Sunday, 3 April 2011

27 Mar 11 - The Cotswold Cups Trial (Rickman Championship Rd 1)

Having already entered this trial I am gutted that due to illness I cannot ride.  The Rickman championship series is one that I have never really done well in and with NT410 I was hoping to make an impression this year.  It's hard to stay at home knowing that Dave, Teflon & Pete are all riding one of the finest trials in the country. 

Still, it's not all bad news.  Had the ACU Sammy Miller championship begun as per the 2010 schedule then I would have missed the first round.  This would have effectively put me out of the championship running for 2011.

I turn my mind to the Cheltenham Home Guard Sphinx Trial on 17 Apr 11; hopefully, I will be back to fitness by then

I console myself watching the ICC Cricket World Cup match on Sky!

24 Mar 11 - BAD NEWS!

I haven’t been feeling well following the Zona 1 Trial and notice a profusion of bruises and red spots all over my body.  I go to the Doctor at 1400 who does a blood test.  At 1900 I get a call from a consultant haematologist at Gloucester Hospital informing me to report to hospital immediately.  It appears I have a blood clotting problem called ITP and at risk of severe haemorrhage! (no pressure)

I go to Cheltenham A&E and get admitted overnight.  Fortunately, they need the bed and I get released back home with Steroids and under strict advice NOT TO RIDE – BUMMER!!

20 Mar 11 - Zona 1 MCC, Les Davis Trial at Nettleton Quarry

Another Diesel saving Trial; instead of riding with Bath Classic at Emborough Ponds Dave and I elect to ride with the monoshock club Zona 1 at Nettleton Quarry which turns out to be an inspired choice.  As it’s only up the road I have a lie in, strap NT410 to the trailer and get there by 0930. There’s a few famous faces about, namely Steve Saunders and Becky Cook, plus a generous helping of up and coming youth riders (some of whom I must confess to not knowing....yet!).  I entered and joined the club before the event so signing on was a breeze and the officials are very efficient. 

Dave Arkell on his Ariel HT5

Pete Collins Ariel HT5

Dave (Ariel HT5) and I meet up with Pete Collins (Ariel HT5) and Bill Andrews (BSA Bantam) but Teflon sadly, is playing Golf. 

I’m pleased to meet up with old friend, Heath Brindley, who I spot giving doing some impressive tricks on a trials push bike despite him having a bad knee.  He’s still spot on with this trials lark!! 

A quick look at the sections and my fears are allayed.  Sometimes Monoshock clubs lay out a course that is overly demanding for Pre-65 machinery but here, the Sportsman route looks just right.  After a quick rider brief we’re off to Sub 1; there’s a big entry and nobody wants to go first.  Dave fires up the Ariel and gets things underway.  He goes the wrong way and incurs a 5 straight away but I learn from his error and take a clean.  I get to Sub 2 and the Matchless dies.  A plug change doesn’t sort it out so I get the Magneto cover off and sandpaper the points.  A quick kick over with the spark plug on the barrel indicates a healthy spark so I replace the spark plug and the Matchless runs sweet.  Such is the fun of riding an old bike.  The sections are twisty undulations and NT410 feels good although the headstock nut comes loose on the second lap but I decide to ride with it as it is.
Exiting Sub 5

Heath plants himself at the twisty Sub 5 and gets a few good snaps of the field as they take their turn.  Sub 8 is a cracker however, the club have erred on the side of caution which is probably as well given the Youth entry.  With so many entrants I get time to watch some of the Youth riders while I’m queuing and I’m very impressed particularly by No. 21 on a little 125 Beta.  He’s definitely one to watch for the future; bags of heart, coupled with confidence and skill.

Overall, I go clean on the day and get the best Pre-65 award on the sportsman route.  I’m glad to have re-kindled an old friendship with Heath Brindley and it’s good to see some other famous riders in a local trial.

I’m glad I joined the Zona 1 Club; I’ll be riding with them some more this season!
Concentration is sometimes called for!

The Flying 410!

Thanks to Heath for these wonderful shots!