South Coast Group Championship
- South Coast Trials Group
Bognor Regis and District MCC ran the February round of the South Coast Group Championships at Blacklands Farm near East Grinstead, in Surrey on Sunday 12th Feb. Clerks of the Course Steve Forrest, Bob Collins, Derek Tickner-Wand and Eric Clarke toiled through the snow on Saturday to lay out 12 sections in the rocky stream that prevails at this venue. They also managed to find a couple of sections out of the stream including an old fashioned mud slot which confused a few riders as there was really only one route!
Sunday dawned grey but without the threatened snow and 41 riders signed on. The group headed off to the far end of the stream for an easy opener to get things moving. Although there was no further snow it was a cold day with no-one wanting to get wet in the stream. Thanks to the observers for standing in the cold all day.
Winner of the January round, Stuart Read of the RRND club, got off to what he described as a poor first lap, but a ‘pep’ talk from Dad at the end of Lap 1 and some tweaks to the bike meant that he improved thereafter. However, even though he was riding very well it was not good enough to beat Chris Heane who rode superbly to take the win on 23 marks lost compared with Stuart on 27. The loss of a few extra marks on the muddy climbs of sections 4 and 5 made the difference. Good to see Ben Heane back riding again and taking third place.
Gary Martin had a great day in the Inters taking a clear win from Scott Martin on the day, although Scott was riding well and did beat Gary on a couple of sections. Michael Hyden on his pretty TRS was close behind Scott and still getting used to the new bike. This class suffered due to the date clash with the Colmore as a few of the ‘regulars’ were missing in action.
The Blue route is ridden by several classes and Alan Patton had a superb ride to finish on 16 marks lost closely followed by Paul Barnes on 21 and then Mick Huskinson on 31. Alan struggled with Section 1 which didn’t bother most of his rivals, whereas he only had three dabs on Section four which featured several steep muddy climbs and took maximums from a large number of riders on this route.
The Clubman A riders compete over half the blue route and half the red and Geoff Muston on his sweet sounding little Honda was riding very well, as always, with a smile and chat as he wizzed round finishing before some had completed two laps!
The ever popular red route was won by Derek Strudwick from Chris Neville but it was good to see Dave Harris having some great rides. Dave admitted he was rusty and had struggled ‘riding round the garden’ on Saturday – well he certainly rode better on Sunday! Also good to see Ralph Charman enjoying the ride round and still getting those cleans.
Everyone seemed to enjoy their day, with the scores on each route about right. Next months South Coast Group trial is hosted again by the Bognor Club, on the 12th March at Miscombe Woods, but check the Club website for details.