The last Nomads official trial of the season, and hopefully also the last Nomads trial that I miss due to convalescence after my injury in March (beware the Ides of March).
Bases farm in Wellington is by far the nicest venue we have - from the animals and birds to the varied terrain, the shady river area, and the friendly host with his dogs (and the ramming ram).
Dion was back on the bike after finally getting it all put together again. Timmy had come in anticipation of some competition in the Junior Electric Trials, but ended up riding alone.
Murray was back after taking time out to ride enduro and paddle the Berg. We also had two newcomers: William and Will(iam).
Mark du Plessis arrived late on his new Sherco and won the experts section.
After following the riders through each section on the first lap, I went to the nicest section (2) and took some photos as they came through, while enjoying the nature and solitude. It was my 52nd birthday.
A very long section with a new entry and an old bit in the middle. Maybe a bit too long as sections go, but it’s a nice ride though and a good place to start the trial. Very low scores for masters and experts but fairly high amongst the rest.
A new one on the steep side of the river with lots of going up around trees for Michael, a few less for experts and pretty much a straight ride through for clubmen. Michael scored his highest tally here (11) with everyone else scoring very low.
Another fairly long section, but with many hazards incorporated. From a tightly winding start, across concrete pipes, massive logs for Michael, over the stream and up a steep embankment, to cross the stream again to the end.
A little further up the stream, this section used both sides of the valley with the stream at the bottom. The fairly easy start to the trial suddenly changed here and riders had to think a bit more as to how they were going to ride it. A steep exit out of the stream on a soft earth bank proved troublesome, so this was changed for the remaining laps. Although Michael had some very high embankments to climb he only lost three here while the experts were battling a bit.
Away from the stream and into the rocks, this section wound its way through and over numerous rocks and scrub. A low scoring section, but one where it was all too easy to lose one or two.
A lot more rocks with some fairly big stuff thrown in. Experts and masters started with a large rock step followed by some awkwardly spaced rocks then onto a flat one, a short gap, then another flat rock. A little breathing space, then the section went up through some broken granite rocks, made a tight right turn to come down again, then another turn left up and over more broken rocks and boulders. Michael had an enormous boulder to cope with and managed the section for seven. I thought the first part of the section was going to be very tricky, but the expert scores were very low here. Even a large rock that fell into the section for the last two laps did not cause too much trouble.
Starting at the base of a large sloping granite rock, the section made its way up onto the rock, through a gap between boulders, then a tight turn on loose dirt, leaves and twigs with a straight line climb to the exit between some trees. The turn and the climb seemed to be where most marks were lost.
In amongst the gum trees, the section made use of the natural gradient, loose surface, fallen trees and rock outcrop to good effect. Again low scores amongst the masters and experts with high scores amongst the intermediates.
Generally speaking, I thought there was a good mix of sections and terrain. Certainly in the expert class it was a trial where everything was cleanable, but you had to keep your concentration all the time. I think Mark did exceptionally well on his nice new Sherco.
Thanks to all who helped with this trial, Russell for the venue and Sale's Hire for the toilet.
|Mark du Plessis||0||0||1||4||0||6||1||4||16||1|
|Lee McEwen||4||1||2||9||1||3||4||1||25||2||18 cleans|
|Brian Barson||0||0||3||8||2||3||5||4||25||3||15 cleans|