A younger Michael Johnson

Julian Wigg

Rob Faulkener

Tim Blackmore

Michael Johnson

2016 James Cup Trial

Report and pictures Ken O'Bailey

Michael Johnson 260 Montesa took the Expert class and premiere award 'The James Cup' losing three marks with this Trial a round of the South Midland 'Total Class' Championship.

Howe Wood Watlington was the venue where 3 laps of twelve sections were ridden we had steep climbs cambered roots and sweeping sandy banks.

Conditions were dry throughout and it was always going to be a battle of nerves between the top riders.

First up to section one was Expert Michael James this was Jakes a drop over some loose rocks before a short sharp climb over roots with an equally steep descent a clean here set the precedent for the day.

Runner-up Expert Scott Faulkner out on the TRS 280 lost four with Alicia Robinson also on four to win the best Youth A award.

Section nine was proving difficult for most a long and winding affair with a wiggle in the middle Alicia lost one after three visits this was the best performance of the hard route brigade.

A handful of Intermediates took on the 50/50 course with Rob Faulkner 250 Scorpa coming out on top with a clean ride.

Neil Saunders 300 Gasser was second on six with 34 cleans to Andrew Earnshaws 33.

On the standard white route Tim Blackmore had a double whammy winning the Pre 65 class and overall best performance with another clean ride, Mark Elms Alex Taylor and Adrian Steele taking the minor positions.

Adrian was on gold til the dreaded section nine took another soft dab.

Alan Taylor 250 Pinky put paid to any hope of silverware with a spectacular get-off at Tom Mitsons section twelve a sandy cambered bank then a sharpish left turn up over a lattice of roots.

In the Twinshock class Stefan Walters done the business on the his immaculately prepared 200 Fantic his loss was seven with an unfortunate five first lap at section two where Jim Axford was on the pencil.
This sub was not as easy as it looked catching many riders out on the steep descent before entering the second part of the hazard.

The Blue eased course was frequented by twenty plus riders with Bailey Tidbury Beta 80 producing the goods with a tally of three Richie Gardner was on six and Neil Osman 410 AJS on nine.

Bailey's only loss was a three at section four first visit a cambered bank then a hop over a fallen tree before a steep cambered rolling turn to the ends.

Many thanks to the landowners and observers.



 Michael Johnson 260 Mont  3
   Scott Faulkner  280 TRS  4
 Youth A Alicia Robinson  Beta 125  4
 Youth B  Oscar Jones  Beta 125  41
 50/50  Rob Faulkner Scorpa 250  0
   Neil Saunders  300 Gasser

 6 ---34 cleans

   Andrew Earnshaw  250 Beta  6 --- 33 cleans
White Route      
 and Pre-65 winner  Tim Blackmore  Bantam 185  0
   Mark Elms  300 Beta  1
   Alex Taylor  300 Beta  1
   Adrian Steele  250 Beta  2
   Alan Taylor  Yam Pinky  6
   Stefan Walters 200 Fantic  7
 Blue Route      
  Bailey Tidbury Beta 80 3
  Richard Gardiner 250 Gasser 6
  Neil Osman 410 AJS 7
  Andrew Camp 250 Mont 10
  Rob Walker 260 Cub 12


Full results can be found here .