Volunteers needed as Trialsmasters - reusing 5 sections from last month and they have ribbon but need splits, 1 new section is complete with splits, 2 new ones need to be built.
Last Event - April @ Camp Gruber
All told 10 riders showed up for the event 8 sections and 3 full loops of approx 2.5 miles over the hills and through the dales of Camp Gruber ORV park. The sections were a great mix of hill climbs, rocks and creek sections.
- Expert Class: was close Shack with 49, Mike Cramsey with 55 and the ever improving Chris Shellenberger with 56
- Intermediate Class: Todd Dusterhaus cleaned up the class with 30 points, while Eldon Malone and Todd Phillips tied with 50 points and Eldon winning on tie breakers
- Senior Amateur: Trials Master Kevin Kight took a relaxing leisure cruise ride with 22 points - resting up for the Nationals he was.
- Amateur: Jay Holton rode his Hodaka as Non-Comp rider
- Nov Class: Bill Kleeman took first with 35 and Penni Taylor with 49
Also great to note that we had 3 new spectators who are very interested in joining our band of merry misfits. Cody rode Jon's TY 350 through several of the sections while Graham and Lindsey, who currently race off-road stuff, followed us around with great interest and are now official NEOTT members - now they just need to get some trials bikes!
We also saw Annie smoothly riding the loop and some of the rocky creek areas on her Beta 300 4T.
Food Masters: Kevin and Barbara Kight supplied the post ride food which was quickly consumed by the hungry finishers since it took about 4 hours to complete the entire course. Nobody left hungry and several rider took home leftovers.
All the scores and year-to-date standings are on the web here.
Thanks to Jon and Anne for the following pics of the Gruber event:
Nationals! NATC Trials
If you spend any time in Roswell it is pretty easy to understand how the locals might envision aliens. Actually I think I saw more alien forms of life hanging around outside the UFO museum and I'm pretty sure it was Charlie Manson's twin brother that tried to talk to me as I left. Creepy! Interesting place though and worth a visit.
Anyway, Roswell, NM is about 4200 feet altitude so some fiddling with the jetting is required to get everything dialed in and there was a nice practice area to work in to get things sorted. I signed up to ride the SR-50 class which is the Support line which for context means about 75% of the stuff I can dabble my way through and 25% is over my head which can be frustrating at times but at this point I think I'd be a little bit bored riding the Sr. Clubman class even though there are guys riding that class that routinely beat me at local events.
Saturday I finished in 5th place, I was doing okay on Loops 1 and 2 but Loop 3 the energy level dropped off the table and I almost dropped more points on Loop 3 than I did in Loops 1 and 2 combined. Also while getting scored a couple of the judges I knew took the time to tell me that Kevin was riding great!
Sunday again 5th place finish but Sunday was better energy wise and I was just a couple of points back from fourth. Have to give a shout out to Penni Taylor, Bruce Bolander and Rodney Gibson who helped keep me in the game by providing air pumps as I had a slow leak in the front tire all day due to cactus thorns. We used some Slime at the end of Loop 1 but that just slowed things down. I've since learned about QuadBoss tire sealant. For Colorado, I put QuadBoss in both the front and rear tires and had no issues there and they had 10 times more cactus than NM. Many thanks to Dee and David Murry of DSquared trials fixing me up with some QuadBoss as well as some other parts and accessories during the week. They are great supporters at the Nationals, HPTA and NMTA events and are easy to find since they have the biggest trailer in the pits!
Having Kevin, Todd and Penni around was great fun and I am happy to see their successes in NM riding the Clubman class this year. Side note: Kevin and Todd headed home after the event and I went on to Colorado Nationals where on Sat I was 3rd place and Sun was DNF due to blown rear linkage bearings.
everything about trials but before April 21, 2018 I had been to only one
national event and that was for one day as a spectator at Sedan/Peru, KS in
April of last year. At the start
of this year I committed myself to be more active in trials. I wanted to meet more riders from other clubs
and see how events were coordinated.
Here’s my summary of my time in New Mexico:
Arrived at Haystack Mountain OHV on Wednesday about an hour and a half before sunset. I like and enjoy the ruggedness of the desert landscape so when I got out of the truck after driving eight hours (with only one stop) I took a look around. In my mind I was saying “Wow…. Look at this”. It was a perfect landscape for trials event.
Along with the trials bike, I brought my KTM 450. In planning for the trip I had researched Haystack Mountain so I knew it was a great place for dirt bike riding. What I didn’t see in my research was during the national trials event the entire 1900 acres was closed to the public and no dirt biking is allowed. That was ok, I knew a quick search would land me several other places to ride. The nearest and best place was Cloudcroft, NM (elevation 8600’). I really didn’t want to drive 4.5 hours round trip but I anticipated it would be worth it.
Nat’l Forest at Cloudcroft did not disappoint.
It had a bit of everything, single track that was wide and comfortable,
narrow single track on the side of the mountains to smooth evergreen forest
trails and steep rocky climbs. I was a
bit cautious and wanted to save some energy for the trials event so at mile 18
I abandoned the single track for a forest service road for six miles that took
me to a county road for four miles and to finish my journey about seven miles
of pavement. Made my way back to my
hotel in Roswell just in time to get ready to meet Michael C. and his college
friend for a great evening meal.
Participants in the photo shoot were Michael C., Todd D. Penni T. Me, a local family and a few aliens.
Okay the local family were painted cut-outs…..not sure about the aliens.
Saturday and its show time. Being my first national my anxiety level is topping the chart. I begin my ride as instructed on my start time. Section one look cleanable…..Boom….clean. Holy crap can’t believe it was that easy. Section two, “oh hell that exit looks tough”…. Boom…One dab. After section six I’m still on one point think “dang… I’m not believing this.” Section 7 – 12, all clean, I’m thinking “what the freek, I did not expect this”. Also going through my mind is….. ““How the hell are they gonna determine a winner with all the riders that have clean rides for the day, cause I know there are tons of riders better than me.”
Second loop still not believing as I am clean through section nine. Section ten has plenty of run to a hill climb that is a little loose and only a single line, narrow rut to get to the top. Of course I had cleaned it on loop one but was a bit off balance when I got to the top so…..dab for a reset so I can make the hard left turn to head back down the hill and complete the section. Sections 11 and 12… Clean. Another one point loop.
Okay now I’m getting confident and cocky thinking “maybe I am a bad-ass trials ridin machine.” “I can clean this next mofo loop.” Well that didn’t happen, two of my inner beings, Confident and Cocky have a way of quickly getting squashed like a bug. I was in good shape until section 4, once again a section I had cleaned twice before. Dropped into the section, shot up the slab rock and was in good shape through the difficult part of the section. Lost my concentration for a split second, front tire caught a rock, twisted my bars……dab. Like a dumbass I tried to throttle out of it….. before it was all over…. three dabs. “Holy crap are you freekin kidin me?”
Sections 5 –
12 all clean. Total score 5 points. Now I’m thinking in this event 5points might
be good for fifth place. Well 5points
ended up being good for second place.
Not bad for a first time national.
There was one section I had problems with, number 9. Enter to a medium size ledge, next, to a small but narrow ledge, left turn to a medium ledge.
Never could make the left turn very well and get set up correctly to make the next ledge, my timing was way off, fived it twice, finally got up it the third time with a two.
eighth place on Sunday.
Looking for a bike? Of course you are - here are some quick links for trials bikes on Craigslist in these nearby cities:
Coming Up in the June 2018 Issue:
- Break down of the May Event at Gruber
- Updates from the TTC and Arkansas Nationals (note there is no NEOTT event in June due to the Nationals)
- If anyone wants to write up a short story or a tall tale send it to [email protected] and we'll get it added.
Here, even the best in the world take a 5 once in a while - Dougie Lampkin posted this on his Instagram account - I believe this was in practice but still a note worthy "5"
Dougie came back strong though to win the 2018 SSDT on the final day - the complete story is here on SSDT.org.