Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Sunday March 17th 2019 “St Patrick’s Day”

Sunday, March 17th, 2019

Happy St Paddy’s Day to all our readers. - may the green beer flow - of course the Irish will likely be crying in theirs -  after losing the Rugby match with Wales.!!

“May you be a long time in heaven, before the devil knows you’re dead”

A bit of Scottish News >>>

This year’s event sees entries from 58 riders from outside the British Isles, representing a total of 12 countries. Must be something special to attract that much interest from overseas 😊 #SSDT2019…/346-it-s-a-foreign-affair
Buddy Heath in the UK posted a video clip of himself getting some practice in at his favorite spot, riding by himself ! -  this brought a rant from his good lady, which of course is justified, as nobody should go riding by themselves. However ! back in the day I did this a lot, in fact much of the 69 mile loop that I set up for the 1975 FIM World Trial  in Alberta, was done by myself - often exploring new trails West of Bragg Creek. - Dumb ? yes - but at that time I really didn’t have much option. - Plus of course when you consider yourself an Expert, what could possibly go wrong ??Image may contain: bicycle, outdoor and natureIf there are two things that Heath likes - it’s Bling for the bike - and ice cream - Oh yes, and JD.
Image may contain: 1 person, sky, outdoor and foodAt least in this day & age, most riders carry a cell phone, but these don’t always work in the Mountains.
This is Gordy Aulenback cutting the ribbon on his new Yamaha store yesterday -in Port Coquitlam - I met Gord back in 1973 - the first year I was with Yamaha Canada - We later shared many memorable times, so I wish him all the very best in this new location - He has been in the Motorcycle business now for 45 years.
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Saturday March 16th 2019

Saturday, March 16th, 2019

OK so this is the Beta Team -pic taken in Italy - but the only guy that I recognize, is on the very far right - Donato Miglio - former very good World Trials rider, who joined the Beta Factory when he retired from the sport.
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Bob Johns has been on Holiday for the past week and took some really nice Photos on The Island - This is one of my favorites.
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Video for today >>>


The sunshine and warmer weather certainly does a lot to lift spirits - especially as we get older - being confined to the house and just watching TV - can only keep you motivated for so long - It’s finally warm enough for me to get out in the shop, which is good, because I have bunch of bikes coming in, and others waiting to be picked up. - nice to be busy, but why does it always seem to be a “Feast or a Famine”

One good thing that we are looking forward to this year, is an expanding old guys class - with a number of new comers anxious  to learn the ropes. - We could very well call this “Team Geritol”  - The big ” Plus”  ( one of the few) about being old - is that most guys are retired and can ride during the week. - Peter Brown and myself used to do a lot of this - usually had the woods to ourselves ( really miss Pete)

I spent some time last night, looking through my collection of video discs  - I have a ton from days gone by, of days out training new riders up & down the Valley - some only stayed in the sport for a year or two & either lost interest or moved on to other things.

Of course Trials isn’t for everybody - and even before the days of Hop & Bop - being watched by your competitors while riding a section - puts an awful lot of pressure on people new to the sport. - Trials has always been a “Head game” - similar to golf in that regard, but without all the “Perks”

I think that is why the longer loops, as in the old days - or events such as the Scottish Six Days, are more popular - riders get spread out with more “Breathing room” - I recall that one of the best Outlaw Trials  we ever held at Summerland, was one long loop with 40 sections ridden once. Yes lots of work setting up, but well worth the effort.


Here is an interesting clip of a row of Beta models - taken someplace in Europe ( before the Evo)



Friday March 15th 2019

Friday, March 15th, 2019

A reminder as we get ready for the upcoming riding season - All Trials bikes require  a spark arrestor   for BC events, plus for riding on any Crown Land.

We have these for TRS and Beta, but early season stock is limited, so be sure to let us know if you need one.


I saw this posted yesterday by Ron Walsh - not sure when the pic was taken - but the parking lot at Ioco, would certainly appear to have a lot of snow.
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It turns out the pic was taken last Sunday & Ron replied to say that most of this snow has now melted - good news for anybody planning on attending the Trial on Sunday. ( No prizes for guessing who the guy with his back to the camera is)


Another upcoming VMC Trial next month.
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Check out this old video>


We have heard from Roger Boothroyd of the VMC that “Boomer”  Gronow has been hospitalized with Pneumonia - but should be OK - As most of his friends will remember, Boomer has been a member of the VMC for decades - I don’t think anybody knows really how old he is !!! His son Paul Gronow  rode Expert Trials for a lot of years, including many of our Okanagan events.

We wish him a speedy recovery.


For many years, Team Bosi - of Italy, have been supplying tricked up Beta models to many Trials stars - This is their latest version.
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I never thought that I would ever say that I was bored about anything to do with Trials, but it seems that the only video that gets posted these days on the social media, is Hop,Hop, Hop. - which to me, while very clever - is not really what Trials is all about& frankly I no longer find it interesting.

I was thinking back ( as all us old guys do) about events from the past, and wishing that I had more photographs - in particular, I would have liked a pic of the Yamaha Canada TY 250 that I crashed while leading a Cross Country race at Elkford BC. in 1974.
The course went along an old rail bed - & being flat out in 6th on the Trials bike, I was a long way ahead of everybody - but the organizers ( new to the game)  had failed to mark a danger spot - where a bridge had been taken out over a creek - suffice to say that the TY ended up pretty much a write off. -

I fared better - concussion & a few cracked ribs. - But I sure would have liked a pic of that bike after the crash when it was loaded back on my trailer. - Nobody could believe that I had survived.  ( It makes a good campfire story)  Alas, few people took pics at events, back then except snap shots.
The kids these days are spoiled because they always have their phones & take a pic of everything that moves.

Back in the day - everything was film and you really had to know what you were doing with a camera- especially if you were shooting for a magazine or newspaper. - ( Which was my background ) - one other very good  motorcycle Photographer in Canada was Harlow Rankin, who now lives in Nanaimo. - also a Trials enthusiast and a founder of the ATRA in Alberta.
Both Harlow and myself plus guys like Roger Boothroyd,  provided coverage of many events for both Cycle Canada and Cycle CMA - plus  some other  International publications.

But you can’t ride-race and take pics so one had to go and I chose to give more time to promoting Motorcycle sport through the lens and event coverage - Although I didn’t actually quit riding Trials until I was 70.
I think a lot of history might have been lost because of this fact. - You have to admire the quality of some of the old Black & White photographs from the  turn of the century -All taken using wet plate large cameras.

Thursday March 14th 2019

Thursday, March 14th, 2019

A reminder that the TRS Trial goes this Sunday at Ioco - weather forecast looks great for any Interior riders wanting to head to the coast to escape the winter blues.

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In other TRS News - The Factory have just announced that for 2020 the Xtrack model will be available in the Raga version.

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🔴 New #TRRS X-Track 2019

Based on the platform of the really appreciated Raga Racing, TRS launched end of March this year the new XtrackRR and expands the concept of both, Trial & Adventure to the best balance between performance, technical specifications and versatility.

100% trial excursion, with a seat height of only 80cm, very easy to drive and with surprising components, it stands out for its improvements in the comfort of the seat and a new translucent tank of gasoline of 3.8 liters,signed by ACERBIS that facilitates a better control of the autonomy.

Available in four displacements, 125, 250, 280 and 300cc, the X-Track RR arrives equipped to face the most extreme terrain, offering the option of using the small tank for the Extreme Trial and the one with greater autonomy and comfort for long distances


This photo from the 1985 Scottish, shows John Reynolds on the section called Chair-lift - Brett Clark , who rode that year, pointed out that Sammy Miller is spectating on the far left in the blue ball cap, but just in front of him, you can see Don Clark. - You could be forgiven for thinking that this was Bob Clark - uncanny likeness.
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We have a Beta shipment coming in next week, but only one of the bikes is unsold - this is the Super Smooth 300 - This is the first one of these we have brought in. But we know a couple of Island guys who love them, so doubt it will stick around long. Call us if you are interested.


Video for today >>>>>> post


More News as it happens. >>

Wednesday March 13th 2019

Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

This is a shot of Mick Andrews at the 1993 Scottish - the section is called Craig Lundie, and Mick is riding the new TYZ. - We brought some of those in that year after chatting to Mick at the 92 Scottish, and checking out the Prototype at that event. - Sadly, the changes that Mick wanted, were never put into production, and the bikes arrived overweight and too wide. - We gave up on Yamaha in October, when Don Clark from Mountain Motorcycle - phoned asking us to sell Beta & Gas Gas. ( Later Sherco and now TRS)


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Great to see Tom Le Breton getting on really well with the Trs 125rr.
These little 125’s are so controllable and grip so well ,but plenty of power when you need it.

Not just a bike for kids…..

This is a nice pic of a young lady on the Beta Evo 125 Factory - great looking bike ( We have a couple of the 300 versions on route)
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Pic below, is of young Chris Stay, who won his class at the recent Colmore Trial - his first big win - The Overall went to his TRS Team mate Ross Danby.
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The snow is melting and temperatures are supposed to be going up to around +15 on Sunday - Time for this gorgeous BMW to find a new owner, - Immaculate with only 9k on the clock - it’s located in the OK Valley and priced right - Call us for more info. ( Not many around in this condition at this price)
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Here is your video for today - James Dabill practicing on a very muddy section - the Beta works fantastic in these conditions ( soon coming to a hillside near you!!)



Tuesday March 12th 2019

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

So as we “Jump in” to Tuesday with Adam Raga - As expected  this  XTrack model is sold out for the moment - ( I think it would be a great bike for the old guy, getting around the loop to take photos & videos- but which one? I already have two demos!!- my favorite Beta Evo 200 and a TRRS 125) - But getting back to the XTrack - let me know if you are interested because it will be Electric start for 2020) -  Not that these bikes are a problem starting - but for an old guy ?
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Not that we are going to be doing any jumping today, as a quick look through the window shows it to be white over - again !!

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For TT fans check out this rare footage from the 1960 event in the Isle of Man - I made my last visit to the Island in 1961, and saw a lot of these exotic bikes.


I saw this post on the Old guys page & thought it was very well put together - it describes how most of us feel about the passion of Motorcycling, no matter what age.

I have been riding motorcycles since I was 7 and I’m 58 now. I have been racing motocross, GPs, and Enduros for the past 28 years and I love it. I can honestly say that every second that I have spent on my bike be it riding or racing are by and far some of the best moments I have ever experienced, even when I was crashing my brains out, and ending up under the knife at the hospital. I think the biggest bounus I get from riding is the little secret that I have tucked away in my back pocket. The secret is the same one you have in your back pocket, that being, that no matter how blanked up things can get in your life from time to time, as long as you know that your going riding this coming weekend, all the B.S. that you might be dealing with at any one moment is all going to fade into the distant past when you swing your leg over your bike. After I ride or race, my whole world seems to come back into focus, and I’m better armed to deal with the day to day strugles that life brings my way. I’v mentioned to many people, riders and non riders that when I’m on my bike, it’s the only time that I experience a true “Purity of moment” There is no external distraction to deal with, I don’t have to “Multi-Task”. I can focus on one thing and one thing only, trying to catch the guy in front of me, getting up that rocky hill that beat me the last time I rode the trail, trying not to be late to my next check point, etc. When I know that I have a chance to race or ride, I start to get geeked three days before the ride, and stay geeked for three days after, replaying the events of that particular ride. When I mention “Purity of moment” to riders, they instantly light up, and know exactly of what I speak. When I mention it to non riders they aknowledge my comment with a look of woderment and envy that I want to share with them because I know thay have never experienced what I’m talking about. I’ll be honest, when I’m speaking to people my age, that I know may never get a chance to understand what I feel when we ride my bike it bums me out. I’ve asked many of these people to come and join me, but I usually get the pat response of, I’m to old, your crazy I would never jepordize my health or my families well being especially at my age, etc. etc. I never take offense to these comments, I just feel sorry for them because they will not get to use the little secret we all get to carry around in our back pockets. So to all my secret in your back pocket Old Guys Who Ride Motorcycles buddys out there in rider land, keep riding, keep having fun, and keep those little secrets tucked away tight in your back pockets.
How about this pic of British MX rider John Banks - with the home made face guard, from the  kitchen   - What a great idea, but I doubt John ever collected any royalties on this design.
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Back in the day, especially after the Second World War - the backyard engineers were in their glory- while the factories were trying to get back to producing motorcycles - the demand was high, especially in the UK, where bikes were used both as everyday transport, then raced or Trialed   at the weekend.
Looking back at what I consider “The Glory Years” - it’s incredible to think that the once mighty “British Motorcycle Industry”  went down the drain.
Of course there have been books written on the demise of BSA, AJS, Ariel and Norton - all very interesting, but also very sad, when you consider that many of the most advanced engineering of that time, came out of the UK. ( Many left to seek a better future)
It is also true to say, that British riders ruled in those days , names like  Geoff Duke, John Hartle, John Surtees and the immortal Bob McIntire–  On the Scrambles field, it was Jeff Smith, Geoff Ward. Brian Stonebridge , Johny Draper -and a host of others -  while on the Trials scene, we had the great Sammy Miller - hotly challenged by  Gordon Farley and the Yorkshire Lampkin clan.
As everybody knows,  in 1954 - The Japanese Honda Factory, entered a team of riders in the -TT 125cc race -in the Isle of Man - They won the Manufacturers Trophy - one American - three Japs.
-The Europeans including the Brits, stopped laughing at the oriental threat. It wasn’t long before the Japanese took over the Motorcycle market. - Why? - because they supplied  a great product at the right price, - And they were reliable
However, mass production and Trials, does not work - So here is where the small European Factories fit in.  -The Spanish, basically took over the British market, when Sammy Miller joined Bultaco in 1954.  - Picking up on this passion the Spanish are now the number one Country in the World  to manufacture Trials bikes. -
Of course we must not forget the Italian Beta, which has been a family business since 1904 - but while others try to compete in a very small pond - it is perhaps interesting to look back, and evaluate where it all started, and indeed what the future will hold..
Here is your video link for today >>

Monday March 11th 2019

Monday, March 11th, 2019

Sunday turned out to be a very nice sunny day and with warmer temperatures forecast  the snow should soon start to disappear . ( Can’t happen quick enough!!)
It was still a bit cold, so I didn’t spend too much time in the shop - then watched the golf. - It was a win for Italian Molinari. - Rory fell off the pace on Sunday.- & Tiger wasn’t playing.

The first 2019  Moto GP is now in the History books, and it was a win for Italian rider Dovizioso on the Ducati - He outdid Marquez to the line, with Brit Cal Crutchlow in 3rd - Valentino put on a real charge from the tail end of the field to finish in 5th spot.

1 25 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Mission Winnow Ducati Ducati 166.6 42’36.902
2 20 93 Marc MARQUEZ SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 166.6 +0.023
3 16 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda CASTROL Honda 166.6 +0.320
4 13 42 Alex RINS SPA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki 166.6 +0.457
5 11 46 Valentino ROSSI ITA Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 166.6 +0.600


In UK Trials action it was a double win for Steve Saunders Team TRS at the National Colmore Trial - Ross Danby took the Expert class, while Chris Stay won the Clubman class. - More on this when the full report shows up.

When  things go wrong !!

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Today will be spent cleaning up outside & making a trip to the landfill - I suspect that things will start to get busy later this week..


Here is a bit of English humor >>

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And here is your Trials video for today - the 2018 Manx 2 Day - one of the most popular events on the ACU Calendar - Lots of side car action ( Something that I have never quite figured out !!)

more news as it happens. >>

Sunday March 10th 2019

Sunday, March 10th, 2019

Hope everybody remembered to put their clocks forward one hour, as we hopefully head into Spring !! While we hear that some of our friends are enjoying the winter on their Snow bikes      ( Martin & Julie) - For us older folks, the snow can go away anytime as we get more people wanting to get out on their Trials bikes.

Toni Bou wrapped up his 13th World Trials Indoor Championship on Saturday - Adam Raga finished in 2nd place with Jamie Busto 3rd overall.
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The Trials World has lost another great rider - Johnny Brittain is best remembered as a Royal Enfield Factory rider. This was at a time when most Trials bikes were rigid frames at the back - Royal Enfield were the first to bring out the Swinging-arm rear suspension, which was soon followed by other brands. - Brittain won the Scottish Six Days twice, plus competed in a number of ISDT events. He was 86.


Meanwhile “Down under” Sam King is enjoying his vacation, visiting family & friends, plus getting some riding in with his buddy Tim Coleman.

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The first Moto GP race of 2019 goes today, with a lot of changes in both teams and riders. One thing that hasn’t changed, is just how fast Marquez is going, in spite of already tasting the gravel in practice.


Here is your video for today - It’s the FIM Trial from Tweed Ontario - Filmed by Dale Malasak  - Prepare for a long movie, & check out the scores !!!

These old videos by Dale, are great to watch as they are very informative.  Thanks to Jon English for posting this one on FB so that we could have it on the blog for everybody to see.

We have a number of these Action Video tapes on VHS from a time when World Trials were more traditional and less of a circus.

Saturday March 9th 2019

Saturday, March 9th, 2019

This is a nice photo I took of Ross Rathbone - it doesn’t seem that long ago, since Ross decided to have a go at Trials riding & joined us at Bear Creek to learn the ropes. - This he did quite quickly, and also became one of our chief event organizers.  - Ross loves his Beta Factory bikes and buys a new one each year. - Anybody looking for a really good used 2018 model, should contact Ross, as his new 2019 will soon arrive.
'Easter Fun weekend is coming - Here is Ross Rathbone last year - call Outlaw Dave for more info:'

This is an old pic of the Les Blows Motorcycle dealership in Victoria - Lots of early history here, which can be obtained by checking out the Victoria Club site newsletter, posted each month by Roger Boothroyd.
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Most people reading this blog, will think of me, only as a Trials guy - but back in the 70’s, while working for Yamaha Canada - I was very involved with the IT program. - This started when I switched from riding a Trials bike in Cross Country races, to a 1974 YZ 250 -a Walt Healy bike, that had a lot of changes to make it more competitive for riding in the woods. -

It had a wide ratio gear box, and a large flywheel, among other things. - This was a very good bike, and while I never did win anything on it. - The photos caught the eye of our Japanese Sales manager, Mike Shibua, in Vancouver, who sent them and the info we supplied to the Factory.

The end result of this, was the IT 400 in 1976, followed by the IT 175 and IT 250.  - By this time, I was spending all my  weekends, either racing or promoting the IT series, with most of my efforts, involving the IT 175. - While a good bike out of the box - it lacked the torque and bottom end required for the tight trails, so we spent a lot of time working to solve this issue      ( most of the time with Walt)  - Of course the end result was a very successful  200, with the whole IT series taking the Cross Country scene by storm.

With the success of this project - I turned my attention to yet another idea, sparked by seeing the success of small bore 80cc bikes in ISDE competition. - Talking to Walt, and ace mechanic Art Gavel, we planned on making a 12 speed YZ 80. !!  - Sadly, this never happened, but it sure would have been fun.
Hercules Plato's photo.

It was perhaps fitting, that my very last Cross Country race ( the National at Peachland in 1986) was on an IT 200. - Unfortunately, my 3rd place finish in the Senior class, was a DNF due to missing an early check, while following Blair Sharpless ( who was also DNF)


This is a photo of Mick Andrews, riding an Ossa at a British Championship Trial held in Wales in 1979 - The weather was snow and cold - quite normal for Trials events back in the day, when we all rode Trials in the winter and Scrambles in the Summer.  ( Often on the same bike)

It was Malcolm Rathmell who won on this day, while Mick finished well down in 14th spot. This was after the Yamaha glory years, and before he returned again to ride TYZ..
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A lot has been written about the Yamaha TZ 750 Flat Track bike, that Kenny Roberts rode  on the mile track, absolutely blistering everything else on the line. - Stevie Baker also rode an identical machine, built for Yamaha Motor Canada, by ace tuner Bob Work, and I even got to sit on it while it was in the service shop at the Richmond Office. - The Canadian bike was decked out in our traditional red/black paint scheme.  - I got to know Stevie quite well, and also met Kenny when attending a Yamaha function in LA.
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Another very nice TRS 280 arrived today - this one is “Alberta Bound”

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Another XTrial this weekend - here is the line up.
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Friday March 8th 2019

Friday, March 8th, 2019

Sunshine and warmer temperatures yesterday afternoon was a welcome relief, after another 5 cm of overnight snow - Of course if things warm up too fast, we will be into the flood season again !!  - path to my shop was mud & water Thursday afternoon.


‘Anyway the signs of Spring have got the phone ringing with bike orders - We have a couple of these beauties being shipped out next week. - Also another TRS arriving today.

We have heard from Beta Canada that they have a good supply of  models, including the great Factory Evo 4T as ridden so well by Ben Hemmingway, and a couple of 125’s, so if you are in the market - for a new Beta call me. (250) 545-6139.

The 2019 Beta Evo Factory bikes are certainly getting a lot of attention - We are only getting two and they are both sold - ( Unless some other shipments show up later in the year, which I doubt)

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In case you ever wonder who runs the WTC  - here is Bob Johns, who lives in Chemainus on Vancouver Island - Bob hasn’t ridden trials for many years, but likely knows more about the sport than most people - he also runs the Trials Canada website, all of this by the way for love of the sport !! -( think about that.) - This photo shows him on his recent birthday, all suited up for the occasion.  - Bob also is very active with the local musical society.
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As most people know, I love the small bore bikes, so check out this TRS site and watch the video of the lad on the TRS 125.  - I have the only one of these in Canada, and can’t wait to get it out on my favorite trails in Summerland. - We did manage one ride on it before the big freeze and really liked it. - ( Of course when I open the door of the shop in the morning - I hear cries from the Beta Evo 200 - “Take me - Take me”)
TRS Motorcycles Factory


No replies on my quiz question from Wednesday - The riders in the old photo are - Steve Colley, Dougie Lampkin, Steve Saunders, Wayne Braybrook - Woody Hole is standing at the back.


Today is International Women’s Day - so we thought we would post this nice pic of Brittany, the day she picked up her new TRS. We also have Dominique   from Lake Country, competing in the Valley, and hopefully, other gals will follow their lead to enjoy the sport.

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