which I am sure will be taking pride of place in a number of trophy cases / shelves. The full results can be found here. It was lovely to hear the number of kind words said about the club during the presentation and I think it is a true testimony to the warmth felt by the riders for the huge effort put in but the club team and the observers!

Elwyn Beedles – Twinshock Clubman

With the weather battering us and the trial in doubt it was lovely to see the sun shine last Sunday for round 3. It was more of a relief to Russ who had been worrying so much he left the lovely Suzanne in bed to go and inspect the venue at 4am then proceeded to put the road signs out. I was one of the first riders to rock up (I do look forward to these events) to find Geoffers with a bit of a stress over parking. With other local trials cancelled the expectation was for a lot of vehicles turning up. After a survey of the newly stoned top area Geoff had it sussed so sorted him out a cup of tea and gave him a bit of a hand with Mark and Russ on the road guiding vehicles in. The walkie talkies are a godsend in these instances.

After a Chis De Burger breakfast courtesy of the club (many thanks all) we had the presentation. This again takes a lot of organising things don’t just happen and it was kind of Dave to explain a little of what goes on behind the scenes and thank the club for their hard work. I took a few piccies that should appear somewhere for those that are interested. Anyone who has done any successful organising will know that the events do not come without a lot of organising, stress and time committed. Landowners have to be looked after, local residents have to be informed and looked after, endless paperwork with H and S etc, then on the day will we have enough parking spaces, enough observers, have we enough signing on sheets, shift that van who has parked irresponsibly etc etc . Perhaps when we are moaning that our score is a mark out or we had to park a bit tight time to think outside the box a little.

On to the sections, Marks section 6 :Unbelievable that the lads found a stream in the quarry ! Tricky section drop into the water left around a large rock through some rocks in the gulley that could easily catch you out then with a choice of a wide left turn or a more direct route to a slippy bank for section ends. Perfect length and a section that was very satisfying if ridden well

Gordons section 7, on first inspection looked pretty straightforward a rocky climb over a small step bearing right with a tight right turn at the top and a drop down to section ends. Riding it was a different matter. With the slope trying hard to push the bike left after the step meant a re adjustment but if you didn’t commit enough the very loose stone under the wheels caused a lack of forward motion with Gordon recording more fives than he can remember. Looks like your name had to be Steve on a modern mono to record a clean on our clubman route. Well done both of you.

Section 8, Lovely little trail through the woods with a bite in the tail at the end with a tricky right turn that wanted to wash the front out. Perfect length for a section, felt it wasn’t just in and out and the turn required a certain skill to negotiate and miss the trees directly after it. Few more cleans recorded on this one but noticed a few lads battling with the turn. For me it was another well organised event that gave me the opportunity to test myself on my ‘new’ Honda TLR.

Great to see half a dozen youngsters who appeared to have a great time and a lovely photo of Allan with one of the lads on his bike. Really captured what trials is about no matter what your age it can be enjoyed by all.

Paul Jones – Pre 65 Novice

I always enjoy Pen Y Graig quarry and this event lived up to my expectations, I met up with the Wigan massive only to be taunted by Mr Newmans protege about looking forward to the big boys challenge and didnt reveal that he was riding his latest weapon the BSA C15. During the annual presentation including free bacon butty which cant be a bad thing, it became apparent just how big the entry just showing how this club is going from strength to strength with regular entries of above 90 riders for past few events. With all the recent rain we were no surprised that some new streams were running in the quarry where it was normally dry but they did provide some good sections.

My three favourite sections of the day were:

Section 5: As we entered the section we dropped straight into a water trough then climbed onto a camber and dropped back into the stream feeding the initial water trough exiting the stream up a slight climb around a tree then between a couple of rocks and up a final slippy bank through the end gate. This was a really nice flowing section but you couldnt be too complacent whilst riding it.

Section 9: This seemed quite a straight forward section on the face of it but I had my heart in my mouth a couple of times, we dropped in through the start gate and down a steep g gully which as the day went on became more slippy providing some excitement trying to pull the Triumph up whilst going sideways at the bottom before taking a right up a bank and out the end gate to the left.

Section 10: This was observed under the beady eye of Mr Ellis, once through the start gate we proceeded down a slight incline to round to the left where you had to be careful your front end didnt wash out as it became slippy, up another slight incline between two trees then drop down a steep shale bank, this is where Mr Dyson decided to show off with a very impressive forward somersault over his handlebars to win the observers claim to be the best of the day. I just decided no I wont try that and dropped down the back and turned right up the next bank and out the section. Being a true sportsman I wouldnt like to mention who won the big boy challenge but I was smiling the rest of the night once the results came out.

Mark Gaskell – Pre 65 Intermediate

After all the warnings about storm Jorge it was a pleasant surprise to wake to a bright, clear morning. Second surprise was to find that the farmer had made some improvements to the land giving far more parking space! The Aqueduct crew always manage to make great use of the quarry to give us 10 interesting sections, and it is difficult to narrow them down to just 3 notable ones, but these are mine. 

Section 4, Russ. Start by dropping into a bomb hole, turning right to climb out across the camber. 180 degree left and over or round a rock step, then 90 degree off camber right which tried to pull your front wheel from under you. Over a jumble of small rocks to a 180 degree left round a tree, then into the sting in the tail, a 180 degree downhill, off camber right turn before a fallen log. Around a tree and out. First three laps took a 2 and two 1’s off me, as I couldn’t manage the last element without footing, but on the last lap I put the wheels in all the right places at the right times for a clean.

Section 10, Kev. Kev didn’t have a working bike, so generously offered to observe. I tried to make his day more entertaining with my antics. A gentle roll downhill, tight to the right hand side of the section, then up an off camber slope towards a small tree. Over its roots, then turn right after it and down slope to another right, across the slope and out. Simple, yes? Lap one I tried to climb the tree, with the Triumph. This has never been successful in the past, so quite why I thought I should attempt it again is beyond me. Needless to say this was a 5. Second lap was easy, and clean. Third lap I struggled to get round the tree, and lost the front immediately after it, dumping the bike onto its side and me on my knees for a 5. To add injury to insult, I scratched the fork leg and the tank, then rolling out of the section the chain jumped off. Last lap was easy, and clean.

Section 9, Ange. I couldn’t see any green flags, so asked the observer. “No problem” she said “you follow the red, expert route!” This put us (inters) at a psychological disadvantage, as we are now scared. Down a deceptively slippery bank, then a right/left slalom round trees to a fallen log at a slight angle. Less than a bikes length after the log was a downhill right turn, hemmed in by saplings on either side, so the turn had to be made with your back wheel still on the log. Down and back up a short gully, left over some rocks and back down into the gully, tight right and blast up a steep bank to the exit. First lap, and I am surprised to find that the bike rolls perfectly over the fallen log and into the right turn with ease. So surprised that I nearly overcooked the next element, but managed to hold it for a clean. I must have been holding my breath throughout, as I felt dizzy after the end cards! Thankfully for me there is video evidence of this clean, as a few people were sceptical. Second lap and again, the log caused no problems, but I did overcook to turn to the last bank and needed a dab. Third lap and a silly dab on the deceptively slippy entry, but that doesn’t matter, as over the log I am distracted by a broken mudguard on the floor, (my excuse) and drift into the saplings on the left. These pull the bars left and furious paddling is required to get back on track for a three. Last lap and disaster! I am too far to the right before the log, and catch a sapling which pulls the bars, and therefore the bike further to the right, but I am by now going left. Over the log, without bike, and headfirst into the bushes. Five.

Superb trial, yet again. A huge thank you to all concerned.

Mark Newman – Pre 65 Intermediate

First things first, a massive thank you to Russ Geoff, Mark, and the whole team for putting on another great even that was run without any problems. Weather was cold and a couple of showers of light snow but on the whole very good.

Riding the inters on my Francis Barnett, Section 1 was wet and deep mud but totally cleanable took at dab on my first lap just because it was the first section and putting pressure on myself to do well ..you dropped into the muddy water about a foot deep up a short steep bank round a tree and back down into same mud crossit and up the opposite bank and round another tree….acrossthe muddy bit again and up a short steep bank across a chamber back into the flat muddy path to the end gates..

Section 3 Dave’s A nice flowing section up and round the trees and banks all good if you keep wide and smooth finished off with a muddy patch the up a very steep bank you had to go for it or it bit you immediate tight right turn over a nicely placed group of logs and out ….1 silly unnecessary dab on my third lap …

Section 5 Mark Sam’s I was expecting a tricky one ..but to be fair it rode really well my favourite of the day …you dropped into a good 2 feet of muddy water which has rocks and branches in it from previous experience, across and up a offset chamber upto the top sharp left back down making sure your on the left side deep mud again and having seen people dabbing and Niel stalling his bike here…then up tight around a tree over a nicely placed rock which went fine with a slight tugg on the bars…the up a loose stoney waterfall smoothness reqd here dropped back down the a short step bank to get out…lovely

Geoff Jones – Chairman

I woke, on the morning of the trial, after a restless sleep. The weather and size of the entry had been on my mind all night, but thankfully we were blessed with a dry sunny day and a large but acceptable number of riders. Everyone arrived early and were parked up ahead of our awards presentation. With a full quota of observers I was not required. I thought my day would consist of getting an overview of how things were running, and “socialising”. How wrong could I have been. I drove down into the quarry to find a queue on section 1, so I jumped in to help Izzy get the riders through. It was on this section where we had our first breakdown of the day, good job I had a tow rope in the jeep. With my foot to the floor to gain momentum, wheels spinning we negotiated the climb up the steep, slippery track. I’m not sure if the rider appreciated the tow as I had kicked up a bit of muck and he looked like he had just he’d ridden a motocross event!.

Whilst back in the farmyard I thought I would take my opportunity to partake in some light refreshment, but that was not to be, a shout came over the radio another rider had broken down, fuel issues, four stroke !!! I grabbed the first can of four stroke fuel that I could find, headed back down and met a distraught rider. Looking at his bike the realisation was that it was a two stroke not a four, so back up to the farmyard we went swapped the fuel, went back down and got him on his way.

Now time to socialise I thought, but again, how wrong could I have been. Another shout over the radio, “ where is the four stroke fuel for the broken down rider”, who would have thought that more than one rider would run out of fuel, so back up to the farmyard yet again, and down to the rescue. As I was down amongst the action, I thought I would have a drive around and check that all the observers were OK. I couldn’t believe it, another refuelling required, big Mark was hungry and wanted a bacon and cheese butty, so back up to the farmyard, again !!!!

Within the blink of an eye it seemed, the day came to an end. Flags collected, observers transported back up to the farmyard, no time left for me to socialise as we needed to load the trailer and get back home to collate the results. All in all, a hectic, enjoyable and exhausting day.

The feedback on Facebook from the riders provided a few sound bites as follows:

Thanks Aqueduct Classics for another top event and to everyone envolved will be back again – Ade Robinson

Many thanks to all at Aquaduct for putting on yet Another fantastic enjoyable trial! Also a big thanks go out to the observers without them there would be no trial….PS Thankyou to the main man Jan Geoff Jones for fetching me some fuel – Alan Dyson

Another fantastic day out in sunny Pen y Graig Quarry with the Accy Classics team. Thanks to all organisers, section setters, observers and catering for a great trial. Absolutely honoured to be awarded the Chris Davies memorial trophy for 2019. See you next time – Graham Pennington

Guys you put on a brilliant trial today, well set out great sections thanks to all the observers and all who put time and effort into a great day. Well worth the trip from not so sunny Southport. Will defo be coming down again thanks – Jeremy Clark

Top Places:

Pre 65 Expert: Paul Edwards, Drayton (9); Chris Gascoigne, Velo (43)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Roly Jones, Dot (12); Phil Alderman, Triumph (22); Mark Gaskell, Triumph (38)

Pre 65 Clubman: Steve Walker, Francis Barnett (11); Jordan Hobbis, Triumph (18 – Tie); Tim Godsmark, BSA (18 – Tie)

Pre 65 Beginner: Kevin O’Toole, Triumph (4); Paul Jones, Triumph (13); Alan Dyson, BSA (21)

Twinshock Expert: Chris Garlich, Honda (31); Mark Blackwell, Yamaha (76); Steve Shelly, Honda (76)

Twinshock Intermediate: Tim Cuffin, Majesty (19); David Matthews, Fantic (27); Jim Droughton, Majesty (31)

Twinshock Clubman: Paul Hornsby, Fantic (14); Elwyn Beedles, Bultaco (28); William Leigh, Yamaha (28)

Twinshock Beginner: No enteries

AC Mono Expert: Ben Butterworth, Hoda (18); Pete Ruscoe, Honda (22); Shaun Montford, Beta (23)

AC Mono Intermediate: Paul Cartwright, Gas Gas (36); Ian Emery, Yamaha (43); James Mylett, Honda (52)

AC Mono Clubman – No enteries

AC Mono Beginners – Tony Williams, Scorpa (25)

Modern Mono Expert: Shaun Hadlington, TRS (37); Mark Linge, Gas Gas (65); Neil Jackson, Gas Gas (78)

Modern Mono Intermediate: Mark Diggle, Sherco (16); Robert Reese, Beta (19); Nigel Sproson, Montesa (28)

Modern Mono Clubman: Paul Hadlington, TRS (1); Mike Jones, Beta (5); Gary Jones, Beta (11); Ken Williams, Beta (11)

Modern Mono Beginners: Chris Matthews, Beta (6); Alan Jones, Beta (12); Glyn Roberts, Montesa (17)

Observers:

Section 1 – Izzy

Section 2 – Mike

Section 3 – Dave

Section 4 – Russ

Section 5 – Mark

Section 6 – Roger

Section 7 – Gordon

Section 8 – Annette

Section 9 – Ange

Section 10 – Kev

Bike Stats:

Bike Classes
Pre 6524
Twinshock19
Aircooled Mono11
Modern Mono39
Total93
Routes
Expert15
Intermediate36
Clubman31
Beginner10
Bikes
Pre 65Ariel0
BSA6
DOT1
Drayton2
Francis Barnett3
James2
Triumph9
Velo1
TwinshockBeta0
Bultaco1
Chase TY1
Fantic6
Honda3
Majesty2
Montesa0
Ossa1
Yamaha1
AC MonoAprilla1
Beta1
Fantic2
GasGas1
Honda3
Montesa0
Scorpa1
Yamaha2
Modern MonoBeta16
Gas Gas12
Honda0
Montesa4
Ossa0
Oset1
Scorpa0
Sherco2
Tenaci Wong0
TRS2

Event Report – Nant Y Ffrith (Feb 20)

Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Stephen Harding, Paul Owen, Mark Gaskell, Kev Williams and Russ Jones

The first event of the year gave us a great turnout of 132 riders and traditionally Round 2 normally drops to the average run rate of 75-80 riders. It was therefore great to see a turnout of 117 bikes as we returned to Nant Y Ffrith for another crack at the great terrain which this area offers. As well as using a number of the previously tried sections (albeit with a bit of a variation), Russ and the section setters picked a couple of new spots to add to the mix. This also incorporated a nice extended ride from Section 4 to 5 then 5 to 6 to dust the cobwebs off.

The 117 entries were broken down into 41 Pre 65’s, 23 Twinshocks, 13 AC Monos and 40 Modern Monos with 22 Experts, 44 Intermediates, 34 Clubman and 17 Novices making up the distribution.

I think it was fair to say that the precipitation over night made the day challenging and whilst everything was rideable the score count on some sections and in some classes was probably higher than the norm. That is probably one of the great things about this sport, as a rider you are basically presented with a set of start gates, a set of end gates and a path in-between and regardless of what skills you have practiced before hand, that’s the route you have to ride. The skill of the course setter is to make sure that regardless of the condition changes the sections remain safe and whilst it was a tough event I hope everyone felt that a good balance was achieved.

Stephen Harding – Modern Mono Beginner/Novice

Well where do I start, first of all a massive thanks to all the team and observer’s for putting on such a great event and Chris deburger for keeping us fed and watered.

Section 1, looking up at the observer and wondered how am I going to get up there but having seen a couple of others go first I had a good go and made it up the steep banks past the tree stumps and up on to the the top and then along a narrow ledge then drop down over a large loose rock and out. Not to many dabs but really challenging for me.

Section 2, Look all the way back down a very steep slope and as you start you drop off a very slippery rock and straight down in to a bit of a dip up and over some slippery roots and down to the exit.

Section 4, A bit of a tough one for me from the start, you have to navigate past a large stone and tight right then almost full lock left and up over a small wall and tight right back then up inbetween two trees and tight left back out of the section not my favourite but a good one, them out for a fairly long slippery ride all the way down to 5

Section 6, A bit of a steep bank up to the start where Sue had her beady eye on the job, an up hill start then dropped in tight left down in to a bit of a dip tight right back up the hill past some tree stumps and out straight on to.

Section 7 where Geoff was standing at the top of another steep climb, from the start you have to gas it up over the first bank then straight away get back on the gas up the steep banks past a long log then up past Geoff and out of the section over the wall and back on to the track.

All in all a great days riding with some great people cheers acc.

Russ Jones – Pre 65 Expert, Clerk of the Course and Red route setter

It’s very rare I get a chance to ride our trials due to lack of observers so here it goes…. The week leading up to the event I was thinking of a lap in my head due to a big entry in the first trial of the year. After communicating with Mark Samuel via phone calls we came up with a plan, so up 7.30 Saturday morning dogs in tow load buggy with equipment and on the trailer she goes. Off we go to Nant Y Frith meeting Rob Slogget and Mark in a very cold and windy forest but very dry we soon battled the elements put against us the ten sections were plotted in with a nice long lap.

Sunday morning soon comes around after listening to the rain and wind thinking of the days sections ahead what can I do ease them off?? Sunday morning we arrive early at the forest only to get out of the car to listen to the trailer tyre going down (yes I caught and split the tyre). I eventually get the trailer off to be reversing back and caught my bloody bumper on the buggy trailer causing a little damage can the day get any better?

YES. 117 riders turning up . So after the briefing and a minute silence for John Cruchlow it was helmet on and ready to ride. So off to sections I go, I’m going to write about two, three and four.

Section 2 – was quite a simple down a slab down a long right hand turn with a fallen tree to the left of us, after walking the section back to my bike thinking of a different line I’d seen, so in I go dropping off a rock I caught my foot rest resulting in my foot down but managed to hang on to it for the rest of the section which was down a Bank tight turn around a tree and out through the end gates.

On to Section 3 – as I arrived there quite a few red route riders shaking their heads at me so off I walk it with abit of banter on the way it was a steep climb up turning left across a off camber going through some trees was quite a hairy drop down then the rest was quite straight forward. Back to bike with red route riders still standing there I was thinking I need to clean this, so Gorden calls me in up I went and holding on very tight to survive the roller coaster drop but to my amazement I went round for a clean.

Section 4 – was in through the gates up a little wall with a right hand turn dropping back off it then into a bomb hole which caused a few problems for some riders you had to get the rut bang on. After the bomb hole was a little wall to climb up then an off camber bank through some tight twisty trees stood there for a while watching and thought shit or bust! On bike off through the start cards managed the bomb hole, going up off camber bank had two silly dabs the only time I cleaned was last lap.

I hope you all enjoyed the trial was a very tricky day but with the rain poor during the night there wasn’t much else we could of done. Thank you keep your feet up ….

Paul Owen – Pre 65 Expert

This took place on the hills high above Wrexham town. We had rain the night before so I knew it was going to be challenging as a lot of it is in the woods and the roots and rocks always stay slippy. 6 weeks early I’d hurt my wrist and have been struggling as I’d broken it many years ago. Yes old age catching up to me (ha-ha). I was contemplating dropping back to greens but said sod it let’s stick with reds and try and learn off the experts and was great to see 110+ riders ready to tackle the tricky sections.

So here are 3 of my favorite sections.

Section 1. I thought this section would be gentle to ease you into the trial. How wrong was I! You entered the start gate and had to turn left to get a tightish right turn up a meter high rock and immediately into a tight left as soon as the front wheel landed. You threaded your way between two trees with slippy roots and then up a bank and over a rock. Turn right across a someone roots and drop into a dip with a sharp left turn and then squeeze between two trees and over a slippy set of roots to a steep incline of a mossy slippy rock face with a groove in it for some grip. If you got that wrong it was a 5 all day long that I found out later in the event. As you crested the rise there was a meter drop off or you could opt for the smaller step down that was going to catch your cases and pegs and send you straight into a tree. Then a right turn and a left up a small rise. Over a few rocks and a tree then to the out gate.

Section 5. This section was at the far end of the trial and a good mile or two of narrow dirt track riding that was muddy rocky and slippy as I found out as I lost my front wheel and slid into a big thorn bush (ha-ha again). and all this before you got to section 5. I liked this section, as you rode into it and a tight right turn up a bank and back down an off camber to a right then left around a tree and a tight right hander up a 3 meter steep bank with a left turn and drop back down a vertical drop to the out gate. I cleaned it 4 times but managed to hurt my wrist again on that final drop off but the top lads made it look so easy. Think I need to possibly move my bars or something to find a smoother ride.

Section 7. You climbed back up the wooded lane about a mile and almost back to the paddock. This section was in the woods and you rode through the rocky remains and footings of a old cottage or quarry house . It was all up a steep hill. We started on the right and up the bank to a left turn between 2 trees. And into what looked like a doorway. With a little shimmy to the left over some rocks and up a short steep climb of what seemed like the old rocky stairs and a sharp turn right to another level and out the side door to a slippy rooted greasy bank as you had to turn left and climb to the out gate. I think this section got worse with the roots and big rocks moving so your line changed every lap. I actually had a lay down twice in the top bedroom on this section!

All in all it was another great trial set out by a great friendly club. Big thanks for the observers for there time as well and well done to the winners and all who competed as they all looked tired but still smiling at the end for the post trials banta. Hope to see you all at round 3 of Aqueduct Classic Trials

Kev Williams – Pre 65 Inters

The day started with a 5 minute trip up the road to my local Nant y Ffrith so I was there on the ball to have a cup of tea and admire some stunning machines and have a few chats then before I knew it a hour and half had flown by then it was time for briefing off Russ and Mark then off we go.

Section 1: Starting with a right hand turn up a bank over slippy roots then kept gradually climbing and weaving in and out of the trees with the odd hole and exposed tree stump to try and catch you out then when you got to the top there was a foot high rock to jump off through the out gate.

Section 3:This one you approached with a gentle climb turning to the left around a tree then dropping into a little gully then over some tricky positioned rocks up a bank then as soon as you got to the top it dropped back down around a tree to the left and over some really slippery exposed roots while trying to get over to the left for the out gate.

Section 7:Another gentle climb along to the left then a tight right 180 degree turn then in to a old ruin over some loose rocks then out the other side then turning left up a steep bank with exposed roots but seemed to be plenty of grip.

All in all a great day sections were spot on and a big thanks to all observers and all Aqueduct team and everyone involved.

Mark Gaskell – Pre 65 Inters

After my first ride at Nant Ffrith last year, I was really looking forward to seeing what the Aqueduct crew had got in store for us this time. It has quickly become one of my favourite venues. Apparently with quite a few other people too! “Green” Intermediate route, Drayton Triumph Twin. Riding with Mark Newman, also on the green route, and Tim Godsmark on the yellow.

Section 3, Gordon. A reverse of last years section, the two main elements being the off camber gully that needed the front wheel to be in the right place, but you couldn’t see it until you crested the rise beforehand, and the rooty left hand plummet at the end. There was a final sneaky little left to stop riders from launching off the top and avoiding all the slippery roots. This concentrated the mind, but the Triumph handled it better than I did. On the third lap my front wheel went a tad off line, which resulted in a wide eyed panic stricken two, and a chuckle from Gordon.

Section 4, Dave. On first inspection, this looked easy. It wasn’t! Through the cards then up a low crumbling stone wall, immediately turn right between two trees and back down crumbling stone wall, which changes each lap. Left and over ruined remains of stone wall, then immediate right before a tree. Roll down to ride into an uphill left bank which got rougher and looser each lap. If you lined each element up perfectly it went smoothly, get one slightly wrong and it went to pot. One saving dab doesn’t reflect how hard I found this section!

Section 6, Suzanne. Again, looked easy. Cost me the most marks of the trial! Gentle climb to a 180 degree left, down a steep 6 foot bank with exposed tree roots, to an immediate 180 degree right on loose sandy soil, and back up the bank to the end. On the first lap I stretched a long single dab on the right turn to keep the plot upright. On the second lap I tried to manage without the dab, and dropped three instead as I nearly missed the turn. On lap three I thought I had managed it, but lost two more marks when I hadn’t. Last lap, and a different line at the top to give a wider line into the right turn, and I tucked the front wheel by not leaning the bike far enough over and fived it.

Section 7, Geoff. An old ruin on a hill  [Ed… the section of Geoff?] . From the start, up a gentle slope, through the front door of the hut, over a jumble of rocks and out through what would have been the window. Left before a large log and then climb up a steep bank to the end. On the first lap, the bike didn’t go where I expected over the rocks and needed 2 to recover. On the second lap I took 2 to be safe. On lap three, I approached too cautiously and stalled for an annoying 5. On the last lap it rode as if it were a motorway for a clean. Geoff asked why I couldn’t have done that before? I couldn’t answer as I had held my breath throughout the section and had now gone faint!

Brilliant trial, thanks again to all involved in the organising, setting and running of the event.

Rob Sloggett – Twinshock Inters

After a bit of a break from riding and getting my legs back on the clubman route it was time to hop back into the Inters and push myself to start chasing the middle of the pack from the lower end. 40 marks dropped on the day was only about 15 marks off the middle and a silly 5 and quite a few needless dabs (with the odd 3) made me comfortable that its possible this year and to be honest for me that is what the sport is about. Man and machine against the section and striving for personal improvements each time you go out. So what were my favorites of the day?

Well you have to start with Section 1 kindly observed by Ian and the route as reported by Kev above. This for me epitomizes the sport! Having dropped silly dabs and threes on much lesser sections this complex entry and flowing turning climb laced with roots and rocks should have taken marks, but for me I only dropped a single dab all the way and it was such a great feeling nailing the entry into this section each time, especially as it deteriorated as the day went on. Its quite interesting looking as the marks dropped on this section across the bike types with Modern Monos having a much higher level of dropped marks as an average per rider on the Inter route?

For something a bit different, you had to look to Section 4 (Dave). This seemed simple. A straight entry towards a rock step but with scattered embedded rocks prevented a clean line. Tight right turn on the flat then drop down at a diagonal across the bank. Turn left but with a set of rocks that regularly moved so never the same path each lap. Now the first rub, two choices, a small step up the bank and tight turn right or try and squeeze both wheels through a nine inch gap between the flags and the step, without running over the flags for a 5! Once through that, a sweeping left hand up a bank, cresting then running out toward the end cards. This took 9 marks from me through out the day, mainly as singles through the section but over the 4 laps I learnt two things. Russ once coached me “if you can its better to ride over something than around it to get the straighter line” and for the entry to the first rock step, whilst the run in had a long rock at a 45 deg angle it was not high and set far enough back not to impede the area where the wheel needed to be lifted. This allowed me regular cleans at that part of the section, The final banked turn seemed to be where I was loosing marks and playing around between first and second across the laps taught me that the shorter gear favored this part as I carried much less speed albeit using the higher part of the rev range. I an sure the last 2 laps saw me at least clean on this part as well.

Finally Section 10, which was Petes section. This one, I was out of kilter with the rest of my class, losing 6 marks (3 on the last lap!) compared to mostly cleans across my class. Once again a simple, unimposing section with a cross camber run in, traverse a ridge downhill, a right hand turn still downhill over some roots then a longish climb up a bank which scrubbed out as the day went on. As the last section on the last lap of the day I an still unsure what happened! The final bank just turned into a dabfest! at least 3 up the bank where before I had cleaned it. Probably totally not committed at the bottom…

All in all a great days competition. Some sections had single elements that were highly challenging such as the final exit on Sec 3, others looked tight and mark takers but once in the section rode very well. I am slowly getting use to the Majesty after years on the Bultaco and will be staying on that bike for this year. Thanks to Mark for setting the Green route, you certainly made it interesting and thanks for not putting the exit drop the same as Red on Sec 5! Observers, as always a huge thanks and to all the other people who make this happen, 117 riders on the day must mean you continue to do the right thing each time.

The feedback on Facebook from the riders provided a few sound bites as follows:

Mega trial today absolutely loved it can’t wait for the next 1 – Chris Garlick

BIG thanks to all the Aqueduct team especially the set up crew for the really fantastic sections, the observers for being out in the cold for so long and the De Burger team for the fantatic service, as always with a smile, great day was had by all, already looking forword to the next one. PS so much mud on the bikes, feel like i took part of the event home with me, should mayby offer to return to the land owner fantastic site love that place – Jeff Hughes

Great trial today some brilliant section and some buttock clinching ones !!. Thanks to all the organisers and marshalls – Mark Lucas

It looks like the next event on the 1st March is at Pen Y Graig Quarry. Round 3 of the Championship. Also make a note in your diary for 17th May. If you are not riding the Kia round, the club will need 20 observers plus a few spare if any of the sections are long and would run best with 2 observers. If you can help out, please let the team know as quickly as possible.

Top Places:

Pre 65 Expert: Jim Hough, Ariel (20); James Francis, BSA (21); Russ Jones, Francis Barnett (25)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Simon Thornley, BSA (1); Carl Winstanley, James (4); Peter Edwards, Drayon Bantam (10)

Pre 65 Clubman: Graham Miller, Triumph (9); Steve Walker, Francis Barnett (14); Mike Hughes, Triumph (23)

Pre 65 Beginner: Graham Turner, Triumph (42); Kevin O’Toole, Triumph (44); Alan Dyson, BSA (56)

Twinshock Expert: Paul Smart, Fantic (24); Dave Wood, Ossa (27); Chris Garlich, Honda (34)

Twinshock Intermediate: Tim Cuffin, Yamaha (5); Josh Matthews, Fantic (6); Dave Matthews, Bultaco (7)

Twinshock Clubman: Stephen Knight, Fantic (3); Perry Tatum, Fantic (25); Ian Thomas, Bultaco (35)

Twinshock Beginner: William Leigh, Yamaha (20)

AC Mono Expert: Pete Ruscoe, Honda (7); Robin Foulkes, Yamaha (73)

AC Mono Intermediate: Paul Young, Gas Gas (10); Shawn Mountford, Beta (13); Martin Powell, Honda (20)

AC Mono Clubman – No enteries

AC Mono Beginners – No enteries

Modern Mono Expert: Colin Sagar, Beta (16); Dan Charles, Beta (68); Steve Williams, Tenachi Wong (72)

Modern Mono Intermediate: David Ellis, Beta (15); Hayden Rainforn, Montesa (15); Nigel Sproson, Montesa (21)

Modern Mono Clubman: Steve Sherwin, GasGas (17); Ken Williams, Montesa (18); Mark Kelly, Honda (21)

Modern Mono Beginners: Sean Halstead, Gas Gas (20); Charlotte Bloor, Gas Gas (27); Alan Jones, Beta (29)

Observers:

Section 1 – Ian Jones

Section 2 – Annette

Section 3 – Gordon

Section 4 – Dave

Section 5 – Mark

Section 6 – Suzanne

Section 7 – Geoff

Section 8 – Izzy

Section 9 – Chris

Section 10 – Pete Thomas

Bike Stats:

Bike Classes
Pre 6541
Twinshock23
Aircooled Mono13
Modern Mono40
Total117
Routes
Expert13
Intermediate44
Clubman34
Beginner17
Bikes
Pre 65Ariel1
BSA18
DOT2
Drayton2
Francis Barnett3
James2
Triumph13
TwinshockBeta0
Bultaco4
Fantic6
Honda4
Majesty2
Montesa1
Ossa2
Yamaha3
AC MonoAprilla1
Beta1
Fantic2
GasGas2
Honda2
Montesa2
Yamaha4
Modern MonoBeta13
Gas Gas10
Honda3
Montesa6
Ossa0
Scorpa2
Sherco2
Tenaci Wong1
TRS2

Event Report – Nant Mawr (Jan 20)

Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Paul Owen and Ian Emery

The first event of the year has become a bit unpredicatable. Only in the way that the normal entry is in the mid 80’s but for some reason last few saw over 100 riders sign on. For some reason Russ had “a feeling in his water” that this event was going to top that so picked the brilliant Nant Mawr Quarry as the January venue again. Luckily the natural hardstanding bowl in the centre of the venue can accomodate a large number of vehicles regardless of the weather so its the ideal choice.

Well he got his prediction spot on because 132 riders signed on (up from 104 the year before) and these were broken down into 40 Pre 65’s, 30 Twinshocks, 24 AC Monos and 48 Modern Monos with 34 Experts, 37 Intermediates, 46 Clubman and 15 Novices making up the distribution.

Whilst the ratio of modern bikes was quite high, the last few events has seem a number of newcomers to the sport and obviously the forgiving nature of a modern bike on sections laid out mainly for the Pre 65 and Twinshock scene is a great way to ease yourself in. Aqueduct has always welcomed the modern bike scene into the events (obvously with the hope that at some point the rider will “see the light”, sell their modern bike and buy a nice Twinshock or Pre 65). But that is not compulsory…. the friendly nature of the club is just happy to see riders having a good days sport on whatever they are happy riding.

Paul Owen – Pre 65 Expert

A early January crisp winter morning saw the 2020 aqueduct classic trials kick off. I’d decided to move up to the expert red route from the greens after clinching the championship a few times now. I knew it was going to be a big learning curve for me and with 130+ competitors turning up that morning, I had a look around to see some very experienced expert riders. Here are 3 of the 10 sections I did.

Section 1. This was a muddy entrance and across a small slippy bank. Then you dropped across the water and out up a bank to a immediate right turn and a off camber climb up a muddy bank to the top and then a very tight right hand turn down where I thought I was going over the bars every lap. And as you just got it stoped you turned sharp left on a small steep drop into the water and then turn right to the out gate.

Section 5. I was dreading this section as it was a big challenge for me. You dropped in right after the start gate and with a tight left turn in the slippy mud it was straight up a very steep bank as you had to turn sharp right on the off camber around a big massive rock and plunge back down to the flat. I suppose it wasnt bad but was something new for me with moving up. As you slowed at the bottom you turned left between a log and rock and gentle back up a mound. Around a tree and out to the exit.

Section 8. This one looked impossible for me but I gave it a go. You started on the quarry path and rode over a big mound as you dropped to a tight left then right as you climbed up some big rocks and then with a sharp left and keeping the clutch covered with high revs you either skipped up them or found every holes going like I did. Just as you got out, there was a sharp right turn and you followed the path along to the right and over a few more rock to the out gate.

This was a cracking trial and a great venue at Nant Mawr quarry in Oswestry. A big thanks to the observers and the club officials for a great start to 2020 and to burn off some excess turkey. Happy New Year everyone .

Ian Emery – AC Mono Inter

Here’s a few of Sunday’s sections which stick in my mind for good and bad reasons………

Section 1: this started with a cross camber traverse alongside fairly deep water filled ditch, to then turn 90 right dropping off the bank, into the water and out the other side, climbing the bank and round a slippy, rooty tree. A steep descent followed dropping sharply into the ditch which had a dog-leg left right where you had to be careful the far bank didn’t grab the front wheel and halt progress. I watched a few people slip off the first camber into the water which made the climb out and up the hill impossible. First section, first lap, always a bit nervous, but managed a steady clean which I repeated each lap.

Section 2: tricky one this one. Started with a drop into the gulley bearing slightly left to then fire up the far embankment and swoop round a tree to the right. A descent followed with a drop back into the gulley and a bike’s length u-turn up a 2 foot rooty step and round and out. The turn round the tree was technically very hard. You needed enough speed to get round the turn wall-of-death style. Too slow and your right hip or footrest would hit the tree, too fast and the front wheel would float and you needed it to be on the ground to traverse the camber. Oh, and just as you were climbing there was an exposed root on the turn meaning if you had any power on you would spin to a sudden halt and crash into the tree. First lap I rode round on the back wheel but couldn’t control the planting of the front wheel back on the ground as the camber fell away without a steadying dab. Following laps I got it right twice and needed a dab again for a high front wheel. Overall very pleased with a score of 2.

Section 3: another one where you had to be careful. Started with a left turn and steep climb dropping onto a grooved track of slippy grey clay. A 90 right turn was required which was tricky to keep the front flowing before going up and over a hump. A cross camber followed where you needed full control of the front to place the wheel in a narrow slot as the traverse continued. The bank on the left was very steep and offered no traction and the slot was beginning to collapse only being held in place by a small sapling which threatened to snag your right hand as you passed carefully through. It really was like tip-toeing through with gentle throttle only. If you got through OK a tight right followed with a sneaky dog-leg just before the ends. Happy with 1 for the day.

Section 7: My nemesis! Technically didn’t look that hard but cost me a lot of marks. Started with a 90 right had to done as a left right 270 as you needed to gain a bit of clear ground before shooting up across a flat rock slab on the hillside followed by a long left turn over a jumble of loose rocks, still climbing before turning back down. First lap I just didn’t have enough momentum and escaped with a 2, second lap even worse with a 3 losing speed and chucking rocks out behind, third lap much more speed but hit a displaced rock with the front and ran over a marker for a 5, last lap rode it like a main rode clean asking myself why I couldn’t have done that previously.

Section 8: Geoff on duty, better not mess up. Started with a climb up and over a steep embankment with a 90 left followed by 90 right, to then climb a series of big jagged rock slabs, up round a high flag on loose gravel before dropping back down over more big rocks and out. Got it right 3 times but needed a 1 once when I slipped off my rear brake pedal on the descent down from the front which messed me up for lining up for the rocky climb. Lucky to escape with a 1. Section 10: didn’t like this one either. Too many big rocks, too many big holes between the big rocks. All in the wrong place in relation to each other and where my wheels were at any point in time. Rode the Yam round like a pogo-stick gritting my teeth.

Happy with my score though, couldn’t have done better. All in all, a really good day. Thanks as usual to the section setters, observers and results team.

The feedback on Facebook from the riders provided a few sound bites as follows:

Well!! What can I say about last weekend?!! The turn out of riders was unbelievable!! Fantastic sections as always My first time riding intermediate, dropping 43 marks which I think was ok for my first time! Even tho I had a bit of a crash on section 2 on first lap But thanks to whoever picked me and bike up? As it’s still a bit of a blur!!? Got some bumps and bruises but the bike didn’t even get a single scratch! “cheers Russ for helping me ride a better line after” as I managed to do it lap 3 and 4. I am already looking forward to the next trial next month!! Massive thanks once again to all the observers!! – David Williams

Great trial today well worth traveling to it, big thanks to all involved and to the observers. Well done will be down again for sure. Cheers – Jeremy Clark

What a brilliant trial today . The green route was just testing enough for me cleaned most of the sections once and then made some mistakes the next time. Section 10 was my bad one but bloody brilliant. Thanks to all organisers and Marshalls for a Bostin day – Mark Lucas

Well that sort of round off the event report for the first comp of the year. We are always rooking for riders to provide copy and as you can see from the reports above, they are very personal and different and thats what we like…. different. So after the next few events, if you have enjoyed reading this, why don’t you put 30 mins in your diary to write a short report. I mean the observers stand around for a full day so its not a lot to give back for a day sport is it……

Top Places:

Pre 65 Expert: Phil Houghton, Triumph (7) tied with James Francis, BAS (7), Chris Chell, BSA (10), Tony Gush, DOT (10)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Simon Thornley, BSA (3); Sam Alderman, BSA (10); Peter Edwards, BSA (16)

Pre 65 Clubman: Chris Forshaw, BSA (0); Roger Smith, BSA (2); Peter Elvidge, BSA (2)

Pre 65 Beginner: Alan Dyson, BSA (18); Graham Turner, Triumph (18); Chris Atherton, BSA (44)

Twinshock Expert: Chris Garlic, Fantic (7); Paul SMart, Fantic (13); Dave Wood, Bultaco (29)

Twinshock Intermediate: Paul Cook, Montesa (8); Andy Cope, Fantic (12); Mark Blackwell, Yamaha (14)

Twinshock Clubman: Tom Houghton, Honda (1); William Leigh, Majesty (5); Graham Pennington, Ossa (8)

Twinshock Beginner: James Griffiths, Yamaha (10)

AC Mono Expert: Pete Ruscoe, Honda (14); Jim Williams, Honda (35); Stephen Burgess, Montesa (43)

AC Mono Intermediate: Paul Cartwright, Gas Gas (15); Shaun Mountford, Beta (22); Paul Young, Gas Gas (22)

AC Mono Clubman – No starters

AC Mono Beginners – No finishers

Modern Mono Expert: Daz Miller, Gas Gas (7); Jake Jones, Beta (12); Ian Jones, Yamaha (19)

Modern Mono Intermediate: Dave Ellis, Beta (8); Paul Hempkins, Gas Gas (13); Jack Curwell, Gas Gas (14)

Modern Mono Clubman: John Hunt (2); Mark Tagg, TRS (5); Timothy Crampton, Montesa (9)

Modern Mono Beginners: Mike Jones, Beta (4); Sean Halstead, Gas Gas (7); Chris Matthews, Beta (8)

Observers:

Section 1 – Suzanne

Section 2 – Elwyn

Section 3 – Dave

Section 4 – Mark

Section 5 – Mike

Section 6 – Annette

Section 7 – Gordon

Section 8 – Geoff

Section 9 – Izzy

Section 10 – Ian

Bike Stats:

Bike Classes
Pre 6540
Twinshock30
Aircooled Mono14
Modern Mono48
Total132
Routes
Expert34
Intermediate37
Clubman46
Beginner15
Bikes
Pre 65Ariel1
BSA18
DOT2
Drayton1
Francis Barnett2
James1
Triumph13
TwinshockBeta1
Bultaco3
Fantic10
Honda5
Majesty1
Montesa5
Ossa1
Yamaha5
AC MonoBeta2
Fantic1
GasGas2
Honda2
Montesa1
Yamaha5
Unlisted1
Modern MonoBeta13
Gas Gas15
Honda1
Montesa5
Ossa1
Scorpa2
Sherco2
Tenaci Wong1
TRS3
Yamaha1
Unlisted4

Kia Event Report – Plas Onn (Feb 19)

Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Paul Norman, Eirian Davies, Ian Emery, Trevor Bennett and Steve Blaxall

With the weather report good and the pre-entered list running at 170, there was a good vibe at the opening round of the 2019 Kia Championship. Aqueduct Classics now veterans at hosting a round (this being their 4th time), had the honour once again of hosting the opening round and chose to return to Plas Onn, the venue for the 2018 opener. Those riders who contested the round last year knew that they were in for a varied set of sections mainly comprising of banked sections with good root / rock combinations or some great stream sections with cascading waterfalls and a great deal of hidden rocks.

As this had been months in the planning, a strong backbone of observers had been secured with the longer sections having two in place and the team had been studious in creating some great new sections to tempt riders and keep the interest keen.

If you are reading this article, do not forget to explore the additional tabs across the top. The Bike Stats one gives a great breakdown of the differences in the classes and bikes compared to last year. It does make interesting reading.

We kindly have 3 articles from riders and two from observers and I will warn readers now that in most cases they are the “raw” text direct from the named author. A few choice words have been edited out for our younger readers but in most cases its how I received it….

It all starts with a report from Paul Norman who decided to set himself a challenge and contest this years rounds on an RTX. This little known trials bike is little known for a reason, but I will leave him to report why!

Paul Norman – RTX. Twinshock Clubman

So the weekend started off well with the “Crazy Gang” all meeting up in the Griifin Inn, Oswestry to be humbled at the Rugby. (Ed note – for those reading at a later date, England had just been beaten by Wales in the 2019 six nations). Works riders in abundance, Butch Robson, Ossy Beers, Fuji Gilbert, Ludvig Granby, Darren Walker & Kev Ellis (our Local Guide). The drinking all went as planned and we were all pleased to get to Chris De Burgers Butty van for Butties and Coffee. Then the serious stuff starts!

Ludvig the Master Spanner goes to fettle the carb on the Works RTX which wont rev out, gets it better so we decide to try it. We go to the briefing, let everyone ride off and get a coffee. Like true works riders.

We blundered on Section 13 so we started there. A Soft Five and Scrappy three being my best effort

Section 14: More Like it, Nice beck & a couple of cleans

Section 15: A steady clean on the first lap but a slack 2 bouncing off the roots on the second lap

Section 16: Clean on the first lap with a soft dab whilst bouncing all over the place on the second

Section 17: Nice pair of cleans

Section 18: A good section with a tricky run up a root by a tree. No speed, no grip and a dab each lap was a good result, oh and a big thanks to my spotter Liz Kenyon for giving me the line !!!

Section 19: A couple of cleans which I was happy with

Section 20: Me old Mate JD and Gillian Lawson were there with the Camera’s Out, no pressure. The first lap the RTX was choking up and I struggled out for a 2 nearly running Dicko Over, 2nd lap, 2nd gear and it flew out. Quick pit stop on both laps at the van to guzzle some fluids down and change some Carb Jets

Section 1: Nice beck section and a couple of cleans

Section 2: Same again

Section 3: Same again up and over the field to section 4. Pair of cleans again, its all going too well

Section 5: Observed by my good friend Roger Kenyon, AKA the Voodoo Man. 1st lap all going well, till I went right over the bars 2nd last turn from the end & same again on lap 2

Section 6: Good section but couldn’t get grip or power / speed at the exit and had a couple of slack 2’s

Section 7: Proper section but not on an RTX …..Short of power / grip & speed. A 3 on lap 1 and a couple on the 2nd

Section 8: I bump into the legendary works Honda Moped rider FUJI GILBERT who levels the section and puts the pressure on. I end up with a 2 & a dab

Section 9: A Couple of cleans

Section 10: It all goes pear shaped under the eyes of the two legends, Granty & Lusky ( And Ludvig ). Lap 1, up round the tree in first, change in to 2nd, down the bank open the throttle and go backwards as your in neutral. Numpty moment. 2nd lap, rev the nuts off it in first, did the job…

Section 11: The highlight of my day. Two crap 5’s. But I could have sat and watched the observer all day, must have been a dozen riders ringing the Samaritans just after they thought they’d got out the section only to find they’d had a five & I’m not moaning, he was consistent so fine by me, and there was a few on their bums too

So to Section 12 and me old mate Trevor with the legend Andy Gardner watching. No pressure then. Throttle wide open, no style & a couple of cleans

All in all a great days fun ………I could hardly move on Monday ….I was battered and bruised but that’s sport ….

A massive thanks to all the organising crew as to cope with 170 riders is no mean feat. I never saw some riders all day. Thanks to Ludvig for keeping me and my bike going, I couldn’t do it with out you. Thanks To Fuji Gilbert for embarrassing me and everyone else on the moped. Thanks to Eirian Davies for making me look good & sober  (Ed note – see next report!) Nice to see Lusky back and well done to all of the class winners especially Dean Deveraux. Finally thanks to Gerry & Freddy for the tireless work they do …it is really appreciated

But mostly thanks to the Guy that designed the RTX …..He knew bugger all about trials riding !!!!

Brilliant trial today- well out of my depth, but had a great time Haven’t felt so knackered at the end of a trial for a long time. Apologies to the observers I forgot to thank (not used to 2 lap format). Thanks to all involved – Ken Williams

Eirian Davies – Fantic 200. Twinshock Clubman

Trial was brilliant, just don’t go to rugby match day before and drink any booze! fell off all the time, lucky I had taxi. Very plonkish rider, but ok here goes….

Got blitzed on Saturday, in Cardiff, fell out of bed at 5am Sunday, phone noises, wife with foot pushing me out bed, luckily taxi picking me up 05:30. Drive up from Llanelli, interesting, 3 stops because I felt like a milk shake.

Signed on with 2 blondes to die for, Jan gives me money for something which I quickly lose. My mates ?? taking great urine out of my state. Kia staff look at me like I’m wierd.

Start at Sec 19, clean, 20 clean, too easy? then 3 x 5s on the trot, want to go home.

Being a hard little so and so, I keep going. It was a mixed ride. Roger Kenyon, good friend, not impressed when I say ogi ogi ogi to him, gives me a 3 when definately a clean then hit the section with the observer who shouts (think its 11). Go for it and hit deck on my backside, big bruise and the rest of lap don’t remember!

Second lap seems to get into normal mode and get some cleans in but the damage was done. Ultimately a cricket score, laugh a lot so it does not matter!

Good club, dedicated organisers who are also real humans. I will try to come and ride more of their events, but no booze! I lent my spare bike to a pal who only been riding a year and beats me, he has not stopped talking all week. Life’s good….

Thanks for a great trial yesterday,nice to have a day out riding with friends,Anthony Charles and Paul Cook. We all suffered handicaps with Pauls bike misfirenig like a pig, Anthonys shocks taking half an hour to decompress and me riding with one eye,which between us provided some great entertainment – Adrian Kent

Ian Emery – Yamaha TY Mono. AC Mono Clubman

A brief outline of 4 sections over the far hill.

Section 5: With Roger Kenyon’s beady eyes watching me, I approached the steep downhill entrance to the section and readied myself for a squirt of throttle to climb the first muddy slot up to the right. This was followed by a 180 left to then drop down another muddy slot where a 90 right was found. With little run up, the next challenge was a slippy clay bank with polished roots and a camber which sent you left and into a tree if you weren’t careful. I saw a few struggle for grip spinning out for a 5 which had me pondering using 2nd. Decided on 1st and got more grip than I expected, flying past the tree on one wheel and needing a dab to bring it down for the rooty 2 foot step that followed just before the end cards. Cleaned it second lap letting the Yam cruise past the tree on a falling throttle.

Section 6: Steve Walker looking after this one. Started along the fence on a slippy clay bank, into a slot before traversing a jumble of rocks to a 90 right to then cross a slippy rock slab with awkwardly placed rocks catching the front as you dropped off it, a 180 left, across the bank, to a 180 right with a few metres to get settled for the final climb out. This climb was steep and the upper half was criss-crossed with a lattice of polished exposed tree roots. A choice to tip-toe left and pick a path up or a fast ascent straight over the roots. I saw a few failures, either too slow to the left losing momentum, or too much power on trying to cross the roots, losing the rear and falling sideways. I gave the Yam a handful prior to the roots and it gripped perfectly meaning I had enough momentum to shut off over the slippy bits and fly up to the ends. Two cleans for me, very happy.

Secton 7: Steve and Graham sharing the observing here. A cross camber entrance into a shallow, wet, slippy stream, with an immediate tight right scrubbing any speed, before a long, twisty climb over loose rocks, where momentum was needed but difficult to gain. Decided on 2nd, approached the first turn, a gentle amount of throttle ( so I thought) only to find the rear trying to overtake the front and steering me to the right and totally off-line and all speed gone. Managed to struggle out for a 3 but was more careful second lap and managed a clean.

Section 8: Tim and Ange in charge here. Started with a tight left over loose, slippy rocks followed by a tight right, to a steep slippy clay bank with little run up. Once over this you dropped into a muddy berm, swooping left, with a nasty hidden root part way round. After this turn was a wheelie/bunny hop over a fallen tree quickly followed by a right turn, up hill and over a narrow step between two trees, the left one showing the scars of grabbing a footrest or two and I saw several people getting stuck here. I managed a 2 and a 1, could have been better but could have been a lot worse. All in all, I really enjoyed my day and was very pleased with my score. I only had one 5, running over a marker on S13, a couple of 3s but lots of 1s.

Thanks to Russ and co. for the day and to the large number of observers who gave their time.

Great trial at Plas Onn I was a bit out of my comfort zone from the usual yellow route I ride .But felt really chuffed to have a few cleans on sections that Felt were too hard for me Finally achieved my goal of a 100 break shame its at trials and not snooker – Rob Goodwin

Trevor Bennett – Section 12

Firstly could I just say they were lucky on Sat and it’s only ‘poshboys’ kickclapclapclapclap rugby not proper council estate rugby like we have up north. The trial from Section 12 ( I was down for section 2 but Russ took pity on me and sat me in the sun all day) tucked into a quarry at the back of a barn. Nothing sets me off more on a Sunday than the sound of hidden bikes starting up after the trial talk and start appearing on there way out to sections. Lots of handshakes and well wishes as riders came past at the bottom of the lane and off they went. An hours wait as some started at sec 13 but when my first victims arrived it was a steady flow for the next 5 hours. I was in good company all day with lots of faces coming in for a chat. Lot’s of banter to and fro and plenty of just general insults, love it. The section was good and long (how I like them) and I had a good vantage point of it all. It never ceases to amaze me the different ways we approach riding a section and I wasn’t let down this time. From the perfectly poised to the slap dash, the looks like he knows what he’s doing to the hasn’t got a clue and never will have ( I fit in here) to the excuse mongers (Eirian I’m still pissed) and the right let’s have it brigade. It all makes for a brilliant day. A good spread of points and quite a few from riders who I wasn’t expecting to dab. Riders falling off where no one else did, Colin made me smile and riders showing off and it going tits up. Lunch provided and brews from our Dawn and Trevs a happy lad. All in all a wonderful day in beautiful surroundings and wonderful people, thankyou. Right I just need to sort the turbo on my van and we will be ready for the next one. Many thanks to all who helped me out, Richard and Shani. Jan Geoff Jones. Russell Jones, Russell and Suzanne Bowkett thanks mates.

I  agree with all my fellow observers, you guys n gals put in loads of effort through the year so its good to give a little back.See you for the March Accy round – Steve Walker

Steve Blaxall – Section 7

This was my first time at officially observing, but I offered my services when the call was made for observers by Russ at Aqueducts first trial of the year. Russ had asked would i bring a bike.( He’s all ready got a plan in mind)I arrived feeling a little nervous at the responsibility of the task in hand. I reported to Russ at sign in. He told me i was paired with Graham Pennington on the section 7 . Having Practiced with Graham and not being on my own i felt a lot more relaxed.

Section 7 indeed required two observers.We hatched a plan after seeing one observer could not see all the section. I would be at the bottom of the climb on the bend (in all the sunshine!) and Graham would be towards the top of the section. I would signal the riders in and score to the corner, Graham would then take over.The system worked and we had an enjoyable day.

Both routes had a short downhill start that was a little tricky over some roots which caught the odd dab for the clubman. Then a blind right hand turn into a loose rocky uphill stream. The red route had the same start but made the turn early over the roots /base of an up turned tree. The clubman route went beyond and around this.

Both were now faced with the task of getting up the stream with its loose minimal grip surface. Speed was what seemed to be required to overcome the lack of grip. It was interesting seeing how obvious lines appeared then disappeared as when the red route boys turned up they cut up the clubman path.

Most Memorable ride for me has to go to Ben Butterworth. Very early on, when no obvious line had been formed,he just went up there like a march hare. Plenty of speed and forward motion, rebounding and digging back in. Brought a smile, a joy to watch.

Ive got to say, whilst I was unable to get to this years event due to work, this reads as not juat one of the best club reports but also I think our best Kia round one (and thats not taking anything away from the reports we have had before! I think the report really brings out the spirit of the Kia Championship but also illustrates a little bit of the personality of Aqueduct Classics as a club.

As well as the usual thanks to all of the observers, organisers, back room staff, support team, land owner etc etc (and I leave you with Russ’s soundbite below from facebook to close that out), I would like to wish all of the riders in the subsequent rounds, the best of luck, keep safe and above all enjoy yourselves, after all it just a bit of fun on a Sunday isnt it?

Rob Sloggett (Report Editor)

Hi folks sorry this abit late from yesterday’s event but would like to thank … Graham Pennington, Steve Bee, Steve Walker, Anglea, Angela Godsmark, Tim Godsmark, Gordon, Harry, Dave Murphy, Roger Kenyon, Trevor Bennett, Izzy Cartwright, Tony Cartwright, Paul Hempkins, Roger Smith, Keith Jones, Peter Thomas, Celyn, Mark Newman, Alan Dyson and Colin Davies with out you we couldn’t of run the event as smoothly as it did. A long day but we really do appreciate your help THANKYOU….. aqueduct team x

Top Places:

Twinshock Expert: Chris Koch, Fantic (12); Richard Allen, Gori (33); Matt Spink, Fantic (37)

Historic Spanish + Pre78 T/S Expert: Dean Devereux, Bultaco (8); Dave Wood, Bultaco (45); Stephen Bisby, Ossa (54

Monoshock Expert: Steve Bird, Yamaha (9); Ben Butterworth, Fantic (10); Dan Sanders, Yamaha (18)

British Bike Expert: Ian Peberdy, BSA (19); Nick Paxton, BSA (23); Yrjo Vesterinen, BSA (23)

Clubman Class

Twinshock Clubman: Martin Gilbert, Honda (13); Jim Williams, SWM (14); Dave Pengilley, Kawasaki (17)

Historic Spanish + Pre78 T/S Clubman: Martin Beech, Ossa (14); Dave Wardell, Montesa (23); Butch Robson, Montesa (28)

Monoshock Clubman: Jerry Hawker, Honda (1); Andy Perry, Yamaha (26); Darren Morgan, Fantic (27)

British Bike Clubman – Robin Luscombe, Matchless (8); John Chatto, James (10); Peter Edwards, Drayton (15)

Observers:

Sec 1 – Izzy Cartwright

Sec 2 – Tony Cartwright

Sec 3 – Paul Hempkins

Sec 4 – Dave Murphy

Sec 5 – Roger Kenyon

Sec 6 – Steve Walker

Sec 7 – Graham Pennington and Steve Blaxall

Sec 8 – Ange and Tim Godsmark

Sec 9 – Keith Ellis

Sec 10 – Gordon

Sec 11 – Harry South

Sec 12 – Trevor Bennett

Sec 13 – Mike Griffiths

Sec 14 – Alec Roberts

Sec 15 – Roger Smith

Sec 16 – Terry Millichap and Patrick Forde

Sec 17 – Keith Jones

Sec 18 – Malcolm Hobson

Sec 19 – Pete Thomas

Sec 20 – Celyn Jones

Bike Stats:

British Bike – 58 (+5 on 2018)

Historic Spanish + Pre78 T/S – 15 (-5 on 20198)

Twinshock – 61 (+12 on 2018)

A/C Mono – 40 (+2 on 2018)

Total = 174 (+14 on 2018)

Classes

Expert – 49 (-4 on 2018)

Clubman – 125 (+18 on 2018)

Class Detail

Twinshock Expert – 15 (-5 on 2018)

Twinshock Clubman – 46 (+17 on 2018)

Historic Spanish + Pre78 T/S Expert – 4 (same as 2018)

Historic Spanish + Pre78 T/S Clubman – 11 (-5 on 2018)

Monoshock Expert – 9 (-5 on 2018)

Monoshock Clubman – 31 (+7 on 2018)

British Bike Expert – 21 (+6 on 2018)

British Bike Clubman – 37 (-1 on 2018)

Bikes

British Bikes:

Ariel – 3 (-1 on 2018)

BSA – 28 (+6 on 2018)

DOT – 3 (+1 on 2018)

Drayton – 3 (-1 on 2018)

Francis Barnett – 5 (+1 on 2018)

Greeves – 1 (same as 2018)

James – 4 (-1 on 2018)

Matchless – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Saracen – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Triumph – 8 (-3 on 2018)

Unknown – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Historic Spanish and Pre 78:

Bultaco – 6 (-3 on 2018)

Montesa – 3 (+2 of 2018)

Ossa – 5 (same as 2018)

Suzuki – 1 (-1 on 2018)

Twinshock:

Aprilia – 3 (+ 3 on 2018)

Armstrong – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Beta – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Bultaco – 2 (+2 0n 2018)

Fantic – 25 (+7 on 2018)

Gori – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Honda – 13 (+5 on 2018)

Kawasaki – 2 (same as 2018)

Majesty – 2 (-5 on 2018)

Montesa – 1 (same as 2018)

Ossa – 1 (+1 on 2018)

RTX – 1 (+1 on 2018)

SWM – 2 (-3 on 2018)

Whitehawk – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Yamaha Std TY – 5 (-2 on 2018)

Aircooled Mono:

Aprilla – 2 (+2 on 2018)

Armstrong – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Beta – 1 (-3 on 2018)

Fantic – 9 (same on 2018)

GasGas – 1 (-3 on 2018)

Honda – 10 (-1 on 2018)

Montesa – 1 (+1 on 2018)

Yamaha – 15 (+2 on 2018)

Event Report – Plas Onn (Dec 19)

Do you know this man????

Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Paul Owen and Steve Blaxall

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Its probably no coincidence that the remake of 101 Dalmatians was release round about Christmas in 1996, and what a way to parody this by having 102 bouncy trial rider pups (I know its a very tenuous link!) turn up to Decembers trial at Plas Onn for the closing event of the 2019 calendar!

With no nasty Glenn Close character to be found, only happy faces and warm smiles on this chilly day were treated to a very well deserved thank you to Harry South who was hanging up his observer board to the last time. I did not realise the pure breadth of Harrys observing activities (not just at Aqueduct) and it truly is people like this who ensure that week in, week out we get to enjoy our sport! A final thank you from me Harry.

So how did the numbers break down? Well in terms of classes we had 32 Pre 65’s, 30 Twinshocks, 10 AC Monos and 30 Modern Monos. Across the routes we had a great turn out of 20 Experts, back on the Green flags saw 40 Inters, 29 Clubman and a really health 13 Novice riders.

Can I close this introduction by asking the question…… In what other club could you see a Velocette lining up alongside a Vertigo !!!!!! I think that says it all….

Paul Owen – Pre 65 Inters

It was a cold icy morning up on the frosty mountain tops of the ceriog valley at plas onn farm. It was the final round of 10 and there was 101 competitors turn up for what must be one of the premier classic trials clubs in the uk.

Quality riders from all over the country went head to head to take top step honors to finish off the 2019 season. All 10 sections were challenging and here are 3 of the 10 for the green route. But this trials had a festive Christmas theme with many riders dressed as Santa and his elf’s plus a snowman and a Christmas pudding.

Section 3 was a up stream start in the water. And over a submerged large rock and immediately up a slippy muddy 4 meter high bank and as you crested the top you had a meter drop off and back down the bank into the stream that almost seen me going over the handlebars . and then another similar climb and decent on the opposite banking . Then back into the stream to the exit gate .

Section 5 was interesting as there was a reindeer in the section. But at a closer look it was the observer in his Christmas fancy dress costume. Ha-ha. We drop down off the path into a rock stream gully, we had to keep to the right and that brought us out and across a muddy off camber bank that wanted to drag you down and so easy to take a dab to save losing the front wheel, we then dropped down across the stream to the left and a steady climb over a rooted bank and back into the up hill rocky stream and with a sharp right up the bank and to the exit gate.

Section 9. This was a drop down a slippy bank into and across the stream and straight up a muddy bank into the field. The dropped back down and across to the other bank. Then back down again but this time we stayed in the freezing water in the stream and we picked a line over the green slippy rocks and then into a very tight left turn and I steep climb over rocks next to the waterfall and then a right turn and out gate. On lap 3 I was just about at the top of the waterfall section and I lost traction but then it gripped and the front wheel was up high. I managed to put my right foot down to save it but with a muddy slippy rock my foot was on the move. And with this the bike did a perfect 180 degrees pirouette and I plunged down back into the stream. Luckily with some fancy foot work I managed to stay upright , then I looked up the banking and seen about 20 riders waiting there turn. Hopefully they didn’t recognize me as i was dress in a Santa suit. Hehe.

Finally I’d like to thank all the observers and members of the Aqueduct Classic trials club for all there hard work and efforts. Roll on 2020. And merry Christmas and a happy new year to everyone

Steve Blaxall – AC Mono Inter

I arrived at a very cold Plas Onn confident that i would stay warm for the day in my Santa outfit. It was great to see so many riders turn up in fancy dress and having a laugh. Sad to see Harry hang up his clip board but good to see the warm send off he got. I’m sure his services will be missed. Here are the 3 sections which kept me thinking – even after the trial had finished :-

Section3 – A straight enough but narrow approach along the left side of the stream, where the stream bent left ,we carried straight on and immediately up a steep climb muddy bank. At the summit was a slight left turn with a nasty little drop off back into the stream up the opposite bank, turn right, back down across the stream turn left and out. 1st lap was a right royal cock up! Concentrating far to much on the narrow approach, i had no speed at the foot of the climb, gave it far to much throttle and half way up the climb all i could see was my petrol tank. I had to bail out. That’s a 5 then. Next lap a bit worried i would repeat the same, i made an effort to keep up my speed before the climb. It worked. With a little extra burst of throttle at the foot of the climb the bike went up with relative ease. I was surprised, The rest of the section just seamed to flow. Think i learnt something there.

Section8 – Simple enough or so i thought when i walked the section. Wrong! Very muddy down hill approach in to the section, follow the stream down hill a little then turn right and out up on to the bank. turn round and back towards the stream. Here was the real problem for me. A very tight down hill, left hand turn around a tree in to a shallow channel. The section then went gently uphill to the right with a left turn to the exit. The turn around the tree got me every time. I did not have an answer for it. Still don’t! I’m still thinking about it.

Section10- Right turn down the bank, across the stream. Turn right again in the muddy edge of the stream and back across the stream. Take care to miss the large rock on the left and go up the opposite bank, turn left at the top back into the stream and line up for the rocky climb out, turn left at the top and out. Was finding this section really flowed well for me. Until lap 3! . Not sure really what happened. But the large rock i needed to miss. think i hit it, and down i went. Cleaned the section again last lap. It got me thinking, don’t take a section for granted. Keep your concentration up. Despite wearing a Santa suit all day.

I managed to get an ok result. Yes i got some 5’s but that the way it goes. Really enjoyed the day. The club did a great job handling such a large entry and so did the observers for sticking out the cold. And not forgetting Mr. DeBurger for feeding the 5000. A Big thank you from me for a superb 2019

Rob Sloggett – Twinshock Clubmans

Having not ridden for a few months, I thought I would close the year having a leisurely ride on Clubmans and having a go at getting to know the Majesty better. One thing I do know is that I have been a 1st gear rider and had not really used second in ANY sections, so my aim this event was to where possible use 2nd and get use to the gearing characteristics. This turned out to be a really good and interesting experiment as in most cases, 2nd was really useable, for one section (more on that later) it did get me in trouble and in another I accidently pulled 3rd and discovered just how much low down grunt the Majesty still had…

So what were my three favorite sections of the day? Well first choice had to got to Marks on Section 8. This has always been a favorite of mine as the uphill flowing gully’s between the trees really make you think about allowing the bike to move between your legs. I ended up clean on this one, even after pulling 3rd on my 3rd lap! But every run had the potential to lose the odd dab.

Section 9 was my Achilles heal! What seemed simple section with a drop down a shallow bank, across the stream bed, cut back across and up and around the bank, drop back in then back up the other bank for an easy exit should have been clean all the way for me….. But it wasn’t! 3 on the first lap, 3 on the second…. right stop. What’s different ? Gear choice. Drop down to first for the 3rd lap for a clean and a silly single on the last lap. Analysing my ride, the first transition across the stream and up the bank had me carrying to much speed in second gear, getting me off line and then totally putting me out of my stride. Definitely a good learning exercise, I should have been able to compensate but didn’t so one for the practice area I think….

To be honest the rest were all good and I would struggle to pick another favorite as they all had something different….

As always, we received great feedback on social media and some of the comments are below:

Well today finished off another brilliant Aqueduct Season and what a cracking trial to finish with. Thank You so much to the Accy Team for putting on such cracking trials, thank you to all the landowners for letting us play, a massive thank you to the observers as always I’ve stood there with a clipboard it can be a bloody cold job. Lastly thank you to the riders for supporting both the club & ourselves. Over a hundred riders today, amazing – Chris De Burger

Another amazing event!!! Ace to see everyone in costume!  Can’t thank all the observers enough!! Plus Harry on his last day! I had a excellent ride and only dropped 2 marks. Only been back riding 6 months after 15 years, July Aqueduct trial was my first introduction back into trials, and I have met some amazing people! So as I’ve had 3 wins “one white and 2 yellow” I think I will move up from Clubman’s to Intermediate next January! Hope everyone has a good Xmas See you all again next year – David Williams

Great day at an absolutely brilliant trial today, sections were perfect for the nice wet slippery conditions. Big thanks again to all involved in the setting up and running of all the events this year and I can’t wait for next year. Best decision this year, buying a bike second best, joining Aqueduct Classics. See you all next year – Jeff Hughes

So that concludes 2019….. A BIG THANK-YOU to everyone who has contributed to the event reports. They get read by a lot of people and are a permanent record of the event and paint such a great picture of the club, especially for people thinking about joining us. I hope if you like reading them, maybe in 2020 you could write a short bit as well…

Top Places

Pre 65 Expert: Phil Haughton, Triumph (4); Chris Gascoigne, BSA (8); Kev Ellis, BSA (20)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Craig Haworth, James (12); Dave Lovell, Triumph (14); Paul Owen, BSA (15)

Pre 65 Clubman: Rober Smith, BSA (8); Jeremy Sutton, BSA (10); Garry Holt (13)

Pre 65 Beginner: Kevin O’Toole, Triumph (17); Alan Dyson, BSA (27); Tarquin Millard, Triumph (54)

Twinshock Expert: Matt Spink, Fantic (7); Paul Smart, Fantic (13); Ian Jones, Yamaha (21)

Twinshock Intermediate: Vince Brett, Honda (7); Paul Cook, SWM (8); David Matthews, Bultaco (9)

Twinshock Clubman: Tony Haughton, Honda (8); Trevor Bennett, Beta (10; Graham Pennington, Ossa (10)

Twinshock Beginner: William Leigh, Yamaha (4); Chris Jones, Yamaha (10)

AC Mono Expert: Robin Foulkes, Yamaha (60)

AC Mono Intermediate: Paul Young, Gas Gas (15); Paul Cartwright, Gas Gas (18); Martin Powell, Honda (28)

AC Mono Clubman: David Lewis, Ossa (7); Ken Williams, Honda (15)

AC Mono Beginner: No enteries

Modern Mono Expert: Colin Sagar. Beta (6); Declan Marsdan, Gas Gas (69)

Modern Mono Intermediate: Nigel Sproson, Montesa (12); Seb Clarke, Vertigo (17); Shaun Clarke, Sherco (17)

Modern Mono Clubman: Colin Steele, Beta (2); David Williams, Montesa (2); Paul Hardaker, Beta (3)

Modern Mono Beginners: Jeff Hughes, Beta (2); Chris Matthews, Beta (8); Charlotte Bloor, Gas Gas (13)

Observers

Section 1 – Harry South (last time ever…. thanks Harry)

Section 2 – Ian

Section 3 – Izzy

Section 4 – Annette

Section 5 – Dave

Section 6 – Danny

Section 7 – Russ

Section 8 – Mark

Section 9 – Pete

Section 10 – Gordon

Bike Stats

Pre 65 – 32

Twinshock – 30

A/C Mono – 10

Modern Mono – 30

Total =

Classes

Expert – 32

Intermediate – 30

Clubman – 10

Beginner – 30

Bikes

Pre 65:

Ariel – 1

BSA – 11

Francis Barnett – 3

James – 3

Triumph – 12

Velocette – 1

Twinshock:

Aprilia – 1

Beta – 1

Bultaco – 3

Fantic – 8

Honda – 4

Kawasaki – 1

Majesty – 3

Ossa – 1

SWM – 1

Yamaha TY – 4

Aircooled Mono:

Fantic – 1

GasGas – 3

Honda – 4

Ossa – 1

Yamaha – 1

Modern Mono:

Beta – 12

GasGas – 8

Montesa – 4

Sherco – 4

TRS – 1

Vertigo – 1

Event Report – Nant Ucha (Nov 19)

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Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Trevor Bennett, Paul Owen, Mark Gaskell and David Williams

Whilst the initial forecast promised a 40% chance of rain, the day remained beautiful and dry as we visited Nant Ucha Farm for the last time of 2019. I am sure we will be back again soon next year as this is a very popular competition (and practice) venue and with the stream not being over fast or high, the club was able to mark out a nice mix of muddy banks and rocky stream sections for the 69 riders who turned up.

The riders were broken down into 20 Pre 65’s, 15 Twinshocks, 7 AC Monos and 27 Modern Monos with 7 Experts, 25 Intermediates, 23 Clubman and 14 Novices making up the distribution.

Trevor Bennett – Twinshock Clubman

Firsy Akky trial I’ve done in a good few years, I’ve threatened to but never got round to it, but after doing the Akky Kia trials or turning out to observe them I knew it would be a good do. An early start so a quick check of the weather forecast as I was entered at the Castleside Kia. Pissing down up there, sunny at Nant Ucha. No brainer really as I wanted to give a new to me Beta tr240 a shakedown test before I took it out to the Costa Brava trial in a couple of weeks. Out of the house at 07:30, foggy as a flippin foggy thing so steady away down to the M6. 2 Hours later I pull into the farm in glorious sunshine. Geoffs there to welcome us and have his first rugby dig. Park up as directed, give him a bit of stick back and time for a brew.

Walking down to the butty van I remembered I hadn’t stopped to fill my petrol can up (dozy beggar) and didn’t fancy driving the Sprinter back down that lane against all the traffic coming up. Danny Littlehales sorted me out with a tankful, cheers mate. much appreciated. Bacon butty and brew in hand it was time to go see who’s here. Oh look there’s a Jones a Jones and ooh look another Jones the place is full of them. Sign on with the lovelies Chris and Jan, have a bit of craic deciding which route to ride. The Marks (Samuel and Newman) decided for me and back to the sign on to put the red card back in the box and while I’m there convince Chris it would be a good idea to chaperon Mark out to the Andorra trial I am transporting bikes to in April. An instant yes was her response. BINGO Mark you owe me a beer. Gear on bike started and another Jones walks up with a shocked look on his face. Blimey Trev, didn’t expect to see you mate says Russ. Another brew (cheers chaps) pre trial speech and we are off.

Section 1 Russ is observing so the craic will be fierce if there’s any cock ups. Sure enough a cheer goes up and loads of laughter when someone gets it wrong. Doesn’t matter to me much I only want to ride the bike around and make sure it’s ok so I can put up with any banter and don’t suffer from nerves at a trial. Simple enough to start with drop into a stream, out up the bank, drop back in around a tree and back out through the end cards. Clean every lap.

Section 2 Turned out to be my bogey section. Drop in, cross the stream up the bank, engine stops, no petrol, FIVE. It’s going to be one of those days I think. Smarts drags my bike up the bank out of the way (cheers mate) and I look to see what happened. No fuel coming through so I blow back up the pipe and it runs free. I presume it must be blocking the built in filter so will have to keep on clearing it. Section 2 took a dap of me every lap because my mind was on it stalling first time round.

Section 3 Drop into stream, ride over a couple of rocks to give a good low line onto the root step then wall ride around the bank to come out past the obs. Dropped 2 here when I tried to take it tighter on the 3rd lap, clean the other 3.

Section 4 Is this the Albert I read so much about. A bit of banter with him while I walk the section. Ask him to be gentle with me as I’m in mourning over the WC defeat and we’re both off on the right foot. Drop into stream under that dodgy branch that should of been cut out Russ around the dead tree, up a fairly flat section then sharp turn right up a steep bank. The little Beta catches me out as the front end comes up and I have to have a couple of dabs to pull it round through the end cards. One more dab on the next lap and we have it sussed, clean after that.

Section 5 Down in the woods. A few slippy roots to cross before we drop into the wider stream and ride across to a muddy lefthander, Back across the stream and up a big nasty root step, first 2 laps clean and a 2 lap dab when I found extra grip and came out with the front wheel pawing the air and just got it dropped down between the end cards. Last lap clean.

Section 6 Steady enough twisty start over roots and rocks, drop into and cross the stream and out up over rocks on the opposite bank. Clean every lap.

Section 7 By the bridge. Drop into and cross the stream out up tight right around a tree. back into the stream and cross on a diagonal and out over rocks. Clean every lap.

Section 8 Twisty ride up a muddy slope and the drop down through end cards. One of those sections where it would be easy to lose marks because you presume it is simple to do. Tried different gears the first 2 laps to see how the Beta would pull them. Stuck with second when I found there was ample power. Clean every lap.

Section 9 Favourite section. Drop down to stream to start and then ride up against the flow. Cleaned first lap and then dropped 2 next time round when I went in in 3rd gear, rookie mistake but that’s what happens to me when I don’t stop and check what gear I’m in. I just rode down the bank and straight in when Jan waved me on. Clean next lap and drop another when I slipped off line and bounced out over the rocks at the end hanging on determined not to paddle out.

Section 10 Simple enough twists and turns to start and then up over roots to happy smiling Mark giving me his best banter. Plenty of time for that in Andorra mate, we’ll have a blast. Clean every lap.

All in all I achieved what I wanted, apart from the fuel issue (which I later found to be a ‘no breather’ so it was vacuuming) making me wonder. The bike performed as it should. A great club trial at a great venue. I came away thinking I should of done better. I had myself down for 18 which I was hoping would not be to bad. Russ’s ‘check the scores on the doors’ comment had me searching the results minutes after I had got back in through the door (amazingly speedy) I was on 17 and had won the clubman twinshock. BLIMEY CHARLIE never expected that. It made the 200 mile 10 hour day round trip well worth the while. What with that, the great trial, amazing organisation, happy people, good banter and good food I will be back for the next one in December. I might step up to the inters route and make a fool of myself but as long as I’m riding my bike I’ll be happy among you. Thanks to all observers, organizers and caterers you did a great job. See you next time.

Paul Owen – Pre 65 Intermediate

Nant Ucha Aqueduct Classic Trials. A dry day but it was still wet from a few days rain. The venue is always set out good and the club always make the best use of it. Here are 3 of the 10 sections.

Section 1 was down the bottom of the soggy feild. We entered the stream and followed it up the slippy lose rocks and then a tight right turn up a 4 foot tree rooted greasy bank and a sharp turn left passed the observer and drop back down to the rocky stream with a muddy right turn to the out gate. I pick up a silly 5 on the 3rd lap as the front end was sliding top of the bank as I was turning left and I hit the coloured flag. I blame the observer who had to jump out the way and I believe he stood on his own coat and squashed his butties (hehe). The observer was my best mate and event organiser Russell Jones, and he gave me a 5 so I dont mind about his butties and coat (HAHA).

Section 7. You entered the wide section of the stream from the right and followed it up between the rocks to the left side and over a log as you turned slight right along the waters edge and then back across to a tricky rocky exit of the stream that seen me have a dab and up a steep muddy bank to the out gate.

Section 9. Was a down hill start and across the stream on green slippy rocks and around a tight right on the edge of the water as you turned and attacked the 2 steps of the rocky climb up the stream. It was a constant battle to keep the bike rolling over the rocks as every lap seen me take a different line as you headed to the out gate. This section took 3 dabs off me, 1 on lap 1 and 2 on lap 2.

The trial was very enjoyable and every section was challenging but ridable and even though I dropped 9 marks it was still enough to just take the win for the green route.

David Williams – Modern Mono Clubman

Hi all “bit about myself before I continue” my name is David Williams and I’ve been riding since a young age and since the “80s” I’ve not ridden since in over 15 years and did my first trials with my wing man John Warren at Pen y Graig at the July trials riding white route and we both only dropped 1 mark. Then I decided to go to yellow clubmans route for the October trial and I dropped 6 marks. So for November Nant Ucha I thought play it safe and do another on clubmans as I was “very tempted to ride intermediate” My score was 29! But I didn’t get any 5s it was mainly silly dabs…but a lot where justified due to the slippy sections So my three sections I would like to mention are…. Clubmans

Section 3 Down a average drop into the stream and a right turn through a narrow part and up over a medium but slippy tree root step, that instantly gave you not time to tackle a sharp right turn that have no grip at all!!! So had to take dabs and 3 it every lap apart from managing to get a 2 on final lap!! Really wouldn’t mind if this section can be added again or at least this annoying but challenging corner 

Section 4 This was a interesting one at the drop got a bit harder over time going into the stream and a few low branches…but then face two ways out of the stream, either a tight but short slippy climb, or to go up a higher bank faced with slippy slightly tree routed and rocky bank…. I chose the higher bank as it had a bit more grip and a extra second of momentum to get up. Scoring 4 in total as I didn’t get my line correct first 2 laps but happy to earn 2 cleans last 2 laps

Section 9 Arrrr a interesting one…as it was only for clubmans and above So anyone on white route didn’t see this one. So will explain best I can. Fairly difficult but ridable. Almost immediately into a stream with a choice of left side that was narrow “with the chance of dabbing” or up the middle over 2 rocks that I found fairly ridable if enough momentum was given at the bottom!! Then faced with some annoying rocks just before the final gate!! First lap I did what I thought the hard part was and took 2 dabs, 2nd and 3rd lap I cleaned it and final lap I took a STUPID dab all at the final part lol but a total of 3 marks in total My total score for the day was 29 not happy with my score! But I blaim myself taking too many unnecessary dabs that as we all know add up!!!! 

Above all a excellent event with Aqueduct trials club and as I always look forward to them!! See you all at the next one Thanks again to the organisers and observers!!

Mark Gaskell – Pre 65 Intermediate

After the atrocious weather we had on the Saturday, Sunday made a refreshing change. Mild, dry and sunny at Nant Ucha Farm. My three stand out sections, Intermediate route, Triumph Twin.

Section 1, Russ. Drop into the stream, avoiding knocking your head on the tree. Ride upstream on deceptively slippy rocks, then keep tight to the left to give enough room for a sharp right over a six foot root infested bank. Left, drop off a ledge and tight right through the end cards. On lap one I gave the bank too much throttle, much to the amusement/terror of those nearby/in the way. This required some footwork to recover the plot before it all went South. Lap two and four clean. Lap three however started to go wrong when I didn’t concentrate on the deceptively slippy rocks, and ended up on the wrong line for the bank. Over compensating with the throttle (who, me?) resulted in me landing the front wheel outside the flags, and directly in front of Russ’s coat and buttie bag! That could have been a life ban!

Section 7, Christine, with help from Albert. Starting next to the bridge we rode into the stream, slalom right left around some rocks, then up a short step. Swing right and thread the wheels through or over a jumble of varied height rocks, then pick a line to ride out, over between or round some more rocks and up a bank. The bike handled these beautifully, until lap three when the pilot allowed a deflecting front wheel to point the bike sideways at the bottom of the bank. Attempting to recover by using more of the surrounding land than usually necessary, and more throttle, resulted in me parking on a tree stump somewhat short of the flags.

Section 9, Jan. Do you ever have one of those sections that you can’t seem to get right no matter what you do? This was one of them. Riding across the stream into a tight right turn, either “float” turn or run the front up the bank. This left very little room for the decision to ride round or over the rock you were immediately faced with, which in turn decided the line up the waterfall after it. Turn right after the huge boulder and ride over a succession of smaller rocks to the exit. I managed each element successfully, but not on the same lap. I had a 5 within inches of the end flags when I hit the wrong rock, and dropped the bike in the stream. I had a 5 when too much throttle (who, me?) after the first right put me into the deeper part of the stream, which I dropped the bike trying to recover from. I think the remaining scores were a 1 and a 3, if so, I’m really pleased with the 1!

I believe the setting out on Saturday was challenging, even more reason to thank everyone involved for giving up their time for our enjoyment. Thank you!

Rob Sloggett – Walking around taking photos of riders after helping mark out the day before

I wasn’t sure whether I was going to turn up on Sunday… Let me explain why quickly. After helping mark out on Saturday, Russ offered to let me drive the 4WD buggy from the forest up to the car park. Mark in the passenger seat and Russ in the flat bed, he passed the keys through to me. CLUNK… THUD… OOPS. Hang on that was not my fault… Russ you didnt tie it in a knot! Yep if you have not worked it out, the buggy has two keys. An igntion key AND an isolator key. Both needed to start it but when one of them has fallen under the plastic panelling and all you have is a 10mm spanner to strip the whole buggy you know you have a problem. As I said, I’m not taking the fall on this one…. but as I had to shoot off home for a preplanned appointment, I had to leave them there (I did feel bad!)

Anyway back to my part of the report. I have been helping to mark out on the Saturday for a few months, and asked Mark and Russ if I could focus on the white route. My reason for this is the Beginners for me represent the future of the sport and if we can maintain interest and develop sections that are not dangerous but each time allow the rider to experience at least one skill or obstacle type, they will continually develop and feel like they have had a good days competetive sport as well as going home happy and having learnt something. The difference between practicing and competition I have found is that when you practice you tend to ride within your comfort zone / skillset but in competition you have no choice but to ride whats between the flags.

Section 3, was definately the hardest white route section of the day. Whilst not dangerous, it offered an end set of flags that had the riders riding across a gradual right to left camber and then being presented with a moderately tight right hand 180 being approached up a bank. For me the natural line would have been to run out wide, hit the bank straight on using the full width of the over run and then complete the final bit of the turn on the flat. The photos, vidoes and scores indicate that this was probaly the hardest of the Begineers sections of the day with the range of scores from 7 to 14 and in most cases this single section was about 40% of the riders total marks for the day. The feedback on Facebook seems to indicate enjoyment?

The other section for me was Section 8. Sometimes you have to work with what you have for the White route and with the top part of the section being very steep and rooted banks, there is no way we would put the beginners up there as any deviation from the line would result in a tumble, so it was a case of using a flat rutted area and then a muddy expanse up hill to the end cards. The aim here was to give some tight turns over rutted ground to develop slow throttle control and then a short blast where more throttle would be needed to commit the run to the out markers. Once again, the range of scores was from 1 to 13 so it just goes to show how hard it is to gauge the section for the cross section of experience, skills and bike (bearing in mind it ranges from a high end Modern Mono, a 50cc Beta, bog standard TY 175’s and older heavy Triumph 500’s) .

I spent the Sunday having a relaxing day. I had been ill the week before and did not have the energy to ride so I grabbed my camera and spent the day taking some competition shots as they had a full coverage of observers. It was great to spend some time persuing another one of my hobbies that I have not had much chance to do and I hope people have enjoyed looking at the pictures on Facebook.

The feedback on Facebook from the riders provided a few sound bites as follows:

Another great trials. Sections were spot on. Very tricky and slippy but ridable. Was great to see Albert Higgins pay a visit to nant ucha – Paul “Moz” Owen

I loved the trial so much…. I fetched the bib home! Thanks to everyone involved with putting on a great trial, especially the person who organised the weather! – Kevin O’Toole

As always!! Another amazing turn out and familiar faces! Bit of a challenge due to the slippy sections but although I droped some extra marks I enjoyed the challenge!! Much appreciated to everyone!! – David Williams

The final event of 2019 returns to Plas Onn, always a great venue and a cracking place to wrap the year up. As always we have to pass our thanks over to the Kynastons for use of the land and all of the Aqueduct team, observers and Chris DB for the catering.

Top Places:

Pre 65 Expert: Danny Littlehales, Francis Barnett (38); Kev Ellis, BSA (59)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Paul Owen, BSA (9); David Beddoes, Francis Barnett (13); Kevin Walker, Triumph (18)

Pre 65 Clubman: Terry Lloyd, Triumph (26); Graham Miller, Triumph (33); Steve Jones, BSA (35)

Pre 65 Beginner: Kevin O’Toole, Triumph (22); Chris Kenny, BSA (31)

Twinshock Expert: Ian Jones, Fantic (42)

Twinshock Intermediate: Dave Pengilley, Kawasaki (5); Tim Cuffin, Yamaha (6); Vincent Brett, Honda (15)

Twinshock Clubman: Trevor Bennett, Beta (17); Allan Thomas, Fantic (40); Graham Pennington, Ossa (43)

Twinshock Beginner: William Leigh, Yamaha (19); Chris Jones, Yamaha (33)

AC Mono Expert: No finishers

AC Mono Intermediate: Gordon Wilson, Honda (8); Paul Cartwright, Gas Gas (12); Ian Emery, Gas Gas (14)

AC Mono Clubman: Ken Williams, Honda (46)

AC Mono Beginner: No starters

Modern Mono Expert: Ian Smart, Montesa (28); Paul Edwards, Beta (55); Nigel Sproson, Monyesa (78)

Modern Mono Intermediate: Hayden Rainford, Montesa (17); David Ellis, Beta (20); Steve Walker, Sherco (23)

Modern Mono Clubman: Paul Haraker, Beta (5); Ad Gray, Gas Gas (6); Colin Steele, Beta (15)

Modern Mono Beginners: Chris Matthews, Beta (27); Jeff Hughes, Beta (28); Sean Halstead, Gas Gas (32)

Observers:

Section 1 – Russ

Section 2 – Suzanne

Section 3 – Ange

Section 4 – Harry

Section 5 – Dave

Section 6 – Gordon

Section 7 – Chris

Section 8 – Izzy

Section 9 – Jan

Section 10 – Mark

Bike Stats:

Pre 65 – 20

Twinshock – 15

A/C Mono – 7

Modern Mono – 27

Total = 69

Classes

Expert – 7

Intermediate – 25

Clubman – 23

Beginner – 14

Bikes

Pre 65:

BSA – 11

Drayton Starmaker – 1

Francis Barnett – 2

Triumph – 6

Twinshock:

Beta – 1

Bultaco – 1

Fantic – 3

Honda – 3

Kawasaki – 1

Ossa – 1

Yamaha TY – 5

Aircooled Mono:

Aprilia – 1

Fantic – 1

GasGas – 3

Honda – 2

Modern Mono:

Beta – 11

GasGas – 4

Montesa – 4

Oset – 1

Sherco – 4

TRS – 1

Event Report – Pen Y Graig (Oct 19)

Event Report by Rob Sloggett

Luckily, the 2020 calendar does not have any Aqueduct Classics clashes with the Kia rounds, but this year we have had several and Octobers event was up against the Central Wales Auto event so a few of our riders traveled across to ride that. Back at Pen Y Graig quarry a slightly damp morning threatened the odd showers but the 59 riders who turned up were greeted with a welcoming signing on team, a bunch of happy observers and of course Chris’s butty van.

The 59 riders were broken down into 20 Pre 65’s, 14 Twinshocks, 5 AC Monos and 20 Modern Monos with 7 Experts, 23 Intermediates, 19 Clubman and 10 Novices making up the distribution.

Mark Newman – Pre 65 Inters

One if the best venues around ..it has everything and some nice climbs. Once again Russ and the team did a great job setting out some fantastic sections and a whole compliment of observers. I had 3 favorite sections.

Ffirstly number 2, in and up around a tree, the drop back down tight left between two more trees you need a good pull on the bars to avoid the roots, then off camber to another right and you had to run the front wheel around a tree stump and the back wheel would go over it nicely. Down a drop back up over a cluster of more roots …it flowed beautifully….

Section 4 between and round trees and you had to make a big figure 8 to line up for a tricky slippy sharp hill up tight between two trees and tight left as soon as you get to top again. Some roots to negotiate with a tug on the bars ….a left and a good climb up around a tree down, a drop and a loose climb up and out .. nice

Section 5, I think Russ Jones observing is always a challenge…! Nice flowing section up and round a tree and an off camber drop onto a group of stones navigation between two trees on the rocks. It was slippy and the James went a bit quicker than I was ready so I needed a dab …its the first time I’ve rode this bike for 18mths and it revs quicker than the big Norton I’ve been riding all year. Tight u turn and back over more rocks onto a big climb off camber around a tree and back down. A bit of a choice around or over the rock to get out and once again a nice flowing section.

All in all good flowing sections with sOmeting to catch you out if your not aT full concentration. Massive thanks, had a great day .

Geoff Jones – Section 1

With the abysmal weather that appears to be none stop at the moment , we set up base in the farmyard as per usual to await the arrival of our competitors for the day. The sections had been set a little bit more relaxed to accommodate the conditions down in the quarry. So the 60 riders all set off to tackle the trial in less than favorable conditions.

Section one, white route was set as an innocent looking ride through but the muddy greasy surface still took a few points from the overconfident.

Yellow route obviously a touch more difficult was set to climb a rocky bank and traverse the base of the quarry wall before sharply turning back down a rock strewn outcrop around a tree, the turn obviously took the unwary by surprise with riders being caught out by the greasy moss covered rocks which altered in condition due to the on:off showers.

Green route was a tighter longer variation of the Yellows with a large slippery rock situated at the start of the section before a steep rock strewn climb, I could overhear lots of discussion re the best way and angle of attack at the section start to ease the turn after the rock before the climb. The section ran level with the quarry wall along a rocky camber, which in itself proved quite difficult due to the greasy conditions, to continue and drop down the same rocky route as the Yellows to the end boards.

Reds again was a more severe version of the Greens with an awkward deviation down the rocks around a tree and back up which for a lot of riders necessitated a long safety dab before the rocky climb back….

Julian Price – Twinshock Expert

I will call this report Remember…..

I would start this report by mentioning the 56 marks I dropped during this trial, and the report is more of an explanation of how not to do it.

Lesson 1. Remember, why Preparation is important. For a reason I won’t mention (Ian), my Fantic buddy and I went off early instead of the usual wait for everyone else to go, in the vain hope that they will scrub the sections and make them easier. So, we arrive at our first section (section 3), quickly look at it, and go for it. Ian makes a tricky long section look easy, and cleans it. I stall on the bottom of the first descent because I have failed to set my tickover! Preparation.

Lesson 2. Remember to be Confident. When you come across a technical looking section, AND Mark Samuel is the observer, keep your confidence. He may have been watching Tony Bou videos the night before, but he may have also remembered that he may have to wipe up your tears when you can’t do his section. We know he will be there with sympathetic words (not), and be ready to assure you that Dougie Lampkin tried it earlier and said it was easy, and all this was to HELP you remain confident. I didn’t remain confident and suffered the consequences. Many dabs dropped.

Lesson 3. Remember when walking the sections. When walking the sections, try hard to forget about previous poor efforts, and remind yourself you can do this! Oh, and remember this is your opportunity to actually study the section and remember where you are going. As a Human you do have a memory superior to goldfish, although a fishes ability to swim would come in handy sometimes. So, remembering the way through is a huge advantage. They are already tight enough without making last minute detours.

Lesson 4. Remember The Power of Positivity. When the section setters devise these cunning routes for our pleasure, they have a pretty good idea what is, and what is not possible. I do not recall going to a trial in the last 7 years where a section was impossible to all the field, was set out. So, on the basis of this, the sections are always possible to someone, and if he can do it, so can you. When riding the red routes there is always requirement at some point, to have large testicles. Now, some of my fellow riders have this area covered, and even have whole testicles to spare! I am, sad to report that mine resemble dried up sultanas which is only an advantage when you land heavily on the tank. Here the power of Positivity can help you, and elevate your gonads to the size of “space hoppers”. It is amazing what a difference a can-do attitude can make. So, I must remember, If Dougie can do it, so can I!! (Yeh, whatever) So in summary. Make sure your preparation is done. Be confident. Walk the sections and commit it to memory and grow some testicles. It’s like rugby, if you go in half hearted, you’ll come off worse as the bruises from going over the handlebars twice will testify!! Feet up.

Ps. After the trial was over, Paul O and I were re doing some sections and Mark Sams I could do for a 1, and section 3 that had me over the bars twice I could clean. Frustration.

Paul Owen – Pre 65 Inters

The day started off nice but we knew the rain was coming but so conditions would definitely change for the worse. Luckily most of the trials was under the trees inside the old quarry.

Here is 3 of my best sections.

Section 4 was tight and twisty. You dropped down into a bomb hole and climbed up left around a tree and back down into a really tight right turn and up a slippy rooted incline and between 2 trees that the handle bars just fitted through. Once at the top it was a tight left over some rocks and across to the bank on the far left as you climbed it on loose quarry stone that had no grip. Then turn right and up a slippy muddy off camber climb to the exit gate.

Section 6 was a getting wetter and slippy as the day went on. You entered it on the flat and turned left up a bank and had a sharp right turn, top side of a tree that the roots were showing so got slippy if you didn’t carry enough speed. But not to fast, as you turned right back down the bank and straight into a left turn and getting on the power to send you back up the bank, but there were 2 solid rocks side by side that you had to hit straight on and turn immediately right back down the bank. I always felt like I wasn’t in control on that corner until the bike slowed to the exit gate.

Section 7 was a basic path into a big bomb hole but I had to use 2nd gear as you headed to the left bank to get the speed for the very step climb up a greasy wet bank which you had to turn sharp left and select 1st gear to drop back down it to the exit gate. It wasn’t much of a section, but I’ve done a lot of improvements to the BSA bantam and got it revving more now so can try 2nd on bigger banks.

To be honest all the sections were challenging and enjoyable. Big thanks to aqueduct classic trials for another great event

Rob Sloggett – Section 9

Having assisted with the marking out the previous day and doing the white route, I was quite looking forward to grabbing a board and observing what the other guys had cooked up for the other routes. I had a section in a part of the quarry we had not used for a while. Basically it was graduated uphill channel with trees, some rock steps and a few banks, finishing with a large rock cluster near the end cards approached (depending on your route) by a number of snaking loose material banks.

Whilst the white route was fairly straight forward and the gradual bank only took a few dabs off the odd rider, the main challenge I had set which was an exit between two trees just over a handlebar width across, then a immediate left turn to the end cards did not really set anyone a challenge.

The yellow route had a great exit and after the straight forward front and mid section which took them around a rock step, they then had a left / right / left snaking climb finally running around the outside of the final rock cluster for the end cards. The early bank surprisingly took a number of dabs from riders but the uphill snake was certainly a good challenge needing good throttle control and line management to stay off the loose stuff.

Green (Orange) route incorporated in the middle section a really tasty rock step. Whilst it had a natural V in the middle and the line I was expecting riders to take was right in the nook (as it set them up for the main banked climb), most riders actually ran more right (i.e. hitting the flat edge of the right hand V rock) which forced a small turn on the bank. So strange to see as it was the consistent line! Quite a few fives, lots of threes but also regular clean rides.

The Experts had a complex section starting with a long climb up a bank, drop  (4 ft.) down the other side then immediately run parallel and turn back up  the 4ft wall to then drop back down a similar length to the run in. The mid section had the same step as the Inters (Green) but then the snaking climb had more tighter forced turns flagged in, taking them through a rock gully to the end cards. Some great rides with a number of riders coming out with clean sheets.

Mark Gaskell – Pre 65 Inters

After a few modifications, the Triumph’s first test was to be in Aqueduct’s trial at Pen Y Graig. A damp day, with promise of more rain meant it was going to be less than pleasant for the observers to be stood out watching us enjoy ourselves, so I’ll thank them first! Thank you!

Section 4. Gordon. Taking a wide line to the left allowed you plenty of room to turn right in the bottom of a gully before a short climb between two trees. Left and let the front wheel roll over a couple of rocks, then right over a fallen log, and finally a steep off camber climb to the exit. Other than a stray dab on the exit, no problem for the first three laps. On lap 4 light rain had made the first climb slick. I watched Paul Moz Owen struggle for a 3, but then Mark Newman flew up it, so I thought I would be ok. Wrong. I didn’t get enough momentum at the bottom and lost traction, which resulted in both bike and I reversing rapidly for a 5.

Section 8. Mark. The rockery. Not helped by watching one of the other riders fall heavily, I was a little nervous of this section. The first pile of rock looked likely to catch my clutch case if I went too far left, and the right hand side didn’t look appealing. A sharp right over a rock, followed by some loose rock, then right around a tree before choosing which rock to ride over. As it was the bike coped far better than the rider, but the rider didn’t have enough faith and put his feet down. A lot. 3,0,3,2.

Section 9. Rob. Starting in the bottom of a gully and swinging left up the bank, then right and over a rock step between trees. An off camber downhill left with exposed roots to another, bigger rock step, then a loose climb with an overhanging branch to distract you before the top. Slalom round the trees to the exit. This was deceptive, the bits that looked easy were difficult, and vica versa. I managed to escape with only 2 marks lost.

Yet another excellent trial from the Aqueduct team, thanks again for all your hard work. As for me, “Must try harder”. Just like my school reports used to say!

The feedback on Facebook from the riders provided a few sound bites as follows:

Another amazing trial! John Warren and myself are already looking forward to the next one! Will try and get some of the guys we practice with to come also! Glad to see loads of familiar faces 🙂 Massive thanks to all the observers and to the organisers! Plus Chris De Burger for his “yum yum” De munchies – David Williams

Another great trial today. Thank you to everyone who observed and set up sections. Thank you to Alan Dyson and Chris De Burger for riding round and helping start my bike – Talei Mallard

Thanks for the organisers, observers and riders patience while the grandson bashed round his first full adult trial with you all, good easy going trial, well set out for the recent weather – Karl Kavanagh

The venue for the next event is Nant Ucha, always good for a chilly November, but as always we have to close this report with a big thank-you to all of the observers, sections setter uppers, admin staff and Chris DB for the catering, plus the landower for the use of this great venue.

Top Places:

Pre 65 Expert: Chris Gascoigne, Francis Barnett (11); Tiny Gush, DOT (12); Alan Miles, Drayton Villiers (25)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Tim Lewis, BSA (3); Paul Owen, BSA (5); Roly Jones, Ariel (7)

Pre 65 Clubman: Jeremy Sutton, BSA (6); Steve Jones, BSA (6); Tim Godsmark, BSA (7)

Pre 65 Beginner: Kevin O’Toole, Triumph (3); Alan Dyson, BSA (18); Chris Kenny, BSA (20)

Twinshock Expert: Ian Jones, Fantic (17); Steve Thompson, Yamaha (52); Julian Price, Fantic (56)

Twinshock Intermediate: Stephen Knight, Fantic (5); Jed Downes, Honda (14); Craig Howard, Fantic (15)

Twinshock Clubman: Graham Pennington, Ossa (18); Allan Thomas, Fantic (23); Darren Riley, Bultaco (28)

Twinshock Beginner: Chris Jones, Yamaha (11); Jeff Hughes, Montesa (20)

AC Mono Expert: None

AC Mono Intermediate: Paul Cartwright, Gas Gas (4); Martin Powell, Honda (13); Gordon Wilson, Honda (14)

AC Mono Clubman: Ken Williams, Honda (14)

AC Mono Beginner: None

Modern Mono Expert: None

Modern Mono Intermediate: Mark Diggie, Sherco (9); Andrew Dean, Beta (9); Neil Lyth, TRS (20), Steve Walker, Sherco (20)

Modern Mono Clubman: David Williams, Montesa (6); Spence Bradley, Gas Gas (12); Elwtn Beedles, Sherco (14)

Modern Mono Beginners: Chris Matthews, Beta (6); Talei Mallard, Beta (32); Jonathon Hughes, Sherco (34)

Observers:

Section 1 – Geoff

Section 2 – Izzy

Section 3 – Dave

Section 4 – Gordon

Section 5 – Russ

Section 6 – Suzanne

Section 7 – Mark

Section 8 – Chris

Section 9 – Rob

Section 10 – Jan

Bike Stats:

Pre 65 – 20

Twinshock – 14

A/C Mono – 5

Modern Mono – 20

Total = 59

Classes

Expert – 7

Intermediate – 23

Clubman – 19

Beginner – 10

Bikes

Pre 65:

Ariel – 1

BSA – 8

Dot -1

Drayton Villiers – 1

Francis Barnett – 1

James – 1

Triumph – 7

Twinshock:

Bultaco – 1

Fantic – 5

Honda – 2

Montesa – 1

Ossa – 1

Yamaha TY – 2

Aircooled Mono:

Fantic – 1

GasGas – 1

Honda – 3

Modern Mono:

Beta – 9

GasGas – 4

Montesa – 2

Sherco – 4

TRS – 1

Event Report – Nant Y Ffrith (Sep 19)

Says it all really….

Event Report by Rob Sloggett, Mark Gaskell Suzanne Bowkett and Kevin Williams

The August break had seen 7 weeks off since the last competition and what a way to start back with a visit to a great new venue and great weather!

Nant Y Ffrith Farm boasts some great terrain and this event really just scratched the surface and hopefully we will get the opportunity to use it again. Whenever new venue become available, the ongoing goodwill of the landowner is inevitably infliuenced by the respect the riders play to both the land and the way we showcase the good nature of our sport and I think Sunday ticked all of these boxes.

So what of the numbers? Well 69 riders signed on with 20 Pre 65’s, 21 Twinshocks, 11 AC Monos and 17 modern monos. The classes were split with 12 Experts (of which 6 were in the Twinshock class), 29 Intermediates, 14 Clubman and 14 Beginners (of which 7 were in the Pre 65 class). Single enteries were seen in the Pre 65 Experts, AC Mono Clubman and AC Mono Beginners classes

Mark Gaskell – Inters Route, Pre 65

A great new venue and gorgeous weather, what more could you want for on a Sunday?

My score wasn’t helped by a silly five when a dead branch flicked my chain off in section 7, and an even sillier one in section 10 when I went the wrong way! Excuses out of the way, difficult to narrow them down, but here are my three standout sections of the day:

Section 3, from the gate, a gentle turn up and round a tree stump which needed gentle throttle to avoid overshooting the next element, a full lock left hand turn. Off full lock and straight onto full throttle to climb a ten foot bank with a tree root becoming more exposed with each lap. Traverse the top of the bank before plunging off to the ends cards. Short and steep.

Section 4, you know you are in for a treat when the start of the section is a long way down hill! Sure enough it started with a short climb over a earth bank, which dropped onto a path and left. Slalom over some tree roots then run wide left on the bank to make a hard right onto a steep and loose 20 foot climb, followed by a left and a gentle climb up through the trees. Plenty of climbing! The last element was a short descent to a right turn and the end. Lovely!

Section 6 was my nemesis. Straight, over a step, then up a long steep bank, veering right over a rockery, then finishing with a full lock left round a tree and full lock right over a root. I didn’t get this section right all day, two 2’s and two 3’s .

Kevin Williams – Inters Route, Pre 65

Another brilliant trial put on by Aqueduct and there new venue did not disappoint and a fantastic day was had by all.

My 3 favourite sections were:

Section 4, this had to be my favourite section. It started with a good climb up a dry dusty bank then it dropped into a gully then over some roots then you had to swing it over to the left slightly onto the bank then immediately turning sharp right up a decent climb then it carried on up to the left then finally dropping down between some trees back into the gully and through the out gate.

Section 5 started with a good blast at a steep bank with exposed slippery roots then turning to the right behind a tree and up a second bank then dropping immediately into a rocky channel weaving through a pair of trees and out over a slippery log which ran on a diagonal.

Section 8 started with a little climb up onto a boulder then turning to the left around a tree then back to the right through another two trees and up a steep solid rock climb then it led across to the left were you had to get over a rock step then it dropped around a couple of trees and out.

Rob Sloggett – Inters Route, Twin shock

After the DNF on the Bultaco at the last event, I had not had time to look at the Butaco (one of the downsides of working aways from home), but it did give me a great reason to use the Majesty purchased a few months ago. Having riden a Whitehawk 200 in the 80’s I loved the Yams but never actually owned a Majesty so when one came up locally it seems silly not to buy it! My plan for this event was to get a feel for the bike on what was a lot of banked climbs and being the shorter wheelbased Mini with a 200 engine I was advised that it could be light on the front end. The gearing was also very different to the Bultaco so I wanted to get a good feel for the limits and torque from the bottom end that 2nd gear would give me and a few sections allowed me to really get to know the bike.

Section 4 was the first one to set me a challenge. With two good climbs (one into the section and one within the section) it felt like a 2nd gear run but the climb into the section felt just a bit wrong for second so first it was. The entry and fiddly bit in the gully offered little complevity but one into the bed of the gully, half way up we hd a 90 deg right turn straight up a long pulling bank with roots. To get a good run at it you had to really snake up the left hand back then sweep down to make the 90 deg turn and snp the throttle to make the climb. Weight well forward and keeping smooth was key but the lenght of the climb really pushed 1st gear to the limit. A 5 on the first lap due to being well off line was followed by a pair of twos but it felt cleanable and on the last lap it all come together. If not under competition pressure I would love to go back and try the same combination in second. I suspect it would pick up clean and not bog down and probably be a lot less buzzy at the top end of the rev range.

Section 5 was probably one of my favourites of the day as the opening bank combination was definately in my weak spot. A cross camber climb with two sets of roots offered two lines to aid you on the right hand turn at the top of the bank. You could either come off the power early and run the front wheel below the second set of roots but then the rear wheel ran low to the tree that sat in the middle of the bank or you could fire much higher up the bank, take the front wheel about the second root line and allow the rear wheel to run a line between the two root formations. I went for the latter and once again first gear was my selection (my thought process being second was more likely to fire the front wheel into the air). The observer after the event certainly commented about the high rev range I was pulling but a think the 4 cleans (albeit with a single dab lost of lap 3 I think at a later point of the section) made me content with the outcome.

Section 6 was definately a second gear blast up a long climb. The first 20 foot greeted you with a small step then another 10 seconds climb gradually getting steeper with a rock and root cluster and it bent right gave you something to think about. You then had to fire across a short root crop to then be faced with a tight 180 deg left around a tree to the out cards. The turn picked up single dabs for me and I struggled to get a feel for the turning geometry and the climb caught additional signle of pairs od dabs leaving me to drop 10 on this section (25% of my overal score). A great section though….

Section 8 was up there with Sectoin 4 as one of my top sections and one that had a second to first shift down as the challenge switched from climbs to tight steps. This one was great to understanding the control and speed of second as the start had a brief upward climb but with an left right combination of turns at low speed then into a bomb hole with a right turn to line up to a steep bank which you had to sweep left straght after the crest. A swift change down to first to line you up to a root / rock step which needed the front wheel to be lifted with enough speed to carry you over the lip then a simple run down to the end flags.

Two silly fives contributed to my score but a great deal of learning on the new bike and certainly one I am going to enjoy riding whilst the Bultaco gets checked over and the frame and a few other bits powdercoated, the hubs relined and a couple of other things to sort. The inter route is definately a challenge and pushes me outside of my comfort zone but thats what this sport is about I suppose….

Suzanne Bowkett – Observer Section 4

Absolutely loved the new venue!! Russ and I were on section 4. White route separate from the rest so a bit hectic at the beginning but loved observing it!!

Bit of a tough one but lots of happy smiling faces think judging by the comments everyone enjoyed it.

As always, we received great feedback on social media and some of the comments are below:

Big thanks to the organisers and observers ! Very good trial at a new venue, sections well set out , challenging but that’s trials ! Great atmosphere and chat with the riders, brilliant day really enjoyed it – Paul Corfield

Was a fantastic day today Geoff, big thanks to you and your team and what a lovely place – Jeff Hughes

Thanks to the whole team for organising and to those that helped him on his way round Jack really enjoyed his first trial – Ian Moody

The usual close by thanking everyone involved and I look forward to seeing you all at the next round.

Top Places:

Pre 65 Expert: Kev Ellis, BSA (35)

Pre 65 Intermediate: Simon Thornley, BSA (0); Dave Lovell, Triumph (5); Graham Greaves, Triumph (20

Pre 65 Clubman: Rob Godwin, Francis Barnett (2); Tim Godsmark, BSA (6); Andy Steele, BSA (21)

Pre 65 Beginner: Jeremy Sutton, BSA (0); Peter Cockins, BSA (3); Chris Kenny, BSA (4)

Twinshock Expert: Chris Gasgoine, Montesa (29); Dave Wood, Ossa (33); Jim Williams, SWM (46)

Twinshock Intermediate: Dave Pengilley, Kawasai (5); Vincent Brett, Honda (15); Stephen Knight, Yamaha (17)

Twinshock Clubman: Steve Blackburn, Montesa (9); Mike Kelly, Fantic (14); Darren Riley, Bultaco (16)

Twinshock Beginner: No finishers (

AC Mono Expert: Matt Spink, Honda (23); Jerry Hawker, Honda (75); Paul Young, Gas Gas (107)

AC Mono Intermediate: Paul Cartwright, Gas Gas (8); Gordon Wilson, Honda (10); Ian Emery, Yamaha (15)

AC Mono Clubman: Ken Williams, Honda (31)

AC Mono Beginner: Jack Moody, Scorpa (90)

Modern Mono Expert: Nigel Sproson, Montesa (74); Robin Foulkes, Yamaha (80)

Modern Mono Intermediate: Paul Hempkins, Gas Gas (18); Jason Davies, Gas Gas (25); David Molyneaux, Montesa (28)

Modern Mono Clubman: Neil Lyth (1); Jamie Jones, Beta (1); Perry Tattam, Beta (15)

Modern Mono Beginners: Jeff Hughes, Beta (0); Johnathon Hughes, Sherco (24); Talei Mallard, Beta (31)

Observers:

Section 1 – Dave Williams

Section 2 – Geoff Jones

Section 3 – John Sowden

Section 4 – Russ and Suzanne

Section 5 – Chris De Burger

Section 6 – Mark Samuel

Section 7 – Izzy Cartwright

Section 8 – Angela Godsmark

Section 9 – Chrissie Samuel

Section 10 – Jan Jones

Bike Stats:

Pre 65 – 20

Twinshock – 21

A/C Mono – 11

Modern Mono – 17

Total = 69

Classes

Expert – 12

Intermediate – 29

Clubman – 14

Beginner – 14

Bikes

Pre 65:

BSA – 10

Francis Barnett – 1

Norton – 1

Triumph – 8

Twinshock:

Bultaco – 1

Fantic – 4

Honda – 3

Kawasaki – 1

Majesty – 2

Montesa – 3

Ossa – 1

SWM – 4

Yamaha TY – 2

Aircooled Mono:

Aprilia – 1

GasGas – 2

Honda – 4

Montesa – 1

Scorpa – 1

Yamaha – 2

Modern Mono:

Beta – 7

GasGas – 2

Montesa – 2

Sherco – 4

Unlisted – 1