The Classic Motorcycle

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
What might have been

Looking through the magazines at the local shop, I spotted the ‘Supreme Sunbeam’ picture on the cover of the July issue of The Classic MotorCycle, which I immediately purchased.

At school in North London in about 1950, our metalwork teacher arrived one day on a new S8. I had little knowledge of motorcycles at the time – many I did look at always seemed to be a collection of parts which somehow put together made a machine.

The S8 design appeared to me as a thought-through design – the engine looked right and I was impressed with the shaft drive, which seemed to me to be a cleaner option; I of course knew nothing of the drawbacks mentioned in the article.

There is a saying in engineering “if it looks right it is right”. As an engineer, there is some truth in that.



In my later years that would have been the machine I would have purchased, but my grandfather was killed on a motorcycle three years before I was born and my father, I was sure, would not have approved of me buying a motorcycle – in those 1950s times when you lived under your parents’ roof, you did what they said.

As a compromise, I suggested to my father I would like to purchase a Lambretta LD 150 scooter, suggesting that they were safer.

All he said was: “You realise you are taking your life into your own hands?”

The next day I ordered the Lambretta and replaced it with the Mk.I TV175 two years later. That S8 has always been in my memory as the machine I never had.

Ernest Wisner,
Northants.


Read more Letters, Opinion, News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the August 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!


The post What might have been appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

grandpaul

Old Bike Lover
Riding for 50 Years
Staff
Local time
Today, 15:21
Joined
Apr 14, 2006
Messages
3,107
Points
272
Age
62
Location
Laredo
My Ride
Legend 900 Triple
Very clean bikes, true classics.
 

Rocky

Still Rocking
Riding for 28 Years
Administrator
Staff
Local time
Today, 17:21
Joined
Jan 28, 2006
Messages
18,539
Points
893
Age
82
Location
Halifax
First Name
Rocky
My Ride
2006 T100 Bonneville
Sunbeam's are very rare around here.
The last time I saw one was at a local bike show about 20 years ago.
There are none in our vintage bike club.
 

CarlS

Charter Member #3
Riding for 62 Years
Staff
Local time
Today, 16:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
27,997
Points
1,163
Age
76
Location
Altamonte Springs, Florida
First Name
Carl
My Ride
12 Tiger 800 XC
I remember one of my classmates having one. Other than that, I have only seen them in museums.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Throwback: John Surtees at the BBC



Back in August 1957, John Surtees took viewers for a ride when the BBC’s television programme, ‘Let’s go motor cycling’, filmed a lap of Oulton Park with the World Champion.

That June, John had come second in the Senior TT on his 500/4 MV Agusta, in the longest ever Grand Prix, at 8 laps, 3hrs, 5 mins and more than 300 miles.

He also came fourth in the Junior TT for MV Agusta, though only managed 3rd in the 500cc World Championship, thanks to numerous retirements. And within three years, John would be the darling of the car world.

John Surtees

You may also be interested in…

This is John Surtees in 1960, en route to winning the Senior TT. His MV Agusta was easily the fastest bike compared to the following gaggle of Norton singles, with a time of 2 hours, 12 minutes and 35.2 seconds, at an average speed of 102.44mph. Read how John Surtees rode to victory in the 1960 Senior TT here.

The post Throwback: John Surtees at the BBC appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

grandpaul

Old Bike Lover
Riding for 50 Years
Staff
Local time
Today, 15:21
Joined
Apr 14, 2006
Messages
3,107
Points
272
Age
62
Location
Laredo
My Ride
Legend 900 Triple
Love that Gold Star...
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
National Motorcycle Museum LIVE 2020 postponed



The National Motorcycle Museum has announced that their Museum LIVE event is postponed until October 2021.

The event was due to take place on Saturday 31 October 2020, but issues revolving around social distancing requirements due to Covid-19 means Museum LIVE “simply isn’t possible”.

James Hewing, Museum Director, thanked everybody who has supported the event since its inception six years ago.


“Operating an event as popular as “Museum LIVE” simply isn’t possible under Covid-19 related restrictions, and in particular, the issues caused by social distancing requirements,” Mr Hewing said.

“We would like to thank everyone who has supported the event over the last six years, and can assure you that it will return even bigger and better in October 2021,” he added.

The announcement follows the National Motorcycle Museum’s launch of their own urgent appeal over concerns about how and when the museum will reopen.

National Motorcycle Museum


The National Motorcycle Museum receives no external funding, meaning the museum relies on visitors to the museum and income from conference business and two sister hotels.

Mr Hewing explained: “Without the income from our three sister businesses, there is little likelihood of the museum opening, and then remaining open, until they return to normal trading. The museum itself requires a surplus of around £500,000 per year just to break even. Without making this appeal, we may have to sell some of our reserve collection of bikes, the last thing we would ever have wanted to do. Unfortunately, all of our business activities are in one of the hardest hit sectors, and we simply don’t know how long they will take to recover.”

The museum currently remains closed following the launch of the Covid-19 Reopening Appeal. For more details visit: www.nationalmotorcyclemuseum.co.uk/appeal-raffle/

The post National Motorcycle Museum LIVE 2020 postponed appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
MoreBikes relaunches with brand new website!

MoreBikes launch


Bringing together the best of Fast Bikes, Motorcycle Sport and Leisure, Classic Motorcycle Mechanics and Back Street Heroes – MoreBikes.co.uk is about to get bigger and better than ever before.

Motorbikes are awesome. And so are the people who ride them. That’s why the website for the world’s biggest motorcycle monthly bike title is getting a major upgrade to pull together even more of the content you love.

Following the relaunch of the MoreBikes newspaper earlier this year, we’ve decided to overhaul the website. Don’t worry, we’ll still be the first to bring the motorcycle news that matters to millions of people – but we’re joining forces with some of the biggest names in the game to bring you even more top content, bike launches and kit news before anyone else.

Fast Bikes magazine’s got the sport side covered, with the freshest track tests, paddock gossip and setup tips. Motorcycle Sport and Leisure magazine brings group tests, industry insights and top quality tours to the table. Classic Motorcycle Mechanics magazine will be on hand to offer advice on the latest coming classics, helping you get your latest project on the road, or snap up that bargain before everyone else – while Back Street Heroes magazine offers an unrivalled insight into a world filled with crazy custom creations.

MoreBikes devices


No matter whether you’re a trackday addict, a day-in, day-out commuter, a sunny Sunday scratcher, a big-miles tourer or a learner looking to take your first step into the world of two wheels, the new site will take your spark of interest and fan the flames, opening up the wider motorcycle world and beyond – with the very best and latest exclusive news, product reviews, motorcycle tests, world launch reports, interviews and everything else that makes bikes awesome.

MoreBikes is your complete one-stop shop for EVERYTHING a rider needs. If it’s two wheels you’re into, it’s MoreBikes you need.

And if that wasn’t enough, there’s a new smartphone app, a weekly newsletter, podcasts, videos,

MoreBikes was launched in March 2014 as the online presence of the UK’s biggest monthly bike newspaper – Motor Cycle Monthly – and the concept was simple; expand and share the newspaper’s popular content across multiple digital platforms.

The project began with the introduction of a modern, responsive website designed to rival anything the industry could offer. This was soon followed with a weekly e-newsletter of the biggest stories delivered straight to readers, a MoreBikes YouTube channel (which has already totted up nearly seven million views), a MoreBikes podcast available on iTunes and Soundcloud and the MoreBikes app – available on iOS and with an Android release imminent – which features a weekly e-zine.

With each of the different strands now well-established, reaching five million visits to the website is the icing on the cake ahead of MoreBikes’ third birthday… but that’s just the start. The introduction of an Android-compatible app is just one a number of exciting developments for 2020 and beyond, as the team continues to work hard to cement MoreBikes’ place as the premier website for the latest motorcycle news, reviews, videos and exclusive content.

The post MoreBikes relaunches with brand new website! appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
The German Grand Prix 1956: Not as expected


When John Surtees fractured his arm in the 350cc event, thus ruling him out of any further racing, the 500cc GP event was thrown wide open. Even then there was no guarantee who would scoop the top spot.

Words: MICHAEL BARRACLOUGH Photography: MORTONS ARCHIVE


The German Grand Prix of 1956 took place at Solitude near Stuttgart, and proceedings were going more or less as scripted until hot favourite John Surtees (MV Agusta) crashed and fractured his arm in the 350cc race.

This meant the young Londoner was not able to compete in the 500cc event later that day, and many thought his absence would result in either Geoff Duke (Gilera), Bill Lomas (Moto Guzzi) or Walter Zeller (BMW) securing a victory instead.

The 500cc race itself was originally billed for 13 laps, making a total of 92.2 miles. This was due to the busy schedule (which included a car race as well as four motorcycle races) but FIM regulations stipulated a minimum distance of 124.3 miles, so the race was extended to 18 laps to ensure enough distance was covered.

With Surtees out of the running, interest was divided evenly between Duke, Lomas and Zeller. The race duly commenced, and Pierre Monneret and Geoff Duke – both riding Gilera fours – bounded away from the starting grid and threw themselves into the tricky Glemseck bends.


John Surtees (MV Agusta) leads the field up the hill from Glemseck in the 350cc race. He would later crash and break his arm.

An early Fabio Taglioni-designed 125cc Desmo Gran Sport Ducati.

Their dominance was short-lived however, as Bill Lomas and his eight-cylinder Moto Guzzi soon screamed into the lead. Duke followed behind, and behind him were Reg Armstrong (Gilera), Umberto Masetti (MV Agusta), Pierre Monneret and Walter Zeller, in that order.

During the second lap, Duke managed to creep inside of Lomas and Zeller coaxed his BMW into third place.

The race soon became a pitched battle between Duke and Lomas, with Walter Zeller snapping at their heels throughout, but the mood of the race turned on a sixpence in laps five and six.

First Zeller retired halfway through lap five with engine failure, and at the end of the sixth lap Duke and Lomas both pulled into the pits, with engine trouble and a burst coolant pipe respectively.


Carlo Ubbiali flying along in the 250cc race on his MV.

On his zippy little Gilera twin, Romolo Ferri won the 125cc race in fine style.

Lomas retired for good, Duke took to the track again, only to pull in twice more. At this point any hope of a last ditch victory for Duke was too far out of sight to make any use of.

So, the top three spots were taken up by Reg Armstrong, Umberto Masetti and Pierre Monneret. After much jostling they crossed the line in that order, making it a day to remember for Reg Armstrong and one to forget for Lomas, Duke and Zeller.

Carlo Ubbiali (MV Agusta) was in fine fettle in this GP, winning the 250cc event and coming second to Romolo Ferri in the 125cc event. This would be the peak of Romolo Ferri’s career, managing to fend off both Ubbiali and Tarquinio Provini to secure his 125cc victory.


Geoff Duke (Gilera) sneaks inside of Bill Lomas (Moto Guzzi) at the Glemseck curves.

Reg Armstrong celebrates his 500cc victory. Umberto Masetti also looks pleased with his result.

After Surtees came a cropper in the 350cc event the race was won by Bill Lomas, who rode spectacularly all weekend despite the unfortunate retirement in the 500cc race.

Read more News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the latest issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!

The post The German Grand Prix 1956: Not as expected appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Ernie Barrett’s offer

Thank you for July’s TCM, another great read with lots of information for enthusiasts of all ages.

I do like Martin Squires’ work, combining insightful drawings with useful background information; it’s a combination of skills unique in my 60-plus years of reading about bikes.

I loved the piece about Ernie Barrett and his Phoenix-JAP racers, a man I remember well from my schoolboy visits to Brands Hatch and Crystal Palace.

I don’t remember his home being given as Harrow in any programme of the day; as a native of that town, I’d be intrigued to know his address there.



His name came up when I wrote a profile for TCM in Bob Currie’s time, on Ron Jones of Shrewsbury, a quiet and modest mechanic with Severn Trent Water whose racing and restoration hobby was quite remarkable: the first man to win a televised motorcycle road race at Aberdare Park in the early 1950s and multiple winner of the Feridax Cup at the Banbury Run.

I asked Ron about Barrett’s development of the JAP racing engines in the early 1950s, to be told that Ernie had offered Ron a deal on a 250cc unit, having seen how well prepared and ridden Ron’s Tiger 70 Triumph was.

“I told him I’d buy one when he beat my Triumph. He never did,” was Ron’s reply.

Jim Reynolds,
via email


Read more Letters, Opinion, News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the August 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!


The post Ernie Barrett’s offer appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Scottish sojourns

The article about the Scottish Six Days Trial in the May issue brought back some happy memories. My wife and I went up to Fort William for the Scottish several times in the 1960s.

First time was in 1962 when we travelled up on my 350cc AJS. Around 360 miles from Huddersfield is a long ride on a bike, as my pillion-riding wife will testify. I recall that the weather that week was glorious; hot and sunny. We went again in 1963 and again in 1966.

We used to stay at a farm at Banavie just outside Fort William where all the other guests were members of the Eltham and District Club.

The photo you printed of Gordon Jackson making one of his dabs in 1960 with Johnny Brittain watching from behind, is very reminiscent of the iconic photo of him making his single dab on the way to winning in 1961.

In that photo, the lad standing behind him in the Johnny Brittain position was Huddersfield Falcons club member Keith Garside (I believe that was his name).


Dave Whitworth’s photograph of Arthur Lampkin at Annat on his way to winning the ‘Scottish’ in 1963.

We had some great weeks up there with the bonus of enjoying the magnificent highland scenery and exploring. If we were to go again, it would have to be for the Pre-65 event.

Dave Whitworth, Mount, Huddersfield.

Read more Letters, Opinion, News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the August 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!


The post Scottish sojourns appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Remembering Tony Godfrey

With reference to the July edition of The Classic MotorCycle,page 98, ‘Godfrey’s last ride,’ I was sorry to hear of the sad passing of Tony Godfrey.

As we know, Tony did make a racing comeback after his crash in the 1963 TT. I have two photographs in my archive from the Avon Trophy meeting at Castle Combe Circuit onJuly 25, 1964.

Tony (above) is warming up the 250cc Yamaha before the race and above right, Tony is working on the Yamaha in the paddock.


Pair of pictures from Mike Newbury of Tony Godfrey on his return to racing.


Tony won the 250cc race on that day at the record-breaking speed of 86.26 mph.

Mike Newbury,
Lacock, Wilts.


Read more Letters, Opinion, News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the August 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!


The post Remembering Tony Godfrey appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Normous Newark Autojumble to go ahead on August 16



THE biggest and best regular Autojumble in the UK is back with bang… but we’ll be making a few changes to keep you safe.

How to get your tickets (safely).

  1. Buy your ticket in advance and beat the queues
  2. Buy your ticket with contactless card payment on the day
  3. Or, buy your ticket with cash… but due to social distancing, it will be quite a bit slower than normal. (For best advice, go back to number 1… buy in advance!)

COVID-19 safe


So what’s the detail?

When: August 16

Where: Newark Showground, NG24 2NY

What time: From 8am

Price: £10 for Early Birds from 8am/£7 for General Admission from 10am

What do I need to know?

  • All visitors must adhere to the government’s social distancing guidelines, keeping two metres apart where possible
  • Indoor areas will be restricted to a set number of visitors at any one time (we will be counting people in and out)
  • Hand sanitiser stations will be available at the entrance
  • Wash your hands regularly throughout the day
  • Toilets will be cleaned and monitored throughout the day
  • Catering will be available

What do I need to do?

  • Buy your e-tickets in advance if possible
  • Print them out and bring them with you
  • Come at the right time
    • Early Bird – 8am
    • General Admission – 10am
  • Wash your hands
  • Keep you distance
  • Have fun
  • Be patient!

For more information and to purchase your tickets go to www.newarkautojumble.co.uk

The post Normous Newark Autojumble to go ahead on August 16 appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
ACU Six Days Reliability Trials: A balancing act


If in 1922 the IoM TT races were regarded as the premier motorcycling speed event, then the ACU Six Days Trials was the leading reliability test. Riders strived for gold medals, makers to showcase new models and organisers endeavoured to run a fair but tough trial. Simple? Well, actually not so simple, and controversy reigned supreme.

Words: RICHARD ROSENTHALPhotography: MORTONS ARCHIVE

Controversy


Logically, the thorny subject of controversy should conclude this feature, but here it sets the scene and proves – as we all know – you can only please some of the people, some of the time…

Past controversy shaped this 1922 event, with the ACU bowing to the pressures of the trade and entrants, a sector which ended the event reasonably happy. But in so doing, the ACU annoyed a large number of spectators.

The 1921 ACU Six Days Trials featured many special tests, some of which in modern terms would be regarded as ‘trick’, but the road work – in effect the testing backbone of these events – was too easy.

A year later, riders hoped for less freakish tests, while makers wanted tougher roadwork to prove the machines. The promotional kudos following completion and a medal from the ACU Six Days Trials was every bit as important to manufacturers as a good IoM TT result.

The factory knew a successful Six Days equalled increased sales, as buyers followed the event in detail, using it to guide the choice of their next season’s model.


The start of the speed test for machines of 500cc and above, at Brooklands. Nearest the camera is Billy Moore on his Scott, with the like mounted (and aptly named) W Scott behind.

Usually, compromise satisfies no one, but for once this tightrope-like act taken by the ACU worked for most riders and factories. But the general public was dissatisfied.

While they considered the road route ‘trying’ and a few of the hills truly testing, the points scoring system, or rather the bands dividing the gold, silver and bronze award winners, was considered by the public as too wide.

With a nod to this thought, The Motor Cycle likened the ACU scoring system to a wide ratio gearbox, adding the ACU should have used a close ratio gearbox as its model…

Endeavouring to appease the disgruntled public, the Press detailed the points scoring system where all riders were awarded 480 marks at the start of the trial.

Marks were lost for failing or not attempting tests, arriving late or early at check points and the machine’s condition at the event’s end, with points lost for general untidiness, worn components such as steering head or wheel bearings, running, gearbox efficiency and more.

Riders were also able to gain marks at certain tests and on the 25 lap speed trial at Brooklands.


Gold winner Mrs Knowles, AJS, at Alms Hill. Apparently, her riding was ‘applauded on many hills’.

It was therefore possible for riders to finish the event with more marks than at the outset.

Equally, riders may fail on two or even three tests yet gain enough marks elsewhere to pull themselves back into a gold medal position, for example.

This led to rule manipulation by a few who did not attempt a climb or two they’d struggle on in the knowledge they could pick up extra marks elsewhere to ensure they scraped into that gold medal band.

In a further attempt to appease the public’s mutterings, the Press endeavoured to show how some gold medals awarded were more meritorious than others.

And famously employed the paragraph: “To give credit where credit is due, we will endeavour to distinguish between ‘100%’ golds and ‘the only-just-got-away-with-it’ golds.”

All too complicated for the spectators, who held their hands up, threw the towel in and continued grumbling that there were too many gold medals awarded and how could riders end up with up to 14 more marks at the trials’ end than at the outset?


The AJS and Harley-Davidson teams tied for the top prize in Class G. The Harley men are, from left, T R Allchin, G Baxter and C W Johnson.

Frank Giles (800cc AJS outfit) did exactly this, finishing the week on 494, 14 more than his awarded 480 starting marks.

Despite these shenanigans, the 1922 ACU Six Days Reliability Trials proved a testing event with some tough rather than freak special tests, and five days of hard roadwork linking them at an average of 20mph for much of the week.

And, of course, the 25 laps (68 miles) of Brooklands, plus a climb of Test Hill and the machine examination on the final day proved too testing for a handful of machines.

Leading its feature ‘Analysing the Six Days Trials’ with the standfirst: “Unequal performances which gained equal awards. Lessons to be learned – by prospective buyers and motorcycle designer – from the trials,”The Motor Cycle cleverly summed up the event.

Signing on

Officially the trails began on Monday, August 21, at York, as riders fired up in glorious sunshine and headed north on what is now the B1363 for Stillington and then the first test on White Horse Hill.


W Hadfield poses with his mount, the new all-chain drive 348cc Raleigh.

But for all competitors, the annual event began a day or more earlier. Factory teams, club assisted riders and privateers arrived in York late the previous week, ready for the ‘official bit.’

Of the 144 entries, 142 riders followed their machines as they were weighed, scrutineered in detail and sealed on the Sunday. Along with completing paperwork and sorting route information, it proved a long arduous day, during which the hype of the event clearly affected a sizeable number of new and old hands.

Spectators mingled during the summer’s day on the look out for new models – and they weren’t disappointed.

The James Cycle Company entered two brand new 349cc singles for J Lidsgate and G Kimberley (both secured gold medals), while George Brough proudly posed with his gleaming new 976cc Brough-Superior Special Sports, informing all it was guaranteed for 80mph.

Raleigh entered new chain drive models – Connaught, near new examples. The lightweights, including Levis, Radco, Sun Vitesse (rotary-valve two-stroke), and Allon attracted lots of interest, with the Press focusing on the smallest machine in the trials, the 169cc JES two-stroke with four-speed gearbox, but no clutch.

At previous ACU trials, riders had lost marks for noisy, ineffective exhaust systems. Many were clearly nervous in case their machines were too loud and they lost unnecessary marks.

The ‘works’ Raleigh lightweights employed a transverse silencer under the magneto and another to the rear of the machines; Westwood Wills fitted an Argus silencer as an extra to the tailpipe of his Powell while GE Austin plumbed the twin pipes of his Coventry Victor into an adapted Argus unit. Others used ingenious additions to the standard systems.


The great dam at Lake Vyrnwy. G Kimberley pauses for a breather, allowing his brand-new model James a rest too.

Apart from the JES, four-speed gearboxes were found on a number of machines, including WN Clayton-Russell’s 633cc Big Four Norton, which sported a Dureff four-speed chain gearbox.

And P&Ms, Dots and Morgan three-wheelers were found with four gears. Competing in the same class as the sidecar outfits were the Morgans, a Scott Sociable, one TB driven by FS Spouse and an LSD.

There were only two non-starters – Mr Packman (349cc P&P) and GE Cuffe (698cc Metro-Tyler) – and four rider replacements, including R Evans on the factory Raleigh in place of Hugh Gibson and Charlie Hough for Eric Williams on one of the works AJSs.

Trialling times

Monday dawned a superb summer’s day, which should have lifted spirits and lightened the responsibility many riders felt weighing on their shoulders.

But even after a dozen or more settling miles, the butterflies remained – the Press likened their situation to stage fright.

The sandy, mile-long White Horse Hill Climb, though strewn with some boulders, should have troubled no one, but the spectators ‘enjoyed’ many calamities.


Cyril Greenwood (Sunbeam) ascends Mow Cop. Greenwood, with teammates Bennett and Dance, won the team prize in Class C.

There were a few stunning ascents, including the neat style of Mrs O M Knowles (349cc AJS) and the tidy climbs of the JES, although it stopped briefly.

Someone always has to play to the gallery and on this occasion it was the AJS men Charlie Hough and HF Harris, who powered up the hill as if racing up Snaefell Mountain, spraying sand to all corners.

After White Horse Hill Climb, the riders descended Sutton Bank with care and later they journeyed onto Rosedale Abbey Bank, which accounted for many failures.

Riding round those who had stopped, Charlie Hough, George Dance (499cc Sunbeam) and other leading riders took no prisoners, earning huge cheers from the gathered crowd.

Fresh from his IoM Senior TT win, Alec Bennett gave his 499cc Sunbeam the big fistful, only to skid through 180° at the gulley, to record his only failure in an otherwise unblemished week.

After Abbey Bank, riders encountered more stiff tests before a colonial stretch took them to the twin water splashes at Hutton-le-Hole and then a circuitous route back to York for lunch.

The afternoon course via Sheffield, Barnsley and Asford included many long, top gear road stretches and easier tests before the show bedded down in Buxton for the night.


Percy Mayo, on the 249cc Coventry Eagle, leads the smallest machine in the trial, the 169cc JES of R P Purnell. They’re at the foot of Llangynidr Hill.

Following early rain, entrants awoke to mist shrouding the spa town, unsettling for some, but overall the day’s tests were easier than on Monday. Despite the easier going, two outfits – IP Brettell (348cc Connaught) and WN Clayton-Russell – crashed heavily with serious injuries to both drivers.

The direct route to the lunch stop at Rudyard was just 17 miles, but by skilful employment of local lanes the ACU stretched this to 66 miles!

Throughout the day, riders encountered long, steeps drags up which many larger mounts blasted, but a few lightweights struggled, including the JES which seized momentarily, then got going again.

If the day’s riding pleased many, the night’s accommodation in and around Shrewsbury didn’t, with officials and support teams billeted in every spare bed across town.

Not great if you were meeting up with mates for an evening beer or two. And the landladies and landlords operated differing rules.

One landlady informed her well-known ace lodger he must be back and in bed by 9pm, yet another returned early to his billet only to discover his hostess at the pictures until 10.30pm – she assumed lads would be lads…

Wednesday’s 156 mile run via Welshpool, the Bala lunch stop and Knighton to the overnight stop at Llanddrindod Wells held minimal horrors.


Drivers and their passengers report to the chief marshal, at York.

Test hills ,including Long Mountain and Hirnant Pass, challenged few and more riders had settled into the reliability trials fun to scorch test hills, including Reg Brown and Tommy de la Hay on their Sunbeam outfits.

However, if there’d been an award for the fastest ascents it would have been a close run thing between W D Pugh’s 989cc Harley-Davidson and the 739cc Martinsyde of Brooklands racer GF Bainbridge.

The ACU missed a trick by not observing Welshpool Hill as it halted a few, including leading riders, while Bwlch-y-Groes proved the only stinker of the day.

Again the AJSs climbed with aplomb, with Hough again the fastest, Harris a little slower, with Mrs Knowles turning up the wick aboard her 2¾hp model, blasting by a number of slower entrants on the ascent.

The run from the overnight stop to Abergavenny for lunch and then Gloucester for the next sleepover should have troubled few, but persistent heavy rain made easy tests much harder.

The wet weather sidelined some temporarily en route, including Mrs Knowles, who was observed hastily drying the magneto of her AJS – still, she fared better than her husband, who retired his Norton with a bust gearbox.

Such was the ease of some climbs at least one observer, Dr Hopwood, was trying to distinguish between footing to maintain balance – allowed – and footing to maintain forward motion, which was not allowed. During the day, five riders retired and a seemingly bored Jack Watson-Bourne took over the mount of George Brough, who had become ‘indisposed.’

Friday’s route took the trial to Brooklands for the Saturday speed testing via Stroud, Tetbury, Oxford (lunch), High Wycombe, Windsor, Staines and then onto Weybridge and Brooklands.

Whether it was relief that the end of the road work was near, or the thrill of riding on the banked Brooklands track, or acts of the Gods, some riders were seen carelessly crashing, overshooting junctions, wobbling on the straights and even tumbling off on easy hairpins…

Arguably the stiffest test of the day was Alms Hill, where the large-gathered crowd enjoyed the racing ascents of George Dance, Jack Watson-Bourne, W D Pugh and others.

For once Mrs Knowles took the climb steadily, probably mentally holding her gold medal already, and Mr Westwood-Wills was spotted rubbing his eye with one hand while controlling his 547cc Powell with the other over the hardest stretch.

One of the biggest cheers of the day went up for Geoff Davison, who cheekily changed into top on his 247cc Levis as he crested the Cannons. All good fun.

Despite the challenges of the week-long event, 105 riders lined up in class order to await the starter’s pleasure at Brooklands.

Each class was given an appropriate minimum speed to maintain for their 25 laps, with many exceeding it by a country mile.


The AJS threesome of Class G winners; FW Giles, H Poole and O Wade. Giles also won the Centre Premiership and the Hopwood Prize for best performance in the trials.

Riders approached the test differently. George Dance announced he was going to take it steady, then didn’t, but was finally outrun by Bainbridge’s Martinsyde, who easily took the unofficial FTD.

Pa Applebee (247cc Levis) was said to have 25 stones in his pocket and jettisoned one every lap, while Mrs Knowles sported a 25 tooth cardboard comb attached to the handlebars of her Ajay, tearing off a tooth per circuit.

The test hill actually challenged few, although Westoood-Wills’ Powell failed with a split belt rim, but having been clean all week he remained certain of gold.

Despite the seeming ease for some during the Saturday, there were six retirements, including the aptly named T Buckle (748cc FN), whose tyre burst at speed causing him to crash.

A total of 79 gold medals were awarded, with recipients including the rapid AJSs of Harris, Hough and Mrs Knowles.

George Brough still gained gold despite Jack Watson-Bourne taking over his V-twin mid week, and of the team prizes the ultra-quick Sunbeam boys of Dance, Bennett and Cyril Greenwood (son of Sunbeam designer John), with a score of 1458, blasted the opposition into the weeds.

And despite oiling problems at Brooklands, the smallest machine of the event, the JES, completed the trial with five special test failures as well as struggling on time at Brooklands to earn one of seven certificates awarded. And so ended a mixed event.

Read more News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the latest issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!

The post ACU Six Days Reliability Trials: A balancing act appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Great article on marvelous Mick

Just got my June 2020 issue and read the lovely article on Mick Andrews.

I first came across Mick in 1962 when a neighbour and schoolteacher Mr Walton took me and a few other street kids to a trial. Our job was to help pull failed bikes out of the sections.

The trial was the Bemrose, Derbyshire’s premier trials event. I was told to look out for Arthur Lampkin and Sammy Miller, who would probably be the winners.

But there was another rider I watched for, he was a local chap called Mick Andrews. He came and went, as did Sammy and Arthur, with no problems.




Jack – or Mr Walton to me – went on to be chairman of the VMCC and original brains behind the 1000 bikes event.

That Bemrose Trial feeling has never left, and I still have the programme.

These days, I live in north Derbyshire and am proud to class Mick and Jill as not only near neighbours, but also friends. They are truly the nicest people you could wish to meet and always encouraging others to ‘have a go’.

You chose well.

Mike Wild,via email.

Read more Letters, Opinion, News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the August 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!


The post Great article on marvelous Mick appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Life after COVID-19: Lessons from past pandemics



With lockdown restrictions easing slightly in UK, this is perhaps a time to reflect on the past months, and look forward to what a world could look like once the COVID-19 pandemic has gone, if ever.

Life after COVID-19
investigates past epidemics and their aftermath, seeking to draw parallels with the world of today and examine how the world could look when this pandemic has finally receded.

Order your copy today plus you can take advantage of our fantastic summer offer saving 15% with code SUMMER15. Offer expires 31/8/20.

COVID-19: Can we learn lessons from previous pandemics?

There have been pandemics throughout the course of human history; they have savaged countries, undermined empires and killed countless individuals – often with drastic and unexpected consequences for the survivors.

Life After COVID-19 investigates past epidemics and their aftermath, seeking to draw parallels with the world of today and examine how the world could look when this new contagion has finally receded.

Author Bob Gordon starts by studying the Black Death (1347-1351), a bubonic plague pandemic that killed a third of Europe’s population, and traces its periodic re-emergence over the course of several centuries including, famously, in London in 1665-1666.

He goes on to look at how Napoleon’s imperial ambitions were laid waste by yellow fever in Saint Domingue and typhus in Russia. Next ‘King Cholera’, the bane of the 19th century, is considered.

A disease of immigration, it stalked across North America for decades causing untold horror. A century ago, the Spanish influenza pandemic ravaged a world already reeling after four years of conflict. Studying the course and aftermath of this disastrous pandemic offers the greatest insights into how a future COVID-19 endemic world might look. Recent pandemics mercifully averted, such as SARS, MERS and ebola, are also considered.

The final chapters look at the current pandemic, its etiology and symptomatology. The current state of the search for therapeutics and vaccines is examined, while the aftershocks of COVID-19 are considered in a variety of fields – including the impact on retailers, the entertainment industry, airline travel, education and more.



Pre-order Life After COVID-19

Price: £14.99

Author: Bob Gordon
Imprint: Banovallum Books
Category: Lifestyle
ISBN: 978-1-911658-77-1
Format: Hardback
Pages: 200
Published: August 27, 2020

Available from www.mortonsbooks.co.uk/covid

The post Life after COVID-19: Lessons from past pandemics appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
The shoots of recovery!

After a year of cancellations, disappointments and frustration, Normous Newark autojumble returns on August 16.

As we went to press details were still to be finalised, but planning is underway as to how all the necessary procedures and safety guidelines can be implemented and followed.

It’s an ever-moving and developing situation, of course, while details will be provided and updated on the website newarkautojumble.co.uk


Normous Newark will return! It’s expected that the jumble will run on August 16.

But it’s great to be able to talk about an event happening, rather than being cancelled.

Read more News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the September 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!

The post The shoots of recovery! appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Touring beautiful Brittany


Touring holidays can be memorable for reasons both pleasant and decidedly unpleasant, though Mary Adams and husband Huw had a fantastic time in Brittany thanks to Roger and Linda Nicholls of Countryside Holidays in France.

Words and photography: MARY ADAMS


We (husband Huw and I) first met Roger and Linda Nicholls four years ago on a Moto Indianos Motorcycle Rally in the Picos Mountains in Spain.

Every year we have been asked to visit them in France, and 2015 was the year that we finally did it.


Classic British iron basks in the French sun.

We took the Plymouth to Roscoff ferry and then had a 1½ hour journey through the Breton countryside towards Lanrivain, and then to the hamlet of Burlaouen.

Brittany has glorious walled towns and strong rural traditions, and has managed to preserve much of its heritage and character, including unspoiled castles, forts and fishing villages.


Spitfire on tap – not bad!

Countryside Holidays in France is situated in the heart of central Brittany (Kreiz Breizh) in Burlaouen, and it is a ‘biker-friendly’ concern. There is a workshop to tinker in if you need to do essential maintenance, which is conveniently located next to the bar.

Roger and Linda have lived in France since November 1983.

Initially Roger went to France in 1980 with friends from art college, where he spent his days making lobster pots and leading a ‘hippy’ type of life. Returning to the UK in February 1982 on his old BSA A10 he was involved in a traffic accident, hitting a lorry after the bike had had a front wheel blow out owing to a defective new inner tube.

He ended up in hospital and was placed in the care of Linda, who is a trained physiotherapist.

Roger and Linda have lived in France since 1983 with their two children, who were both born there.

In 1998 Roger renovated a stone barn and began to rent it out for holidays and, as his children grew up, he decided to pursue a career in renting accommodation to motorcyclists and offer guided tours for bikers wanting to explore the areas around Brittany, and so, in 2005, Countryside Holidays was born.


Accommodation in the chalet is rustic, warm and welcoming.

Initially he began by taking the Triumph Owners Club from London to the Resistance Museum in St Marcel after they had failed on several attempts to find it! Pre sat nav days, you understand.

He discovered that motorcycle tours were very much his forte and he started developing routes and finding good, biker-friendly cafes and restaurants. Roger even takes French bikers on routes and rallies as he is an expert on Brittany – they often tell him that he knows Brittany better than they do.

Roger organises trips to places of interest such as the submarine pens at Lorient, Le Manoir de l’Automobile at Loheac – the location of Fort de La Latte, where the film, The Vikings, was made – and a Spanish fort in Finisterre.

He will even lay on a French scrapyard tour where you can find many an interesting item.

Roger is careful to tailor his rides to motorcyclists of every skill level, and will alter the route and speed to accommodate the abilities of the riders and the age of the bikes in any one party.


One of Roger and Linda’s chalets.

He maintains that past experience working in a psychiatric hospital where he spent seven years as a maintenance carpenter has put him in good stead for looking after bikers; medication time is always adhered to, and he makes sure that there is always bread on the table, beer in the fridge and a cup of tea on hand if you need it.

Brittany is unbelievable for motorcycling. With its superb uncongested roads, you can easily travel for miles without seeing a single vehicle.

It is very peaceful travelling through shuttered and sleepy villages.

The landscape is beautiful and the scenery is as diverse as it is breathtaking, with craggy cliffs at the north coast and beautiful sandy beaches at the south. It is a 3km walk to the nearest village where you will find a traditional Breton bar serving local ale, and Roger can organise a brewery visit if you are interested finding out how it is made.

There is a local town called St Nicholas du Pelem with a large supermarket, bank, cash point, bar, restaurants, post office and a baker.

Close to the accommodation on the property is the Bike Shed where no money changes hands. Roger’s rule is that if you drink what’s in the fridge, you replace it before you leave. He also is the most amazing cook. With Linda being a physiotherapist she works extremely long hours in her local village practice.


The Bike Shed. No money changes hands here – you drink it, you replace it!

So, over the years Roger has had plenty of cookery practice. He cooks various dishes and everybody’s culinary needs are catered for.

The accommodation is brilliant, comprising three holiday cottages, a stone house, which comfortably accommodates seven people, a wooden chalet sleeping six and a wooden cabin sleeping two people.

The chalets are set in the woods with a nearby pond and woodland walk, and the stone house is situated very conveniently opposite the Bike Shed.

All the accommodation – as you would expect – is bike friendly, and clubs or individuals are welcome at any time. Roger and Linda’s house and gîtes are at the end of a track hidden by trees and a field, so there’s no through traffic or neighbours to disturb the sound of motorcycles being fettled!

Roger will take you to local villages to sample the mouth-watering seafood platters and traditional Breton crepes, washed down with refreshing local cider. You will never go hungry or thirsty at this establishment.


The bikes form an attractive assemblage of British craftsmanship from the late-veteran Beezer to the classic Ariel and Enfield.

We were given an amazing welcome at Roger and Linda’s. We had one of the chalets down near the lake which had plenty of room to park the van with the S29 BSA in the back.

We unpacked and headed up towards the bar. Thomas, Roger and Linda’s son, had his birthday, so we were included in his birthday celebrations.

We felt a bit guilty for gatecrashing a family party, but both Thomas and Linda told us this was normal procedure, guests took priority and everyone is always made to feel welcome at this establishment.

We visited the local Resistance Museum at L’auberge de L’etang neuf, which is a great museum with a lovely restaurant overlooking a lake, making for an idyllic setting should you stay for a meal.

The following day we took an 80-mile trip to Binic, with Roger on his 1954 Royal Enfield Bullet and his son Thomas on the ‘54 350cc Ariel. We enjoyed a delicious ‘Jeff burger’ and some wonderful homemade ice cream – just what we needed on a lovely sunny day.


Thomas with the 1954 350cc Ariel.

After the long trip to Binic, the British bikes started to feel the effect of the heat and all three played up on the way back – the joys of owning a British bike, Thomas was told! Roger’s garage and bar contains some really interesting bikes and memorabilia, and his flags from all over the world reflecting the people from different countries who have visited him since 2005.

Two of the main attractions of Roger and Linda’s establishment are two very cute Jack Russell-cross dogs called Nip and Gnash.

They seem to be everywhere at once, and they even escort you back to your chalet when night-time descends, just to make sure that you get back okay.

They really are little characters, and both so friendly – they even feature on Roger’s marketing material for Countryside Holidays in France!

If you want to try something different we can highly recommend the hospitality offered by Roger and Linda in France.

You don’t need to speak the language; they speak French fluently and Roger will get your shopping organised for self-catering if you let him know in advance.


The boys at Binic.

He is the most amenable guy, and will sort you out whatever your problem or query.

He is a member of a local old bike club and is happy to take interested bikers out on its club runs, or join in charity runs or other events that might be happening at the time of your visit.

Brittany is a truly beautiful place and Roger and Linda’s home is situated right in the centre, with easy access to all parts of Brittany. Vive la France!

Read more News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the latest issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!

The post Touring beautiful Brittany appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 

DaveM

Rock & Roll
Riding for 46 Years
Administrator
Local time
Today, 22:21
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
38,373
Points
1,257
Location
Port Elizabeth
First Name
Dave
My Ride
Speedmaster
Triple winning chance

If you fancy adding another classic to your stable, or even getting your first, a new competition run by the National Motorcycle Museum could be just what you need.

The museum receives no external funding so relies on visitor income as well as support from its conference business and two sister hotels.

Director James Hewing said: “Without income from our sister businesses, there is little likelihood of the museum opening and remaining open.

“The museum itself requires a surplus of around £500,000 per year to break even. All of our business activities are in one of the hardest hit sectors.”


Win one of these three beauties in the NMM’s additional Covid-19 raffle.

To help raise funds, the NMM is launching a special Covid-19 appeal raffle with the chance to win one of three classics…

■ First prize – 1977 Norton Commando 850cc, brand new old stock
■ Second – 1948 Ariel NG 350cc, restored by the museum
■ Third – 1959 BSA B31 350cc, restored by the museum


The draw will take place on Monday, December 21, at the museum. Tickets cost £6; they’ll be with our October subscription copies, or can be obtained online from www.thenmm.co.uk

Read more News and Features at www.classicmotorcyle.co.uk and in the September 2020 issue of The Classic Motorcycle – on sale now!

The post Triple winning chance appeared first on The Classic Motorcycle.
 
Premium

Support TriumphTalk by becoming a Premium Member.

 What You Get

Donate

 

 

Search

Top Bottom