Green, McColl and Bristow top round one

Green, McColl and Bristow top round one

Many weeks of planning finally came to fruition on April 21 when the Bootle Club’s opening round of the 2024 Trial GB Championship took place at the marvellous Fell Green venue having been forced to move from the originally planned location of Po House.

But no matter where the trial was held, it was always going to be a cracker with Anthony Brockbank at the helm planning the three laps of 12 sections, and so it proved to be with some mighty tough sections that tested the riders in the three classes, Trial GB, Trial 2 and Trial Expert.

Current World Trial 2 Champion Billy Green proved to be the best of the select Trial GB entry of just 7 riders with a superb ride to lose 33 marks with only the awesome section 8  being a significant problem where he lost a third of his winning total. It was a section that remained uncleaned by any of the Trial GB riders with the best scores being a single 2 marks lost by runner up Harry Hemingway on his first lap and a similar two dab ride by fourth placed Jack Dance on lap two. Green had a five and two threes whilst it was mostly fives for the rest of the entry.

Whilst the section was intentionally the most difficult, it was in contrast with the remaining eleven hazards which all saw riders go clean at various points throughout the five-and-half hours of the time allowed to complete the course. Defending Trial GB Champion Jack Peace was third just one mark behind the 51 total of Hemingway.

The Trial 2 podium

Trial 2 was a Scottish rider domination with pals Duncan McColl and Jamie Galloway taking the top two places with Alexz Wigg in third, the three riders being separated by just four marks. At the end of the opening lap McColl shared the class lead with Wigg, with Galloway down in fourth, then on lap two he upped his game to match the best second lap score with final fourth placed finisher Alfie Lampkin, whose excellent ride was spoiled by too many dabs for he only accumulated 8 cleans through the day whereas his top three rivals notched up 16, 14 and 15 zeros, proving that at this level, every mark really does matter.


Watched by Luke Walker and her minder Donna Fox, Expert winner Emma Bristow on section 4 where she was just one of two cleans

As the riders gathered around the results tent the rumour circulated that there could be a surprise winner of the Trial Expert class as last year’s Trial Expert runner-up, Brad Bullock had a enjoyed a challenging ride but all knew he had some time penalties. And it was those penalties that cost him victory which went to nine time World Ladies Trial Champion Emma Bristow, her first ever class win in the British series. Hers was an immensely popular victory for a very popular person and the round of applause as her name was announced as the winner was loud and appreciative.Her scalps included those of runner up Luke Walker a further 5 marks adrift of Emma’s 68 score with regular star of the class and last year’s champion Dan Thorpe on 75.

Emma Bristow – MBE – had three really impressive rides in her total of 11 cleans with zeros on sections 3 and 4 on lap one, and the first clean of the day’s final section, along with Brad Bullock she was the only clean of section 4, where a really nasty first few yards of the hazard saw Joel Hazlett, riding his first ever championship event, loop his Beta in the most spectacular manner. The bike the somersaulted in the air and crashed back down on the handlebars, fortunately with only minor damage and though dispirited with the severity of the event, Joel persevered and though he had zero cleans, ones and twos, he did manage 9 threes and took 27 failures, but still finished AND he wasn’t last. All the talk is about the winners, but his determination was excellent and a true test of grit.

This was a truly excellent event, and though some would say it was ambitious, Trial GB rounds are at the highest level of the sport and only attract the best riders, so the severity can only be expected.

Full results are linked from the Home page with pictures from various sources in the Gallery.