Ian Peberdy stormed to victory in the first round of the revamped ACU Classic Trials Championship at the Dartmoor Trial in Devon.

Last year’s championship winner was unopposed in the new Class 1, having changed machinery from the BSA Bantam he rode last year to a 500cc Drayton Triumph. 

Peberdy completed the one-lap 26-section course for a loss of only five, the best score of all classes on the harder Route 1. 

He took a three on section three in ‘Paradise’ which took marks off of all the expert riders, only Chris Koch on his Fantic bettering the score with a two. 

His only other loss was a two on the first Millwood section where there were no cleans all day. The rain from the previous days made all sections more challenging particularly in the fast-running streams but Peberdy rode superbly all day. 

In Class 3 all-round trials expert Chris Koch made a rare appearance in the Classic Championship and took the class win. 

Regular Classic rider, Fantic-mounted David Sherlock, matched Koch throughout the trial, only to drop a mark on the penultimate section and miss out on top spot by one. 

Yamaha-mounted Chris Berry was just one mark further back in third. 

In Class 4 Anthony Rew made a slow start on his Bultaco with two fives in the first three sections compared to David Wood’s three and he never made up the ground as Ossa-mounted Wood won by six.

Route 2 riders were particularly challenged in The Grove where the water was running at its fastest. 

Best performance came from Anthony Bradley, who racked up just 10 to win class 7 however ride of the day on this route was from Geoff Muston. 

After a good start he matched last year’s championship runner-up John Long for the first half of the trial but in the Grove on section 12 he jumped his front wheel out of the stream over a log but the back wheel slid away along the log and he was pinned under the bike laying in the stream. Geoff was rescued by three good Samaritans and his Honda kicked over at the 20th time of asking. 

He then managed to clean the last twelve sections to take Class 10 by two from John Long. 

Graham Howes took victory in the Rigid class unopposed but he also came to grief in section 12, tumbling off the BSA Gold Star headfirst into the stream. Despite the drenching the BSA kicked over first time.

In the Sidecars Les Granby/Lee Ashby were back on their BSA to defend their title, the Yorkshiremen were one mark ahead at the mid point from Paul Fishlock and Debbie Merrell on their Ariel. 

Mechanical problems then forced Fishlock out, which left Paul Randall and Richard Webb to take up the challenge. 

Granby took advantage of being the first chair through section 22 with a clean on what looked like a straightforward climb but suddenly became treacherous as the top surface was taken off.

Morley dug in for a five and Randall had no chance for another maximum. 

Fives on the last two sections for Randall made Granby’s victory-margin bigger and dropped Randall from second to third behind Morley.


Route 1

Class 1 British Pre-72 Over 300cc: Ian Peberdy (Drayton Triumph) 5.

Class 2 British Pre-72 under 300cc: John Chatto (James) 14, Chris Poel (BSA Bantam) 42. 

Class 3 Pre-85 Air-cooled Japanese/ Italian: Chris Koch (Fantic) 9, David Sherlock (Fantic 300) 10, Chris Berry (Yamaha TY220) 11, Rob Sherlock (Fantic 200) 23, Martin Matthews (SWM) 32.

Class 4 Pre-85 Twin-shock Spanish/ British: David Wood (Ossa) 27, Anthony Rew (Bultaco) 33.

Route 2

Class 5 Pre-72 Pre Unit: Gary Kinsman (Ariel HT 500cc) 40.

Class 6 Pre-72 Unit: Keith Gardner (Triumph Tiger Cub) 19, Jim Ashford (BSA B40) 23, Alan Halford (Triumph) 24.

Class 7 British Pre-72 Two-stroke: Anthony Bradley (BSA) 10, Vivian Stephens (Francis Barnet) 29, Roy Enticknap (Dot) 35.

Class 9 Pre-72 Rigid: Graham Howes (BSA BB32A) 47.

Class 10 Pre-85 Air-cooled Twin-shocks: Geoff Muston ( TL Honda 125) 17, John Long (SWM TL280) 19, Paul Cook (SWM) 20, Malcolm Peberdy (Bultaco) 30, Paul Hodder (Honda TL 200) 34.

Route 3

Class 11 Veteran Over 60: Richard Clarke (Ariel HT 350cc) 72.

Class 12 Sidecar: Lee Granby/ Les Ashby (BSA B44) 24, Kev Morley/ Rob Chapman (Ariel VH) 39, Paul Randall/ Richard Webb (Triumph T500) 43, Andy Cheeseman/ Nick Hunt (Suzuki 250RL) 84.