A reflection on 9 days in Scotland

A reflection on 9 days in Scotland


The Scottish Six Days Trial came to a conclusion just three days ago as I write this personal review that’s relevant to Northern Centre riders and undoubtedly it should be the weather that gets the accolade, for the entire nine days I was in attendance to view the Scottish Pre 65 trial followed by the Scottish Six Days, not a drop of rain fell where I have been.

Starting a review by mentioning the weather is not the correct journalistic way to begin, but in all the years I have been to the Scottish, I do not recall a single, totally dry year. Sure, some have been brighter and warmer, but drier, not as I can recall.

However, getting to the point in hand, there’s no doubt the two trials were as successful as ever, and in particular it’s very good to see so many social media posts from both riders and enthusiasts praising the events, with pictures all saying how much they enjoyed the whole experience.

Riders who live in the Northern Centre (plus a small number non-resident but who support the centre’s organising clubs) totalled 20 in the Six Days and nine in the Pre 65 – apologies if I have unintentionally missed anybody out.


Nick Shield and Craig Asbridge

Taking the pre 65 trial first, Nick Shield was the best of the nine taking the delightful 350 Ariel manufactured by Nick and Andrew Bingley into 28th place with the loss of 14 marks with Chris Myers  next best Cumbrian local on 27. Another Ariel man was Peter Clibburn in 80th on 40 marks then came Centre Chairman Angus Jenkinson with the loss of 46 on the results sheet.

However, for unknown reasons, the score Angus was given appeared to be exactly 20 marks more than he believed he had lost. Over 30  distinctive sections each day it’s easy to calculate what you have lost. Angus claimed 19 for the first day, which was correct on the Friday results sheet, then was very happy on Saturday night having completed all 30 sections on what he believed was six marks – an excellent result – or so he thought. But to see that his second day total was 26 came as a shock which he has been unable to get clarification on.

The most likely scenario is that an observer has missed his ride through a section (missing a section is 20 marks), and with no score recorded, the system has automatically allocated the 20 in the results as he is credited with a score everywhere else, so had not retired. Chairman Jenks is adamant he rode everything, and whilst a reduced score would have been more reflective of his ride, there is little he could do to get a correction.

Adam McCanna and his dad Peter lost 67 and 93 respectively on their totally uncompetitive Greeves, whilst Craig Asbridge was the only other finisher from the Northern Centre as both Edward Dobson and Phil Parkinson retired. The 500 Norton Dobby rode was simply too big for Edward to manhandle for two days and Phil Parky was very unfortunate to have an accident on Saturday morning which resulted in a broken wrist and collarbone and other lacerations.


Onto the main Six Days now and before the trial even started it was time to recognise the achievement of Nigel Birkett who was due to ride his 50th consecutive Scottish Six Days Trial. Nigel has now set a record that is unlikely ever to be matched, let alone beaten and his incredible achievement was recognised  at the compulsory pre-event presentation which was attended by every rider in the trial  (less 3 attendees given dispensation) and many of their supporters. The organising Edinburgh Club presented Nigel with a pair of engraved whisky glasses and the Northern Centre ACU, following a congratulatory speech, presented Nigel with an engraved Cumbrian Glass fruit bowl by Centre President Keith Quinn.

And as if to prove beyond any reasonable doubt as to his ability, Nigel not only finished the trial, he took a First Class Award with an amazing 130th position from the 288 starters.


Top Northern rider, Darren Brice and first timer Steve Stamper

Best ride from our area was by Darren Brice in 42nd place as he finished his 4th Scottish whilst son Cameron was in 61st as he took in his first SSDT. Another dad and lad pairing was Steve Dixon and Jack, respectively 46th and 93rd as Richard and Dan Gaskell finished 54th and 121st.

Will Brockbank was riding his first SSDT, in fact he had not been there since he was 6 weeks old, so has no memory of the trial. Will, on an Inch Perfect Montesa was really on form and 59th was a superb effort as was James Postlethwaite’s ride into 63rd – each year he has improved, just as he has this season in local trials.

Another first timer was Jamie Bingley who took 76th whilst the rest of the local lads all completed the trial with Lewis Johnson 87th, James Johnson 100th, Stuart Gaskell 122nd, Andy Payne 146th,  Steve Stamper 168th, Ian Payne 172nd,  Drew Morton 185th, John Holland 196th, Richard Fisher 216th, and Tony Wild 224th.

Apologies if I have missed anybody but in the words of Old Mr Grace, “You’ve All Done Very Well!!

Winner for the 14th time, Dougie Lampkin

They certainly have, so just to finish, I reflect on Dougie Lampkin. Nigel may well have the record of 50 rides, 50 trials completed, Dougie Lampkin’s 14th victory is simply unbelievable. To win just once is amazing, to win four times is incredible (Jackson, Saunders, Viney, Colley, Jarvis), to make it five (Miller, Andrews) makes a mockery of the rest, but to do it 14 times is simply beyond imagination.

We doff our hats to you.