Nathan Mummery won the 2020 Australian trials championship, and thus might have become the only national trials champion this year?
> Big photo gallery from the race below the text.
Bashguardian’s Austrialian correspondent, Matthew Harding, helped us write a summary of the race weekend.
2020 Australian Trials National Championships – March 13th – 15th
Since the mid 2000’s, there has been a steady decline in the number of trials riders around Australia, leaving a sparse but passionate group to keep the scene alive down under. A handful of riders have been working to slowly build comp participation back up and encourage more people to ride trials.
National Championships is our biggest competition of the year, and is combined with the Downhill, Cross-country and Pump Track disciplines. Each year we work with event organisers Mountain Biking Australia (MTBA) to construct a purpose built trials area for the competition weekend.
The 2020 Trials National Championships were held in beautiful Bright, 330km north east of Melbourne. While the town of Bright was not directly affected by the devastating bushfires, it was evacuated as a precaution and local businesses took a big hit over what is usually their peak tourist season. It was great to be able to head up there for a long weekend of riding, eating and drinking to support the Bright community, one of many rural areas hurting from the bushfires.
This year we were fortunate to have the trials event site in the centre of town and right next to the Bright Brewery, the best location we’ve ever had for a competition! An advance party of riders travelled to Bright five weeks prior to the event to select and organise obstacles for the first three sections. This was followed by a huge solo week of work from Wil Powney who built the final two sections and finalised the other three sections. The sections were comprised of concrete pipes and blocks, timber apple crates from local orchards, and large pine logs from the plantations surrounding the town.
The new positive points scoring system was used for the first time at the national champs in Australia with fantastic success. The weekend kicked off with Elite men competing on Friday evening in front of crowds drinking and dining at the Brewery. Nathan Mummery edged out long time rival Andrew Dickey to take his third consecutive title, with Matt Harding close behind in third place.
Saturday morning graced us with beautiful blue skies, making perfect conditions for titles to be decided in the Novice, Sport, Sport Masters and Expert categories. Novice rode in the morning, and Joshua Kluth won the title with Jesse Dunlop in second place – both riding in their first trials competition. Peter Gordon took the final podium position and an honourable mention must go to young Harry Scott for a fantastic ride at his first nationals. Sid Caulfield won the Sport category with up and coming rider George Tsarhatsidis in second and Rory Smith in third place. The hotly contested (and new for 2020) Sport Masters category was won by Kleat Wilson, with Darren Paterson trailing by just 20 points to finish second and Tom Scott in third place.
The Expert category closed out the weekend’s competitions on Saturday evening. Experienced riders Alex Markwart and Craig Pearce managed to edge out the defending Expert champion Dean Lawless, Alex taking his first National title by 20 points.
On Sunday, the final day of the national’s weekend we held a “come and try” session for non-competing cyclists and riders from other disciplines. The aim was to let them have a go and allow them to get advice from the more experienced riders. This was a great success with thirteen new riders participating, most of them able to hone a couple of basic skills in just a few hours.
Bans on large public gatherings across Australia due to COVID-19 came into place the day after national champs concluded, which would have cancelled the entire event if it was a week later. We were extremely lucky with the timing.
Congratulations to all the trials competitors! A big thank you to all trials riders who gave their time to make this event happen, Andy from MTBA and all the volunteer observers and time keepers. The event would not have been as successful without the help of all these people.
We had the highest number of riders at an Australian trials competition in the last five years. While we have had to put this year’s Victorian State Trials series on hold until normal life resumes, we are keen to keep the momentum from Nationals and continue to build trials rider numbers up.
> Race results below the photo gallery.
1st – Nathan Mummery – 860 points
2nd – Andrew Dickey – 810 points
3rd – Matt Harding – 720 points
4th – Sebastian Zepeda – 60 points
1st – Alex Markwart – 490 points
2nd – Craig Pearce – 470 points
3rd – Dean Lawless – 310 points
4th – Chris Moore – 140 points
1st – Kleat Wilson – 720 points
2nd – Darren Paterson – 690 points
3rd – Tom Scott – 610 points
4th – Joel McFarlane – 450 points
5th – Scott Clare – 320 points
6th – Toby Rushford – 240 points
7th – Wil Powney – DNF
1st – Sid Caulfield – 420 points
2nd – George Tsarhatsidis – 350 points
3rd – Rory Smith – 260 points
4th – Jackson Dunning – 190 points
1st – Joshua Kluth – 580 points
2nd – Jesse Dunlop – 550 points
3rd – Peter Gordon – 430 points
4th – Harry Scott – 390 points