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Sporting Trials - Craig Bazley's Mid-Season Review

Fri 19 Jul 2013

The season this year should have started on Sunday20th. January with the Larry Cook Trial. The weather decided otherwise causing the postponing of this event.  This meant that our first outing this year was to Syde in Gloucestershire for the Piccadilly Trial organised by the Western Centre. This event also attracts a number of BTRDA Competitors giving a total entry of 22, of which only eight were 750 Championship contenders. Heading the 750 drivers was Richard Robarts closely followed by John Cole. The event was hard on some of the cars with a total of eight retirements.

Sunday, 4th. March saw  eleven 750 Competitors joining in with the BTRDA drivers for the Walsingham Trial at Jacksons Wood, at Horsmunden near Tunbridge Wells  as usual Bill Watson as Clerk of Course, laid out some challenging hills to test the skills of the 23 drivers. Who had been divided into National `B` and Clubman’s Classes. The overall Winner was Ian Wright who just managed to beat Thomas Bricknell on a tie break of  21 to 20 clean climbs, both having lost13points. The Clubman Class was won by Arthur Carroll with a loss of 15 points. The best 750 Championship contender was John Cole with a loss of 37 points.

Our next outing was a return to Tullecombe Woods near Rogate in West Sussex for the Harold Biggs Trial on Sunday 17th. March. This was a Clubman status event and 13 contenders started this round of the Club Championship. Including newcomer Stephen Wicken who was competing in his first event. Bob Bruce was the overall winner with a loss of 98 points and was the only surviving `A` class driver still running at the end of the event. A very popular winner of Class `B` was Nelly  Danel  on 108 points will Luke Little won the Novice Class with a loss of 119 points . This was a high scoring day mainly due to the surprizing lack of grip under the thin layer of leaves. In spite of the high scores a very enjoyable days sport. The following week there was the Southsea Motor Club`s Presidents Trophy, to which the 750 Club is usually invited with a Clubman Class specially for our Members.

After the Easter week-end it was time for the Alan Gisby Trial, on Sunday, 7th.  April. For this event we returned to Betchworth Quarry near Dorking. This was a return after a break of several years. The parking was good; fairly easily to access and leave at the end of the day. This a venue usually used by the Motor Cycle Trials Riders.  Who turned out to watch our cars in action and were surprized at the climbing ability of our cars. We were joined at the venue by the Gisby family and several other members of the 1980/90 Trials fraternity. It was good to see them all and have their support on the day. Enough of the chatter now for a few details of the event. The Trials Committee laid out six challenging hills for us to tackle. Although some looked a trifle daunting, we had no incidents and only one retirement.  There were 15 starters, through the day we saw some excellent climbs with all but one hill being cleaned by several drivers. Steve Avery after driving well all day emerged as the overall winner with a loss of only 18 points.  Ross Bruce just beat Stuart Beare by one point on 23 to Stuart`s 24 points to win the “A” Class.  Chris Burton won the “B” Class with a loss of 55 points from John Sleight on 79 points, and Luke Little won the Novice Award with a loss of 78 points.  The awards were very kindly presented by Mrs Jo Gisby.

Our last round of the Championship before the summer break was the Bluebell Trial; which was held at Steep Marsh near Petersfield.  The Committee this time laid  out eight  challenging  for us to attempt again clean climbs were possible but there were more ones and twos than zeros through the day.  Although the location of the hills were mostly on ground we have used before the routes of each hill differed from previous events held here. Again a very enjoyable event a relaxed feeling to the event but it certainly did not lack a competitive edge. The winning score was higher than that at the Alan Gisby and all the scores were higher across the range of entries. At the end of three rounds of eight hills the winner was Stuart Beare with a loss of 40 points. Steve Avery won the “A” Class with 55 points lost.  While Kevin Judd surprized himself by winning the “B” Class with a loss of 64 points and the Novice Award was won by newcomer to Sporting Car Trials Stephen Wicken with a loss of 122 points.  So on to our last event before the Summer Break the Non Championship Trials Picnic. This year held at Tulleys Farm, the picnic this year being organised by Tulleys Farm they certainly did us proud. The selection of food was well presented and much appreciated by all the Competitors and their guests. On the completion side of the event we had 3 rounds of six hills to play on as this a Non Championship event it more a day of competitive practice for everyone. With scores kept to maintain a competitive interest. So no awards today but Stuart Beare was best overall losing 19 points. Top driver in the Class “A” group was Richard Robarts on 42 points. John Sleight was top driver amongst the Class “B” losing 45 points and young Sam Beare was the best Novice, driving his Dads car losing only 62 points. Certainly a potential future Champion I think.

Our first event of the 2nd. Half of the season is scheduled for Sunday, 22nd September. The venue has yet to be finalised. The Committee are looking at several potential venues in the Hampshire and West Sussex areas.  If any drivers have some venue suggestions within this type of area please let a Committee Member know. We are hoping to soon be in position of having a different venue for each of our Events. We look forward to meeting you all again in September at the Autumn Cup Trial.