AHRMA VINTAGE TRIALS MILLIKEN 2009
AHRMA VINTAGE TRIALS MILLIKEN 2009
Saturday morning and a slightly later start out walking the Iditarod team in a sea of easy ups that has
grown like wild flowers overnight with the arrival of all the MX people.
Brenda is helping with sign-up and those other forgotten duties that take all day behind the scenes;
loop cards, the master scoreboard, volunteer checkers etc.
Start time comes round at 1000 and the 3,4 and PI riders will start at 1&2 and 1 and 2 will begin at
section 3 the pipes. Arrive at 3 and start walking with memory selected. A small secure log to cross
after the start and then a slalom through some tires before a banked turn to the right entering a gentle
lefthander leading up to a very simple up and over a bank. Drop down the other side and cross the
busted concrete chunks before getting to the pipes. Enter with a left hander and the take a wide
downhill adverse to the right to come back over some logs and set up for the multiple pipe crossing
and final gated log before the exit. Many riders are taking on the pipes and logs in a full bloodied
attack but if you take a different line you can cross only one before the gated log. Despite nerves,
probably from the Scottish arse kicking, I stick with my line and I sail through for a precise clean.
Exactly on line in Section 3
A little ride round the loop to 4 which is a much longer version of the one I rode here 2 years ago when
I went over the bars with those Miller pegs. This is a delicate power section and again stay precisely
on the line at all costs. Enter into a gentle uphill left hand adverse switching directions into a right
adverse dirt turn and then crossing a berm by the gate to get out wide for a double berm crossing and
drop down to the lower level. Just enough room at the bottom to get a good line up on a line
dependant steep grass uphill before entering a steep series of uphill turns. Crest the ridge under
gentle power and take care along the loose track to the exit. The Cub behaves flawlessly and goes
exactly where I want and another clean is punched.
No 5, starts with a straight shot uphill on loose dirt, rocks and grass and could go any way depending
on how the hill behaves. 1 liners have a crafty little S turn at the bottom and it looks like any power will
rotovate some rollers into the path. Sarah Duke gets into some real trouble here!…… and Keith
Wineland also puts his boots into action which must have come as a real shock for an accredited
National rider of his standing. At the crest of the hill we do a tight left hander and then brake all the way
back down before another shorter uphill twist into a left hander and descent to a long right hander
across the adverse portion of the hill. I have the power spot on and all goes to plan without finding any
rollers in the grass.
Over to 6 where again throttle control will be the key to success as there are a series of turns up and
across the grassy dirt banks and any error in positioning for these or any wild power applications will
end in tears. After the turns an adverse bank into a left 180 before entering a downhill narrow adverse
track, again line dependant, bringing all lines back together where 1 & 2 get a right, left uphill in loose
rubble to the exit. Stick with the plan and get another clean. Saw Fred have a very unlucky 5 on the
adverse before the 180 when for no reason she stalled. Don’t you just love Amal ?
Finishing 6 we are almost at the start of 7 which is potentially the hardest section of the day. A short
uphill into a left turn and immediate descent to come inside a marker and a steeper uphill with a
multitude of line choices to get up and over the hill. Further up the hill 1 & 2 take on a BIG log which is
the likely “mark grabber” before a steep downhill and then turn for the exit. The up and down goes
to plan and now be gentle with the power to stop the front wheel washing before lining up for a straight
uphill shot, recover on the top and line up for the daunting log which the Cub sails over and then gentle
control through the rest to the exit.
The 1 & 2 lines are the same on 8 where we enter onto a sandy ridge before dropping down into a
right hand round the bush on a sandy surface, which could get deeper, and up the bank again for a
tight round a tire turn and down the bank to a gentle right left through the bushes to the exit. A minor
weight shift required on the soft sand but a good recovery for the clean but bear that in mind for the
next 2 loops.
Back at the start area for sections 1 and 2 in the notorious “Pit” where 2 MX bikes were lost and have
never been recovered! As you walk the bottom of the pit, although hard and dry, the surface ripples like
a trampoline as you step on it indicating the horrors of what lies beneath!
Entering the Pit on Section 1
Section 1 kicks off with a quick uphill onto the path where Ed had the throttle stick open for an
unexpected get off! After that, turn on the track for another small climb into the left hander before
meandering round and down the side of the pit into a right left to get up onto a very narrow ledge by the
tape. This ledge could easily break away and make this portion quite tricky on future loops. Having
slipped along the ledge drop back into the pit and take on the uphill to get out taking care to go the
correct side of the exit marker in a sea of flags. All well here but watch that ledge!
Up on the crumbly ledge of Section 1
Le Ann has section 2 and Dan Straka dropped a 5 here for upsetting the checker by entering without
permission. Tough that one but it was mentioned at the Rider’s Meet. The section itself set off with a
downhill adverse to pick up a gully, exit onto the top again before dropping back down to that
“trampoline” surface. Stay inside the tires and line up for a small log crossing and then pick a path
through the groove with the footrest wide banks to get back to the top and ride down to the exit. No
problems here and a good clean first loop so back to the start and see how its all going. The boards
are not yet up so a quick drink and back down to 1 & 2 and do it all over again.
Out of the gully on Section 2
No problems here so, 10 down, 14 to go. Nothing has changed on 3 so through and across to 4 where
a nice line in the grass shows the way through. Bit of a backlog at 5 which is taking some marks, loose
rocks everywhere but Cub drives through. Nice line established in 6 and no major changes. 7 looks the
same and 8 rides easier this time. Another clean loop so back to the start and see how its all looking.
Len Sims, doing his double entry under the NEW ABSURD RULE again, has lost a dab somewhere and
as I’m trying to bring things to a HEAD I’ve also entered Prem Hwy Exp just to show how stupid this is.
Rob and Shane have lost 6 and 7 so this should be a fun finish.
Last line up through the Pipes on Section 3
Last loop and realistically no changes anywhere so just a lot of concentration required to prevent the
“dumb dab” or worse. Another clean loop so clean for the day and another “honest” win in Classic
Expert. Turns out Len is younger than me anyway so at least I have age on my side should we tie
anytime this season. Back at the start Rob and Shane are really not happy!! ….. and of course
understandably so, WHAT A STUPID RULE! Let’s hope that it gets thrown out as it will make a
mockery of the Championships unless we all agree to not play it.
Game over and a “0” Card
Other than the obvious, the results are in and show 3 clean cards for the day with Mike Buckholz riding
the revamped Ossamaha to first place in Modern Classic Expert, myself in Classic Expert and Steve
Doyle, who can still not walk the sections, coming in an easy winner in Modern Classic Novice. Fred
and Hugh tied in Classic Int on their Cubs both having an unfortunate 5 with Hugh getting it on age.
Modern Classic Int saw Wolfy get the win on 5, yes he laid out the Trial, but he NEVER rode any of the
sections. Bob finished on 8 with Ed taking third after his “loop de loop” on the first section. In Prem Hwy,
ignoring my “score” Rob just edged Shane with 7 and 8 lost.
A clear victory for Steve Doyle in MC Novice with a “0” Card
Rules and arguments aside a good event overall in very pleasant conditions rounded off with some
fireside chatter and a selection of “special brews” courtesy of Ed.
Good riding from Ed after the section 1 upset to finish 3rd in MC Int
Sunday morning and the trek home only this time we will take I25 south to Walsenburg then Alamosa
back to Wolf Creek Pass and home. It will be longer but less tiring through the mountains.
Coming up Wolf Creek Pass with some “Scottish” sections by the road
Yes, a better drive and home by 6 p.m. to finish a pleasant weekend and I now have 3 first place wins
for the Classic so just 4 more events on that one before switching to the big RE and take on Rob,
Shane and Derek on equal terms with absolutely NO chance of cheating!