A typically mild early October greeted the 65 riders who turned up at Pen Y Graig quarry ready for a great days spot. As usual, the sections had been marked out with 4 routes making perfect use of this venue. Generally dry under foot, the break down of bike classes was 19 Pre 65’s, 9 Twinshocks, 7 Air Cooled Monos and 30 Modern Monos.
Right from its inaugural competition, whilst being a club with its roots firmly in classic trials, it has always valued the modern class as a feeder class to catch peoples interest in the classic scene or as a more forgiving bike to ride for beginners coming into the sport. Therefore it was no surprise to see 9 beginners in the modern mono class including a number in the youth class.
The overall breakdown of route classes was 11 Experts, 30 Intermediates, 11 Clubman and 13 Novices.
Paul Owen – Pre 65 / Intermediate Route
Another great event with aqueduct classics, and the club set out another amazing trial. I was riding the old rigid frame bantam in the intermediate class as the expert class has gone even harder for me and I know my limits….ish haha . Here are my 3 favourite sections but all 10 were equally as good.
Section 2….With a gentle right hand climb onto a flat then a steep downhill slippy rooted off camber bank immediately into a sharp right turn and a tree to the left . But it was a fallen tree and was the same height as your handlebars. You had to be 100% committed to the drop in as there was only one line. Once around the corner it was a simple left, right between 2 trees and up the climb to the out gate. I drop two 1’s on lap 1 and 2 just because I had to pull the front around from hitting the tree but I cleaned it on lap 3 and 4. It was the trickiest section of the trial for me but it gave you a big grin if you cleaned it.
Section 4… with another straight forward uphill start to a platform then up onto a big rock that was so easy to lose the back end as it wanted to slide to the left and if it did it would kick you towards a tree. Once over the rock slab there was a slippy off camber that looked nothing but could catch you out on the gravelly footing to the exit gate.
Section 10…this was at the very bottom of the quarry near the entrance. Yet again another climb up the banking from the start and into a left hand turn back to the bottom, and a very tight right hander and up a 5ft climb over a rock then straight into the left and up again. You had to keep your momentum over the rock and turning. Then you followed the off camber banking to a rocky drop to the exit gate. It was a steady section but took 5 marks off me as I’m sure the gearbox locked up and stopped the bike dead as I was attacking the 2nd climb on my last lap. Luckily I stayed upright but bent my wrist back and hit the headstock really hard with my chest and it knocked me for six. I finally got the bike started after about 20 kicks and the bike seemed ok. But then I heard a clacking noise in 2nd and 3rd gear. Which is a common thing to break in a standard bsa bantam chocolate gearbox. Apart from that hiccup it was one of the best trials I have done even though I ended up in 6th on 11 points.
Plus the group of lads I was riding with made it very enjoyable with banta and laughter. Massive thanks to the organisers and observers for another great day.
Stephen Harding – Modern Mono / Novice Route
A big thanks to everyone involved in setting up another great trial at this brilliant venue, a massive thanks to all the observer’s without whom it wouldn’t be possible to have such a good day, so thanks to everyone for giving up there Sunday so we can do wot we love doing, cheers, and not forgetting Chris deburger for keeping us fed and watered, cracking bacon butties and a brew to start the day.
Here’s three of my favourite sections although it was hard to choose as they were all great.
Section 5 – Mark on watch, So you start off from the main track looking straight down a steep shale slope to where Mark is standing, into the section, back brake on and front on quite a bit and roll down to where Mark was then a bit of a tight right and in to a bit of a wooded area and some loose rocks then left across some more mossy rocks between some more trees and then a tight right past another tree and then fire it up another steep shale slope and out of the section and then up an even steeper slope back up on to the main track, a bit of everything on this section but I enjoyed it.
Section 7 – Russ and Sue on watch. Another one of my favourites. You start off from the bank and drop down a bit of a shale bank and a bit if a right past a tree and on to a rocky base along and through a couple of more trees .Then a tight right up another shale bank and an even tighter right out of the section, I managed to clean this one every time so was made up.
Section 9 – Dave on watch. A great section this one. Again you start off from the main track straight into the section and up a steep shale slope and head towards a large tree and then a tight left round the tree and on to some good sized rocks keeping an eye on the big rocks then on to the top of the section through the flags and the a really long very steep slippery shale slope back down to the end of the section trying to avoid the tree to the left on the exit.
Overall I had a great day with some great riders, had some fun and good banta along the way.
Big thanks to all the aqueduct team for all the hard work that you put in so we can do what we love doing, cheers Can’t wait to see you all at the next one,..
Tony Williams – Modern Mono / Novice Route
Here we are back at Pen Y Graig, great weather which made all sections very grippy. We will start on the white route, Section one.
A short steep drop on to a slow left turn with loose rocks everywhere. Then tight left over a small bank, then into a dip before a steep climb to out flags. Everything going well until the last bit and who walks straight in front of me, the one and only Peter Edwards a yard before out flags! Had to hit the brakes, missed the out flag, but great observing – as he had seen what happened and did not down mark me!
Later on I got Peter back, my Honda was running a bit rich, smoking a tad and he was in a queue behind me so I left engine running for a while……
Next section 7, a short one but over loose rock & marbles underneath you. Down short bank tight right, then a full lock exit to the outs. Got it right three times, but the last one eagle eyed Sue spotted me having a safety dab on exit!
Then on to section 8, up a bank, round a tree, drop down into dip, up steep bank right turn on & flat for ten yards. Then right turn in between two trees, very tight, then full lock left to out. I hated this one, first time got it all wrong missed the out flag, well flattened it. A 5 off from Ian.
An enjoyable trial, a tad easy in some sections, but the young ones loved it, gives them great confidence for the future. Well done Aqueduct. Many thanks.
Steve Blaxall – Air Cooled Mono / Intermediate Route
I arrived at the farm yard in my van, wound the window down to get parking instructions off Mark Samuel. To be greeted with “Its your fault” and he pointed to the rip in his trousers. Apparently last minute alterations that morning to a section they were not happy with had caused a little accident. I wont repeat what I said, but we both had a laugh and the banter had started. It was the start of a good day.
Here are 3 sections that tested me in different ways.
Section 2 – Ride into the section, slight uphill across to the right, then left after the markers and across the level ground. The hard bit is now in front of me. its a short steep decent with a right hand u turn at the bottom to come back up the bank. This was a tight turn. and what made it worse was being all closed in, the ground sloping away and a tree that would not let you past if your turn was not exactly right. Once out of there you rode out looking up to the left. The end cards were at the top of a steep climb. You had to ride between two close together trees before you got there. They were the type of trees that could jump out at you if you weren’t concentrating. I made a complete hash of this section first lap, taking lots of dabs going into and around that turn in the dip. I cleaned it once, which pleased me and a strategic dab in that turn for the 2 other laps. 5 marks lost in all.
Section 5 – Only 2 marks lost here. but it had the type of turn that I dont have much confidence in. The section starts down a long steep bank, followed by a fairly tight right in front of the observer. Now ride up the bank in front of you and turn left at the back of the tree, now its a shallow climb to the rear of another tree. Its now a tight turn left to go back down the bank switching from up hill to down hill in the turn. I was never settled doing this turn and basically winged it!. At the bottom of the hill it was a right turn back on yourself and a gentle climb to the end cards. I could quiet easily of dropped a lot more marks on this section. Definitely need to practice more on this type of turn.
Section 6 – A section we have seen before but now in reverse. A steep downhill left required a lot of attention and smoothness with the throttle as it merged into a steep uphill climb. At the top was an immediate right turn down a bank that was scattered with rocks. Remember to keep turning left through the trees then right – it was tight here and could easily catch you out then a straight run before turning right at the foot of a bank, aim for the end of the rocks, before turning right to cross the mud and up the short steep bank remembering to keep left, so as to make the end cards down the other side. Cleaned this on the first lap. Second lap coming down the rocky bank I must of freewheeled with the clutch in ,just using my brakes (not a good habit of mine ) by the time I let the clutch out i was already in the tight turns, this upset my balance and several dabs were now required. Not good. Third lap I excelled my self and made an effort to leave the clutch alone and I was clean right up to bank at the exit, only I was off line going up the bank, being too far over to the right. Not a problem I thought. I will correct it all the other side. I didn’t get that far. I used to much back brake at the top, stalled the engine, lost balance and fell down the bank, nearly making the exit cards but without the bike!. Think that’s a 5? Fourth lap was uneventful with a single dab. Clutch use seems to be hard wired in me. Need to force myself to use it less.
Was happy with my ride, only one five which i think is a new 1st for me on greens. It was a great day, saw a few more faces returning again, the banter was flowing and it was great to see the youngsters on their 50’s & 80’s. We really are fortunate to be doing this. Many thanks to all the crew and observers for taking the time and effort to make this all happen. Last but not least, Chris De Burger for keeping us all fed.
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.
- Expert – No starters
- Intermediate – Peter Edwards, Drayton Bantam (1); Kevin Walker, Triumph (5); Mark Lucas, Drayton Villiers (8)
- Clubman – Graham Miller, Triumph (2); Paul Brimlow, Cotton (4); Steve Walker, Francis Barnett (13)
- Novice – Paul Beswick, BSA (0); Paul Jones, Triumph (16)
- Expert – Tony Gush, Majesty (12); Paul Sagar, Honda (19);Jim Williams, Honda (22)
- Intermediate – No finishers
- Clubman – Darren Riley, Bultaco (24)Joel Riley, Yamaha (17)
- Novice –
Air Cooled Mono
- Expert – No starters
- Intermediate – Shaun Mountford, Beta (0); Mike Jones, Fantic (2); Steve Blaxall, Fantic (21)
- Clubman – No starters
- Novice – Pete Rainsford, Yamaha (18)
- Expert – Mark Blackwell, Beta (60); Mark Diggle, TRS (78);Declan Marsden, Gas Gas (81)
- Intermediate – Spence Bradley, TRS (0); Robin Foulkes, Sherco (5);Ken Williams, Montesa (7)
- Clubman – Gary Jones, Beta (6); Jeff Hughes, Beta (19); George Jones, Beta (24)
- Novice – Jay Hanmer, Oset (0); Logan Price, Beta (3);Glyn Roberts, Montesa (5)
1 – Pail Cartwright
2 – Dave Lovell
3 – Chris
4 – Gordon
5 – Mark
6 – Steve Jones
7 – Russ / Sue
8 – Ian Jones
9 – Dave
10 – Elwyn
- Pre 65 – 19
- Twinshock – 9
- Air Cooled Mono – 7
- Modern Mono – 30
- Expert – 11
- Intermediate – 30
- Clubman – 11
- Novice – 13
- BSA – 5
- Cotton – 1
- DOT – 1
- Drayton – 3
- Francis Barnett – 1
- James – 1
- Matchless – 1
- Triumph – 6
- Bultaco – 1
- Honda – 5
- Majesty – 1
- SWM – 1
- Yamaha – 1
Air Cooled Mono
- Beta – 1
- Fantic – 2
- Gas Gas – 1
- Honda – 1
- Scorpa – 1
- Yamaha – 1
- Beta – 10
- Gas Gas – 5
- Honda – 1
- Montesa 3
- Oset – 1
- Scorpa – 1
- Sherco – 3
- TRS – 2
- Vertigo – 3