Yorkshire Classic’s first Championship trial of the year turned into a wet and windy event as the day progressed on the hills above Bingley, causing some discomfort for the observers and not helping the 67 riders’ efforts in the rocky sections laid out by Clerks of Course, Dale Harrison and Ian Livingstone.
Ben Butterworth, riding a borrowed Bantam, was not put off by this, losing his only mark on Alan Forest’s section 7, a straight run over the rocks and uphill to the finish. Second placed Tony Calvert lost all his marks on section 4, a downhill start, along the cambered hillside and back up the rocky groove, which caught everyone except Ben, Mick Clarke and Andrew Scott. The next challenge was Section 5, twisting up the hillside through some tight gaps between well embedded rocks with only John Maxfield joining Ben and Tony on clean. Section 9 started along an old broken wall and uphill between large embedded rocks catching everyone except Vesty, (Yrjo Vesterinen), Nick Jefferies and the winners. Rob Shepherd has been helping the Club with observing and it was good to see him back on his bike and finishing joint 3rd.
On the eased Clubman route Carl Winstanley led the way losing only 1, with Barry Fieldhouse second on 7. Again, the most difficult section was 4, with an easier run below the camber to enable speed up the hill, with Graham Wilkinson and Max Clift joining the first two on clean.
The eased route on section 5 up the grass banking took marks from all except David Cockcroft and the first 2. Whilst not the biggest mark taker, section 2, a rocky run along the wall side, caught all the Clubmen except Carl, Ike Myers and Max Clift.
For 2019, the Club has introduced an Intermediate Route into the Championship to give further choice to riders, where up to 5 Premier route sections are ridden with the balance being Clubman sections. The response has been excellent with 14 riders trying it out at Lady Lane, which is recognised as quite a challenging venue and it is hoped that feedback will help the Club to further refine the new Route.