Dougie Lampkin - Gas Gas has officially announced his retirement from the FIM Trial World Championship earlier today, after an incredible nineteen years of competing at the top level of the sport. Since making his debut in the series on Sunday 18th April at Warken, Luxembourg way back in 1993 Lampkin has contested a record two hundred and fifty-seven Grand Prix events. Confirming his status as the most victorious and successful rider ever to be a part of the championship, Dougie has recorded an unbeaten ninety-nine GP wins, an unequalled one hundred and seventy rostrum finishes and amassed an unmatched three thousand nine hundred and forty-four World points in total.
Born on the twenty-third of March 1976, Douglas Martin Lampkin was always destined for the top, when on that day thirty-six years ago he became the latest member of perhaps one of the World's most famous motorcycling families. His father Harold Martin Lampkin, or Martin as he is more commonly known was the first ever FIM Trial World Champion when the series was elevated from European status back in 1975. Some twenty-two years later Dougie was following in his father's tyre marks as he became Britain's second and only other FIM World Trial champion. Dougie is the eldest son of Martin and Isobel, who have one other sibling, Harry who is two years younger than his title-grabbing brother.
From the mid-nineties through to the early part of the next decade Lampkin totally dominated the championship to set yet another record by winning seven consecutive outdoor titles, with no other rider having previously won more than three championships in a row. Dougie secured his first FIM World Trial title at the age of twenty-one at Nepomuk in the Czech Republic on Sunday 31st August 1997. Lampkin's final outdoor championship was won on Sunday 13th September 2003 at La Cabrera, Spain and in doing so Dougie matched Jordi Tarres' tally of seven outdoor titles.The broad shouldered Yorkshireman recorded his last GP win in La Chatre, France on Saturday 25th June 2006.
Over a similar period as his outdoor reign Dougie also won five successive FIM Indoor Trial World championships, a feat that has only recently been over taken by current champion Toni Bou just last month. Lampkin clinched his first indoor title at Monte Carlo, Monaco on Saturday 21st March 1997, the same year he won his first outdoor crown. This was a theme that was to repeat itself over the next four seasons as Dougie became unstoppable both indoors as well as outdoors. Lampkin's indoor reign was brought to a close in 2003, when he was finally deposed by his now Gas Gas team mate Adam Raga.
Whilst the FIM Trial World Championship will no longer feature in Dougie's competition schedule, he will still be very much a part of the series in his new management and development role within the factory Gas Gas team. As well as assisting Adam Raga and the other Gas Gas riders in their championship assaults, Dougie still plans to contest a number of events such as the Scottish Six Days Trial, the Scott and other international competitions. In addition to this Lampkin still plans to compete in the FIM Super (Indoor) Enduro Championship and selected extreme enduro events.
Speaking about stepping down from the World championship Dougie said. "Whilst it feels quite strange to know that I will not be doing battle at the World championship this year, the ongoing problem with my ankle last season has made it an easier decision for me. Although part of me feels a little sad to be stopping, I can't really complain as I have had an incredible run at the top level with so few injuries when you think that I have been riding the World championship for almost twenty years."
"The good news is that I still love riding my bike just as much as I did when I first started riding. As for winning, well I love that as much as ever, it just does not happen as much as it use to now! I still have a massive motivation and desire to win, that's why I am still looking forward to riding the Scottish, the Scott and perhaps some other multi day trials in Europe along with the enduro events. Beating the younger riders still feels good, so they still need to watch out for the old man as he is not finished just yet." Lampkin added with a large smile.
"I am also very motivated to help Gas Gas win too, I think we have done some good work so far and have moved in the right direction, but this year I think we can be even stronger. So although I will not be riding, I am sure I will still get a huge sense of satisfaction in playing a part in helping Adam (Raga) and the other Gas Gas riders win this season." Ended Dougie.
Dougie next competitive outing will be at the Scottish Six Days Trial in Fort William from 7th to 12th May 2012.