The 24-Hour Trial pits rider and bike against Australia’s unforgiving terrain in what many people deem the “Ultimate Reliability Test”. The event lives up to that billing, with competitors running four six-hour laps and just three 15-minute fuel stops evenly spaced over that period. Twelve timed sections comprise each lap and the rider with the lowest overall time claims victory.
Of course, dedicated enduro bikes fare best in the 24-Hour Trial, but Triumph saw the endurance race as the perfect venue to show of the 2022 Tiger 1200’s durability and off-road pedigree. Unveiled in December, 2021, Hinckley’s latest-generation heavyweight ADV lost 55 pounds but gained a new 1,160cc inline-triple, Showa semi-active suspension, and a host of tech upgrades.
With the range now split into GT and Rally variants, Triumph tapped two-time Isle of Man TT winner Cameron Donald and expert enduro rider Donald Owen to complete the 24-Hour Trial aboard the Rally Pro trim. To get the Tigers in fighting shape, Triumph added crash protection, knobby tires, and an LED light bar, but removed the center stand and pillion mounts for extra weight savings.
Gallery: 2022 24-Hour Trial: 2022 Triumph Tiger 1200
Even with those extra preparations, the big-bore ADV still had its work cut out for it.
“Physically, that was one of the toughest things I’ve ever done on a motorcycle,” admitted Donald. “To ride out there in that terrain on these bikes over four six-hour laps for 24 hours was such a battle. It was brutal. A lot of people told us we were crazy, not expecting us to finish a single lap let alone four laps to finish the race.”
Out of 138 competitors, 91 riders crossed the finish line. Donald and Rally Pro shut down all the doubters by finishing in 74th place. Unfortunately, his teammate, Owen, had to retire after completing two-thirds of the 24-hour race after running into a squared-edge hole.
“The weight of a 1200 cc adventure bike didn’t make it easy against lightweight enduro bikes, but I was constantly amazed by how well the new Tiger 1200 got through the terrain,” added Donald. “In a race as grueling as the 24-Hour Trial, we threw so much at the Tigers, but they were supremely capable and absolutely shined. I’m gutted both bikes didn’t finish, though, and that just drives home how hard the event actually is.”