Dougie Lampkin - Vertigo is closing in on an historic eleventh Scottish Six Days Trial (SSDT) win as the former multi FIM Trial World Champion remained feet up for a fifth day in succession as the sun continued to shine in the Scottish Highlands. Whilst the victory itself remains very much in the balance, with Jack Price - Gas Gas just five marks off the lead going into the final day, already the big question is being asked - Can Dougie go one better than Gordon Jackson did when he won the 1961 SSDT on a single dab, and go clean all week?
Whilst it is obviously a record that Dougie would dearly love to add to the many that he already holds, his first objective will be to get the job done and further extend his winning tally to eleven, that being six more than the five SSDT titles won by both Sammy Miller and Mick Andrews who are next best in the honours list.
Price remains a real threat heading into day six and has shown why he was the winner of the 2016 FIM Trial2 World Cup with some tidy and consistent riding despite his relative lack of SSDT experience. Michael Brown - Gas Gas is another man who should not be discounted, currently in third spot, the likeable challenger from Scarborough sits just three marks behind his younger team mate going into the deciding day.
Despite not enjoying the best of days with a five-mark loss, Jack Sheppard - Beta still holds fourth position, but has lost important ground to the leading trio and thus has greatly reduced his chances of being part of the fight for outright victory heading into Saturday’s showdown.
After his poor showing yesterday, top foreign rider Jordi Pascuet - Gas Gas reversed some of the damage done on day four with his three mark tally today seeing him climb back up to fifth position overall.
SSDT newcomer, Thomas Minta - Gas Gas continues to impress and holds sixth spot with one day remaining despite dropping one place today. Both Minta and Scotland’s best performer Gary Macdonald - Scorpa parted with eight marks apiece over today’s thirty testing hazards. Macdonald goes into day six in seventh spot, leaving Andy Chilton - Scorpa, Sam Haslam - Gas Gas and Richard Sadler - Beta to round out the top ten overall respectively.
Current FIM Women’s Trial World Champion Emma Bristow - Sherco has again more than earned the respect of her male counterparts with her holding thirty-third place in the full results with just one day to go as well as totally dominating the fight to be the best Female rider in the two hundred and eighty strong mixed entry.
Being the best Over 40 competitor will mean little to Dougie Lampkin if he fails to lift the main prize, but will be yet another trophy to add to his already over-crowded mantle-piece. Thomas Minta will hope that he has a top ten finish overall to go with his best Newcomer prize come tomorrow afternoon whilst Gary Macdonald will be no stranger to collecting the award for best Scottish rider unless he endures an absolute disaster on day six.
Although the finish line now maybe in sight, Saturday’s route should never be underestimated. After the tough finale to last year’s SSDT and the welcomed feedback from riders post event, the organisers have duly removed Nevis Forest from the closing day but have still included sections at Achintee, The Ben and Glen Nevis before the traditional end to the week at Town Hall Brae, by which time the 2017 SSDT winner will have been decided.
It was a long day today as the riders headed out for the traditional road run round the Moidart peninsula. A lengthy spell at the first sections at Doire Dhamh as we waited for leader, Dougie Lampkin on what was his late day, then a quick stop at WD's followed by a spell at Meall Nam Each and finally into Rhuba Rhuadh to end the day (apart from the 2 hour wait for the ferry).
Trials Central Supporters - Bumber gallery of over 290 images from day five, hi res and unwatermarked. Access by clicking here