Sunday 3rd April saw the return of the Jack Leslie Ellis Memorial trial after a 2-year hiatus. This Yorkshire Centre Trial is a tough two-lap road trial, which sets out to challenge all riders entered. Due to being a road trial this was not open to youth riders.
Joel Sadler, clerk of the course, along with other Ripon Motor Club members set up a challenging 18-section trial. The 100 riders were faced with sections that were a hearty mix of rocks, hill climbs and streams; these combined with loose shale, tight turns and deceptively slippy ground meant for a great day out. With sections through woodland, across rivers and over moorland along with difficult terrain between sections, this really was a fantastic event and that was enjoyed by many.
The Championship riders put in a strong performance with the top 5 losing less than 10 marks across 36 sections, with the top 3 only losing 5 marks each. Section 12 proved to be the one that caught most of the riders out; a lose rock stopped Richard Sadler (Vert) in his tracks, costing him his only marks of the trial. The same unpredictable section took Danny Gamble’s marks with a 2 first time through and a 3 on the last lap. Thomas Housecroft (Vert) had a great ride throughout with 5 single dabs to come in third. Top 10 scores: Sadler (5), Gamble (5), Housecroft (5), Timperley (8), Crinson (9), Yeadon (17), Rooksby (17), Middleton (18), Howell (19), Spivey (20).
The green course had a great turnout of 42 riders tackling a tricky route round. Section 5 through Westhill Wood claiming most of the marks and Section 9 through Bostocks river was the decider section. Leading from lap 1, only losing marks on 3 sections, Dave Mawer (Vert) took the win for Clubman A class. Nigel Crowther (Vert) and Ben Burgin (Vert) with solid rides took second and third spots. Mawer (12), Crowther (16), Burgin (17), Tales (19), Gravestock (20), McGee (21),Wright (25), Pears (26), Heath (27), Gravestock (28).
The best ride of the day on the easy course went to Robin Luscombe on his BSA, closely followed by Mark Sunter on his Ariel. Both proving that the old bikes are more than capable of keeping up with the newer editions. With only 4 marks separating the top 5 in the class, it was a closely fought battle. Ian Bradley’s tough water section was the biggest mark taker on this course. Luscombe (11), Sunter (12), Mitchell (13), Gaunt (14), Haigh (15), Holmes (20), Chippendale (23), Hayward (24), Lamin (25), Farrington (28).
A huge thanks goes to the landowners for allowing the club to use their land, and to the observers who, whilst it remained dry, stood out in the bitter wind to allow the riders to take part in the trial.
Ripon’s next trial is the First of the Saturday Night Series at Lightwater Quarry.
Photographs Neil Sturgeon
Roving Reporter Megan Hare