WHERE TO RIDE IN 2009 ?

WHERE TO RIDE IN 2009 ?

WHERE TO RIDE IN 2009 ?


Scotland 1974 SSDT

Leaving Scotland aside time to look at the 2009 program and see what can be ridden this year within
the new budget. The season got off to a great start at Buckeye AZ but then has taken a nosedive as my
usual run of events in AZ could not be ridden due to distance and finances. Missing 3 AZ favourites of
Kingman, Keith’s Mine and Alto Pit leave a big hole in the Ahrma pre season practice and this year I’m
also missing DD’s down in the bayou so nothing on the horizon until Milliken in May.

Missing Alto Pit this year

Normally by May I have already completed half a season’s worth of events but this year all the events
have been too far away to even consider. So let’s assume I get ONE ride in using the Ahrma dumbarse
rule before someone notices and objects and that should then leave 4 more rides for Classic Expert
and 6 for Premier Heavyweight.

In the Mudhole at Milliken

So Milliken will be the “double or triple entry” on May 16 and then a couple of weeks off before the NEW
venue at Turkey Rock, Howard CO, me thinks this is similar altitude and conditions as Cotopaxi but
we will see.

June has a couple of the Rocky Mountain events that I haven’t ridden in the past so more new ground
for me at Steamboat Springs on 20 June and then the following weekend at Lyons Quarry on June 28.

The rocks by the Lodge at Donner

July and time to head for the hills and Donner Ski Ranch in CA. Not sure what it is about this place but
I love the location and event and always seem to have a good ride at this one. I think it must rate as the
near Perfect Trial on the Ahrma calendar. It has everything, location, facilities, terrain and a very
pleasant atmosphere  to go with the views and perfect trials riding temperatures.

Then while others work their way through Mid Ohio and Chehalis I will bide my time until the end of
August when we are back at Tucker Ranch Cotopaxi. Again I enjoy this venue and normally ride well
enough but seem to have had a lot of “5’s” if memory serves me right. Well perhaps it was setting up
the Cub in it’s early days but nonetheless a very beautiful place and perfect terrain for trials at all levels
up to Modern National.

The Waterfall at Cotopaxi

Tight turns at Cotopaxi

September will see us away for over a week with the 3 day event at Casper Wy where I have had
some good and bad rides over the years despite the fact that the sections and conditions are some
of my favorites. The first year on the Yams was pretty good with a nice win on day 1 and then a
mechanical fuel blockage causing a 5 and losing day 2. Second time out the first day was again good
but Dan Straka had an “A game day” and had a deserved win. Day 2 was marred with a couple of
surprize 5’s which didn’t do much and dropped me down the order. Third appearance at this venue
and I’m on the Cub but it keeps chucking me over the bars until we discover the SM pegs are causing
the problem. Last year was a very easy routing for the big RE which chuffed round 3 days for the loss
of just one mark although it did eat a handful of plugs.

The Rivers of Casper

In the Woods at Casper

Straight down I25 post Casper and back to the sand of Sandia which I seem to ride better than most
and with the new terrain and sections this has been a good venue for me over the past few years.

Sandia…….. sand!

Come October we may take our pilgramage back to Napa to have the “Anniversary” and round off
the season with Hollister Hills on October 10 which is “The Day”.

Getting close to “Crunch Time” so for anyone still thinking of “Pledges” for the Pre 65, don’t be shy
every little contribution from $1 upwards will certainly help.

Many thanks to those that have contributed already

TONY DOWN

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  • 3/30/2009 6:58 AM Jack Knoops wrote:
    Hi Tony,
    Have you received the letter yet? I sent it on the 23/03/2009 and Royal Mail confirms it lef UK on24th. Yours Jack
    Reply to this
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GOING, GOING, GONE!

GOING, GOING, GONE!

GOING, GOING, GONE

The Rise & Fall of an Empire

2008 was without doubt the worst year on memory on a personal front as the economy and death of the
construction industry bit harder and harder until eventually I was forced to close the company. Yes, there
was some work and several large contracts but the slow rate could not keep a medium sized company
operating and slowly people were laid off and more and more equipment was standing idle in the yard.

By May 2008, having poured a fortune in to keep the boat afloat, it was time to abandon ship and accept
what fate had in store. Had I sold the company back in 2006 I could have walked away with about 2M
with all debts paid. But life isn’t like that and things were going extremely well at that point so why would
anyone sell?

Didn’t sell, had to Walk Away!

Yes, it had it all, 9′ deep 42′ long

So first up time to put the 1.2M house on the “For Sale” list …….. not even a nibble! Then in an effort to
sustain life a major attack on ebay which for about 6 weeks went very well with old parts and bits
selling on a regular basis. At the same time my Ford Tractor went off to Bingham and was eventually
sold for a good price. The 10 wheeler that I owned outright was bought by an older gentleman who flew
down from Canada to drive it all the way back.

Gone to Canada

Gone to Texas

2 other 2005 Chevy pickups that were also mine went on Craigs list and one departed for Texas and
the other was snapped up by my long time mechanic. Sadly the MV Augusta with barely 1000 miles on
it was sold to a dealer via e-bay while 7 trials bikes that were some of my best restorations went to
Richard in Colorado to join the other 4 he had bought from me over the years. The 2 lovely Rothman’s
RTL and TLM Hondas, the Ossa, Cagiva, the TYZ, the Majesty 320 Yam and the unridden rechromed
TY175.

Heartbreaking!

Gone to Colorado. Ossa, Majesty, TY175, TYZ, Cagiva, and the Rothman’s
RTL and TLM

Gone!

By August things had become serious and the Attorney suggested stop paying for anything and sell
the house and go on a World Cruise!  With fuel and insurance prices going through the roof I complied
with his suggestions (without the World Cruise) and by the end of Sandia I was forced to conceed that
we would have to leave everything in Arizona and try and sustain life in Colorado. The Screamin Eagle
with a mere 700 miles on it was sold to a Harley dealership and the Starship Beaver Marquis was taken
back and left on the “for sale” lot at RV Renovators. Sadly there was $170,000 equity in the RV but in
these financial times very unlikely that any of that would be recovered.

Gone! with just 700 miles

Walked away from with $170,000 equity

Walking away from my former home  in AZ with all its perfect workshops and glorious gardens was a
real heartbreak, but what can you do when the price has dropped by about $750,000 and still won’t
sell?  All possessions in the house are put up for sale in an Estate Auction and $100,000 + of
furniture, personal possessions,and knick knacks only raise a meagre $5000! I almost made more
than that in the 2 yard sales.

Man, I miss those workshops

Then just to rub salt in the wound the 7 Championship rides that I had won fairly and squarely in
Classic Expert are deemed “ineligible” as my Ahrma card is stamped Intermediate!!!

So here we are in 2009, and within the last 2 weeks the 520 EXC KTM did sell and also the one off
OSSAMAHA which I never thought I would sell has also departed. Well I still have a few machines so
I’m not without a ride so must stay positive and hope the Universe will be kind and look after its own.

Gone in the last 2 weeks

Also gone in the last 2 weeks

….. and now I have THAT ENTRY in the Silver Jubilee Pre 65 Scottish but I’m running out of  ways to
finance the project and really need some Sugar daddies or Mommies to come to the rescue. If this
story has “touched the heart”, rather than, “serves him right” then see the earlier article,
“The Fun of Funding”.

All very sad.

TONY DOWN

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PLAYING BY THE RULES

PLAYING BY THE RULES

PLAYING BY THE RULES

ALL these from just ONE Ride !!!

Despite my protests to the powers that be, and post a Board meeting nothing has changed on the
ridiculous New 2009 Trials Rules. These were of course changed after my Classic Expert
Championship was taken away last year such that the problem could not occur again!

The NEW rules which are reproduced below from this years Handbook state that you can enter ALL the
classes you wish at any one event providing they take place on the same line.

13.3.e  A rider may only enter one class per day, with the following exception. A rider may enter
more than one class per day if:

1) the rider’s ability level is the same in each class;
2) the lines ridden are the same for both classes;
3) the rider declares the intention to enter multiple classes at registration and pays the fees for all
classes, and;
4) the sections and loops are ridden as if the rider was riding just one class.
At the completion of the event, the rider’s score will be applied to all classes entered.

Strangely you do NOT have to actually RIDE the event or even OWN a machine that is eligible for the
CLASS that you have entered! So here we have a situation whereby I can ride my Cub in Premier
Lightweight and enter ALL classes that EXPERTS ride on the 2 Line. Whatever score I return for my
three actual loops will then be used as my SCORE in ALL other CLASSES that I entered. Assuming I
had unlimited funds I could enter THREE CLASSES all riding the 2 line and if I emerged as the low
score it will then carry over into the others whereby my score on the Cub goes directly against those
riding big old Ariels, Velos and Aj’s. Hopefully I should be able to do better on the same section on the
190 lb superb handling Cub than on the 280 lb Bullet. I can imagine the annoyance of anyone riding a
TRUE Premier Heavyweight machine who now finds himself up against a more agile and lighter
machine purely because the owner has spent another $40 on an entry fee, and of course I can also
use the same score in Classic Expert providing I have entered that class as well.

We have already seen this “Joker Rule” used at Buckeye in the opening event and I, as Trialsmaster
had to award TWO First Places for a single ride. Clearly this rule is complete nonsense and has to go.
As the powers that be have chosen to ignore it at their meeting I TOO will use it at the next event just to
make the point. It is also true that any of the INT riders riding the PI line can do the same in their
respective THREE classes and cause complete mayhem in those divisions as well.

Winner of the Premier Lightweight, Premier Heavyweight and Classic Exp
all for ONE ride and THREE entries……… “Well Done !”

Who, I wonder, sat down and wrote that crap? …….. and some people wonder why Ahrma is getting a
bad name, well it is rules like this one, and I am now forced to agree with Alice Sexton as I have written
several e-mails to both Ahrma, the Off Road Director and members of the Trials Committee. I have
recently been told that these “Ahrma E-Mails” are not answered???? Well what is the point of
publishing them in the “Contact Us” section if nobody is going to have the courtesy to reply?

Very interesting !

…..and now, it has just come to my notice that this letter is out and about ? No mention at all on the
Ahrma website, or even a sniff of what is happening. Once again the Ahrma membership is being
treated as the “Mushroom”……. left in the dark and fed on ****! ……… perhaps they don’t check their
mail either……Ignorance is bliss.

TONY DOWN

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