There is a local trial on at Cowcombe in Chalford however, the Golden Valley Classic trial is so well attended that queuing is a major headache. Now I have the van I’m able to go further afield so this year I elect to try something different.
|Clean-ish before the start|
Penny and I are up early for the long drive to Lime Kiln Quarry near Langport in
for the Somerton Classic Club’s Gordon Francis Memorial trial. Dave and I, along with Teflon and Pete Collins contested this trial in March but December is the normal running date; it having been delayed in December 2010 due to snow. Somerset
|Approaching the tight turn in Sub 1|
The heavy rain sees the venue sodden but we find a hard standing to park the van. The Gordon Francis Trophy is contested by pre-unit bikes riding the A route however, following a quick look at the course before signing on, I elect to ride the B route again. There are a few good riders down this way who can really do the business on heavyweight singles and it’s a joy to watch them on the tight and twisty course.
|In the turn on Sub 1|
I start at Sub 1 and it’s straight into tight stuff; I get the initial tight turn correct but take a dab when I lose the front wheel in the rock strewn gully. Sub 2 continues the theme but I go clean on all four laps. Sub 3 is trickier; a steep climb takes you straight into a tight double “S” but despite an initial clean I have an altercation with a hawthorn tree to record a total of 4 marks lost here (and a badly cut shoulder and arm!). Sub 4 has just enough room for me to get the bike around and I record four cleans. Sub 5 is a mixture of water and greasy banks which I clean however, on lap 3 I encounter something lurking in the muddy water and have to take a steadying dab.
|There was something|
in the water here!
I must be half asleep as I go the wrong way on Sub 6 on the first lap and gain a maximum which is disappointing. However, I rally and go clean for the other three laps. Sub 7 is too rudimentary on the B route but there isn’t much scope for the Clerk of the Course to play with. Sub 8 is a cracker; a watery entry leads to a steep climb into a tight gully and despite looking tricky I’m pleased to go clean. The entry to Sub 9 is a joke; You have to limbo under a fallen tree trunk up a greasy bank to get into the section however, I manage to get under OK. Finally, Sub 10 is a long, twisting, undulating section but I maintain concentration and go clean on all four laps.
|Carefully does it in Sub 6|
I take second spot in the Pre-Unit/Twins Class (B route); my eleven marks loss was not good enough to beat J Pym’s Triumph (9 marks lost) and I rue going the wrong way in Sub 6 as this would have ensured a class win.
Thanks to Dave Fisher and the team at Somerton for a cracking trial; I really enjoyed it. Despite being in
I’m back home earlier than if I’d have gone to Cowcombe. Somerset
|Chris & Jill spectating at Sub 10|
Thanks to Lynda Metherell for kind use of these photographs. Riders wanting photographs may email Lynda at firstname.lastname@example.org quoting their riding number.
Next up: Herefordshire Classic Trial at Clyro
|Final shot of 2011!|