NORBA National Bike Trials #1
May 22-23, 2004

Big Bear, California

Written by: Stephen and Kimberly Maeder

The NORBA National Trials series kicked off to a great start last weekend in beautiful Big Bear, California. Event organizer JP Sickler set up some big, technical sections to challenge last year's National Champions in 26" and 20" Pro categories - Jeremy VanSchoonhoven from Oregon and Ryan Cecil from North Carolina. Jim VanSchoonhoven said they were some of the best sections he had ever seen in North America. This event was the first NORBA event to use UCI rules, so riders were penalized for using their pedals or bashrings, among other differences from last year's rules.

On Saturday afternoon, sport, expert and pro stock riders competed on five challenging trials sections (with 3 loops each). More than 25 awe-struck spectators followed the riders to each section. One of the spectators, a downhiller, said, "I can't even balance like that at a stoplight!"

In Sport Stock class, Ross Luzzader from Utah came in 1st place. Jon Martin from Arizona came in a close 2nd.

Traveling all the way from Hawai'i, Nathan Goodhue rode smoothly and won 1st place in Expert Stock with 49 points and 4 cleans. Kevin Rothman from Arizona placed 2nd. Pancho Anderson drove from Colorado in his van, which broke down on his arrival to Big Bear. Pancho still competed, and had a fun time placing 3rd. Paul Bray from California came in 4th place.

The 26" 2003 North American Trials Champion, Jeremy VanSchoonhoven, riding his Coustellier, amazed even Hans Rey with his style and efficiency. Jeremy won 1st place in Pro Stock with a score of 23 points and 7 cleans. Competing for his first time as pro rider, Kevin Shiramizu from Colorado had a rough day with a bad crash near the beginning of the day, but rode with heart and determination placing 2nd.

On Sunday, 20" 2003 North American Trials Champion, Ryan Cecil, won Pro Mod. He was the only rider to complete the section with the giant tractor tires and backhoe.

Mark Webb from California competed in Expert Mod, but suffered from severe allergies and was not able to finish.

Also at the event, Nathan managed to break his Brisa front fork hopping up the huge metal backhoe. Pancho managed to wear through the bottom of his shoe and cut his foot in the process.

Special thanks to JP Sickler for making the incredible trials sections! They were enjoyed by the riders and spectators.

The next NORBA National Bike Trials competition is May 29-30th in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Sport Stock - Points
1. Ross Luzzader 60
2. Jon Martin 60

Expert Stock - Points, Cleans
1. Nathan Goodhue 49, 4
2. Kevin Rothman 58
3. Pancho Anderson 68
4. Paul Bray 74

Pro Stock - Points, Cleans
1. Jeremy VanSchoonhoven 23, 7
2. Kevin Shiramizu 71

Expert Mod - Points, Cleans
1. Mark Webb DNF

Pro Mod - Points
1. Ryan Cecil 42


Thank you to Kimberly Maeder for the photos!

Ryan Cecil competing on Sunday

Jeremy VanSchoonhoven competing on Saturday (all shots with National Champ jersey are from Saturday)

Jeremy riding for fun on Sunday (all shots with black shirt are from Sunday)

Hans "No Way" Rey showing Jeremy a different approach for this challenging up

Kevin Shiramizu about to...

...take a spill

"Can I see that on instant replay?!"

Nathan Goodhue

Paul Bray

Pancho Anderson

Pancho makes special "ventilation" holes in his shoe...

Kevin Rothman

Paul Bray

Mark Webb

Hans Rey trying out a section after the competition