MSA recognised club Association of Land Rover clubs
Jul 302013

Sundays trial, or the build up started for me on about Wednesday, i recieved a text from Mike Webster asking for assistance in setting up on Saturday, he tends to take the lead at crossways as it was his contact that got us use of the site. He said that he had asked for the gate to be unlocked for 9am, and suggested that that would be a good time to start set up.
I replied saying that yes, i was available for setup, and asked who else had responded, the reply was that Rich, Roger, Me, Andy and himself would be there, i chatted to Jason on facebook and he said he’d come along too. There were offers from James and Trevor on Dorsetrover but it was felt that enough offers had already been recieved, Fri Roger txt and asked if i could log in to the MSA website, and print off the permit, as Nigel had unexpectedly had to rush off to Birmingham, (hope all ok Nigel!!) i must have searched my emails for ½ an hr before speaking to Rich, before between us we worked out the club login details. Permit duely printed, after spending another 1/2 hr trying to figure out the way around the rubbish MSA website. The reason fopr needing the permit actually printed and onsite is simple, its proof of our insurance for the event, and technically i don;t think you can run the event without it.

So Saturday morning, 9am, i arrive at Crossways, there was a merry band of willing helpers, Andy had arrrived with an assistant, Neil, Roger set about doing lots of trimming of bushes so he didn;t scratch his freshly polished D11, and also in case any shineys turned up on Sunday, and the rest of us set to and started setting out the sections, its always tricky trying to find something different to do at sites where you’ve been several times, but hopefully we managed a few different things this time around, we finally finished setting out at about 1.30pm, so thats 4 ½ hrs of scrabbling around banking holes in hard ground, putting canes in, numbering and checking courses.
I then went home, and got the event paperwork in order, writing the event names on sign in sheets, and getting the case sorted and ready to just open in the morning and be ready.

9am Sunday we all gathered onsite, Roger set to doing the scrutineering, and Caroline duely dealt with the signing on etc.
Can’t remember what time we started, but those that were there will be aware of what happened next, we decided to stay in one group rather than split into two, in order to be more sociable, certainly on the first couple of sections this was in hindsight possibly not the best option, but no matter, everyone ended up having a laugh, at my expense! You’ll know why ikf you were there!!

Lunch came and went, and after lunch Roger handed me the ‘odds’ score sheet and we split up in order to try and speed up proceedings, we had 5 officials signed on for the marshaling side of things, those being Roger, Me, Tony, Rich and Caroline.

The afternoon sections seemed to go much faster than the mornings, partly due to no recoveries being needed, and partly due to only having 7 drivers in each group, at the end of the last section, several drivers simply drove off, having hopefully enjoyed their days trialling, but having paid no part in setup, or break down of the event, I was slightly dumbfounded by this, and in truth, annoyed, as it clearly takes a lot of effort on several peoples parts to organise and run the events, and for people to just drive off I think personally shows little if any gratitude, without the course setters, and those who clear up at the end of the day, the events would not happen! Bear this in mind please!

I spent quite a while gathering up canes, and getting them back in the bags and numbers in the box, along with others, and my day didn’t end there, I then had to make contact with the Moreton estate game keeper, to get the gate locked, and the land owner to pay the site fees, this done, I headed home, Roger had towed the little trailer with all the kit home behind Bertie, as he left it there overnight having taken it behind the D11 on sat morning, even when I got home I wasn’t finished, I then had to check the money, pay the permit, enter the fees etc in the club accounts, and make sure everything tallied, which of course it did.

Hopefully this little tale will enlighten people into what goes into running a Trial, and this is of course not all of it, before the even can even take place, the site has to be booked, and the permit applied for.

If people reading this feel a little guilty for just driving home immediately after finishing the last section, then me sitting and writing this has been worthwhile, it’s not meant to offend anyone, or indeed discourage people from coming, hopefully it will just mean that in future people might be a little more willing to help, be that with set up, or taking canes out afterwards and generally helping with the running of things, we as a committee are looking at ways of possibly introducing some sort of points system, whereby you will be encouraged (with points) to come and set up, and possibly marshal, but this is in the early stages of development, and something that I personally feel shouldn’t be needed, as it would be nice if people saw fit to help of their own free will, without having to be almost bullied into doing so……

In conclusion I would like to thank those that assisted with set-up, and the few that helped taking canes out and clearing up, and to those that didn’t, thanks a bunch!

Jul 292013

Very Big Thank you to Robin, not only for navigating but for all the advice on driving technique.   My score was  half my usual  result on the previous trials.    I really learnt a lot, I felt more in control of the vehicle and a lot safer.  Robin is Dorset Rover’s “STIG”.

Doing it properly made it far more enjoyable, learning from an experienced driver is far better than learning from your mistakes.  I have always appreciated the help, advice and tips given by various club members but having a full day with an “instructor /co-pilot” was brilliant.    I hope Robin enjoyed the day as much as I did.

I recommend to all new members to ask for help.  I hope the experienced club members will be available to pass on their knowledge.    I know its asking a lot to give up their time;  they want to complete and enjoy the day as well,  but could we have a new entry class “Practice Round”  where the score would not count in the overall standings, this would overcome the rule of having a “Driver” as a co-pilot. The instructors could still complete in their own vehicles in a scoring round before sitting in with a novice, then they would not gain any advantage of having a prior run through the course.   I am sure this will benefit the drivers and the club in the long term.

Kind regards,


Jul 052013

I’m thinking of compiling a short history of the club – not least to mark DLRC’s 25th anniversary (more about that later and elsewhere!). What I’m hoping is that some of the longer-joined members might have copies of the newsletter (pre-2011), minutes from the AGM over the years, photographs from the start of the club, any other documents that I can research, or failing all of that, anyone’s anecdotes, memories (preferably factual!). I’d be grateful for the loan of anything that members might be able to lend me – I promise to return everything and to take care of stuff. I’ll be at tonight’s club meet at The Cock & Bottle, or you can e-mail me at to let me know what you’ve got. Many thanks.

Andy Wilson