The Stuart Butterfield sporting trial run by NPTCC was the first day of the two day northern trials weekend, attracting drivers from all corners of the country. We had drivers from as far afield as Cornwall and Sussex making the long trip (8 hours plus for these guys) and to top it off CofC Martin Grimwood, and the NPTCC had offered this up as a chance for the Irish to come over and have a rematch from the Irish visitors trial. It was great to see half a dozen of the Irish making the trip over to compete, we hope to see you again next year.
Martin decided to run 10 hills 3 times on the first day with a slightly later start then on the second day running 8 hills 3 times with an earlier start so the guys catching ferry’s and the southerners could attempt to get going a bit earlier which worked really well.
Baring in mind the awful wet winter we have had it makes sense to use Eden Hall, with its all weather parking and good draining terrain made it perfect for a weekends trialing. We set off to the hills with 4PSI in our tyres wondering how wet we would find it. After the first round the scores were low, Richard Sharp and John Fack led the way dropping just 1 point, hot on their heals was Ian Veale on 2 points. Darren Underwood was finding the terrain to his liking having a good first round in his live axle Sherpa dropping just 4 points.
As we moved on to the second round the grippy conditions saw some sections subtly tweaked to tighten here and there. Josh Veale had the lowest round dropping 6, Richard Sharp dropped 7 but still held on to the lead, Ian Veale, John Fack and Mike Salton all dropped 10 for the round and David Webster from across the pond held the top spot from the Irish with a good round of 9 points dropped. Another notable battle was that of father and son Stuart and Sam Beare, both on 17 points, at this point you would think their lunch break would involve trying to put each other off, however this wasn’t needed as both cars needs a bit of work. Stuart was running on 2 or 3 cylinders and on removing the plugs a couple were rather black and oily, new set of plugs in the car had it running on all four again. Sam’s mechanical niggles saw a lot of travel of one fiddle brake, cant believe how he was going so well consider the lever was going miles, quick bleed of the left brake had him back in the game – all to play for!
So Scores on the doors for lunch, Richard Sharp was on 8, Josh Veale 9, John Fack 11,Ian Veale 12 rounding out the top 5 was Mike Salton and David Webster both on 14 so all very tight at the top. Martin decided to keep the pressures the same on the drying site and make some sensible tweaks in the main the top of the hills to hopefully make for an interesting afternoon on the 10 remaining sections.
The first casualty of the round was David Webster who managed to catch his front wheel on a little step breaking his stub axle off, Next was Ian Blease-Dudley competing in his first trial who lost his crank bolt holding the front pulley on his car, meaning his trial was over as his pulley fell off so no longer had a water pump. However, he still had a smile on his face and was thoroughly enjoying his first trial. So after 30 tough sections the results were tight, Richard and Joe Sharp took there first win of the 2020 season dropping 10 points, Josh Veale came second, also on 10 points with Richard beating him on most number of clears. Ian Veale and John Fack both dropped 17 points with Ian completing the third step of the podium on count back pushing John back to fourth. Amazingly fifth and sixth positions were also a tie with Mike Salton and David Webster (he managed to fix his broken stub axle) on 18 points with fifth going to Mike Salton, this securing him first Red Live axle and David sixth taking the Blue Independent award. Live Blue Axle went to Michael McBratney and the Rookie Class going to Darren Underwood who is really starting to drive well. The NPTCC also have there own club championship running, A class win went to Bryan Walker back in the hot seat after winning the BTRDA Gold Star. B class went to the not so local driver John Cole who was enjoying the going in his Crossle. John Firth is really driving well in his SRB and won himself the C Class.
After the event as we all loaded up it started to rain as we all headed back to the local hotels to talk about the what ifs and if onlys over a pint. A really enjoyable weekend, good company, good food, good trials, what more could you want. I would recommend to anyone coming up to the weekend. Martin and the NPTCC put a huge amount of effort into the weekend and I look forward to doing it again. Congratulations to Richard and Joe for the overall win.
Report by Josh Veale
What more can you want than a weekend of trialing in one of the finest area in the country. The 2 day weekend, will take place at the sprawling Edenhall site. The site is pretty much weather proof so baring conditions of a biblical nature the event should run. The site Encompasses, bracken, woodland with a whole variety of sections possible this is a weekend to put in the calendar. Always a warm welcome received from the NPTCC, get your entries in for this one.
As an added edge our Irish friends are coming across to enjoy this one to take on the English in an Ireland v England match. Fingers crossed for some fun and friendly competition.