Tuesday June 21st 2022

Today we are publishing an account of a Lady Trials rider tackling her first event !!!  Lisa explains it so well, that I’m sure many newbies will enjoy it.  ( And yes I do remember my first event back in 1955 - the course was 70 miles long and I lost 72 points!!!  no award that day. - The pic on the Outlaw Plaque was taken that day)
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Hi Dave.

My first competition was more than fun. Do you remember your first?

I caught the 6:20 a.m. ferry from Langdale to Horseshoe Bay putting me at the Canada Pacific Trials Association’s gate in Ioco more than 2 hours early for the 10 a.m. start.

One club member, Brian, was in the lot when I arrived giving us plenty of time to debate the pros and cons of wearing knee braces during competition. Given he was recovering from a torn knee ligament, I can understand his position, but opted for just extra knee padding based solely on the tenant not to change anything on the day of an event (butt, hip and spine padding also helped during the armadillo rolls to be made throughout the day).

Early arrival gave plenty of time to contemplate why one might want to do her first trials competition at age 58. Other than trials being the coolest sport with the coolest bikes ever, it surely must be all about the colourful boots (you saw the photo; I wore mine proudly).

The parking lot filled up quickly shortly thereafter. By the time the horn blew, summoning us  to the clubhouse (a utilitarian collection of seacans containing volunteers, interesting photos, old trophies and a pit toilet for those of us suffering from the pre-event jitters), the race organizers were prepared to declare it a sunny Father’s Day with a good turn out for the event. Fathers were congratulated for attending and all we headed off into the woods for a new adventure.

I entered the junior category and was placed in a group with four lovely young aspirants.  Emily, a 21 yo rider doing her second competition, kept in contact with her father, Jeff, throughout the day. A man of many hats, Jeff acted as father, announcer, score keeper and participant for the day. As he was also the creator of our shared junior and intermediate stages, he was much amused to find himself off course at least once, making me wonder how much us newbies could reasonably expect of ourselves.

l had a chance to meet Emily’s identical twin sister during lunch. When asked why only one of them was riding, they admitted to owning one bike between them. This  didn’t seem to cause them any grief since, given they are identical, no one knew the better when as they alternated their attendance at events. Come on, Dad, buy that third bike!

Before things got going, I had the opportunity to peek at the first of the two riding areas where we would begin. The terrain was fairly flat and dry, having many sharp turns betwixt and between the trees, leaving the more hilly terrain for later morning (see video of Bob riding an intermediate stage).

To my horror, my early preview did not have the anticipated effect, rather resulting in the first of many WTF moments that I experienced throughout the day and causing me to turn tail for the parking lot to seek assistance. The  first woman I saw on a bike was Jacqueline, a young woman who, when not trials riding, is a professional mountain bike instructor from Vancouver’s North shore. She graciously walked me through the first stage pointing out the in and out and giving me my mantra for the day, ”right is red”. My heart rate slid back into the survivable zone.

I was thankful to have sportsman (old) Bob (of Mountain Motorcycle who sold me 2 trials bikes,  the most recent being my 280 TRS, my greatest treasure) and his friend, Steve, behind me. They quickly showed me how to make sense of the ribbons and identify the hazards which proved useful, although it didn’t prevent my first score of 5 for stalling (see photos of Bob).

Sportsman, I learned, is a category unto itself preserved wholly for the really old riders who apparently used to be really good, and probably still are.  They are an odd bunch, keeping diligent score, mostly of their peers from across the forest floor, helpfully bellowing numbers for all to enjoy, less a point be missed, and to ensure that none are spared from the humiliation of missing a point, sportsmen will be attentive to the accurate punching of all cards, sparing no one.  Most amazing, sportsmen are required to keep score and place against their category competitors, win their ribbons and the honour of our appreciative applause, yet the logistics are, to me, quite mysterious, since no sportsman hands in his score card at the end of the day. Frankly, while  I can’t figure it out, even the most curmudgeonly of the sportsmen is cracking a smile at the end of the day. It must be in the blood.

I got through the first loop with a lion’s share of 5’s, a couple of zeros and a smattering of everything else in between.

Lunch, provided by the club, was medium rare roast beef and horseradish on a bun, which raised my spirits immensely and, after a short break, I was ready to go again.

3 stages into my second loop Bob said, “You have a choice here. You can finish the loop or you can learn something”.  Having never DNF’d in my life, it was not the easiest choice, but I was tired and I was progressing quickly from inconsistent at my best to erratic to downright dangerous. That and the fact that first hand instruction is hard to find living where I live(Youtube goes only so far), made the learning option a no-brainer. I spent the rest of the afternoon with Bob repeating various stages, making what in my mind were noticeable improvements which, and I am grasping here, while cheering my soul, probably wouldn’t have won me a trophy on any given day.

Before heading out of the parking lot, Ted, who had parked his travelling work shop (see photo of him and his bike) beside me, got up into the bed of my pick-up and finessed out of my bike a fragile plastic idle adjuster threatening to break off, saving me no end of woes once back on that rock I call home. Thanks for that, Ted. Then, ofd to pay homage to my master, BC Ferries (don’t forget to make a reservation if you plan to ride our amazing dirt bike trails in the Sunshine Coast).

4 hours on the bike yesterday. Feeling it for sure. Popped 2 anti -inflammatorie’s for breakfast before heading back to my desk job. Feeling like a Viking queen. Hope it lasts all summer as the club’s next competition won’t be until the fall. All in all a perfect first time experience.

Lisa C. Rae

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And here is a report on the Merrit Hare Scramble by Andrew Christiansen

Went well, got the 100 dollar hole-shot award, Led for the first half and then the local track builder got me , came in second. He knew the course pretty well , but it wouldn’t have mattered , it was  boulder city and the 3rd lap I got pretty tired. BIG turnout, 225 riders, fantastic weather, and tons of people I haven’t seen in a while. Next race is the monkey wrench in 2 weeks. Richard Gavel did well, 11th in super senior , and Mike Hano got 12th in Senior AM.

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Congrats to Invermere’s Trystan Hart who finished 3rd at the Erzbergrodeo  - 500 started - only 9 finished  ( Sounds a bit like the old Moose Mountain Cross Countries of the 1970’s)

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Breaking News. - Triumph have bought Oset.

May be an image of 1 person, motorcycle, outdoors and text that says 'TRIUMPH V'

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