EXACTLY 44 years ago the Richmond Motor Club moved into sidecar trialling. The demand was there for three wheel fun and games and the club obliged with a one-day event centred on Wensley.

That initial starter whetted many an appetite and right up to the final event in 2003, entries fluctuated between 80 and 18. Competitors travelled from all parts of the British Isles plus the Isle of Man. Gerald Simpson pioneered the trial organisation in the formative years and rode passenger with Norman Iveson.

Sadly Gerald Simpson lost his life in a car accident in 1977. The Richmond club renamed the trial as the Gerald Simpson Two Day Memorial Trial. The entry numbers rocketed.

Dronfield’s general dealer and car mechanic Adrian Clarke took a stranglehold on the trial with four victories in its formative years. The demise of entries ended the trial in 2003 as it did not merit a full scale sidecar trial and the title was reborn as a two day solo event but still carrying the Simpson title.

Bellerby’s Peter Brown won the first event. In 1988 the trial attracted an all-star national entry. The course traversed Bolton Castle where teenager Michael Orde-Powlett was on home ground as passenger with Peter Simpson in the 1983 event.

In one event which started at Wensley Bridge, Leyburn caterer John Dale took on the role of traffic controller on the busy West Witton to Wensley road. His dress featured an ankle length white catering apron.

In its solo only guise the trial continues to attract nationwide competitors. That brings in demands for accommodation, meals and visits to the local hotels.