National Two-day Trial in the Shetland Islands coming this summer

National Two-day Trial in the Shetland Islands coming this summer

There’s news this week of what promises to be something really different – especially interesting for those riders out there who have been there and done that.

You will have ridden the Reeth Three Day, Manx Two Day, Lakes Two Day etc, and also the popular multi day trials in France and Spain. But what none of you have ridden is a National Two Day Trial in the Shetland Islands and that is what is up for grabs this week, named the Simmer Dim trial, thanks to a collaboration between the busy Bon Accord club in Aberdeen and a bunch of enthusiastic trials riders in the Shetlands.

It promises to be quite an adventure as the Shetlands are around 100 miles out in the sea north of Scotland – and around 250 miles from Aberdeen – which is where you will sailing from which means a loooong overnight ferry! The date for your diaries is the weekend of June 29/30 – but with the travelling you are going to need at least a day either end.  So why not take your time and have a holiday!

Over to the Bon Accord club’s press release…

“Midsummer of 2019 will see the Bon Accord Motorcycle Club quite literally breaking new ground when they run what will surely be the most northerly motorcycle trial ever staged in the United Kingdom.

“This exciting new addition to the calendar will be held at West Burrafirth in the Shetland Islands, a distance of some 250 miles north of the club’s home base in Aberdeen.

“First hatched as ‘one of those ideas in the pub’ some six years ago, this trial has been born out of the sheer determination of a handful of riders based in Shetland to have a trial on their home ground.”

Bon Accord club president Bill McGregor recalls how the Shetland connection started.

“An e-mail appeared one day asking if riders from Shetland would be allowed to ride in our trials. We immediately answered that they would be most welcome and told them when and where our next trial was and thought nothing more about it until a van with four bikes and riders turned up. It was only then the effort that these guys had made to ride became apparent to us. An overnight ferry ride into Aberdeen followed by a day’s riding and then an overnight ferry back to Shetland ready for work on Monday morning.”

That initial day out started to become a regular trip and one of the Shetland riders, Keith Leslie, went on to become not only the first Shetlander to ride in every round of the Scottish Championship but also the first Shetlander to ride and finish the SSDT.

“Making friends and gaining respect everywhere he turned up, one of the first questions he was asked was, ‘When are we going to Shetland then?’  Now, after having secured the use of a large piece of ground in the west of the islands the dream is set to become a reality. While the logistics of staging this trial are complex, we have some excellent club members who all live on Shetland actually doing the groundwork while the club is looking after the paperwork and organisation of the ferries and accommodation.”

Bon Accord have purposely set the trial status to National which means that it is open to riders from all corners of the UK. It is the club’s hope that this two day trial can become if not an annual event then maybe a biennial fixture in the trials calendar.

“We already know that everyone who makes the effort is sure of a warm welcome in the Shetland Islands with amazing scenery, fantastic trials riding and 23 hours of sunlight each day.”

Each day’s trial will be set out with three routes to allow for riders of all ages and abilities. Saturday night entertainment will include a charity auction, free food, a (one!) free beer and entertainment by a local band. This promises to be a weekend to remember.

On-line and postal entries for this two day trial will be available from the Bon Accord website from early February. It’s hoped there will be special ferry deals which you will be hooked-up to on entering.

We will keep you fully informed with updates on this exciting prospect.

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