Training Days With Karl
I like to give my expertise to Moto Trials Riders as when I was young and learning there was not a lot of help out there on offer to learn from. Trials is Great fun but also we all like to improve our level and I can help with this. I can help any rider at any level, from beginner through to the top level in Expert class, with still having fun.
Pioneer Club have been very supportive and I have done several training days with them in the past and still are. Most cases I have had approx 7-8 people per training group which works very well, but for me to teach you the most one on one training is where I can give you the best training.
Any other Trials Clubs are also welcome for training.
Here are some references from previous training I have done.
It was the second training day we had experienced with Karl and Brendon and it was just as good, if not better than the last one.
It was the first time we had used the Horsford Downs property for many years. After a quick warm up, we headed towards our practice section that Paul and Rob had put in earlier. Paul had mentioned logs but I wasn’t quite expecting what we found. After some instruction on how we should be looking at tackling logs it was time to throw a bike over them. After a couple of attempts, Brendon separated the group and took them off to do some other training in a different area. The rest of us stayed with Karl to try and master the section. Ross was the only one I saw game enough to carry his front wheel off the bigger of the logs that we were all sumping.
After lunch we played follow the leader on the way back to the other area for more training. We were faced with another set of logs which everyone tackled with new found skills from the previous section. Brendon pulled part of the group aside to explain the art of hopping. The rest of us were faced with a double log and a gap big enough for a wheel to fall between (of course) to add to the trickiness the second log was higher than the first. There were a few minor offs, but everyone that attempted it made it up and over in the end. Quite a feat and I wasn’t the only with a smile on my face after getting over those.
We ended the training on that high. I think most of us were finding it hard to keep the bike upright by then. The improvement that was seen in people throughout the day in confidence and skill was amazing.
Thanks Karl and Brendon for another wonderful training day. Can’t wait for the next one!
Question: Can you teach a 48yr old, overweight, tired trials rider with a buggered knee new tricks?
Answer: If you’re Karl you can!
Now I’d be the first to admit that I would have thought the answer to that question would have been a categorical NO, so at this weekends training days Karl and Jake had a real test on their hands. One they passed with flying colours. On Sunday night as I laid (unable to move) on the couch I had a smile on my face and was quietly chuffed with what I had personally achieved.
The weekend started on Friday afternoon with a bonus session at the Waimak Practice Area that I was unfortunately unable to attend. The three riders who were able to escape work (Stef, John and Andy) spent about three hours at the area getting a head start on what we would be doing over the weekend.
Saturday was a 10 am start at Living Springs and with temperatures soaring above 30 we were grateful of the cover of the trees. The boys started the seven of us on a bank teaching us the “Double Blip” and then moved onto a steep hillside for some off camber turns. Before we knew it it was after 1 and time for a bit of lunch. I wasn’t sure who needed the break more, us riders or Karl who had spent the morning catching, picking us up, encouraging us and demonstrating what we were supposed to be doing. After lunch it was into a slippery creek and another bank but it was easy to see the mornings lessons were starting sink in. Karl and Jake seemed to be helping less and less and we were all starting to get a few “cleans”.
We finished the day (around 5pm!) with a bit of a hill climb which involved some techniques that were very foreign some of us older riders. Slipping the clutch wasn’t possible on the old Ossa with its “three finger” clutch lever when I was learning to ride trials. This proved to be the highlight of my weekend when to my surprise I found myself at the top off the hill with only a couple of “comfort dabs” at the top. I didn’t think I had it in me and to be honest wasn’t really keen to try. This feat alone is testament to the coaching ability of the boys. The confidence they instilled in me meant I was able to give it a go and succeed. If only I was 20 30 years younger!
Sunday was another scorcher, with very little shade at Horsford Downs. We decided to get out in the sun early and then head for the shade of trees when it started to get too hot. The day lessons were to be about “the Splat”, carrying the front and more clutch slipping hill climbs. Doing “the Splat” was another of those things I really didn’t see myself doing but again the boys surprised both me and the others with their easy manner and gentle encouragement and soon I was starting to get the basics. We started with a small clay bank, moved up to a larger clay bank then onto a small rock. Later we even got to attack a reasonably big log with the same technique. Now I’m not going to be jumping up any six foot steps anytime soon but I did get the feel of it and that’s a long way from where I thought I’d be.
The heat started to get to us and we headed for shade and a slippery log and a clutch slipping hill climb with a bit of hopping and balancing thrown in. Once again it was after 1 before we knew it and we stopped for another well earned rest and a bite to eat. After lunch we headed off to some Willows for some more logs and a bit of practice at carrying the front. I don’t know if it was the heat or just the intense effort of the weekend but in the end the carrying the front technique seemed to be the hardest for all of us. We ended the day with a bit of a play on the rocks by the cars but in truth exhaustion was starting to take it’s toll and the final hour or so are a bit of a blur to me now.
It certainly was a great weekend and something that I now wish I had done years ago. The structure of the weekend was brilliant and having two top riders watching, pointing out where you’re going wrong and showing you how to correct it was priceless. I can totally recommend Karl and Jake as a coach and encourage anyone to participate if they ever get the chance. Karl’s energy and enthusiasm was limitless. I am certainly looking forward to another lesson in the future.
Practice day with Karl Clark at Little River
Pioneer posted on April 2, 2012 05:56
As always the highlight for me in attending any trials event was the food I brought and this week it was a homemade egg and mayonnaise roll washed down with a hot cup of tea. Once that is taken care of it’s down to business by pretending I’m fine tuning my bike for the days riding ahead.
We were privileged this time to have Karl taking the less experienced riders for the morning session and we started off with some back to basics. Karl is a great teacher and very good at just talking you through the section bit by bit, nice and slowly and clearly explaining what you want to do where ie. to get over the log, round the tight corner etc. After a few attempts some riders kept practicing on the section while others fine turned their skills on other objects around the property until we moved on to another section. Luckily it was a glorious day so great conditions to practice in and again after Karl had touched on some basic bike maintenance and set up tips we attempted the next section. This one was a bit trickier as it involved some hill climb and different techniques. Karl lead us through the best way to approach the section and sure enough after a few attempts most of us were riding back through the finish pegs with big smiles on our faces. Everyone was eager to share knowledge and encourage others which is important when you are at the beginning of your trials career. A special mention should go to Gareth Wadsworth as, as the only “younger” rider by a country mile he just got on with the riding and quickly improved to clear sections that we were all trying to conquer.
Also I would like to thanks the property owner for letting us use and enjoy the beautiful setting, and all other club members who were involved in organising what was a very enjoyable and successful training day. Oh and Karl of course for some great tips, positive encouragement and taking the time to spread the trials gospel once again over a contented pioneers congregation.
Team Egg Mayo