Archive for February, 2019

Saturday February 15th 2019

Saturday, February 16th, 2019

I see that Sherco are making a 20th anniversary model for 2019 - I had the very first one in the Country back in 1999, when it was called a Bultaco.

Here is pic of me -  the first one up this new section we found at Green Mountain - Krash Crumly is looking on. As I recall I used 3rd gear and a bit of leg waving to make it through with a dab - we used it when we held the Outlaw Trial there in 2003 and it took a lot of points. ( it continued up the mountain with more great sections)
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-Albert Cabestany with the 2 models - 20 years apart.Image may contain: one or more people and outdoor

And now for something completely different - check out this video



Another rare pic of a JCM rider up in the Mountains someplace in Europe back in 1988.

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I’m sure that many readers are aware that Malcolm Smith got hurt, being run over by a Golf Kart. - Well If you would like to read the whole story - click on the link below.


How about this “Classic”

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Remember when I  told the story of Trials tires freezing if being transported in pick-ups on very cold days ?  Here is a pic of one that did this in the Edmonton area a few years ago. -The guy asked for warranty !!!
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After seeing the pic of the restored Sherpa T - Our buddy Turk Perepalkin sent this - he bought it new in 1969 for $695.00 and rode it in Trials and Cross Country events ( A bit like what we all did back then) He commented that he wished he still had the bike - as indeed I wish I still had a lot of my models from the past.  - Interesting that I paid $600.00 for my 1969 Sherpa T - used !!!

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Friday February 15th 2019

Friday, February 15th, 2019

This weekend it’s the big Telford Motorcycle show in Shropshire England, mainly for vintage enthusiasts, but many Trials Importers are now attending to show off the new bikes as well ( Maybe this one is less expensive that some of the others)
The Toronto Motorcycle Show also takes place this weekend - The ATA usually have a booth in that, and Helmut Clasen always has a nice display of his bikes - mostly Zundapps. & Hercules. - You won’t see any Beta display because the booth costs  that they charge are insane and the money can be better spent in other areas..
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And here is a beautiful restoration of the bike that changed Trials forever, when Sammy Miller joined Bultaco to ride the lightweight ( for that time) Sherpa T 250. - The year was 1964, ( When Sam first went to Spain) and the next big change didn’t take place until 1984, when Yamaha introduced the Mono-shock TY 250.

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With nothing much to do today, I spent some more time posting old photographs on Face Book - Here is one I took of Stan on the JCM that I brought in in 1990 - I had met the Factory guys at the Scottish the year before, and as they looked good & they had quite a large Team , I arranged to Import them to Canada. - Although the bike looked great, with the gas tank below the seat. and air filter up high under the top frame, - it lacked power  and while Stan won the first Trial he rode it at Ioco, - things soon started to fall apart with my communications to the French Factory. - This suddenly ceased production, even though they had lots of money and were into other big business., making parts for Renault and French trains. - It was sad in a way, but may have been a blessing in disguise. - The change to liquid cooled motors was starting to happen, with Beta, Gas Gas & Aprilla  all having the new design, and the air-cooled machines were falling out of fashion.
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The ATAQ Trials club in Quebec have just posted their 2019 Calendar - neat way they did it, and again they will host the WTC Eastern Championship for 2019.

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As it is snowing heavily  in Vernon - I thought it might be a good day to post this photo of warmer times. - This is Babsy and myself on the beach at Cattolica Italy - which is situated on the Adriatic sea. We traveled approx 3,000miles through Europe, camping in France, Switzerland and right here  on the beach, which was almost deserted in September 1963. - The  Norton never missed a beat, even though we had it loaded with all our camping gear.

It was a wonderful holiday, waking up on a Mountainside in Switzerland to the sound of cow bells as the farmers herded them up to the pastures - this was a time before cell phones and credit cards, so we did everything on a low budget.

Unlike the modern touring bikes, the Norton was more of a “Racer”, not built for passenger comfort, so Babsy deserves a medal for making that trip, without complaining.

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Thursday February 14th 2019

Thursday, February 14th, 2019

A good day to post this I think  >>

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Anybody that attended the 1994 World Round at Donner, will remember this section - Dougie Lampkin is the rider & I took the photo with a Pentax fitted with a 300mm Telephoto lens.  - That was back when we used film and you had to know what you were doing.

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With all the discussion going on regarding modern Trials  -  I found this post interesting regarding the vintage Pre-65 scene in the UK 
Just to stir things up,probably not worth much but it’s my opinion . All my life I’ve been involved with bikes ( like most of us ) mainly classics . I’ve seen the demise of genuine classic race bikes, they are now nearly all brand new repros which cost a fortune ! Admittedly this does help in safety issues particularly in the IOM road meetings . The next and worst for me is the explosion of brand new Pre 65 trials bikes ! Go to a pre 65 trial and there are hardly any pucka bikes there ! It’s so sad that the heart of the sport has gone ( nothing against the great engineers and companies who market all the products ) but it was great turning up on an original bike with your mates and fettling these great machines . Every pre 65 bike now looks identical and they are all fake ! By the way I’ve been guilty of this by building a brand new James at one time but through my dummy out and sold it ( I believe it’s being used quite successfully now by a certain rider ) Are we going to see all our twin shocks left in the back of sheds in years to come ? Replaced by £10k replicas ! The rot could soon set in ! That would be sad , let’s try to keep them as genuine as poss !
While today is “Valentine’s Day” -many people in the Trials World, are remembering the great Diego Bosis, who died on this day seven years ago at the young age of 44 years old..
At -18 again this morning in the Valley so a cold one for all the “Lovers’ out there.

Wednesday February 13th 2019

Wednesday, February 13th, 2019

Bob Johns posted this rather humorous pic taken by a new neighbor - the Island folk have sure got hammered this past few days - Vancouver is also under a snow advisory.
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Not that it was much better in the OK Valley yesterday - snowed most of the day.


Check out this great video >>>>


I’m sure that everybody has an opinion on how the sport of Trials riding is at the moment, on a World wide scale.

James Dabill’s minder Jiri Svoboda  has posted his ideas on the link below. - interesting comments and worth reading. - He is also a good rider and has been around for a while on the International scene.

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Here is a photo of Jiri competing in the Scottish Six Day Trial.


With snow blanketing the  Province, it’s hard to get too excited about riding, in fact I think I will need to cancel a Doctor’s appointment today as the driveway is “Plugged”


And now for something different - Anybody in the market for a really good deal on a low miles ( just over 9,000 k) 2015 1200 - lots of extras. - A Trials buddy needs to sell this as he simply doesn’t use it. - Give me a call if you are interested.

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It’s not easy hitching a ride in the winter !!! This is a pic taken in the Rogers Pass.

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And here is a pic from the Ioco “Beta Trial” last Sunday - as you can see it was snowing - sorry don’t know who took the photo.

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Tuesday February 12th 2019

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019

So the word from Vancouver on the Beta Trial, was that they had 25 riders, amazing considering the conditions. A full report will soon be up on Trials Canada, but it sounds like everybody had fun.  - Alex Walton (TRS) took the Expert win.

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I had to laugh when I saw this posted  - but it also took me back to my Yamaha days, and the time I took the new Japanese President to visit Walt Healy in Calgary. - Walt was busy, so I took the Japanese upstairs to the next level, where Walt had a “Bunch” of used bikes stored. - “Oh” was the exclamation as I flicked on the light switch, and they saw the rows and rows of bikes - every make & size - a total of 600 on that floor!!  - At a later date, I got Walt to pick 10 of these each week and post them as “Saturday Specials” in the Calgary Herald Classified advts. - You would have been amazed at how this moved product, but it also got customers in to look at new Yamaha’s as well.  Great memories.


Nice to see that the Island boys got some snow !!! ( That will teach ‘em for posting all those pics riding on the dry ground day after day !!!)
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Some of our readers may recall seeing a photo of me riding one of these ! - I borrowed it from “Ton-Up” Cycle in Calgary to do a test for the Cycle Magazine, and ended up riding it in a Trial at Blackfoot Park in early 1971 ( still snow on the ground)  This was my first ever Trial in Canada, and saw me winning the “Best Opposite” award ( A strange system the CMA had back in the day)  - The Greeves Factory closed shop soon after, but quite a few good lads from the UK rode them for a while.  - I sometimes wonder what ever happened to that bike I tested.
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Check out this Retro World Trials video - All the top riders with sensible sections.


I like this pic that Pete took of me - as usual I’m on an Evo 200 and just starting into this neat section at a secret location. - It even looks like I’ve got things under control!! It must have been around 2013, because I’m wearing old gear and my NZI Carbon Helmet.
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Here is one of me out testing the 2013 Beta RR300  ( Now owned by Kevin Fleming) very impressive bike, but the new high seat style and the fact that back then I was already 75 - had me spending a limited amount of time on it. ( Likely just as well, because it sure got my heart thumping)

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Lots of snow pics being posted at the moment, so thought you would like to see this old one taken at the Summerland Ady Brown Memorial Trial a few years ago - actually it was the day after - that is Jay Colley’s camp set up - not ideal camping conditions for sure - but Steve Day & the Bustin family also stayed over.
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Monday February 11th 2019

Monday, February 11th, 2019

For those of you who didn’t see the clip of Benoit Bincaz at the French indoor on Saturday - here it is  - riding in front of his home crowd must have been tough - but he came through with flying colors - it would appear that the switch to Beta suits him.

I should mention that I found the scoring system confusing, but that seems to happen a lot in France. ( Remember when Gille Burgat won a World Round and even he was surprised at his score!!)
Here is a good shot of Luca Petrella. another new lad on a Beta.
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This is a nice practice area that Heath & his buddies have in the UK - I notice that even over there some folk dispose of old tires in the bush.
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After my post on Postil Lake yesterday, somebody emailed, asking if this was still available to ride? - To be honest I’m not sure - I did go there about 4-5 years ago and found a new road had been pushed through, which took out a lot of the stuff we used, -  also the Mountain bikers have taken it over to some extent, installing all their wooden ramps etc - this should not be allowed in my opinion - lets keep the woods natural.

Quite frankly I didn’t enjoy the day riding there which was a disappointment considering all the great sections we had on the loop. An old guy by the name of Joe had a shack close by, and told us he was the caretaker of the land we used which he said belonged to the Bennett family, of Political fame or other things depending on what you thought.


Nice old Scramble video from the UK. - Those were the days !!



With reports of a lot of snow on the West Coast - we have no idea as yet, how things went at Ioco for the Trial - we will let you know when we have news.

Janis Clark posted this pic of her driveway Sunday afternoon in Coquitlam.

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Sunday February 10th 2019

Sunday, February 10th, 2019

The bitter cold weather continues in Western Canada - Not sure if the CPTA Trial at Ioco is still on for today, but we know that the one slated for next week in Victoria, has been postponed. They have more snow forecast for the Island today.
Update: Ron Walsh posted to say the Ioco Trial sponsored by Beta is a go. However, looking at the forecast, it will be mighty cold, so good luck to all the hardy souls who attend.

Saturday I watched some live video from an Indoor in France - some crazy obstacles as seems to be the norm these days, and spectacular riding from the super stars - Benoit Bincaz had a very good ride on the Factory Beta, finishing second to that man Toni B. - Adam Raga beat out Busto for third spot.

Trial Indoor International Cup

For road race fans, here is some news from the Moto GP testing in Sepang Malasia.

Maverick Vinales set a new unofficial all-time Sepang lap record during the start of Friday’s final day of official MotoGP testing… then Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci went even quicker!

Monster Yamaha Vinales, quickest with a 1m 58.897s on day two, rocketed to a 1m 58.644s on his eighth lap of the day. That beat the previous unofficial fastest ever two-wheel lap at Sepang, which was a 1m 58.830s by Jorge Lorenzo one year ago for Ducati.

But Lorenzo’s replacement Petrucci then set a stunning 1m 58.239s, with team-mate Andrea Dovizioso slotting into second ahead of Vinales with a 1m 58.538s… until Pramac riders Jack Miller and then rookie Francesco Bagnaia took over second place, making it an all Ducati top four.


An old report on one of the National Trials we put on at Postil Lake near Kelowna. - That was the day, when once again, the weather became our biggest adversary, with pounding rain just as the Trial started. - As you can see by the scores, this turned out to be a high scoring event, and also a day when Sparky Bill had to retire after a fall. - There was also  a kids class, which was a late addition, this featured such future stars as Ryon Bell, Will Duggan and Brandon Wince. - We had riders from all across Canada, plus a few from South of the border.
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And how about this old photo by Harlow Rankin of a young Stan Bakgaard on the 172 Montesa - Stan did really well on the small bike, riding it in a lot of big events. There is a great pic of him on it in Bernie Schreiber’s book on Trials.

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The very cold temperatures continue in the Valley -27 in Vernon this morning, so I think it will be another day watching the box - some golf on later from Pebble Beach, it is a Celebrity  event, with guys like Bill Murray, Wayne Gretsky and other stars joining the regular Tour players.  - Everybody seemed to be having fun Yesterday, when the weather at the Ocean side course was both rainy and blustery.


Saturday February 9th 2019

Saturday, February 9th, 2019

With the cold winter weather, it was a welcome relief to find the Trial Mag: in my mail box yesterday - but  even more of a surprise, when I opened it and found the report of my Hall of Fame thing posted.

To be recognized in the #1 Trials Magazine in the World is obviously huge - and very humbling.  -

Little did I think back in 1953, when I first got the “Motorcycle bug” - that it would eventually be the way I would earn my living  - working for Yamaha Motor Canada for ten years - then after being involved with a couple of Yamaha retail dealerships - moving on to form my own company selling Motorcycle accessories and later becoming a Dealer for Mountain Motorcycles.-

We sold  Gas Gas and Beta Trials bikes in Western Canada - later we added Sherco, but both Gas Gas and Sherco went by the wayside, to be replaced by the new Jordi Tarres TRS.
It was the idea of old friend Harlow Rankin, who  submitted the story to the Canadian Motorcycle Hall of Fame Committee.

Of course the worst part of this presentation, was having lost a couple of my front teeth - A visit to the dentist for a quick fix before the event - turned ugly.

With all these issues, I was considering cancelling the trip to the awards in Vancouver - but was talked out of it, by Babsy my better half,  -  who has put up with all the motorcycle stuff since 1959.

-( Hell she sat on the back of my Norton traveling over 3,000 miles through Europe in 1963.)

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If you like to read magazines filled with great content - you can buy a subscription to Trial Mag;  on line
Click on this link >>Trial Magazine UK


Friday February 8th 2019

Friday, February 8th, 2019
ARE YOU A BETA LOVER? READ ALL THE STORY…No photo description available.

Are you a beta lover? Read the whole story…
Article available at the beta sales network.
Cod. P01. in Florence over a century ago, betamotor still continues to be protagonist in the motorcycle field. A story made of intuition, courage, work, will to compare with the most important world brands. This is the story, and never told for whole, of an Italian motorcycle company born in 1905, passed free through two world wars, founded and guided still today by the white family, now at the fourth generation.
A story divided by chapters, each accompanied by the images of hundreds of models produced over time: from the first bicycles to the many motorcycles, accompanied by the respective technical sheets A production always evolving to satisfy the wishes of the public every time, starting from the glorious “Velomotori” of early twentieth century up to trial bikes before, and from enduro then, capable of conquering world titles on repeat. They could not miss mopeds, from those to pedal to the famous ” Tuboni ” of the s until the ” modern ” Scooters of the ninety. Not only, but there are also the first “Sports” Road, the cross, enduro and rally bikes. When the victories come with engines designed and built in their own, starting in the s, the circle closes.
Jamie McGregor of Brantford Ontario , has been posting some pics & reports of some old Trials events from the past - This was the first page of the write up of the first ever FIM World Championship in 1975 near Bragg Creek Alberta, set up by myself, and reported by Harlow Rankin,This was likely, one of the most difficult challenges that I have faced, over a span of 40 years in Canadian Trials. - Not knowing just how good the European riders were, and certainly not knowing just how overnight bad weather would effect the course, ( A long 69 miles ) - had me scrambling to salvage the event. -
The object, as with all Trials, was to have a variety of sections to test all abilities, and while it’s easy to criticize as an onlooker, after all these years, I was happy to recently get a couple of messages, from two of the very best in the World, who were at the Trial. ( Both were complimentary)
So this weekend is the first CPTA Trial of the year at Ioco - Will it be a go? weather is a bit iffy - check this blog for news tomorrow am.  A word of warning - with the frigid low temperatures, please take care if you plan on transporting your Trials bike by Pick-up Truck - the soft Trials tires can freeze to the metal bed and rip the knobs off when you try to unload - also the cold air can freeze the rad.  ( Yes we have seen this happen)
Here is video of some of the local action from BC.
And another from a UK Trial.
This is a great shot of one of the most famous sections in the World - “Pipeline”
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Thursday February 7th 2019

Thursday, February 7th, 2019

This is a very good section - would be challenging even on a modern bike - the pic shows Bernie Schreiber trying out a James at a Vintage event.  ( Note:  his riding gear for the day - also this is one of the very special James rebuilds inspired by Mick Andrews and not the model we had in the 1950’s)
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And this is an old pic of a member of the “Over the Bars” club
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Interested in Statistics ? Here you go>

Home » News » MIC Owner Survey reveals today’s motorcyclists

MIC Owner Survey reveals today’s motorcyclists

We know that more motorcycle owners these days are women, and now we know increasing percentages of all owners are married and college graduates, and they’re generally older, according to the 2018 Motorcycle Industry Council Owner Survey.

“Demographics are changing for Americans across the country and it’s no different for motorcycle owners,” said MIC President and CEO Tim Buche. “For decades, the MIC Owner Survey has told us a lot about who we are, and we’re now learning how things have shifted since our last study was done in 2014. Some of the stats are encouraging, like the increasing number of women owners, while other data, such as the rising median age, show where we have more work to do.”

Gender, Age, Marital Status
Male Owners – 81 percent
Female Owners – 19 percent

Median Age
2018 – 50
2014 – 47
2012 – 45

2018 – 68 percent
2014 – 61 percent
2012 – 63 percent

Education, Income and Work Status
College Graduate
2018 – 24 percent
2014 – 20 percent
2012 – 17 percent

Median Household Income
2018 – $62,500
2014 – $62,200
2012 – $64,100

Employed – 71 percent
Retired – 24 percent

The owner survey also uncovered trends among the emerging group of millennial motorcyclists. More than half have taken a training course and use their bikes frequently for commuting. Sixty-nine percent say they are interested in electric motorcycles, citing fuel and the environment as top drivers.

“For the past several years, manufacturers have offered more great entry-level motorcycles at affordable prices,” Buche said, “while at the same time focusing on increasing the industry’s outreach to millennials.”

The Motorcycle Industry Council exists to preserve, protect and promote motorcycling through government relations, communications and media relations, statistics and research, aftermarket programs, development of data communications standards, and activities surrounding technical and regulatory issues. As a not-for-profit national industry association, the MIC seeks to support motorcyclists by representing manufacturers, distributors, dealers and retailers of motorcycles, scooters, ATVs, ROVs, motorcycle/ATV/ROV parts, accessories and related goods and services, and members of allied trades such as insurance, finance and investment companies, media companies and consultants.


A blast from the past ( thanks to Jamie McGregor)
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Check out this video from the Jodi Tarres “TRS FUN Times”


The World of Trials has lost another “Great” - Neil Crosswaite died at the age of 70 in Yorkshire - He was  the inspiration along with his buddy Martin Lampkin, in starting the Sheffield Indoor Arena Trials. - His son Martin Crosswaite was a top rider in the UK for many years.