The DTRA 2019 Racing Season Launches at The Bike Shed, London

Hello and welcome to the DTRA blog - here’s where you’ll find all kinds of updates throughout the racing season, from race previews and round-ups, to rider interviews and information about all the other great events we organise or get involved with.

We’re kicking off our blog with a guest post from one of our younger riders, Max Inman (#14), who has graduated to the Adult Inters class for 2019 - meaning he’ll now be racing against his own dad, Gary, a seasoned rider who most of you also know as the editor of Sideburn Magazine. Max is taking a look back at our 2019 season launch event, which brought together many of our riders and supporters, old and new, along with some of the most exciting bikes that will be competing this year. We reveal an awesome video of the event by Tom Bing too…

The Dirt Track Riders Association 2019 season launch took place at The Bike Shed in Shoreditch, London.

Like at all DTRA events there was a great atmosphere, everyone talking about the new bike builds, the upcoming season, and the winter practices that have been taking place, pausing only to admire the machines.

All the bikes on show would’ve been showstoppers if they were in a room of production bikes, but between the 13 bikes, there wasn’t one that stood out the most; they were all different yet amazing in their own way, the best bit being, almost all of them are racing in the 2019 DTRA championship series.

The crowd, made up of DTRA regulars and newbies, many of whom have been preparing throughout the winter ready to make their debut race, watched on as the Spaniard, Gerard Bailo, collected his 2nd place trophy. Jeremy Skipp was then picked out of a hat to win a season’s worth of racing for free before Anthony, also known as the DTRA boss, thanked everyone for coming and making the event great.

"Not long to go now..."

The DTRA were selling new T-shirts on their stall opposite the Sideburn Magazine pop-up-shop. Leah Tokelove’s new ladies-only flat track school called Days on the Dirt was also selling newly designed T-shirts alongside Greenfield Dirt Track’s fresh merchandise.

The Bike Shed’s very own Ross Sharp was presenting his Yamaha 750cc MT07. This engine was in a Wasp frame with a Co-Built exhaust. It was a real crowd pleaser, especially because Ross had kept it very quiet while building it, I didn’t even know he was building a new flat tracker!

Some of the many racers and spectators admiring Ross' Yamaha

One bike from Team Greenfield and the Evolve Motorsports team were on display. Gerard Bailo’s championship runner-up bike, the KX450F and third place last season, Gary Birtwistle’s brand new Honda CRF450.

Gary Birtwistle's Evolve Honda CRF450

Last season Wilbur Skipp raced a home-built Honda XR100 made to look like a Harley-Davidson XR750, and featured in Sideburn’s issue #35. For the upcoming DTRA season Wilbur is racing a classic Honda mini-framer with a Lazer frame with a XR125cc engine, imported from the USA.

A sneak peek of Wilbur's Honda

The two Krazy Horse Indian Scouts had been raced in the Hooligan class last season by Lee Kirkpatrick and Leah Tokelove. Lee and Leah are both continuing to race these bikes in 2019 but this time with recently painted body-work designed by Ryan Quickfall.

The Hooligans, Lee and Leah, with Paul Beamish of Krazy Horse and Steve Cain of Indian Motorcycles

Lee Kirkpatrick is also racing Krazy Horse’s very special Italian Zaeta DT for the first time in the DTRA Series.

Jason, who I hope is making a comeback to the DTRA took a Norton Commando and Harley-Davidson XLR900, both great-looking vintage bikes.

Mike Hill's Survivor Customs Honda CRF450 Framer

During the winter Mike Hill and James Smith have also both been busy building their bikes for the season. Mike’s being a CRF450R engine in his own design of Survivor Customs frame along with a Survivor Customs seat unit and petrol tank. James has overhauled the look of his Harley-Davidson Sportster by making a carbon seat unit, tank and exhaust guard to protect his S&S Cycles exhausts.

James Smith's Sportster

And last but definitely not least was a pair of Harley-Davidson hooligans. Adam Brinkworth’s Noise Cycles XG750 and Charlie Stockwell’s Warr’s Sportster. Both racing in the Hooligan class, and both well worth taking a long look at.

I’m sure all of the DTRA crew went away from this event thinking the same thing: ‘What a great night Anthony, Anna and the Bike Shed members have organised, once again!’

Even dogs are welcome!

See you at the races!

Max Inman

Thanks so much for the post Max, and to everyone who made it along for the event. We're really excited for the racing to begin - Round 1 of our Nationals championship is taking place on April 12th and 13th at Kings Lynn's Adrian Flux Arena. We're looking forward to seeing you all there.

Keep checking back on our blog for more updates throughout the season, and check out our Nationals and Euros pages for more information about the racing that will be taking place this year.

Video by Tom Bing. Pictures by Tom Bing and Braking Point Images.


© 2019 Dirt Track Riders Association Limited