THE CAT OPENER
The Start 2005 with the SuperglitzNo, this is not a story from the Animal clinic but the opener for Central Arizona Trials. New rule
changes and no more Vintage Class as it has now been combined with Twinshock and the class
rules opened up to include all the bikes from the late 70’s and early 80’s. Well I could get to ride
the Cagiva or even the SWM when I get round to rebuilding it.
So this week it’s been decision time in the workshop! What to ride? The Cub is now fully
competitive in all classes, the Ossa has it’s new carb and fired right up so is well in the running
and then there are the Yamahas. Superglitz hasn’t had a ride since her 2006 Championship runs.
The Majesty could come back out? and then there is the 77 Yam which I might change yet again
and give her another go. Not forgetting the work of art Ossamaha who did get 2 rides last year
and is begining to loosen up a little after a fairly tight rebore. Decisions, decisions!
The decision was made and the Cub got it. Ossamaha was second and Ossa taking third spot.
Must share it out later in the year. So a very early start at 0430 and leaving the house with 200+
to go for a 0830 check in. It started raining after about 70 miles and carried on until daybreak.
Arrived at the start, cold, bleak and unusually very windy.
Difficult to tell how many riders were there as most people seemed to be hiding in their transport.
However 43 riders took the start all assigned to their appropriate groups. My group consists of
Steve Richardson from Canada, rounding off his 2 week trip out of the cold, Rich Palmer and
Theresa Striedeck who is riding Beginner Lines.
We have a choice of start and being the first group ready we elect to take section 1. A variation
on an old theme here with a tricky entrance after an uphill approach. 2 large footrest high rocks
to squeeze through before a descent onto some granite slabs and then a turn and set of steps
to the upper plateau before a few simple turns to the uphill exit on the path. Rich cleans it while
Steve and I both take a dab and in the process I give my knee an almighty thwack on a rock for
Over to section 2 which really should not cause any problems for any of our group but after
negotiating the first series of simple turns I manage to turn in an inch off line and the back wheel
slides throwing the front into a cactus and a resulting scrabbly 3! Steve makes a mess too and
adds 2 more to his score while Rich rides the line like a demo and makes it look very easy.
Rich gives us a “demo” Section 2
Section 3 is our only visit to the river and after a downhill turn from the ledge there is a left turn
over some jagged rocks and then a splash and crash before a difficult and slippery exit. 3’s from
Steve and myself and yet another amazing clean from Rich….. this is getting one sided already!
Back through the pits and along the road to 4 where Trialsmaster, Mike Carlton , is checking out
the action. The initial part of the section is a series of turns followed by an uphill across some
rocks and then descending back towards the start where the fun begins with a full lock left turn
before a full bore uphill in loose dirt. I take a dab on the turn before the hill trying to cut it too
close but rocket up the hill and manage to get traction all the way with a bit of arse wiggling!
Steve doesn’t get the power on early enough but gets over the top with a very long dab. Rich
seems to be going well but there isn’t much power and half way up the hill he takes a dab before
taking the alternate route which I personally thought was doomed to failure but that little Yam
responded and with a fine ride he is up an over for just the dab. Well at least he IS human today!
Round the corner to 5 which is a series of “up and over” soft berms and should get easier as the
trial progresses and sure enough all three of us are through clean on all three laps.
6 has a series of uphill rock steps and apart from Steve going the wrong side of a card on the
first loop we are all clean on this and subsequent visits.
Over to 7 which has a very difficult exit taking marks from all 3 of us on every loop until Rich pulls
off a great clean on our last visit.
Body “English” from Canadian Steve Richardson Section 8
Round the trail and over to the other side of the property for 8 which is a classic down and up
and we all clean this with a lot of style and make it look very easy, which it wasn’t!
Back to the road and the last one on this side of the valley which crosses the brook and then
after rocks and soft sand over an adverse tree root to a left turn to drop us back into the brook
again amidst some big awkwardly positioned rocks before a soft sand uphill adverse exit.
Different lines here but we all get through with a bit of effort.
Rich takes the outside line on 9
Section 10 is by the start and although presenting a good challenge for the Intermediates our
line is a real “gimmee” considering the level of ability in our group.
Overall a fine event and a great ride by Rich…. well done! For my part the bike was flawless,
which of course is good but for some reason I never really felt 100% comfortable …. just one
of those days, didn’t ride badly, but didn’t superstar either…..oh well, that’s the fun of trials.
On reflection this would have been a good trial for the Ossa.
Rich 6 points
Me 20 points
Steve 26 points
Just IN……. Mick Andrews will be at Sandia for the AHRMA trial and may well be riding one of
Next CAT Trial at Table Mesa with all those “Scottish” rocks 16 March…. don’t miss it!!