All-rounder Kiaran Hankin produced back-to-back scores of two marks to record a comfortable win in the Manx International Classic Trial at the weekend.
Riding an immaculate 185cc BSA Bantam, he walked off with the Manx Classic Premier Award for the best overall performance as well as the two-stroke springer cup.
Closest two him was fellow Lancastrian Mark Jackson on the 240cc Triumph Cub who ended on 11 marks, having dropped four on the opening day.
Overnight leader Yrjo Vesterinen had a disaster on day two. Having gone clean on the Saturday with the Bantam, he ended the weekend on 32 marks in 11th place overall.
Peter Carson of Derbyshire had a brilliant ride on the rigid Bantam to stay feet-up all weekend and edge home first in Clubman class, one ahead of Chris Gasgoigne’s Francis Barnett.
A full-house of 241 riders – a fifth of which from overseas – faced a 28-mile trek in the west and south of the island on Saturday containing 32 observed sections.
Groups included Slieau Whallian Plantation, Ballaspit, Knockaloe, Ballacallin and Glen Rushen Gulley in the morning, rounded off with South Barrule Quarry, Stoney Mountain Plantation, Ballanicholas Farm and Foxdale Brickworks in the afternoon.
Vesterinen showed glimpses of his past mastery with some excellent rides on his 1964 replica Bantam to keep a clean sheet. Next was Northern Ireland’s Stephen Murphy on a dab, bidding to make it two wins in succession on his Bantam.
Level on two apiece were Hankin and Phil Houghton on the first of the Triumph twins, closely followed by Michael Irving (Ariel) and Nick Jefferies (Bantam) on three apiece.
Vesty’s second day started badly when he went the wrong side of an ends’ card on the second sub at Cooil Slieu, only to get a whole lot worse with three more fives, a brace of threes and six separate dabs.
The Sunday route is traditionally tougher in the north, with groups at regular haunts like Kings Forest, West Baldwin Bridge, Tholt-y-Will Quarry, Cluggid Gate, Ballaugh Plantation, Little London and Eairy Beg Plantation.
Hankin got through it all with two separate dabs, when many (including Vesterinen) would have been happy to ride the last of three tough subs at Cluggid for anything better than a five.
Three-time former winner John Maxfield was another, as was Rob Bowyer – who otherwise rode the remainder of the day for a single three and four dabs to work his way up to fourth after a disappointing first day.
Jackson had seven individual dabs to move up from seventh overnight and nail second place on 11, picking up the unit construction four-stroke award.
Murphy slipped one rung to third on 15 for the weekend, two in front of Paul Dennis on the Cub, with Irving remaining ultra-consistent on the big Ariel to finish fifth and again win pre-unit springer award.
Martyn Stanistreet leap-frogged from ninth to sixth on the James, earning him the best newcomer award on the expert course. Ian Strickland made an even bigger improvement from 20th on day one to finish joint seventh with fellow Bantam man Maxfield.
Peter Carson’s clean performance on the rigid-framed Bantam to win the Clubman route award was nothing short of impressive. But he had no room for error as Chris Gascoigne also cleaned Sunday after dropping a stray dab on the easier day one route.
Alan Brown (Cub) of Kent, Sean Isherwood (Ariel) of Lancashire and Andrew Webb on the sweet-sounding Ariel Arrow all finished on single-figure scores.
The tele-fork rigid award went to Yorkshireman Gary Marshall on the Triumph TRW, while the best newcomer was another of the Stanistreet clan – Harry – from Derbyshire on the 250 Ariel.
There was a close contest for the Twinshock Premier class honours. Glen Scholey (Honda RS) and local star Juan Knight (350 Ossa Gripper) both rode the opening day for no loss, but the latter suffered an early setback on day two with a missed flag at Druidale Watersplash while Scholey went off the boil with a brace of fives and hatful more dabs.
They dropped to second and fourth respectively, the latter taking the best newcomer in the class.
Darren Wasley dropped three on day one and eighth more on Sunday – without any fives – to move up from fourth and take the win on the 1985 300 Fantic for the best overall performance.
Manxmen Wayne Wardell and Graham Christian finished third and first on a pair of Yamaha 250s.
Steve Plain of Llandrindod Wells started the weekend wondering if he would be fit enough to complete the trial.
But the wily 175 Yamaha rider ended up cleaning day one and winning the Clubman Twinshock class by a margin of two from Andrew Blacker’s Whitehawk version of the TY175, with Andy Ellis of Northern Ireland third on a 200 Yamaha Majesty.
Pre-65 Premier: Kiaran Hankin (BSA Bantam) 4, Mark Jackson (Triumph Cub) 11, Stephen Murphy (BSA Bantam) 15, Paul Dennis (Triumph Cub) 17, Michael Irving (Ariel) 19, Martyn Stanistreet (James) 19, Ian Strickland (BSA Bantam) 22, John Maxfield (BSA Bantam) 22, Rob Bowyer (Triumph Twin) 24, Mark Stokes (Trifield) 31, Yrjo Vesterinen (BSA Bantam) 32, Chris Collins (BSA C15) 34, Graham Brown (James) 36, Danny Littlehales (Francis Barnett) 39, Nick Jeffries (BSA Bantam) 41, Jim Hough (Ariel) 42, Russell Jones (Francis Barnett) 43, Tim Blackmore (BSA Bantam) 44, Joan Pere Santure (James) 45, Mark Buckworth (James)
Pre-65 Premier (Under-35): Miles Jones (Triumph Cub) 5, Ben Butterworth (Ariel) 8, Carl Batty (Norton) 9, Asier Zurbano Berruete (Triumph T100) 33, Jack Butterworth (Ariel) 34, Dan England (Triumph Cub) 41.
Pre-65 Clubman: Peter Carson (BSA Bantam) 0, Chris Gascoigne (Francis Barnett) 1, Alan Brown (Triumph Cub) 5, Sean Isherwood (Ariel) 6, Andrew Webbe (Ariel Arrow) 9, Victor Martin Bordonau (Triumph Cub) 10, Neil Buckley (BSA Bantam) 16, Carl Winstanley (James) 17, Philip Clarkson (BSA Bantam) 17, Keith Gardner (Triumph) 19
Pre-65 Clubman (Under-35): Frederic Bergada Laseca (Triumph) 7,Daniel Smith (Triumph Cub) 27, Daniel Merino Martin (James Commando) 36.
Twinshock Premier: Darren Wasley (Fantic) 11,Juan Knight (Ossa) 21, Wayne Wardell (Yamaha Majesty) 21, Glen Scholey (Honda RS) 22, Graham Christian (Yamaha Majesty) 33, Roger Williams (Fantic) 39, Mariano Gomez (Merlin) 41, Lee Wardell (Bultaco) 45, Dave Knaggs (Bultaco) 47, Steve Martin (Yamaha Majesty) 49
Twinshock Premier (Under-35): Russell Rooksby (Fantic) 10, Thomas Knight (Montesa) 44, Matthew Lund (Fantic) 51, Alba Villegas Bosch (Bultaco) 60.
Twinshock Clubman: Steve Plain (Yamaha) 10, Andrew Blacker (Whitehawk) 12, Andy Ellis (Yamaha Majesty) 16 Nigel Woods (Honda) 22, Mike Rapley (Honda) 27, Mark Lund (Fantic) 28, Javier Ruiz Lozano (Honda) 32, Harold Whiteway (Bultaco) 33, Jose Rafael Moreno (Bultaco) 40, Xavier Crespo Nomen (Honda) 46