Home debut for Martyn as he returns to Montesa

British fans looking for a potential podium finish from a home hero at the DL12 Indoor Trial at Sheffield’s Utilita Arena this coming Saturday could do an awful lot worse than throw their weight behind Toby Martyn as he breaks cover in his new colours and back on board a Montesa.

The twenty-two-year-old has endured a baptism of fire in his debut season in the premier TrialGP class of the FIM Trial World Championship in 2022 with a final finish of eleventh, but he did score a career-first podium in the FIM X-Trial World Championship this year and he knows if he can replicate the form he showed in France at Chalon-sur-Saône he is in with a fighting chance of getting on the box.

“Sheffield is normally the first event of the year and it is also one of the biggest events of the year especially this year for me having just changed teams,” says Martyn. “Both of probably my career-favourite results have come indoors – an X-Trial podium this year in France and fourth at Sheffield in 2019.

“I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself, but I know a podium this time around in Sheffield is possible. It will be great to be riding in front of a British crowd and hear them cheering for me. I’m really looking forward to it.”

Another major factor in Martyn’s performance in the Steel City will be his return to Montesa and four-stroke power.

The Cornishman has not ridden for the marque since 2018 when he lost the FIM Trial2 World Championship on a tie-break. Following this heartbreak he switched to a two-stroke and it took him a further three years to take the title before moving up to the big league this season.

“I didn’t burn any bridges with Montesa and they are really happy to support me. I feel so at home on the Montesa – I’ve always loved the four-stroke and I have so much confidence on it. I know I ride it well.”

We must not forget that Martyn is still very much a rookie when it comes to top-flight competition. In 2022 he became a back-to-back British champion, but it is World competition that is the true proving ground.

“2022 was a hard year, definitely. I think my expectations were a lot higher than my results and I know I could have done better. I don’t think I went into it with quite the right attitude – I really didn’t think it was going to be that hard. The level is so high and every mark really does count.

“I’ve learned some lessons and there’s so much I’ve still got to learn, but I can take so much into this year. I now know what it’s going to be like and what to expect and last year I was going in blind. I’m one-hundred-per-cent confident I can turn this around.”