Tarres just got Beta
It was whilst researching some detail on this article covering the 1987 World Trials Championship on the excellent trials website www.trialonline.org, where Belgium’s Charley Demathieu has collated a hive of information, that I noticed just how competitive that year’s season had been. Finland’s Yrjo Vesterinen had been the first three-time consecutive World Champion from 1976–1978 on the Bultaco as Belgium’s Eddy Lejeune on the four-stroke Honda then joined this exclusive club by winning from 1982–1984. Young French Fantic rider Thierry Michaud then started to make an impact in the series with his first World title in 1985, followed by title number two in 1986.
In 1985 a very young Jordi Tarres appeared on the World scene finishing in eleventh position. In 1986 he took his and Italian manufacturer Beta’s first World Championship win, in America, on his way to fourth position in the series. In a show of sheer determination and skill he totally dominated the 1987 Championship as Michaud failed to win a single round which also lost him the opportunity to join the exclusive club of consecutive triple world champions. The Frenchman was not finished though, as he beat Tarres to win the 1988 World crown but this would be his last. Tarres on the other hand simply got better and better. He would win consecutive triple crowns from 1998–1991 and from 1993–1995 before the dominating years of Great Britain’s Dougie Lampkin in 1997–2003 and, in more recent times, Spain’s Toni Bou from 2007–2016.
Both Michaud and Tarres remain unique in the World Championship though, as riders who have lost the World title and regained it. On his way to his seven World titles Jordi Tarres would repeat this feat twice. Firstly in 1989 on the Beta, and then again in 1993 on his move to Gas Gas.
1987 World Trials Champion Jordi Tarres (Beta-ESP)
Looking very much a contender for World Championship success Diego Bosis took his and Aprilia’s only World round win in America. This shot is from the ice and cold of Belgium.
A very young Diego Bosis signs a much sought-after Aprilia factory contract to contest the 1978 World Trials Championship.
From its introduction in the early eighties Italian motorcycle manufacturer Beta now had a World Championship winning machine with the TR 34 model in the hands of Jordi Tarres.