NRTC History

The new Transvaal Trials Club was founded in January of 1960  by W F Bell. It replaced the Transvaal Trials and Racing Club which, according to Bill Bell, failed because they got involved with too many branches of the sport... The TTC would concentrate mainly on observed and road trials.

 

The Transvaal Trials Club was arguably South Africa's premier trials club – organizing both observed trials and road trials. In the early 1960's they organized four trials annually, counting towards the Transvaal trials championship. These were the Shimwell trial, the Autumn trial, the Winter trial and the Spring trial held around February, May, July and October, respectively. The Shimwell trial was named after a well-known chain of motorcycle dealers who had presented the floating trophy back in the 1940's. In 1966 the Autumn trial became the Rex Norton trial named after a friend of Bert Milligan's (a prominent club member) who had been killed in a wartime aircraft accident. In 1967 the Winter trial became the Lew Hunter trial in memory of Lew Hunter who lost his life when the aeroplane in which he was traveling crashed into the Blyde river gorge. The Spring trial, as far as I am aware, remained the Spring trial. Later the Claude Nicholl trial in memory of Henry's brother, the Des Campbell Trial in memory of Des who had been a keen club member and the Walter Schutz trial in memory of Walter who died in a freak motorcycle accident, were introduced and still later the Bill Bell Memorial Trial.

 

The road trials organized by the TTC, which counted towards the provincial championship, were the Lambretta, Summer and Kelvin View held around February, October and December respectively. The Summer Trial was the premier event and started at midnight on Friday night and finished, some 400 miles later, late on Saturday afternoon. The series started in 1960. The other road trials were Saturday afternoon events usually less than 100 miles (160 km) in distance. These events were held on mainly dirt roads.

 

The TTC also organized riding tests, gymkhanas, economy runs, treasure hunts etc. These were closed to all but club members and results counted towards the club championship. Results in open events counted towards the club victor ludorum. Floating trophies were presented at the annual prize giving to the winner of the victor ludorum and the club championship. The Bennett shield was presented to the club member who was the top observed trial rider for each particular year.

 

From 1960 until about 1973/74  all observed trial competitors rode the same section. This often resulted in reduced entries as new comers to trials found the sections too difficult.

 

From 1960 until around 1970 10 sections were laid ridden 4 to 6 times in one direction before lunch and then the same number of times in the reverse direction after lunch i e 80 to 120 sections were the norm.

 

In the early days sections were marked with tape but later flags came into general use.

 

Although they rode the same sections from around 1975 until ? riders were split into A and B classes and entries increased. From typically 12 – 15 riders to around 30.

 

Towards the end of 1970 various classes were introduced namely Masters, Experts, Clubman and Junior with each class having an alternate line through each section.

 

Venues for the early trials were mainly on mining property in the Johannesburg/Maraisburg area, namely Nourse Mines, City Deep, Consolidated Main Reef and the Comet sand pits near Benoni. Trials bikes were generally modified road machines with 350cc and 500cc fourstrokes predominating. 200cc Villiers engined specials were doing well and becoming popular. By the mid 60’s the most successful riders were generally using bikes based on the 175 B S A.  During 1969 quite a number of purpose built trials bikes were imported and Greeves, Montesa or Triumph Comerford riders were generally among the winners.

 

 

 

1963

 

A TTC trial was held at the Comet sandpits near Benoni early in 1963.It was won by G Hollis riding the 500T Norton.

The TTC Winter trial was held at Benoni on the2nd June 1963. N Mc Ewan riding a 200 James won this

 

The Spring trial was held at Benoni on the 13th October 1963. This was won by N McEwan on a 200 James

 

The Transvaal trials champion for 1963 was N McEwan with G Hollis the runner up.

 

1964

 

The TTC practice trial held at Nourse mines on the 5th January 1964 was won by Billy Bell on a 200 Villiers. Most of the TTC organized trials were held at Nourse Mines the venue being within sight of the present motorway. In fact, it was the construction of this motorway that resulted in the loss of this venue.

 

N McEwan on a 200 Villiers won the TTC championship trial held at Nourse mines on the 2nd February.

 

The TTC championship trial (Winter trial) held at Benoni on the 7th June attracted 12 starters. WD Bell on a 200 James won the event. The Comet sandpits were used by TTC for one or two trials annually. Basically it consisted of a large pit, partially flooded, surrounded by a high bank around the perimeter with gullies caused by soil erosion leading to the partially flooded area. The surroundings were flat and treeless, typical of the East Rand.

 

A championship trial organized by TTC was held at Nourse mines on the11th October.This was won by WD Bell on a 200 James

 

 

The results of the 1963 Transvaal trials championship were 1st WD Bell. 2nd B Bennett and 3rd P Deglon

 

1965

 

The Shimwell trial was held at Nourse mines on the 21st March. Their were17starters and 15 finishers.  Riding a 175 BSA P Deglon won the event.

 

The Rex Norton trial was held on the 23rd May.  There were 12 starters and 11 finishers. P Deglon won the event on a 175 BSA

 

 

The Lambretta road trial was held on the 31st July starting from and finishing at the TTC clubhouse. Derek Lloyd won the event

 

 

As mentioned earlier the TTC organized a number of road trials annually and these were generally well supported. They were in effect rallies with a number of secret controls where you were penalized a point per second if you were early or late. A rally board was attached to the bike with a sealed watch that was used to record your time at each control. This particular event covered a distance of about 100 miles on mostly sand roads.

 

The TTC Winter trial was held at CMR on the 22nd August. A Hart riding a 200 Ambassador was the winner

 

A riding test was held at Gilloolies Farm on the 1st September. There were 21 starters and 19 finishers Gilloolies was a favoured venue for riding tests and gymkhanas organized by the TTC. A pleasant spot with large grassed areas, a stream and many willow trees. Ideal for a picnic but a little crowded at times.

 

Basil Bennett on a 250 Jawa won the Spring trial held at Nourse Mines on the 21st November

 

 

Paul Deglon won the clubs Victor Ludorum by 15 points and narrowly won the Club Championship from Billy Bell and Johnny Bennett (by 1 point).

 

W F Bell was chairman of the TTC for 1964 and 1965 and WD Bell was club captain.

 

Paul Deglon was Transvaal Trials Championship with Basil Bennett being runner up.

 

At this time the Royal Automobile Club controlled motorsport and that body awarded the certificates.

 

 

1966

 

The TTC committee for 1966 was as follows. WF Bell (chairman), H Milligan, R Jones, WD Bell (club captain), D Ross, D Hayes, N Simpson, Paul Deglon

 

The TTC clubhouse was officially opened in April with a live band and dance, paid for by Bert Milligan.

 

The Lambretta road trial was held on the 26th March. Derek Lloyd won the 110-mile event

 

 

The Rex Norton trial was held at Nourse mines on the 22nd May.It was won by Jan Benade

 

The Winter trial was held at Comet sandpits on the 24th July. This was won by Norman McEwan

 

The Summer road trial was held on the 22nd October, in miserable weather, in the Eastern Tvl. The winner was B Thring on a 490 BMW (2254 point’s).

 

RJ Bell won the TTC Club championship

 

Norman McEwan won the Transvaal Trials championship with Jan Benadi the runner up

 

1967

 

 Lew Hunter was killed in a flying accident on the 7th January. He was passenger in a light plane, which crashed in the Blyde river canyon killing all three occupants.

 

Committee members for 1967were: WF Bell (chairman) Paul Deglon (club captain), H Milligan, R Jones, A Farley, N Simpson, K Youngman and RJ Bell.

 

The Shimwell trial was held at CMR on the 19th February with15 starters and 12 finishers. It was won by J Benade

 

The Rex Norton trial was held at Nourse mines on the 18th June with 21 entries and 15 finishers. The event was on by J Bennett

 

The Lew Hunter memorial trial was held at Benoni on the 23rd July. There were 15 finishers. B Bennett on a 175 BSA won the trial. This event had previously been called the Winter trial.

 

The Spring trial held at Nourse mines on 17th September attracted 16 starters. J Bennett on his 200 Villiers won it

 

Willie Grobler won the Summer road trial held in the Machadodorp area on 13th October

 

The Club champion for 1967 was WD Bell.

 

P Deglon won the Victor Ludorum for 1967 on 64 points with E Exner 2nd on 62 points

 

Johnny Bennett won the Transvaal trials championship

 

1968

 

The committee for 1968 was WF Bell (chairman) RJ Bell (club captain), H Milligan, E Exner, J Linsay, D Ross, R Jones and O Jenkins.

 

 

The Shimwell trophy trial was held at CMR on the 18th February. There were 18 starters and 16 finishers. The event was won by N McEwan riding 175 BSA

 

The Rex Norton trial was held at Nourse mines on the 30th June and attracted an entry of 18 riders. Due to motorway construction it was considered likely that this may be the last time this venue, which has been used for the past 30 years, may be available. B Bennett on a 175 BSA won this 100-section event.

 

The Kelvin View road trial was held on the 21st of August. Of the 16 starters only 12 finished the 75mile course. Riding a 180 Yamaha, P Deglon won the event with a total error of 207 seconds

 

The Lew Hunter trial held at Benoni on the 25th August attracted 17 starters including 3 from Natal. Wilf Norcott on a 250 Bultaco won the event.

 

The Spring trial held at CMR on the 13th October must have been fairly tough, as there were only 8 finishers.  Basil Bennett riding a 175 BSA won the trial

 

The Summer road trial was held in Rustenburg area on the 25th and 26th October. Willie Grobler 250 Suzuki won this.

 

WD Bell won the 1968 Club Championship.

 

P Deglon won the 1968Victor Ludorum by 14 points from the runner up, Basil Bennett.

 

Transvaal trials champion for 1968 was B Bennett with N McEwan the runner up

 

1969

 

Ray Jones was voted in as chairman of the TTC while Bunny Bell became club captain

 

The Shimwell trial held at CMR on the 9th February attracted 25 starters The event was won by Norman McEwan with Billy Bell second; both mounted on new Greeves trials machines

 

Ernie Exner, Paul Miles and Paul Deglon organized the Lambretta road trial held on 22nd February. The winner was Willie Grobler.

 

A National Championship trial organized by the TTC was held at Benoni on the 1st June. The event attracted a large entry and there were 35 finishers. The trial was won by J v Tilburg of Natal riding a 250 Montesa

 

24 riders finished the Rex Norton trial held at Nourse mines on the 29th of June Due to the construction of the motorway a new venue was used right up among the mine dumps. Paul Deglon won the event riding a 200 Triumph.

 

Riding a 125 Puch P Deglon won the Kelvin View road trial held on the 12th July

 

The Lew Hunter trial held at Benoni on 24th August attracted an entry of 22 of whom 17 finished the event. It was won by Norman McEwan on a 250 Greeves

 

The Spring trial held at CMR on the 5thof October attracted 16 starters and there were 14 finishers. The winner was WD Bell

 

The TTC Club Championship was won by Bunny Bell

 

Basil Bennett won the TTC Victor Ludorum

 

WD Bell won the Transvaal trials championship while P Deglon was the runner up.

 

1970

 

The TTC Committee for the forthcoming year was as follows. E Exner (chairman), RJ Bell, N Kruger, Paul Deglon (club captain), J Bennett, N McEwan, N Simpson, H Pretorious, D Hayes and N Bell

 

B Bennett riding a 250 AJS won the Shimwell trial held at CMR on The 15th of February.

 

18 riders completed the Lambretta road trial held on the 26th of March.19 The event was won by Paul Deglon riding a 250 DT1 Yamaha on 249 points with runner up W Grobler riding a  250 Suzuki on 319 points.

 

Only 11 riders completed the Rex Norton trial held at CMR on the 28th of June. The winner was Basil Bennett on a 250 AJS

 

Bunny Bell won the Lew Hunter Memorial trial held at Comet sand pits on the 30th of August

 

This years Summer road trial was held in the Middelburg- Lydenburg area on the 16th, 17th and 18th of October. There were 36 starters and 25 finishers. B Broady on a 350 Honda won the event.

 

 

The Kelvin View road trial was held on the 21st of November. There were 21 starters and 17 finishers. Willie Grobler won the event

 

J Bennett won the TTC Club championship.

 

The Victor Ludorum was won by R Bell.

 

The Transvaal trials championship was won by R Bell.

 

W Grobler won the Transvaal road trials championship.

 

1971

 

Key members of the TTC Committee were Barry Broady (chairman) and Johnny Bennett (club captain)

 

In January the TTC had a membership of 58.

 

The Lambretta road trial held on 13th March attracted 26 starters and there were 20 finishers. It was won by Paul Deglon riding a 350 Honda on 291 points

 

 

Pat and Paul Deglon organized the Summer road trial held in the Vaalwater area on the 22/23rd of October. There were 31 starters and 27 finishers. The event was won by B Broady on a 350 Honda

 

20 riders completed the 65-mile long Kelvin View road trial held on the 20th of November. Barry Broady riding a 350 Honda (108 points) was the winner

 

10 riders completed the Spring trial held at Brickor on the 21st of November. The winner was Rod Sterndale

 

The TTC Club championship was won by R Bell. Runner up was D v Breda.

 

The Victor Ludorum for was N Bell. Runner up was D v Breda. .

 

The Transvaal trials champion for 1971 was D v Breda.

 

The Transvaal road trials champion for 1971 was B Broady

 

1972

 

Key members of the TTC Committee were E Exner (chairman), N Simpson (vice chairman), and J Minnaar (club captain).

 

Rod Sterndale riding a 250 Greeves won the Shimwell trial held at CMR on the 8th of February

There were 17 finishers in the Lambretta road trial held on the 11th of March. Bruce Johnstone won

 

A TTC Petrol economy run was held on the 29thof April

 

The Lew Hunter memorial trial held at Brickor on the 5th of November was won by Rod Sterndale riding a 250 Greeves on 49 points

 

The Spring trial held at Brickor on the 19th of November was won by Rod Sterndale on a 250 Greeves

 

Bunny Bell won the Club Championship.

 

Bruce Johnson won the Victor Ludorum.

 

Rod Sterndale won the Transvaal trials championship. I finished 4th

  

1973

 

The key men in the TTC Committee were N Bell (chairman), Henry Nichol (vice chairman), Bruce Johnson, (club captain).

 

 The Lambretta road trial was held on the 10th of March

 

Rod Sterndale riding a 250 Greeves won the Lew Hunter memorial trial held at Benoni

 

Club champion for 1973 was K Smith.

 

Victor ludorum for 1973 was K Smith.

 

Rod Sterndale was Transvaal trials champion

 

Ken Smith was the Transvaal road trial champion

 

Note that during this year trail machines competed alongside trials machines, there being separate awards for them.

 

 

1974

 

The TTC Committee was the same as the previous year.

 

Arnold Liem riding a Montesa won the Spring trial held in December

 

1975

 

The Shimwell trial was held on the 16th of February. The A class won was won by R Sterndale

 

Rod Sterndale 250 Montesa won the Rex Norton trial held on the 2nd March

 

E Battig 250 Montesa won the Claude Nichol trial held on The 6th April

 

The Lew Hunter trial was held on the 18th of May. The A class was won by Walter Schutz

 

The Transvaal expert’s trial held on the 8th of June attracted 32 entries and was won by R Sterndale

 

1976

 

The Shimwell trial was held at the Pines on the 8th February

  

1980

  

Syd Reinhard was chairman of TTC but resigned during the year and Henry Nichol took over

 

Mike Deglon became Transvaal trials Champion in the Experts Class and was awarded his Transvaal Colours

 

1981

 

Graham Gentles became chairman of the TTC

 

Mike Deglon riding in the Masters class won the Des Campbell trial.

 

Dave Deglon was this years Transvaal Junior trials champion but because of a change in the rules was not awarded his colours. He won the Junior class in the Des Campbell, Walter Schutz, Shimwell, Rex Norton, Claude Nicholl, Lew Hunter and Spring trials. He was also the TTC Club Champion. He rode a 175 Yamaha in all of these events.

 

1982

 

Paul Deglon was elected chairman of the TTC.

 

Mike Deglon was Transvaal Trials champion in the Masters class. During the course of the year he had finished first in the Spring, Lew Hunter and Des Campbell trials and second in the Claude Nicholl trial. He was also the winner of the Victor Ludorum and the Bennett Shield.

 

1983

  

Mike Deglon was Transvaal Trials champion in the Masters class. During the year he finished first in the Shimwell, Spring, Des Campbell, Lew Hunter, Claude Nicholl trials and Fox Shop trials. He was also the winner of the TTC Club Championship and the Bennett Shield.

 

1984

  

Mike Deglon was once again Transvaal Trials champion in the Masters class. During 1984 he won the Lew Hunter trial. He also won the Bennett Shield.

 

1985

 

Mike Deglon was Transvaal Trials champion in Masters class. During the year he also won the Des Campbell, Lew Hunter and Rex Norton trials.

 Mike Deglon won the TTC Victor Ludorum

   

1986

 

On the TTC Committee were: R Louw  chairman, Mike Deglon – vice chairman, Paul Deglon – member.

TTC meetings were held at Patterson Park, Orange Grove.

 

 

In the Don Hayes Memorial road trial Paul Deglon was 2nd overall and won the A class riding a 500 Yamaha XT500.This event was organized by Henry Nicholl and was run in the Magaliesburg area.

 

During the year Mike won the Masters class of the Des Campbell and Spring trials

 

The Transvaal trials championship was won by James McEwan.

 

1988

 

Mike Deglon was chairman of the TTC

 

The Bill Bell Memorial Spring trial was held at Hennops River on the 25th September

 

During the course of the year Mike Deglon riding in the Masters class, won the Shimwell trial..

 

1989

 

Mike Deglon was elected chairman of the TTC for the second successive year



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