Jack Peace won the National Lakes Two Day Trial last weekend, the East Yorks-based factory Sherco rider taking the Premier Hands Trophy at the first time of asking, keeping the Sherco run going after Jack Sheppard’s victory last year.
And local lad Craig Seward took a popular win in the hugely popular Clubman class riding his well presented but well used ‘vintage’ Yamaha engined Scorpa.
The Lakes, based as usual in the Cumbrian market town of Broughton-in-Furness, had once again started with a full house of 180 entries with the vast majority on the Clubman course but the Experts boasting more than 30 riding the National sections.
Each day featured a 9am start and a totally different single lap route with 36 sections on Saturday and no fewer than 40 on Sunday.
And, despite a poor weather forecast, the weekend proved ideal for trials with the heavy rain saved for Saturday night, early Sunday. The overnight downpours caused a few early morning section tweaks but nothing the organisers couldn’t handle.
Saturday saw the trial heading north over Corney fell, taking in several groups along the way, including Buckbarrow bridge before heading to Fell Green, Bootle and then looping round Black Cowm, with some excellent track and moorland riding, before retracing the route home on the road off Corney fell.
The sections were a mix of rocky outcrops and Cumbrian becks with section nine on Buckbarrow fell, comprising large grippy boulders on the steep hillside, the toughest of the day.
On the National course, Jack Peace enjoyed a fantastic ride, his score of 10 giving him a surprise 12-mark advantage over Richard Sadler (Gas Gas) and James Fry (Sherco).
The Clubmen were headed by Craig Seward who enjoyed a five-mark advantage over Bassenthwaite Clubman Stuart Gaskell (Beta) and a tightly packed chasing group.
Sunday then made a long loop out from Broughton heading towards Torver, near Coniston, with no fewer than 18 groups providing the 40 sections.
Probably the hardest section on the day, for both routes, was the first at Hawes Beck, the sixth group, with the water in the beck causing its own problem.
Ride of the day came from Andy Chilton, the Whitby rider causing gasps of awe as he rode the Scorpa on the back wheel across the rocks in the foaming beck for a stunning clean. Only Dec Bullock later pulled-off a very effective second clean on his Gas Gas.
Jack Peace made sure to keep on the move as he was in safety mode, protecting that hard-earned overnight lead.
Overnight Clubman leader Craig Seward was still on the charge and his first clean on the Clubman route showed that he really wanted that win, simply refusing to put a foot down in the foaming waters.
Sunday afternoon is traditionally an easier run home and completed in quick time and this proved to be the case again although the tight, steep beck at Top Souterstead took a few shock marks.
Although Richard Sadler had eased his way round for just two marks and Chili just one more, Jack managed his ride well to keep his total to seven for the day which still gave him a clear seven mark advantage to take victory from Richard and Andy.
Said the winner: “I’ve really enjoyed this weekend, especially on Saturday when the sections just seemed to suit me. I’ll definitely be back!”
Both Sadler and Chilton made strong challenges on the day but the gap from Saturday proved just too much to bridge and they had to settle for podium places ahead of James Fry, Tom Minta,
Dan Peace and Dan Thorpe with Chris Alford, Dec Bullock and Chris Pearson completing the top ten.
World Women’s Champ Emma Bristow just missed out on that top 10 slot ahead of a bunch of locals headed by Steve Dixon and James Postlethwaite, the latter who lives all of 50 yards from the start.
On the Clubman course, there was just no stopping Craig Seward who really had the bit between his teeth, riding the old Yam engined Scorpa like a demon.
Ireland’s Jake Hanlon came through to take the runner-up position with a cracking Sunday ride of just nine marks. And Jess Bown was in contention for the Clubman overall victory all weekend, third overall being a super ride from Jess.
Stu Gaskell and Darren Wasley followed Jess home, Waz giving himself too much to do after a fairly expensive Saturday ride.
Both National and Clubman courses proved competitive all weekend, as the scores show, and once again The Lakes proved to be an enjoyable classic event, so huge thanks for all who made it possible.
National Course: Jack Peace (Sherco) 17, Richard Sadler (Gas Gas) 24, Andy Chilton (Scorpa) 27, James Fry (Sherco) 33, Tom Minta (Scorpa) 37, Dan Peace (Sherco) 38, Dan Thorpe (Gas Gas) 55, Chris Alford (Gas Gas) 57, Dec Bullock (Gas Gas) 58, Chris Pearson (Sherco) 59, Emma Bristow (Sherco) 75, Steve Dixon (Scorpa) 91, James Postlethwaite (Scorpa) 93, Joel Gowan (Gas Gas) 105, James Hayhurst (Sherco) 115, Tom Swindlehurst (Sherco) 125, Joe Hiley (Gas Gas) 128, Will Brockbank (Sherco) 132.
Clubman Course: Craig Seward (Scorpa) 17, Jake Hanlon (Beta) 25, Jess Bown (Scorpa) 31, Stuart Gaskell (Beta) 34, Darren Wasley (Gas Gas) 34, Jake Gowan (Beta) 40, Tom Hudson (Beta) 41, James Moorhouse (Beta) 42, Stuart Hanlon (Beta) 43, Paul Bennett (Scorpa) 45, Stephen Dalton (Beta) 45, Dan Gaskell (Scorpa) 48, Tony Buckley (Beta) 49, Robert Taylor (Beta) 49, Nigel Birkett (Scorpa) 54, Anthony Ayrton (TRRS) 57, Richard Crackles (Sherco) 58, Tom Hodgson (Scorpa) 59.