With cold light winds and fair skies forecast, 58 riders turned up for the first Pre-Unit championship trial of the year, at Roggerham Gate in deepest Lancashire.
Stav Chorley aka Dave Ingram (Ariel) found top form and took the blue riband springer class keeping a clean sheet on the slippery sections, closely followed by Mick Clark (Ariel) dropping only 1 on the slippery section seven.
John Feather took the rigid pre-unit class on 11 marks well ahead of Gordon Imrie on the ex Steve Rayner Matchless for the first time.
Yrjo Vesterinen took his Bantam to first place in the lightweight just for fun class with the only other clean of the day.
With the route restricted to the centre of the area, several of the favourite sections were out of bounds so Rob Lowther and Colin Lawrence had to find new sections to bridge the gap. The first three sections caused little trouble but weaving through the rocks of section four needed care on the thawing turns and climbs. Andy Scott and Pete Clibburn both on Cubs dropped their solitary marks here.
It was section 7 that caused the most trouble taking marks from the majority. The cambered uphill approach and turn just before the last climb to the steep exit caught out all but the winner in the Pre-Unit classes and sharp tyres were needed after the grass was lost on the first lap. Many riders floundered on the hill but were lucky to get the wheel spindle through the ends cards before being dumped on the clay. Others were surprised when finding grip causing uncontrolled wheelies and unceremonious dismounts.
In the lightweight fun class Vesty was followed home by four riders losing only one mark with the Club’s oldest rider tiebreak deciding the runners up. Phil Clarkson (Bantam) therefore took second ahead of Andy Scott, Pete Cliburn and Robin Luscombe all on Cubs.
At the end of the day, the majority went home happy and most thought it just about right for a Yorkshire Classic pre-unit event.
1st Dave Ingram (Ariel) 0 2nd Mick Clarke (Ariel) 1 3rd Gary Shaw (Norton side valve) 6
1st John Feather (Ariel) 11 2nd Gordon Imrie (Matchless) 20 3rd Gary Marshall (Triumph TRW) 21
1st Colin Benson (Triumph) 44 2nd Rob Lowther (Triumph) 46
Rigid Vintage Two Strokes
1st Eric Atkinson (James) 47
Just for fun
1st Yrjo Vesterinen (Bantam) 0 2nd Phil Clarkson (Bantam) 1 3rd Andy Scott (Cub) 1 4th Pete Cliburn (Cub) 1