WELCOME TO PATHFINDERS TRIALS MOTORCYCLE CLUB
Unlike most other forms of motorcycle sport, Moto Trials is not racing. It is simply a competitor and their bike pitted against the terrain.Moto Trials is a sport of balance, skill and concentration. One at a time, competitors will ride over an obstacle course of boulders, streams, hill climbs, logs, drop offs, and nearly anything else. Moto Trials is one of the world's most popular participatory motorcycle disciplines. In Australia about one thousand riders compete - in Europe many thousands compete regularly.
Moto Trials riders compete in ALL weather conditions! From Juniors aged 7 years through to Veterans from 40 to 70 years plus, there are classes to cover all rider ability levels such as Expert, A, B and C Grade, Club Class and also Veterans (40 years plus). Whilst it is spectacular and sometimes appears dangerous at the top level, speed and other competitors are not factors likely to cause incidents, so the sport remains very safe. Very few injuries are sustained due to the low speeds and "one at a time" use of sections by competitors. Riders in the top classes attempt seemingly impossible obstacles, and in the process perform some of the most amazing skilled and trick riding - including air turns, bunny hops and bouncing the front and rear wheels during turns.
It all started in 1975 with the typical Perth rivalry – north or south of the river? At that time , there was only one moto trials club and it was based in the northern suburbs. A number of interested competitors lived south of the river and congregated around a company called “Small Motors” in Rockingham - seeking good service, good deals and good chats! It was decided to gauge the interest in another club and an informal meeting was called for 1st May 1975 at the Ye Olde Narrogin Inne in Armadale to see if another club could survive. Thirty three people attended and this informal meeting developed into the Inaugural Club Meeting of the WA Pathfinders Trials MCC. Wilf Parker was elected the first President and a 9 member Committee was installed.Club and Committee meetings were held each fortnight and were very social events.
The first edition of the “Pathfinder” magazine was published by Chris Spikins in November 1975. In that year the Club also gained affiliation with Motorcycling WA, the Club Constitution was adopted (it remained unchanged for the first 21 years) and the Club was incorporated as a not for profit sporting club MWA Competition Licences for open events first appeared in 1977 when membership fees were $10 and event entry fees were $1.50 per competitor! During the first years, helmets were not compulsory and many photos show cloth hats, terry towelling caps or bald heads as the day’s fashion (safety) statements. That all changed in 1978 amongst much criticism and derision – who needs a bloody helmet anyway? Protective equipment and clothing was seen as by many optional, and some competitors wore the tried and true (rubber) Wellington Boots or just plain work boots.
1981 saw the first Arena Trial and a National Championship held at “Jubb Rd” in Jarrahdale. This venue was used by the Club for many years and for many events. You needed a sledge hammer to drive the pegs into the ground at this venue, and once you got to the top of the southern hill, you fought your way through nests of dugites! A great venue that has been sadly missed by Pathfinders Members.
In 1986, compulsory MWA competition licences were introduced for all level of events and slowly a certain level of professionalism started emerging within the Club, competitors and MWA. Throughout the years, many events and venues have come and gone, but still our history lives on with the Prestige Series (named after Prestige Earthmovers), the Nobby Clarke Memorial Charity Trial and Auction (the old Telethon Trial), the Blackwood Two Day at Kirup and our now famous Junior Development and Coaching days.
For the first twenty five years of the Club’s life, wooden pegs were a fact of life. Now we use wire holders for our boundary and grade markers, but then, hundreds of jarrah “garden posts” were carried around the course and banged into the ground. Splinters every time and pray that it didn’t rain because that doubled the weight of the bags. Organisers had to have a couple of helpers as a minimum, just to carry the bags of timber. Over the life of the Club, many changes have occurred.
We have gone from Gestetner copiers to this website. Remember when faxes were the “big” thing? We have gone from drum brakes that worked occasionally to disk brakes that can throw you over the handlebars. We have gone from no stop rules, to hopping and balancing for what seemed like an eternity, to time limits and maybe back to no stop rules in the future? But during all that time, the Club has maintained the desire to promote and organise Moto Trials events and to encourage good fellowship amongst its members.
Characters in the Club have come and gone, membership has waned and then grown again, but our Members continue to be good people who value good sportsmanship and good company. Oh – and that “other” club that was north of the river? That is the AJS Trials MCC in Neerabup (previously named Wanneroo). Where once there was open animosity between the two Clubs, today there is a healthy respect and a willingness to co-operate. Which is great. Because after all, we ride moto trials motorcycles to enjoy the competition, enjoy our challenge of our sport and have a good time.