I started racing in about 1963-4 I had ridden an AJS 7R on the road for about a year (£50 from Monty and Ward) so I was a dab hand at bump starts (and riding fast on push bike lights at night but that’s another story). My best mate Steve had decided to start racing so I thought I would join him Ah, The rashness of youth! I sold that 51 long stroke 7R, which would have been a perfect tool to start club racing, and I bought an Aerial Arrow racer. Need I say more it was a disaster I lost a whole season trying to get the thing to run without seizing. Finally I bought a 125 TSS air cooled Bultaco and had a great time (Franco Sheen ‘did’ my gearbox and Barry was 11 years old). I think my best on that was a 5th at Brands Trophy day in front of 150000 spectators (That’s a crowd!), then the 125 Hondas came along and that was that. I then had a 500 Manx from Sid Mularney and did most of the BMSEE meetings and club events. I got married, I never had a lot of money but I never gave up racing completely I raced my Comet (£15) that I rode to work and then my Rapide (£65) at the MCC High speed Trials. I had a lot of help from Ron Kemp who then only lived a few miles away. As things got a little financially better I raced in the BEMSEE production class on the Rapide (It was then over 15 years old) but was still the fastest bike on the track in a straight line (not round the corners). And basically that’s what I continued to do with the MCC and VOC races and a lot of that ride to work Comet is still in the present day racer. I have always had lots of bikes, race, off road, touring, long distance Trials solo and sidecar I did a list of the types bikes I have owned (often more than one of the same) here are the high lights.
Aerial Arrow,NH AJS Matchless 1930’s V twin, G3LC,G3L,47 AJS 16M,7R BMW R90S,R25,R75/7 Difazio,GS1150,K100,KS1100,K1100,R850R, BSA Bantam 125,Bantam 150,Super Rocket,C15,B31,B33 Bultaco TSS 125,Sherpa Douglas 1925 CW,1926EW,MK5,T35 Francis Barnet 36 Cruiser Greeves Hawkstone Honda TL125,TL250,Black Bomber,CB900,Pan European James 98cc Comet Norman B3 Norton Model 50,Manx Scott TT Rep Suzuki GS750,SP370,DR350 Triumph Tiger cub, T90 off road special, Trophy 52 and 58,Triton,Triumph Greeves Velocette MAC,MSS,KSS Vincent Rapide ,Comet Egli, Rapide (D) Yammaha Serrow,TRX special,
The best? Well that depends on what you want to do with it. Hooligans bike 51 7R AJS Trail riding SP370, Touring K100, Racing TRX Special, Just fun A comet road bike or the 52 Trophy Vintage 26 EW Douglas. Classic Vincent Rapide Best all rounder BMW GS1150 (over 1 mph) Worst? Super Rocket