BMCA "A Year for Al"...

 AKA "Hammertight"...

 

 Explanation...

 A bit of a late start this year... due to an IT glitch that stopped me getting reports from Luke,  until I found them hidden away in a G-Mail file. 

 But Al was up there and got both Luke and I together on the same page so to speak...Page on "The Life of Al Ussher" later..

 This year we will try and incorporate more little Videos of the events if we can..

 Which to my mind portrays the events much better and with sound,and puts you at the venue of the event...

 Thanks Luke AKA "Spanner" for your help...

 

BMCA Easthope 13.10.2019.

Longstanding BMCA venue, Easthope Wood played host to this week’s BMCA trial. For many years, the trial was diligently organised by our former correspondent Al Ussher. Following the sad loss of Al last year, it was unanimously decided upon that the trial should be renamed in his honour to the Al Ussher Air Ambulance trial. The trial has raised hundreds of pounds in donations to the Air Ambulance year on year – a cause that all bikers are particularly passionate about. Despite a modest turnout of twenty three riders, but a full group of observers, this year’s total raised was a pretty healthy £457, including a kind donation from the BMCA.

As the day approached, the outlook was grim, lots and lots of rain forecast and delivered. Ask any BMCA regular and they’ll tell you Easthope is usually a muddy affair; so, the prospect that lay ahead, following some pretty solid downpours, was daunting. However, the reality was much better than anticipated, the weather eased up just long enough for the trial and the ground held up remarkably well. Of course, there were a couple of sections that turned quickly into their usual muddy conditions – just the stuff to get the grey matter working and dust off the mud riding skills!

A great effort by Nigel Houlston, Andy Lane and John Davies, gave us ten well thought-out, quality sections. Taking the weather and ground into account, the sections were laid out just right. At first it looked as though the setting out was a little too accommodating, but the logic and experience behind it soon became apparent by lap two; when things got interesting.

As always, rigid bikes were present; Les Richardson and Dave Beddoes both competing on their lovely period correct machines. Richardson took the rigid class win by a good margin on seventeen points, he’s getting to grips with the Panther and learning where its strengths lay the long wheelbase makes it very stable and it “just flew up” section nine (the long slippery climb that was Al’s favourite section). Swapping from the Drayton Francis Barnett back to the OK supreme must have been a stark contrast, but Beddoes still put in a great performance to finish on thirty-three points lost.

Clubman class saw an entry of eight this week, Dave Pengilly, Steve Leyshon and Jerry Munslow making up the top three. Competing on an ex-Al Ussher DOT, Pengilly only dropped a couple of dabs here and there and took the class win on just five points lost. An extra two dabs cost Leyshon dearly, leaving him to settle for second place on seven points. Hot on his heels was Munslow on ten points. The top three were a way ahead of the rest of the group who scored twenty-four or higher.

The largest group of the trial was intermediates class, ten entrants in close competition. Top spots went to Joe Owen, Bob Greenhough and Mark Strong. Owens trials pedigree was evident in his score of seventeen – a good four points in the lead. Greenhough snatched second from Strong, twenty-one points to twenty-two; great riding from both distanced them from the rest of the pack with scores of twenty-eight plus.

Expert class, although a small entry this week, saw plenty of good riding; Steve Hay, Nathan Jones and Kev Taylor making up the top three. A stray two dabs on the incredibly slippery section one were the only that Hay picked up during an impressive display of riding. Jones made his 2019-2020 season debut in style, finishing on eleven points lost. Steady riding by Taylor brought him home on fifteen points.

Our observers came to the fore once again, venturing out on such a wet morning to allow the riders to lark about in the mud; thanks guys, you are invaluable! A particular thank you must go to Sandra and Lesley Ussher for laying on a post-trial treat – cakes! They certainly spoiled us with a multitude of delicious cakes that would put Paul and Mary to the test! The treats rounded off the trial nicely, lots of smiling faces as a result.

Abbreviated results:

Expert class; 1 STEVEN HAY (BAN) 2, 2 NATHAN JONES (BSA) 11,  3 KEV TAYLOR (C15)

Intermediate class; 1 JOE OWEN (BAN) 17, 2 BOB GREENHOUGH (BAN) 21, 3 MARK STRONG (BAN) 22.

Clubman class; 1 DAVE PENGILLEY (DOT) 5, 2 STEPHEN LEYSHON (BAN) 7, 3 JERRY MUNSLOW (BAN) 10.

Rigid class; 1 LES RICHARDSON (Panther) 17, 2 DAVID BEDDOES (OK Supreme) 33.

FULL Results here.

Report and (bad() photos by Spanner

 

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BMCA trial at Bedlam 20.10.2019

Well nobody ever said life was easy, certainly nobody ever said a trial at Bedlam was either… Not that any of the riders, observers or spectators would have had it any other way! Laurence Alden, Nigel Randal Steve Leyshon and Jerry Munslow put on a right treat for all involved; superb use of the terrain gave us ten sections guaranteed to get the adrenaline (and arms) pumping.

The sections started with the familiar section in the lower end of the stream and headed up to the constant that is section ten at the top (‘Neil’s section). A total of seven sections in the water and three utilising the adjacent banks. Familiar sections were kept fresh by a few tweaks thrown into the mix – all worked brilliantly. The scores saw some clear winners in each class, with clusters of close scoring through the rest of the table. Also evident is the skill of the course plotters, nobody got an easy class win but also none of the sections were sheer punishment!

 

We don’t have many streams or rocky terrain on the BMCA calendar, so Bedlam always stands out from the rest of the season. The venue is a favourite of many riders for many reasons, for example the chance to play in the rocks, the beautiful surroundings, a field leveler – it’s all good. Even when people take an early bath mid-section or have to sit out for a minute trying to work-away arm-pump by lap three, chances are they’d be smiling, including one poor soul that took a tumble through a bush…..

Clubman class top marks went to Dave Harrison, Andy Hunt and Ernie Johnson. Harrison made a strong return to the field this week, fourteen points lost in total. Continued steady riding by Hunt this season, he just lost out by one extra point, taking second place. Johnson came in third on twenty-six, good scores on most sections blotted by a few pesky fives. In the rest of the class, there was a good deal of quality riding, including Barfield – his riding is coming on week on week.

The largest entry of the day was Intermediates, eleven in the class, with Dave Beddoes, Kevin Walker and Christopher Dean taking the medals. Beddoes surely showed the rest of us how it was done; a score of just ten points in total. A well-deserved second place went to Walker, keeping his cool and finishing on thirty-six points, despite his bike losing a chain at toward the start of the trial. Good riding by Dean, saw him take third on thirty-seven points.

A relatively low field of just five entrants in expert class, however this did not make for disappointing competition; It was hard to predict who may win the class this week. When the scores came in, Kevin Taylor, Paul Munslow and Laurence Alden made up the top three. Consistent skill and control netted Taylor the win on twenty-one points. Second place Munslow, twenty-five points, showed sparks of brilliance; the only man of the trial to clean section five all four laps. Equally, third place Alden, showed the men from the boys with his trial leading four cleans on section ten.

 

Abbreviated results:

Expert class; 1 KEV TAYLOR (C15) 21, 2 PAUL MUNSLOW (BSA) 25, 3 LAURENCE ALDEN (BSA)

Intermediate class; 1 DAVID BEDDOES (FB) 10, 2 KEVIN WALKER (TRI) 36, 3 CHRISTOPHER DEAN (BSA) 37.

Clubman class; 1 DAVE HARRISON (BSA) 14, 2 ANDY HUNT (VIL) 15, 3 ERNIE JOHNSON (CUB) 26.