Newlsletter 45 R1 2017. 1. 30.¢  8. Keith Thompson (Scorpa) 49 (14x0) 9. Sean Booth (Ossa) 56 10. Jason

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Text of Newlsletter 45 R1 2017. 1. 30.¢  8. Keith Thompson (Scorpa) 49 (14x0) 9. Sean Booth (Ossa)...

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    Paradise & Gell has been located on Michael Street in Peel since 1974. Here you will find a wide range of furnishings to enhance any living space. Whether you are looking for something contemporary or a more traditional piece, then look no further than Paradise & Gell.

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    Cover Picture:- From the 2009 Vintage Rally comes this sturdy chap making progress on his Gilera. The weather might slowly be improving but a spot of rain shouldn’t put you off enjoying your vintage machinery!

    Editor: Harley Richards

    Page 2 Chairman's Chat

    Page 3 Yellow Belly Notes - “Paris in the Springtime - ish"

    Page 7 VMCC Trials Report & Championship Results 2015

    Page 10 Trials Results


    Page 13 George W. Pratchett

    Page 22 Book Review:

    "Harley-Davidson: The Era of the Two-Stroke Motorcycles"

    Page 24 Forthcoming Events

    Page 25 Some facts about the ACU Benevolent Fund

    Page 26 Out and About

    Page 28 The Life & Times of Gerald

    Page 36 A Moment in Time

    Page 37 New Members

    Page 37 Flogger's Corner

    Page 38 Rider Profile No. 30 - Gary Hocking

    Photo by Amulree

    Published by Peel Copy Centre Tel: +44 (0)1624 843889

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    At long last the weather has started to play ball and thoughts of motorcycling return to most of us - although we have several hardy souls who ride throughout the year, hats off to you.

    The AGM has now taken place with no significant changes to report, finances appear in good order, everything looks positive and the coming year should be even more interesting. Please keep checking the local press, Facebook and our web site for updates, there are plans afoot!

    Remember that April's “Bring and Buy” club night will be at the Vagabonds rugby club for a trial night, NO decision has been made to move away from the Peveril club house permanently. Closed roads parade entry forms are available on our web site and Facebook but be aware that these have changed regarding entry requirements so please read the forms carefully, and don't forget your rally and Jurby entry forms, why not enter everything and give yourself a treat?

    I'll keep it short and I look forward to seeing you at our events.

    Safe riding - Richard

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    Yellow Belly Notes Paris in the Springtime - ish

    For a long time now I have thought that France is a source of vintage bikes that has been untapped for years. Few bikes were imported from France before the Second World War and, consequently, little is known about them. When I casually mentioned that Bonhams were having an auction in Paris in February, my wife said “I’ll book the hotel and the flight from Birmingham then.” Hmmm!

    The venue was the Grand Palais (Pic 1), which seems to be what London’s Crystal Palace would have looked like but for the unfortunate fire. It was smart, and Paris smart at that. The auction was mainly a classic car do but there were several French bikes which I was there to see, starting with a 1911 Clement (Pic 2). The engine looks almost the same as the Swiss Motosaco- che that was used by Royal Enfield. The running boards look like skate- boards and the handlebars were the antithesis of clip-ons. It did not sell with

    Pic 1

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    the last bid at £10,200. Maybe my theory of there being bargain bikes to be had in France was looking a bit shaky.

    Pic 2

    Pic 3

    A 1910 Rene-Gillet (Pic 3), looked a lot more sporty and the only part missing, as far as I could see, was the final drive belt. The firm supplied the French army and police with its robust machines and many of the v-twins

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    were fitted with sidecars. It sold for an all-up price of £12,531. A cracking bike but, again, not cheap!

    1888-9 is what I call a ‘proper’ vintage era, and Lot no. 227 seemed to be perfect. It was a De Dion-Bouton tricycle (Pic 4). Some years ago when I first went to the ASI meeting at Varano in Italy, I saw the amazing sight of three De Dion-Boutons racing in wet conditions - no messing, wheel to wheel racing. In fact, in their heyday they were successful in a race run from Paris to Bordeaux and it is highly probable that most of the long distance races at that time were run on little more than dirt roads (early photos of the mountain TT course spring to mind). Close inspection of the bike revealed no frame number and, more importantly to me, no history. So although I had registered to bid, I kept my hands in my pockets and watched this one go for £9,200 all-up.

    Paris was great fun, much cheaper than London and of all the exotic cars that were also for sale, the one that caught our eyes was a 1972 Renault Alpine (£73,398). Perfect for a car track-day at Cadwell Park (Pic 5 - Management considering her next purchase).

    Pic 4

    Pat Sproston. Louth. Lincolnshire.

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    Classic Motorcycle Restoration, to your budget. Bike Rebuilds,

    Paintwork, Metal Polishing, Professional Motorcycle Valeting

    & Detailing Service 07624 498626 (Sulby)

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    The IOM Section of the VMCC's Trials season comprises of 10 events, of which 8 are for the Club Championships, plus 2 which 'stand alone' - being the Handicap Trial and the Geoff Cannell Memorial Trial. 2015 saw these off-road events contested by a total of some 110 riders, with an average of 40 for each event. That is about the same level of activity experienced on the Club's road runs.

    The driving force on the organising side is Sean Seal and his small group of helpers, who have built an excellent reputation amongst the local Trials community. Once again they provided a super season of sport for riders on both old and new machinery – BSA, James, Bultaco, Ossa, Montesa, Kawasaki, Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Gas Gas, Beta, Scorpa, etc. These were ridden in classes ranked as 'A' (hard) and 'B' (easy) and sub-divided into VMCC Members, Invitation (Adults) and Invitation (Youth).

    First event of the year was at South Barrule Quarry in January, with following events spread across the Island, finishing at Knock Froy in December. It was 2014 champion Steve Lace who took the opening round at South Barrule in Vintage 'A' class, although he did not sustain his championship challenge in 2015, for he spent much of it getting to grips with his shiny new Triumph twin. After a few 'shake-down' events, it was going as well as it looked. Both Steve's Triumph and that of David Haynes were an aural delight for spectators when given a handful of throttle.

    The most consistent runner in Vintage 'A' during 2015 was probably Kevin Whiteway, followed by Shaun Huxley, Sammy Ball and Jim Davidson. However, while Shaun's form proved a bit variable, come the final round and the Championship was between him on his James, and Kevin on his Tiger Cub. Shaun took the win on the day and the Vintage 'A' championship, with Kevin as runner-up.

    There was a different story in Vintage 'B', where ever-consistent Andy Sykes won every round he contested on his immaculate rigid BSA Bantam, finishing well clear of Jon Duncan, Peter Blackburn, Ian James and others.


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    Riding several different bikes during the year, young Daniel Smith took the Championship win on Invitation 'A' route, to repeat his victory of 2014. This was another class that was not resolved until the last round however, when Daniel had to withstand pressure from Paul Smith, to take victory on the day and clinch the Championship.

    In Invitation 'B', Billy Booth and his Fantic finished the year tied on points with Keith Thompson (Scorpa). Billy showed the worth of scoring points in every round when contesting a Championship but, although Keith did not ride as many rounds, he took the overall win for having two victories to his name. Peter Peniata found his 'new' Tiger Cub to his liking and finished in third spot. Support in the Youth Invitation classes was a bit up and down in numbers, but Fraser Heginson won Class 'A' from Dylan Groom and Ella Doherty, while Class 'B' went to Kaytlyn Adshead, from Bobby Moyer and Oscar Lace.

    In the two non-Championship events, it was Andy Sykes (Rigid Bantam) who won the Handicap Trial at Ballagarraghyn in March, while Brent Seal (Yamaha) took the Geoff Cannell Memorial Trophy at a sunny Bim's Field in May. A generous selection of trophies were presented to riders at the Annual Dinner, some with names which will bring back memories within the Club – the Bob Thomas Trophy, the Harry Cardy Memorial Trophy and the Roger Quayle Shield.

    Vintage 'A' 1 Shaun Huxley (PIC 1) 2 Kevin Whiteway 3 Sammy Ball Vintage 'B' 1 Andy Sykes (PIC 2) 2 Jon Duncan 3 Peter Blackburn Best VMCC Four-Stroke Kevin Whiteway Best VMCC Two-Stroke Shaun Huxley Invitation 'A' 1 Daniel Smith (PIC 3) 2 Paul Smith 3 Colin Scarffe

    Invitation 'B' 1 Keith Thompson (PIC 4) 2 Billy Booth 3 Peter Peniata Youth Invitation 'A' 1 Fraser Heginson 2 Dylan Groom 3 Ella Doherty Youth Invitation 'B' 1 Kaytlyn Adshead 2 Bobby Moyer 3 Oscar Lace Handicap Trial Andy Sykes Geoff Cannell Trial Brent Seal


    David Wright

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    Photos courtesy of Brian Maddrell Trials Collection copyright 2016

    Shaun Huxley

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