Since 1924 and the year of the first running of the 24 Hour Trial only 2 riders have managed to win this event 5 years in a row – Peter Milstead from 1963 – 1967 and Shane Diener from 2004 – 2008, with the only difference being that 4 of Peter’s wins were tied in the era of many riders ‘cleaning’ the event. 2018 will see a third rider try and join this most exclusive club as Todd Barry will be riding for a 5th consecutive win in SA’s famous ‘all-nighter’!
Like 2017 Barry, on his Kessner Motorcycles KTM will be hard chased by his fellow Gawler MCC member and 2017 24 Hour trial runner-up, Yamaha’s Riley Graham who will be all out to win the event for the first time. Also entered this year in the high quality field is the returning 2 time winner, the Keyneton MCC’s Sean Throup (Yamaha Australia), and many time podium finishers in the experienced Rowan Pumpa (Flinders Motorcycles KTM, Keyneton MCC) and Leigh Bentley (KTM, Gawler MCC), along with young guns Alex Heidenreich (B&B Offroad Yamaha, Keyneton MCC) and Daniel Prior (Barossa Motorcycles Yamaha, Gawler MCC).
As can be seen, it also looks like another battle between the traditional rival clubs in Gawler & Keyneton, as they not only chase the outright win, but also the Club Team Award, which has been almost exclusively ‘shared’ between the clubs for well over 40 years now!
In the 3 wheeled battle for sidecar honours in 2018, and with the 2017 winners, Max & Sam Hutchesson (Mud N Tars MCC), missing due to an injury to Max, look for the 2017 runners up, Hec Evans & Shaun Buckley (Gawler & Levis MCC) to lead the field on the road and also try and lead the scoresheets as well. If Hec & Shaun get over the line it will be a 3rd win for Hec, and all with different passengers after wins in 2001 & 2006, but trying to stop him will be the chasing teams of, the Keyneton MCC’s 3 time winners, Mark Launer & Tyson Rohrlach, the Levis MCC’s Darren Winter (a 2 time winner) & Lachlan Greenhalgh, with both of these teams fresh from their efforts in Wales at the 2 Day Enduro last weekend.
There is also 2 serious dark horses this year; the team of Shaun Harman & Shayne Bain (Gawler MCC), fresh from their win at the Robbie 2-Day, with Shaun looking to add to his win as a passenger (2006) and also add a 2nd generation win after dad, John’s win in 1988, and, the Mud N Tars team of Ben Mayne & Ash Ball who won the Keyneton 6 Hour.
So, all in all, the 2018 24 Hour Trial once again looks to be a highly contested event, with this year’s event, once again being held on the ‘2nd weekend in July’, the 14th & 15th, starting from the Kapunda Trotting Complex, with the first bike starting at 11.00am on Saturday morning, and all being well, the first bikes will finish from 11.00am Sunday morning.
This is the 94th anniversary of SA’s most famous motorcycle event, with the event having been run 86 times since 1924 (7 years missed for WW2 1940-46 and 2 years in the 1950’s through market slumps). In 2018 however, and like previous years, todays modern riders will again tackle a course of 4 laps of about 200kms each, with 12 off road sections per lap, with tea and breakfast breaks between laps 1 & 2 and 3 & 4.
The Trotting Complex will have full catering available all weekend, merchandise, along with event programmes available Saturday morning in the under cover area, which will include any directions to spectator areas for the event.
WITH THANKS TO PRETEND PHOTOGRAPHY FOR THE PIC OF RILEY GRAHAM!