The countdown to the 2012 Scottish Six Days Trial (SSDT) has begun. This year's lucky 275 riders who made it through the over subscribed ballot are once again set to make the pilgrimage to the Scottish Highlands to compete in this world-famous event on 7th to 12th May. Amongst these competitors will be reigning British Champion, James Dabill (Beta), who earned his second SSDT win last year.
The event celebrated its centenary last May and remains a highlight of the international trials calendar. This will be the tenth year Dabill, the 25-year-old Beta rider from Leeds, has competed in the SSDT. So as the SSDT enters it second century, the question being asked is can Dabill complete his hat-trick?
Who better to answer that question than the man himself. James responded: "The Scottish Six Days Trial is one of the best trials events in the World. It's every young trials rider's dream to go up there and do it. Winning the SSDT was definitely on the list of things I set out to achieve in my career and now I've done it twice. It would be great to get a hat-trick this year."
Impressively, both of Dabill's SSDT wins have earned him a place in SSDT history books. In 2007 he was the first competitor since 1966 (Allan Lampkin) to win the SSDT on a four-stroke and last year he became one of only two riders (him and Sammy Miller) to win the event on both four-stroke and two-stroke machines.
"It's always a bonus when you do make it into the history books, but the most important thing with the SSDT is to get out there and have fun," says the Yorkshire rider.
"I don't think you could have an event like it anywhere else in the world. It doesn't matter if the weather is bad or good, it always feels great to be out there. It's a beautiful place and the people of Fort William and Lochaber are always so welcoming."
Whilst Dabill will no doubt be keeping a close eye on his nearest rivals who include the likes of Dougie Lampkin (Gas Gas), Michael Brown (JST Gas Gas) and Alexz Wigg (JST Gas Gas), he offers his advice to younger riders preparing to compete in the SSDT for the first time this year:
"To any young newcomers, I'd say don't try to do too much in one section, just do enough. Don't go stupid on the moors, it's important to save your energy for the sections. But most of all, just enjoy it and have fun."