British Trials Cup Round 2 – Blackpool

Saturday 12 May 2012
by Ben Swales
popularity : 10%

GIF - 19.5 kb JPEG - 10.5 kb Driving through Blackpool on a bank holiday weekend you get the impression that it’s a bit of an unusual town. Like most seaside towns, it looks as though it could have been frozen in time in the 70s, with arcades, amusements, neon lights, trams, a sea life centre and of course, the famous pleasure beach and tower. It seems that everyone you see is on a hen do or a lads’ weekend, parading round in large groups and ridiculous outfits, and soaking up the sunshine and fun.

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This weekend, however, among the revellers could be seen small groups of people with some unusual looking bikes making their way down to the seafront, because on Sunday 6th May Blackpool played host to the second round of the Biketrial Federation’s British Trials Cup.

Over 70 riders made the trip to this seaside town in the North West of England, eager to compete on the sections set our by Mick Carthy, Robin Morewood, Brian Wright and their team on Blackpool’s famous moon rocks (or perhaps it was the hope of being presented a medal by Ella Green, Miss Blackpool 2011 that attracted them). Unusually, for a British bank holiday, the weather was on our side and we were treated to glorious sunshine, blue skies and no wind – I’m still sporting a bit of ‘colour’ on my face as I write this!

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The British Trials Cup hadn’t been to Blackpool for a few years, so the riders were keen to ride the rocks, and soon the sound of brakes squealing could be heard up and down the shore and there was an air of real excitement as people gathered in the control area, signing on, checking out the stands from series sponsors Onza Bikes and 3SIXTY and the free samples very kindly provided by Gatorade UK from their Pro Series (available from Tarty Bikes) for all of the riders.

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The competition got underway at 10:30, with all of the riders setting off together to attack the sections. The most spectacular riding came in the top UCI World Elite Class, the Biketrial Federation’s answer to the Super Elite class, intended to test those riders intending to compete in the UCI world events later in the season. With this round counting towards the British Cycling selection for the 2012 UCI World Cup in Saafelden, Jack Carthy (Enter Bike/Tribal Zine), Dave Kerr (Cycle Mart/Tribal Zine), Andrei Burton (Echo/Andrei Burton Events), James Hyland (Tarty Bikes), and Sam Oliver (Rockman/Trialtech were all determined to ride at their best and get on that podium.

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JPEG - 404.2 kb The scores were incredibly close at the top. Tribal Rider Jack ‘Clean machine’ Carthy lived up to his reputation and finished in first place, having come in on clean on both laps, realising the perfect trial! There was one hairy moment when it looked like he was going to pick up a five, which would have seen him knocked down to second place; an up to front on a huge step in section 1, the Tarty Bikes section, nearly went wrong as Jack’s weight looked as though it was going to pull him back off the wall, but he somehow managed to hold it and stay up. No problem on his second lap though! It seemed as though there was nothing the section setters could do to cause Jack any problems – which bodes well for his World Cup competitions and is sure to please his new sponsor! Second place went to James Hyland, who dropped three points on his first lap, dropping a pedal on the big step that had nearly caught Jack out in the Tarty Bikes section, and picking up two points in section two, the Trialtech section, soon after. JPEG - 620.1 kb He cleaned the rest of his first lap, however, and just dropped a single point, again in section one, on his second lap to finish on four points. The UCI World No. 11 in 26” trials Andrei Burton finished of the podium in third place on just five points, picking up a dab on the same step as James on both laps, dropping a point a lap in section three and a final point in section seven on his second lap. Not only did Andrei put in a great performance on his bike, but he stopped at every section to lend a hand to the observers, stamping cards or timing the riders as he waited for his turn to come round. Thanks Drei! As 20” and 26” riders were competing in the same class in this category, Tribal Rider Dave Kerr, who was once again riding both 20” and 26”, was able to finish in fourth place on 20 points (on his 20”) and sixth place on 28 (on his 26”). Dave’s competition experience showed through as he picked tricky but effective lines through the sections, varying them to take advantage of the attributes of each bike. He picked up a couple of unfortunate fives on his first lap on each bike, one of them due to a puncture on his 26” half way through a section. JPEG - 676 kb He tried valiantly to finish the section, but it ended with a series of drops, and with no air in your rear tyre, that’s not an attractive prospect! A great performance all the same, all the more so when you consider that he rode twice as many sections as everyone else! Sam Oliver completed the table in fifth place, his laps almost mirror images of each other as he was caught out on the big step in the Tarty Bikes section and dropped fives on sections three and four, falling foul of a big hook at the start of section three, with no room for manoeuvre on the top.

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Jack Carthy 0
2. James Hyland 4
3. Andrei Burton 5

JPEG - 579 kb In the ‘normal’ Elite class, a 50/50 class where riders rode four yellow sections and four red sections, 3SIXTY’s Alec Wray, last year’s Expert Champion, finished in first place in 26”, dropping four points on each lap to finish on eight. Alec’s riding gets better every time we see him, just as his shoe choice gets more bizarre! Second place went to Steve Rogers (M.A.D./Tribal Zine) smiled his way round the competition and finished just one point behind Alec, dropping six points on his first lap and three on his second. JPEG - 761.1 kb Third place went to Wayne Mohamet, an old school rider who used to compete in World competitions and is making a bit of a comeback in 2012. Wayne finished on 19 points, not bad for someone who’s not competed for a few years and who had a hole in his hand from a football injury! In 20” it was podium regular Rob Poyser who took the top spot, picking up five points on his first lap and eight on his second to finish on 13. I always like to watch Rob ride – he has an unusual style, very straight-backed, but is extremely smooth and powerful and definitely stands out from the crowd. Second place went to Jack Chapman, who finished on 21 points, and Dan Wheeler (Radical Bikes) finished of the podium in third place on 24.

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Alec Wray 8
2. Steve Rogers 9
3. Wayne Mohamet 19

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Rob Poyser 13
2. Jack Chapman 21
3. Dan Wheeler 24

JPEG - 595.5 kb In Expert 26” James Bancroft and Matt Arkwright both put in very strong rides, making short work of the difficult sections to finish tied on 13 points each. They were separated on most cleans, with James coming out on top. A victory that was spoiled somewhat by his disappointing behaviour at the presentation. Tarty Bikes’ Andrew ‘Cap’ Willan, a relative newcomer on the competition scene, put his power and precision to good use, finishing on 16 points to take third place. M.A.D.’s Lee McCaw was unfortunately forced to retire after a big drop in section six saw his front axle snap, giving him a bit of a scare! Owen Gawthorpe (54 Sport, who is rapidly becoming one to watch, took the top spot in Expert 20”. He dropped nine points on his first lap, picking up a five in section five and dropping a few pedals here and there. JPEG - 640.6 kb His second lap saw a vast improvement and he dropped just two points in section seven to finish on 11. Tribal Rider James Davies, riding in his second ever competition, finished in second place on 17 points, picking up an unlucky five on his first lap after going through the wrong gate in section five, a result of his lack of competition experience, rather than skills, which he has in bucket loads! Third place went to Richard Tickner ( / Crowthorne Club), a relatively unknown rider who is starting to make a name for himself with competition results and impressive videos.

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. James Bancroft 13
2. Matt Arkwright 13
3. Andrew Willan 16

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Owen Gawthorpe 11
2. James Davies 17
3. Richard Tickner 24

JPEG - 680.8 kb In Cadet class, where riders rode 50/50 red and blue sections, there was very little to separate the top three, who finished on three, four and five points respectively. JPEG - 746.7 kb Tribal Rider Charlie Rolls finished in first place, putting the experience gained in international competition to good use and making short work of sections that took points of much bigger and more experienced riders. After watching him following Dave Kerr around after the trial, riding for hours (even though his parents wanted to go home!), it’s easy to see how Charlie has got so good – he has bags of natural talent and a real love of riding his bike. Adam Morewood, another super-talented young rider with several international titles under his belt, finished in second place, picking lines that other riders simply didn’t see and using his competition experience to know when to put down a well-placed foot and when to go for the big move. Third place went to TJ Reynoldson, a skilful and determined rider who moved up from Intermediate at the same time as Charlie and Adam and who is no stranger to the podium.

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Charlie Rolls 3
2. Adam Morewood 4
3. TJ Reynoldson 5

Senior class, for the over 28s, was one of the most fiercely contested classes of the day – now that they don’t have to worry about being beaten by the super-talented youngsters, the ‘old men’ have developed a real competitive streak! Dave Barratt took the victory, finishing on 21 points ahead of Derek Coates on 39 and Neil Robinson on 43. Tribal Zine’s Ben Swales had a bit of a tumble, by his own admission, ‘messing about’ between sections, that saw him lose his front brake and take fives for every section of his second lap. Unlucky!

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Dave Barratt 21
2. Derek Coates 29
3. Neil Robinson 43

Tribal Rider Sam Rolls took the win in Intermediate, riding very strongly on both laps to finish on seven points ahead of Toby Smith on 9 and the Scottish Biketrial Club’s Aaron Duke on ten.

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Sam Rolls 7
2. Toby Smith 9
3. Aaron Duke 10
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Donna Fox (Trials Queens racked up another win in the Ladies class, finishing on six points (obviously not letting the photographers put her off this time!). Nadine Staniforth, the lady behind the Trials Queens website and team, finished in second place on 49 points and third place went to Fern Sanderson who had borrowed boyfriend Jack Carthy’s bike to have a go, more to make sure that the podium was full than anything. We need more ladies to enter – do you know any?

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Donna Fox 6
2. Nadine Staniforth 49
3. Fern Sanderson 80

In Novice class, Reece ‘Twiglet’ Seymour finished in first place on four points ahead of Jack Biggins in second and Paul Grange in second and third respectively on 13 points apiece.

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Reece Seymour 4
2. Jack Biggins 13
3. Paul Grange 13

Primary class saw Adam Biggins finish in first place in 13, with Sam Shepherd in second on 16 and Joel Holdsworth in third on 19. Special mention goes to Billy Anderson who took a bit of an acrobatic tumble, bouncing down about 16 feet of rock steps, and still went on to finish the

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Pos. Rider Pts.
1. Adam Biggins 13
2. Sam Shepherd 16
3. Joel Holdsworth 19


Click below to see the full results for all classes:

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Photos by Ben Swales, Adam Read and Paul Hesling. Another full gallery by local photographer Paul Smith can be seen here

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