The final championship round.
Sunday 4th November 2018, Hillsborough Mcc Sheffield
Following front brake issues from the previous Trial, a lot of head scratching and several hours in the garage was required to modify a new disc to fit my old bike. After a successful test ride the brake was working better than ever. A different carburettor had also been modified to fit, which was working really well, so the bike was ready… but was I?
My travelling partner Dean and I arrived nice and early at the venue, not far from the Lady Bower reservoir, on the edge on the Peak District. I’m told there’s some lovely views, but with thick fog, we just about found our way to the burger van for breakfast!
An excellent entry of around 120 included some very good riders that don’t ride the full series but were sure to challenge for the honours. Heading off to section 1 I felt good, a few nerves, but calm and focussed.
The first few sections were relatively easy and most riders were still clean until the tricky section 9. A rocky climb out of the stream with a turn up a slippery mud bank, then over another rock. Many riders were struggling for grip on the mud, so not getting the momentum to clear the rock. With a bit of skill, a sprinkling of luck and sheer will, I pulled off a stylish clean ride. I’d not meant the front wheel to lift quite so much as I didn’t expect the grip I found, but I didn’t dare close the throttle until I’d cleared the rock. On another day this might have gone terribly wrong and I’d be dumped on my backside, but not today.
I managed to stay clean until section 18 of 20 when my front wheel caught a hidden rock in a deep stream section throwing me off balance, just 1 mark lost though so no disaster. So, first lap done and all good, onto lap 2.
Due to the large entry and some demanding sections that took a good looking at, time was getting on. In fact, light was fading fast in the dense wooded gullies, so by the end of the lap it was almost dark. Thankfully, I managed to go one better on the second lap and cleaned all 20 sections.
I really was chuffed with how well I’d ridden, undoubtably saving the best till last. An excellent way to finish off. Thankfully the results were soon posted online and despite some excellent opposition I’d taken the overall win. This was my fourth of the year, confirming me as 2018 Kia Air Cooled Mono-shock Champion.
My thanks go to all the people who gave up their time to organise the series and all the clubs up and down the country that hosted each round of the championship. Lastly a huge thanks to Prosaw for their support this year.