Monday, 10 August 2009
norton manx engine, one of the most iconic motorcycle designs ever, been to a couple of classic race meetings this year and the sight and sound of these bikes being used in anger is a real delight so much better than a static display in some musty old museum or worse still in someone's private collection never seeing the light of day. i like the fact that the classic racing club allows modern day replica's to race against original bikes but loads the points in the favour of the original bikes, chain primary rather than belt drive, 19'' wheels rather than 17'' with their greater choice of race rubber and original engines versus the modern cnc machined cases, it all makes for some really close racing and the chance to see these bikes being used as they are supposed to be and that can only be a good thing.
1957 sportster campaigned by leo payne, by the mid-sixties it was a 9 second, nitro burning animal that won every race it entered, for payne even this was not enough and he set his sights on the bonneville salt flats, it was geared so that he had to be towed up to 75mph [holding onto a car door!], before firing it up and heading towards the timing lights, in 1970 he reached a new record for a non-streamliner motorcycle of 202.379 mph.