Yorkshire Classic - Captain's Trial Results

yorkshire classic mccOn a day that saw the four season's of weather in 5 hours, the 130 riders that got their entries in early for the Yorkshire Classic Club's were treated to 3 laps of 15 sections on a 3.5 mile lap.


The previous day's snowball shower sent the section markers scurrying for cover and made the ground slimy and unpredictable.


The riders were greeted by a light spring shower and several were delighted to find they had come up trumps winning a B & S motorcycles donated Putoline product in the prize draw.


Section 1 was a rock strewn path over rejected masonry from the former stately home that soon became covered in mud and took marks from all but the top 4 riders on the normal route plus Mick Preston, Les Humphries, Mark Elvidge and Eric Boocock on the clubman's route.


Section 4 was the next section to test the experts. The normally straight 2nd gear approach had been lost to Mick Clarke's enthusiasm to make life difficult for the riders by routing it round a tree at the foot of the climb. Only eventual winner Anthony Cooper of the heavyweight brigade rasped his twin up the slimy bank without loss. Sounded great! The clubmen were saved the from the climb taking a slippery but easier exit.


The waterfall of section 5 is amongst the favourites but takes few marks off the top riders these days.


It was the following section in the rocky torrents of the so called Luddenden Brook that took marks from every hard route rider except former World Champion Yrjo Vesterinen out on his very special but Scottish legal Cub for the first time. Anthony Cooper lost his only mark of the trial in the over the hubs deep channel on the initially slimy stepped river bed, John Maxfield (Cub) lost 1 and both Pre-Unit Springer class winning rider Ben Butterworth (Ariel) and Paul Heys (Cub) lost 2 of their 4 marks final total here. By contrast the Clubmen had it easy keeping to the shallows.


The next 4 sections were also in the 'Brook' and it was the nasty 90 deg turn of section 10 that took marks off several of the best. It was where the Bantams shone with clean rides from the delighted 2 stroke class winner Steve Thomas, Nigel Greenwood and Mick Grant with Cub mounted Vesty, Maxfield and Rochdale Club stalwart Mick Whitlow amongst those sharing the limelight. The clubmen also entered the deep water here and class winners Gordon Imrie (Ariel) and Vintage 2 stroke winner Ady Brayshaw (James) were amongst the select few clean. The deep water drowned several machines including Chris Bacon's immaculate Matchless. The over 1 mile uphill push back to the start doesn't bear thinking about!


The next two sections in the quarry were tricky but rideable twisting over the rocks of tiny watercourse. Chris Bradley was almost hidden from view and keeping warm in his fishing shelter, watching the new exit to this old favourite section.


The long and straight, wall enclosed climb of 'Durham Lane' becomes harder every year as the rocky rut gets deeper. Specials class winner Keith Hobson (Armac Cub) and Mick Grant were they only riders to stay clean in their respective classes with several top riders doing the same. By contrast, this section took more marks from the clubmen than all but one other. Sidecar star Robin Luscombe, out for pre Scottish practice on the rigid Royal Enfield, chose to ride the hard route and showed his class by being one of only five clubmen to clean the Lane together with veteran Maurice Brayford on his oversized DOT, Bantam mounted Mick Dickenson, Speedway's Eddie Bull and Ripon's Richard Bainbridge.


The usual slippery climb in the wood by the reservoir at the penultimate section had to be kept relatively short this year as changes in the ground conditions were uncertain. The riders were able to let rip and the exhaust music raised smiles amongst the entry. The clubman found the going tough and it was their highest scoring section. Only 3 clubman riders were un-penalised with Gordon Imrie's Ariel, Mike Dawson's rigid Bantam and Harry Stanistreet's Ariel Arrow engined 2 stroke twin playing the right notes on each lap.


The verdict seems to have been that it was an excellent event with the sunshine warming the assembly for the majority of the afternoon's entertainment.


The final weather season was played out as the route was cleared and large hailstones laid a short term white carpet on the valley.


Thanks to all the Yorkshire Classic members and friends involved in making the event run so smoothly and especially to the landowner for the privilege of allowing us to use this fabulous Pennine venue.