Sunday would see a cloudy start at the Seymours arena venue in Oxfordshire for the Men to strut their stuff on the man-made sections to decide who was to take over from last years winner, but non entry this year, James Dabill.
Overnight rain hadn’t really made any impression on the sections with just the grassy parts retaining a little dampness by the time the event got under way at 10.30 on Sunday. The clouds started to break up and throughout the day the riders and crowd were treated some sunny intervals.
15 riders undertook two laps to decide who would be the top 8 to contest the final, 5 sections into the final lap the riders would be trimmed down to 4 for the final 5 section shootout. Jack Peace, out on one of his first rides on a 250 GasGas instead of his normal 125cc machine, would lose out on a place in the final by virtue of number of cleans. Toby Martyn – Beta, was also unlucky in the same tie as Ross Danby took his place in the final on his TRS.
Iwan Roberts – Beta, had been the man to beat right from the first qualifying lap with a stunning score of just one mark on the tight and possibly more sever than previous years sections. But the wheels nearly came off his run as he suffered a nasty accident during the second lap that had rumours circulating that he may have broken his leg! News of his demise was greatly exaggerated as he returned to complete the lap and still finish top of the table on cleans, tied with Michael Brown and Jack Price on their GasGas’.
All of the riders put on a stunning show for the crowd, with amazing riding skills but just the top 8 moved on to those first sections in the final.
Once again Iwan led the way and lost just a single dab on the very tough section three, with Michael Brown, Jack Sheppard – Beta, and Jack Price joining him to contest those last 5 sections. Dan Peace – Gas Gas, Ross Danby and Gas Gas pair Alexz Wigg and Sam Haslam gave it their all but had to sit out the rest of the afternoon.
After the 8th section Michael Brown had taken the lead for the first time and you would have bet that he would have kept it but an unexpected maximum on the very next section gave Iwan the relative safety of a 3 mark advantage to play with in the last section of the competition. Of course he didn’t need it as the Welshman signed off with a brilliant clean to put his name, for the first time, on the winners list for this brilliant event. Jack Sheppard was just 3 marks behind Michael at the end with Jack Price a further 7 in arrears.
The tenth running of the North Berks Supertrial was going to be the last for a while but after posing the question to the riders and crowd at the end on whether they should do it again Stu Robinson was greeted with a resounding yes … so you never know!
All Photos – Trial Magazine