RMTA is an Equal Opportunity Non-Profit Organization
“Wineland Wins a Wet One”
RMTA Trials Series
May 16, 2010
By Ron Pocher
Photos By Ron Gardner & Dian Hardekopf
Just north of Boulder, whose residents have an ongoing debate with Bostonians as to which town is the real center of the universe, you’ll find the quaint, little community of Lyons. Established in the 1860’s, Lyons now has a tidy population of 1,500 down-home folks.
When Edward S. Lyon settled in the area, he noticed several easily accessed outcroppings of red sandstone in the rugged, surrounding mountains. With an extensive background in the field, Lyon introduced quarrying to the area and after a slow, but productive start, soon had as many as 1,000 men working the nearby quarries. At one time, the Brodie/Murphy Quarry was the largest in the west. Chances are pretty good that the salmon-colored flagstone adjacent to your favorite neighbor’s patio came out of the ground somewhere near Lyons, Colorado.
The RMTA has been hosting competitive trials events on Bill Cowey’s “Lyons Quarry” property since the year 2000. The Colorado club rotates dates with AHRMA; one year the modern bikes rule the roost while the next year sees the site crawling with vintage machinery. Cowey is a childhood friend of RMTA member Mike Wehling and his generosity is greatly admired by both organizations.
The Trials Masters for this year’s event would have gladly been sent on “a slow boat to China” if Sharon Jubb just hadn’t been part of the somewhat cranky group. Mike Buchholz, Frank Petersen, Tom Klinker and the ever-exuberant Jubb helped torture the support class clan while Wehling, Jim Plumb and Jared Drake had their way with the upper level faithful. Plumb’s construction company supplied the food and drink for the post-trial barbecue and a substantial first-of-the-year collection, in honor of the 2010 TdN team, accumulated in the donation jar.
Sopping wet socks were the order of the day, as a whole week’s worth of rain led up to Sunday’s contest. The generous amount of rainfall, coupled with snowmelt caused by warming temperatures, had all of the site’s drainage courses pumping pretty much full bore. About half of the event’s sections boasted a water feature of one form or another. The ice-cold water, that was able to pool, had to be negotiated with great care, for the sudden and drastic change in temperature caused many a motor to die throughout the day. Restarting could only be accomplished with the use of one’s choke. Although the majority of the course loop featured near perfect conditions, many portions of the trail were rather soggy, to say the least.
The Junior B class sported seven well-mannered tikes with Jackson Lewis coming out on top over an extremely tight cluster that included Luca Wood, Chase Bright, Tyler Long and Mia Manniko. Isabella Parker and Jack Vanmater weren’t far off the pace. Evan Manniko took the honors in the Junior A division.
Ray Plumb continued his dominance of the Novice group by cleaning all thirty sections. Young Micah Hertrich had a phenomenal ride, needing but a dab on each of the first two loops, to snatch the silver. Judd Payne claimed the bronze with his 5-point card while Albert Handy (7) and Chase Abbott (8) had their own little tussle going over fourth.
Cindy Bright and Lauren Barnard both finished with 8 marks dropped in the Women’s class, but Bright got the nod on cleans, 25 to 23, to nab the gold. RMTA secretary Jody Hutchinson’s 16-card placed her in third. The majority of the observers, 18 of 23 to be exact, certainly welcomed the pleasant change of scenery. The remaining five observers were every bit as stunning themselves.
John Clement, aka “Jed Clampett”, won the Vintage A division for the second-straight meet with his stellar 25-point ride topping Ted Preston. Vintage trials icon, Mr. Ed Peacock steered his way to the Vintage B gold medal.
The Amateur class featured ten snorkel-wielding contestants with John Hutchinson’s breaststroke being most macho. Hutchinson’s 26-point card flushed the field. Adam Faleck mined the silver with his 38 while Darin Baker’s 50 points worth of punches was good enough to fill out the podium.
Andy “the Spoiler” Parker and Dave “King Kong” Koerwitz had quite the mud-wrestling match in the Senior Amateur division but Koerwitz fell to Parker in the soiled battle. Andy’s half nelson (and 11-card) was just a little much for Dave’s 13 on this damp morn. Luckily, neither gent felt the need to strip down to their thong bikinis during the fracas. Mark Doyle returned to action and posted third with his 26.
The top three cats in the Intermediate ranks just couldn’t quite decide who should get the gold. Pete Helfter ended up on the top step by being the only member of the threesome not to punch a loop card in the twenties. Helfter finished with 51 while Forrest Reynolds and Jon Greenleaf both tallied 53 points and 6 cleans, but Forrest came out of the trees with more one’s to just nip Jon for the silver. With names like those it’s a good thing Woody Woodpecker didn’t enter this class.
The Senior Intermediate class boasted seven worthy participants but Mark Jacobsen was toting the biggest bag of tricks and took the win with his 42-card. Mike Bolas bested good buddy Neil Pieper, maybe for the first time ever, with his 67-point total being good enough for second. Pieper and Mark Berry had quite the duel over third – the two plonkers tied across the board. Both hombres had the same number of points, cleans, one’s, two’s, three’s and five’s. Both took their first points in the very first section. Mark took a five to Neil’s three, allowing Mr. Pieper to abscond with the bronze. For a minute there, we all thought it was going to come down to who was the oldest when they finally quit wetting the bed.
With two of the usual entrants serving as Trials Masters; another home sick; one competing in Wyoming; and a couple more needing some well deserved couch time; the Veteran class was sporting a thinner than usual field, with the word thinner being used rather loosely. Jeff “Chumley” Payne, Ron “the Butcher” Pocher and Larry “Big Air” Lund had quite the skirmish going there for a while. Payne led the way after two loops, via his 34-point total, with Pocher trailing by a dab and Lund lurking just three marks back. Señor Payne put the “Battle of the Belly Brothers” to rest with his 9-point, third loop card. Pocher could manage no better than 19 while Lund chose a poor time for his highest loop score of the outing, a 23; thus helping Payne to easily prove that he was indeed the “big boss man”.
The Advanced class was the usual “bar room brawl” and not a single one of the eleven contestants were pulling any punches. Young Keifer Jacobson had the upper hand after two laps with his 18-point total leading Billy Burgener by two and Adam Leute by three heading into the day’s final circuit. Jacobson was able to hold off the advances of Sir Leute, who punched the best last-loop card with a 9, but Mr. Burgener’s legendary guile proved a bit much for the mere youth. Burgener’s lap 3, 10-card allowed him to pocket the gold with 30, while Keifer’s 34 was good enough for the silver. Leute scrambled back for the bronze with a final tally of 40, while Greg Howie and his 42-card found him in fourth. Stephen “Steel” Marcus rounded out the top five with 46.
Only three members bothered to show up and contest the Senior Advanced division and one of them chose to ride exhibition. The entire club was no doubt happy to see RMTA icon Mark Manniko back in the saddle. Manniko holds club records for most Colorado state championships at nine and most Ute Cup victories with five. Manniko, who was a national-level contender in the late 80’s and early 90’s; finishing as high as runner-up in 1990, also managed to win the El Trial de España on four separate occasions. Mark easily posted the best Advanced line score of the day with 10 points and 24 cleans. Ron Gardner and Ken White had each other in a “death grip” through the first two loops, with White only two dabs adrift, but Ron managed to punch his best card on the final circuit while Ken unfortunately punched his worst. Gardner wandered off into the sunset with the gold.
The Expert class, which held eight talented stoneworkers, proved to be the tightest scuffle of the day. Northern Colorado’s Bernie Fredrick was the only classmate who was able to improve with each loop and that small detail just may have been the difference. Fredrick’s 71 marks dropped just nipped the 74-card of Montesa-mounted Chris Hertrich.
Keith Busch nabbed his fourth-straight third place finish by trailing by just another dab with 75. Ben Wehling, who was sitting in the “catbird seat” after two laps with a 3-point lead, ran into a spot of bike trouble and fell to fourth with 81. Tom Hedwall and Al Duke both ended play with 86 points, but Hedwall was able to clean one section during his afternoon spree and that little factor allowed him to capture fifth.
The Pro or Championship class, as the RMTA likes to call it, sported four somewhat insane daredevils. Sections 8, 9 and 10 were all clustered in a small canyon that proved to be the more popular viewing area for the day. Mike Wehling went to work with his skid-steer, in this challenging little grotto, and created some man-made obstacles with non man-made materials. The strategically placed flagstone ramps were a delight for both rider and spectator alike as all of the upper level gents were logging plenty of airtime. Bailey Tucker was leading Keith Wineland by seven marks after loop one, but Wineland rebounded and quickly erased that deficit to start the final go-around with a five-point lead. Keith punched continually improving scores of 21, 14 and 8 to capture the Pro class gold with 44. Tucker failed to match his first loop 14-card on either of the remaining laps and came home in second with 59. Dustin Hedwall took third with a final tally reading 76 while three stalled-motor five’s, due to that previously mentioned cold water, didn’t contribute much help to the score of Steven Deines.
If you had to pick just one venue to fill the rest of your days, you could certainly do worse than Lyons Quarry. This challenging site is the exact sort of place that any true trials enthusiast would never tire of riding. Most feet up blokes would gladly tool around here daily or as The Quarrymen later sang, after changing their name to The Beatles, “Eight Days a Week”.