Lots To Come

It’s good to learn that the Scott Trial is now full, as far as I am concerned as a long time supporter of this fantastic event, (now taken up by Trials Central itself), it’s a trial that should always be full as it remains a great challenge to riders of all abilities, with no guarantee that the top men won’t succumb to trouble or even suffer the embarrassment of missing a section.

I was chatting to one of the Richmond guys only today and he told me that this year the trial will run in the reverse direction, as it does every three or four years to maintain some variation in the route. For those who don’t know what’s the normal direction and what’s the reverse direction, riding in the reverse direction you tackle Bridge End, Punchard, Whaw Bridge and Black Hills BEFORE crossing the Grouse Moor, which makes the infamous Grouse Moor later in the trial than it is the “normal” direction of the trial.
In fact running in the reverse direction is actually a lot more work for the organisers as the trial doesn’t naturally run that way, meaning the course has to be flagged so that many of the sections are ridden past before the riders ride up them. It also increases the mileage a bit. But it’s necessary to keep the variety.

I haven’t seen the entry list yet so can’t comment on the likely winners, but no matter who is entered, there’s no doubt it will run at its usual frantic pace as the 200 riders tackle the 80+ miles and 80 odd sections. For the past seven or eight years now I’ve observed or been a number checker in the trial and as the group I go with usually have Black Hills, it allows us to have a quick look at some of the earlier sections before we have to be on station and then again some of the very late sections in the trial. It’s a great day and one I look forward to every year.

As a national trial secretary, I have just received from the ACU the forms to apply for a national trial next year should my club wish to hold one. The only dates that are currently in the calendar are the world trials rounds, the British Solo rounds and the Youth rounds, and whilst these are not cast in stone until the FIM have confirmed their dates at the Autumn Congress, they generally remain accurate. It would be wrong for me to publicise these in advance of the ACU, as I receive them for private information rather than public consumption at the moment. However, I think it’s fair enough to say that some countries that have traditionally hosted trials in the past, are no longer allocated rounds, assuming of course that they make an application.
Not for me to make comment, but it would be of interest to see countries like Finland, Sweden, Ireland and even the USA and Australia allocated rounds (though of course they may not have applied) which would spread the interest around a considerable amount.

As a non-betting man, I would not know the odds on Spain winning the Trial des Nations in Poland, in fact I rather suspect that it would be nigh on impossible to get odds quoted if I were a betting man. However, that they won is now common knowledge as is the fact that the British quartet of Dougie, Dibs. Pune and Wiggy came second, as was expected.

I went to the last TdN in the UK when it was on the Isle of Man a few years ago, and the two women’s events were especially great to watch as it was possible to relate to the sections they were riding, whereas of course the Men’s TdN is on much tougher stuff, but none the less interesting. Next year’s TdN is a long way off, of course, but there’s plenty happening before then so there’s lots to look forward to, the Scott in just a few weeks (preceeded by the Lakes Two Day of course) and then a full winter of sport, with the anticipation of another visit to Scotland next May for the 100th Scottish Six Days.

You have probably noticed that this column is very late in appearing this week. Not down to me not writing it, far from it, but unavoidable technical problems have been the delay, which probably means the next column will now be Sunday week, rather than next Sunday.