Roar on the Moor: North Devon Classic Scramble 29/May 2016


With the Border meeting at Welshpool cancelled, a few of the Welsh regulars (myself, Kevin, Ian and Graham) ended up getting late entries for the Roar on the Moor, run by North Devon (Atlantic) near South Molton. New venue and track, and possibly with the Bank Holiday weekend, it wasn’t a massive entry (50 twinshocks and 35+ classics as an estimate).  However the weather was excellent and was a great location.  The track was, er different, 70% scramble, 30% enduro but personally I enjoyed it, with some technical bits and some open sections, so that all 4 gears on the Husky were used each lap.

The 360 Automatic went well in practice but whilst waiting in the pit box, with engine running, before the first race, it decided to stop and not restart for the rest of the day. What’s always entertaining when you are trying to fix a bike is the amount of advice you get, both good and bad from others. Some of these  comments are excellent and useful whilst some are just a distraction. Spark and fuel, a carb stripdown, flywheel off to check the crankseal and timing, but all these looked good. I’m presuming the bike is just completely flooded after the wait. One of the disadvantages of the Automatic is that you can’t bump start it down the field. Anyway gave up on that and focus on riding the 1970 Husky instead. Got 4 good races out of it, with the first pre74 race being the best. The bike had some weird tyres on it (Kenda rear) and trying to give it too much to stay up with a Metisse saw my downfall in race 2. The Twinshock C races were a bit frenetic for the first couple of laps but good fun. Missed some gears in the last race and the 250 was down on power on the fast sections towards the end of the lap.



The first Twinshock C race (which I missed with the non-functioning Automatic)  ended up with a red flag after a coming together with new riders at their first meeting; one broken collarbone and one broken leg.  This provided a long break which turned into the lunch break. In the end the racing schedule ended up about 17h00, after the second age related race didn’t start after a finisher in the previous race decided to drive straight into a stake and ended up with he and bike going flying.



Kevin’s CanAm shed a chain in race 1, and then in race 2 whilst he was running 3rd (he blamed the split link I’d lent him) and after fitting a new chain, with borrow battery powered angle grinder for the 3rd race, the internal clutch nut had come undone. He’d gone well on the YZ400 and had got a 3rd in the Twinshock C race. Ian Hall’s return riding continued on the pre74 and in the in race watering system does look a bit weird but does do the job of mouth wetting. Best Welsh championship regular on the day was Graham Trump, who’s ability to wheel out a working bike from the tatty transit doesn’t cease to amaze. Perhaps it was the missing front mudguard, but there were a couple of 3rd places and some good racing.

With no traffic there and back (honest 2h10 only from Bwlch to South Molton) it was as easy to get as Welshpool nearly and you can use the cruise control for most of the journey.



Don’t see too many of these out racing.  A Greeves Hawkstone, with Dave Bickers favourite front fork selection.

Nice atmosphere, great weather, not a bad track and a well run meeting. Recommended Bank Holiday trip away. As an additional bonus for the travelling Welsh contingent I’d brought along the portable record player I’d picked up in Belgium last year.   As well as some Motown, Northern Soul and 80’s managed to play an appropriate track for the location. The Wurzels were on Top of the Pops with Combine Harvester, which was at #1 in the charts 40 years ago this month. I’ll be taking requests and maybe spinning the decks at Narberth in a couple of weeks.  If you want to sing along, the lyrics are further down:



I drove my tractor through your haystack last night
(ooh aah ooh aah)
I threw me pitchfork at your dog to keep quiet
(ooh aah ooh aah)
Now something’s telling me
That you’m avoiding me
Come on now darling you’ve got something I need

[Chorus] Cuz I got a brand new combine harvester
An’ I’ll give you the key
Come on now let’s get together
In perfect harmony
I got twenty acres
An’ you got forty-three
Now I got a brand new combine harvester
An’ I’ll give you the key

She made I laugh ha ha

I’ll stick by you, I’ll give you all that you need
(ooh aah ooh aah)
We’ll ‘ave twins and triplets
I’m a man built for speed
(ooh aah ooh aah)
And you know I’ll love you darlin’
So give me your hand
(ooh aah ooh aah)
But what I want the most
Is all they acres of land


Ooaah she’s a lovely bit of stuff an’ all

For seven long years I’ve been alone in this place
(ooh aah ooh aah)
Eat, sleep, in the kitchen, it’s a proper disgrace
(ooh aah ooh aah)
Now if I cleaned it up would you change your mind
(ooh aah ooh aah)
I’ll give up drinking scrumpy and that lager and lime


Who loves thee baby ha

Weren’t we a grand couple at that last wurzel dance
I wore brand new gaters and me cordouroy pants
In your new Sunday dress with your perfume smelling grand
We had our photos took and us holding hands

Now I got a brand new combine harvester
An’ I’ll give you the key
Now that we’me both past our fifties I think that you and me
Should stop this galavanting and will you marry me
Coz I got a brand new combine harvester
An’ I’ll give you the key

Aahh yu’re a fine lookin’ woman and I can’t wait to get me ‘ands on your land.

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