Stephen Douglas

Dean Devereaux

Stefan Walters

Jason North

Tim Blackmore 

Kelvin Bint


2017 Norton Trophy and James Cup Trials and Meteor round

Report Ken O'Brien

Pics Gary Dowzall

It was a cold but sunny morning where 70 riders of all abilities waited in anticipation for the off to test their skills on the banks of this ancient forest venue where rocks roots and more were waiting in undergrowth.
Ten Experts on parade today with Stephen Douglas 300 Gas Gas over from the Milton Buzzard club taking the overall hard route and Expert class to win the premiere award 'The James Cup' losing 0 marks.
This Trial also incorporating the Norton Trophy for the best performance on a Pre 65 machine riding the Yellow standard route.
This event also held Meteor group status. 

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 in all classes.

First up to section one was Expert Sean McCullagh with Tom Mitson on the pen 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.
Best Youth A on the hard route was Bret Harbud on six 
Best Intermediate went to Dean Devereux piloting the trusty TLM 260 around for eight marks lost on the 50/50 route.
Dean made short work of section two recording three cleans a steep drop then a climb over roots before a loose sandy climb up to the ends.
On the standard Yellow route best performance went to Stefan Walters on his immaculate Fantic 200 best Twinshock also went his way.
Stefan was inch perfect on section eight every visit starting with a right handed drop into a mulch of leaves a steep climb out then a flop around an aging sycamore before climbing a bank to the holly bush exit.
Best Pre 65 and Norton Trophy went to Jason North with a sprinkling of dabs totting up to five.
Jason's Tigercub coping with the various terrain with no problem.
In the Clubman class Nene Valley raider Simon Levett just edged out Pre race favourite Adrian Steele on most cleans both losing ten marks.
The loose clay turns of Jim Axfords posed problems for most during the proceedings but Simon with pinpoint accuracy was on song today with three great cleans.
Tim Blackmore BSA Bantam 185 parted with 19 marks but still made best Two Stroke in the British bike class although engine gremlins played a big part in two of Tim's failures.
Another great ride was that of Kevin Bint 350 Triumph this was a heavy old lump to handle around this technical but open course, Kevin was rewarded with runner-up in the Unit class also in the British Bike.
Ex Scrambler Brian Tomkins TRS 250 pressed on for the win in the Novice class.
Brian was spot-on at section six a series of wall of death climbs and turns finishing over a lattice of roots.
On the White easy course Norton mounted Steve Jones roared around to the delight of the crowd cleaning every section at some stage five was his tally after an enjoyable day
Mick Clarkson Bantam 186cc lost 23 taking best Two Stroke with Roy Haines 250 Ariel Leader Twin on 28 in third spot.
Many thanks to all involved for a very enjoyable day.
Class Rider Bike  Points
Red Route      
 Premiere and James Cup  Stephen Douglas  300 Gasser  0
   Sean McCullgh  300 TRS  1 f/c
   Tom McCabe  300 Gasser  1
   Jeremy Callow  260 Mont  1
   Graham Haslam  125 Beta  2
Youth B  Bret Harbud  125 Beta  6
50/50 Intermediate  Dean Devereaux  TLM 260  8
   Jason Clifford  250 Beta  14
   Rowan Hill  260 Mont  28
Yellow Route      
Best overal and Twinshock  Stefan Walters  Fantic 200 2
Clubman  Simon Levett  TRS 280  10 mc
   Adrian Steele  250 Beta  10
   Alan Taylor  TY 250  14
  Novice  Brian TOmkins  TRS250  32
British Unit  Jason North  Tiger Cub  5
   Kevin Bint  Triumph 3TA  37
 White Route      
Overal and British Unit  Steve Jones 500 Norton  5
 Two Stroke  Mick Clarkson  Bantam  23
   Roy Haines  Ariel Leader  28
 Unit Class British  Chris Pickup  Tiger Cub  51
   John Eckhart  500 Triumph  63
 Novice  Ian Horner  250 Beta  33
 Twinshock  Dave Barron  200 Honda  36
   Steve "Rambo" McHugh  200 Honda  41


Full results can be found here .