POPULAR annual trials event, The New Year Shield, was the perfect way for the Isle of Wight Motorcycle Club to kick-start 2019.

The first of the year’s Winter Trials Championships was held at Sweetwater Brook, Calbourne.

Riders had the usual challenge of negotiating a tricky course of four laps of eight sections, which deteriorated as the day wore on.

The event attracted the Isle of Wight’s top riders in the elite class — the likes of Chris Stay, George Gosden (who both had clear rounds) and Josh Stephens — who provided spectators some excellent trials riding.

Isle of Wight County Press:

Colin Brodie in action at the New Year Shield trials event at Sweetwater Brook, Calbourne.

Expert rider James Stay was almost forced to retire from the trial with a brake problem, but fixed it and completed it to start his campaign with a maximum ten championship points.

Ben Read (44 marks) won the intermediate class, while Scott Milton got back to winning ways in the clubman class — just two marks ahead of the ever-improving Scout Gregory.

Joe Taylor took the novice category, while Nick Symes won the twin shocks class, but with a slightly disappointing 30 by his own high standards.

Alfie Haydon, another rider promoted in class to youth intermediate, also earned ten championship points having coped well on five of the eight sections he tackled.

Dan Locke put in a determined effort in the youth novice class, with Josh Morris not far behind.

Both are tipped to have a close battle for the 2019 title.

Simon Newnham (29 marks) was the pick of the sportsman class, coming in well clear of any of the other B route riders.

The club’s next event, the Medina Cup, will be held on Sunday, January 27.