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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
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 12 IMPORTANT STUFF
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
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
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
the last bid at £10,200. Maybe my theory of there being bargain bikes to be
had in France was looking a bit shaky.
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
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
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).
Pat Sproston. Louth. Lincolnshire.
Classic Motorcycle Restoration,
to your budget. Bike Rebuilds,
Paintwork, Metal Polishing,
Professional Motorcycle Valeting
& Detailing Service
07624 498626 (Sulby)
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.
ANOTHER YEAR OF SPORT
2015 VMCC TRIALS REPORT
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
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.
1 Shaun Huxley (PIC 1)
2 Kevin Whiteway
3 Sammy Ball
1 Andy Sykes (PIC 2)
2 Jon Duncan
3 Peter Blackburn
Best VMCC Four-Stroke
Best VMCC Two-Stroke
1 Daniel Smith (PIC 3)
2 Paul Smith
3 Colin Scarffe
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
Geoff Cannell Trial
VMCC TRIALS CHAMPIONSHIP RESULTS for 2015
Photos courtesy of Brian Maddrell Trials Collection copyright 2016