Archive for June, 2020

Wednesday June 10th 2020

Wednesday, June 10th, 2020

My first Motorcycle was a 1955 James 197cc - very similar to the one in this advt - and as I recall the price was 125 pounds. ( about $215.00) - Of course after the Second World War, motorcycles provided the main transport for many people as  there was very little money.

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Want to see some really neat footage of Scottish Six Days events?  Check out this link to buy the video.
https://www.dukevideo.com/prd1900/Six-From-the-Scottish-DVD

and another great road racing video

Racing Together 1949-2016

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And one more  about Sammy - >>>>. post

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I see that Sammy Miller is asking for donations in order to keep his wonderful Museum open during this difficult time - Obviously this has to be the ultimate in the World,  with regard to heritage Motorcycles, but he receives no Government subsidy or financial help from anywhere.

We started bringing in Sammy Miller special parts around 1970 and continued for many years, until he sold his shop. - I might have one of his old catalogues somewhere in my vault!!
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This is a 1933 Scott Flying Squirrel - 650 water cooled 2 stroke twin - built at a time when British Engineers were number one. -With designs that were way ahead of their time. - My Dad had one but I don’t know what happened to it with the 2nd World War happening soon after, & Dad was off into the Army.

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A big thanks to everyone who posted on FB or email with Congrats to Babsy and myself yesterday. - last I counted there had been around 100 contacts., from well wishers. - We spent a quiet enjoyable day - nothing special.

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I see that a Mountain biker was killed near Penticton over the weekend - very sad to hear, but to be honest, I’m surprised there are not more deaths, as there are so many pushing the limits.

Of course if it had been a Motorcyclist either road or Off road - it would have been plastered all over the news.

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Birthday Greetings go out today to Dominique Doyon and Steve Mills.

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Tuesday June 9th 2020

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020

On this date 58 years ago Barbara Jones became my wife - Yes a lot of water has gone under the bridge since then. -

The year after we were married, I talked Babsy into going on a trip  to  the Adriatic Coast in Italy -   - BY MOTORCYCLE -  The previous year, we had spent our honeymoon at this  wonderful place with white sand and warm sunshine., called Cattolica -

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- Of course, when we were there on our Honeymoon - it was the Tourist season -  when we were back on the Norton - it was pretty much deserted - we camped on the beach.  - Wonderful memories.

Another time we had been on the Autostrada  ( 100 mph stuff) outside Milan, -  for a long time in rainy conditions - I decided to grab a Motel and we  pulled off into this spot not sure where it was, but as the office was also a Cafe - we had to pass a number of tables to get to the desk - we did notice that all the locals were staring at us, not really unusual, because we were dripping wet and in motorcycle  gear -  but it was only when we got to our room - that we realized why the strange looks - the oil that had sprayed up from the hiway had blackened our faces - except for where we had our goggles. - I should have taken a picture of that. we had a good laugh at that.
We did a total  of 3,000 miles on a Norton 600, loaded down with camping gear etc - not many people did that back then - AND Babsy never  complained - that was a long trip when  big touring bikes were still in the future.

- Just climbing over the Swiss Alps  - Simplon Pass going and the St Godhard coming back - - with a bike so heavily loaded was amazing - camping in our tent -in a meadow near a farm house in Switzerland  and waking up to hear the cow bells on the cattle as they were herded up to the high mountain pastures. -

It was late September and with all the Camp sites closed - we we often just pulled off on the side of the road - I recall one day - it was getting late and we were heading out on the hiway above Lake Como - no camp sites to be found - so we turned off on a  track leading to a garbage dump.  - It was a very steep Mountain side - but I rode the Norton up high onto a grassy spot overlooking Lake Como -

That night we celebrated with a bottle of Chianti  as we looked down on the wonderful Valley below . Babsy likes to tell another story about that night - of grass-hoppers and other things !!!!!
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Video for today >
https://bit.ly/2XjTNm3

and another one

youtube.com Trial Berga 1992 Primera prueba del campeonato del mundo de trial 1992.

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Please note that for some strange reason our computer decided to do a “clean up” of our files and now all our email contacts have been lost into cyber space. - If you have recently sent us an email and not had a reply - please contact us again at daverhodes@shaw.ca.

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The big event for me yesterday, was getting my hair cut !!! I was definitely starting to look like a “Hippy”  - Of course in these strange times - having this done is quite the experience - wearing a mask and lining up outside the Barber shop - yes they were busy with four chairs going steady.

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I wonder how many people know that our WTC Guru Bob Johns - is also a very talented Musician plus he wrote a Children’s book   - this is a pic of my Granddaughter - now 22 with his wonderful book.
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Monday June 8th 2020

Monday, June 8th, 2020

A blast from the past>

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And this one from the 1973 Moose Mountain Cross Country in Alberta - 172 riders on the line - I’m on the Bultaco 325 Sherpa T Trials bike at the right side of the pic, just behind Barb Sadownick - Bob was next to me.

This is how I looked at the finish - 2 loops of 50 miles - totally buggered - but I got 3rd in the Open Class  behind Bob who was on another Bultaco - (just behind me in this pic) -. his was an Alpina model  - I think there were only about 10 finishers - Yes races were tough back then. ( Babsy seemed happy)  - The Trials models back then all seemed to have the footpegs too high - so some of us fitted the tall Renthal bars - look a bit strange by today’s standards.

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Video selection for today >>
https://shop.iomtt.com/prd1158ED/Racing-into-History-Download

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youtube.com Trial Berga 1992 Primera prueba del campeonato del mundo de trial 1992.

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https://shop.iomtt.com/prd1118/One-Day-in-June-DVD

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We hope everybody had a great weekend - We stayed close to home which has become quite normal during these uncertain times.

Although we try to stay away from posting about the Political  stuff - The recent events World wide because of the Police action in the States, has to be mind boggling. - Yes the Police made a mistake and this has happened in Canada to the son of a Trials buddy, with no Justice after years of trying.

However - to set this guy up on a  pedestal , with even Biden going to the funeral to try and  get votes - when he had a history of jail time for various crimes  -  plus the stupidity of our own Prime Minister for joining the Protestors , at a time when Social Distancing has been flogged to death every single day. - Has the whole World gone mad?

Thank goodness we have Motorcycles.
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Sunday June 7th 2020

Sunday, June 7th, 2020

Friday I took the day off ( seems to happen a lot during this Pandemic) - I had arranged to meet Roy over in “The Valley of the Sun”  and we went exploring some of the many old back roads that are common to this area, made at the turn of the century, when mining for gold, silver and other minerals was huge.

Back then everything was barged in across Okanagan Lake with the small Town of Fintry the main docking area.

The pic below was taken at the old White Elephant Gold Mine, and you can see the yellow dust still embedded in the rocks (not gold) - The Yellow TRS estart is the perfect bike for this type of riding.

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Another video from the Isle of Man.
#IOMTT

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This ex Gordon Jackson 350 AJS is for sale - It’ s a Factory bike on which he won the British Experts Trial and also rode it in Scotland - but I don’t think it’s the bike that he won on with only one point lost in 1961. - I’m guessing it will go for a lot of money.
Factory AJS comes up for sale

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Just saw the news that another old riding buddy from  my early days, has passed - Brian Morris from Selattyn near Oswestry,  was a very good rider, seen here on a James.
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We have been contacted by Tim Cox from Kelowna, he is new to Trials and looking for somebody to ride with his ph # is (250) 870-2352

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Saturday June 6th 2020

Saturday, June 6th, 2020

Today is the Anniversary of “D” Day - When the Allies stormed the beaches of Normandy - At times like this, with all the riots etc and general unrest and violence - I’m sure many Veterans wonder what the World is coming to.

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The great Geoff Duke - on the famous and for many years, unbeatable Manx Norton. - He was one of my heroes when I was a young lad - he attended one of our club banquets in Oswestry and I got to shake his hand !!   - I later rode in a Time Trial which he won as he was also a great “All round” rider.
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A 1938 Velocette.

And a Scott “Flying Squirrel ”
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All that glitters - is not gold - a pic I took yesterday at the site of the Old White Elephant Mine on the Westside.

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Friday June 5th 2020

Friday, June 5th, 2020

Saw this beauty on FB - It’s a G45 Matchless twin - looked and sounded great, but had limited racing success against the Manx Norton.
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An amazing shot of Gilles Burgat - literally “On the edge”
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And how about this old Scramble shot - lots of European riders , but it’s Vic Eastwood with the hole-shot.  Can’t say I recognize any of the other front runners.
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So yesterday I thought I would head down-town early to get a hair cut - However the car park was full and there were at least a dozen guys standing outside in line - also a sign saying you needed to wear a mask ( which I didn’t have in Babsy’s car) - Therefore - it will be “Hippy time” for a while
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Quite a few people guessed  the answer to yesterday’s quiz - Brett Clark was the first in to say it was Xavier Bulto on an early Matador, wearing his distinctive checkered cap. - John Kitchener also got the Bulto part correct and reported that he is still stuck in England due to the Pandemic. - Jack Chant from Calgary also got it right - we haven’t seen Jack for a very long time - he was just a young lad when I was riding in Alberta.

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So what’s wrong with this picture? Well for many people who click on this blog - they would say the lady rider is on the wrong bike for riding what looks like a typical Trials section.

But that seems to be the “Norm” these days. - No wonder you see so many Enduro bikes with smashed pipes and looking very 2nd hand.
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UPDATE:  It’s a Beautiful day in the Valley, so I’m heading over to the Westside to explore some old gold trails & ghost towns.  If you need something - email and I will look after it when I return>

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Thursday June 4th 2020

Thursday, June 4th, 2020

This is a wonderful pic of myself delivering a new Beta Evo 200 to Gloria Miller, who was sadly killed in a diving accident in Mexico. - I still remember her bubbly personality and a desire to learn about Trials. -

Over the last few decades, I’ve been lucky enough to  guide and share our sport with many people, including a lot of young ladies, and although most are just play riders, some have gone on to ride competition.

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Still looking at TT nostalgia >>> And yes I was in the Isle of Man in 1957 to see (and hear) the fabulous Guzzi V8.
https://shop.iomtt.com/prd5572/On-Bike-TT-Experience-4-DVD

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Josef has posted some really nice pics on FB lately - obviously a lot from his Helicopter  trips - I liked this one although I have no idea where it was taken.

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The Ontario lads have been out for a practice and appear to have some nice stuff to ride at this private location.

It’s time to sell the 2020 Beta Evo 200 demo - Immaculate with hardly any time on it - call me if you’re interested ( big saving on a new out of the crate unit)
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Your quiz for today - Who can name this rider and machine?

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Finally - New rider Tim from Kelowna is looking for somebody to hook up with for a ride his # (250) 870-2352

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Wednesday June 3rd 2020

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2020

The nice photograph below, could have been taken in the Rockies - but it wasn’t - It was in Europe a place where riding anywhere Off Road, is strictly controlled.
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Now take a look and read the article below regarding what happened in Alberta in 2014 - A Dirt Bike Club and a very well respected Dealer both issued huge fines. - No wonder people get nervous about hosting events .

Ironically, there is likely more damage done to Crown Land, by the weekend warriors, than by any organized event, and I say this having Promoted Trials in both Alberta and BC for decades. -

It’s unfortunate that Law Enforcement Officials, don’t prosecute the people who REALLY treat the back country like a Garbage dump. - Of course - this is much more difficult, than having details on paper of permits issued to Law abiding clubs, who follow the correct procedure to host any event. -The CO’s might actually have to do their job!!  ( Rant over)

R³ – Respecting, Recreating & Racing in Alberta's Lands. - DBN

dirtbikenews.ca R³ – Respecting, Recreating & Racing in Alberta’s Lands. - DBN Putting races on is tough work across Alberta, Canada and North America in general. Events can take many months and even years to successfully run with the vision race directors & course masters have, some may be more more technical and demanding than others. Motocross Club and Director Convicted in…

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We haven’t heard much from Shane lately so when I saw this pic it caught my eye!!
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Another great Italian Road Racer dies at age 90 - We saw Carlo Ubbiali  race in the Isle of Man in 1957 - he was on  125 & 250  MV Augusta - His arch rival was another Italian Tarquinio Provini. -The 125cc MV’s were reported to be doing over 100mph down Bray hill.!! - while in the 250 race Sammy Miller was leading when his bike quit. This was on the Clypse Course and I recall seeing Sam pass both Ubbiali and Provini  in one move - what a photo that would have been.  ( Can’t remember what Sam was riding ? maybe an NSU?)
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Tuesday June 2nd 2020

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2020

The first day of the month started off with a trip to Ace Courier to drop off a bunch of Opti Oil for Cascade - Like many other business’ - they now have all the counter space behind Plexi glass - and I have to think that this is one Industry that is likely booming during these troubled times. - Later I visited the local Medical Center to have some stitches removed, but after that it was pretty quiet.

Because of the Pandemic, it’s hard to find a lot to write about on the daily blog - our friend Roger Boothroyd who does the Newsletter for the Victoria Club, is finding the same thing.

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Brian McNeal from Vancouver posted this pic of a very nice Twin Shock “Special” he has built over the winter months - nice to see that some people are still interested in riding the Outlaw Trial Vintage events.

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Bruce McLaren,died in an accident 50 years ago at Goodwood in the UK, but before that, the Kiwi built a huge reputation for design and race cars that bore his name - unfortunately he failed to see the many Formula One victories  when the team was  managed by Ron Dennis. The pic shows him with his first race car - a souped up Austin 7 - and yes a buddy of mine had one of those, - check out the other old cars in the background.
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as this is normally TT week - here is another video >>> https://shop.iomtt.com/prd1668/TT-A-Film-Documentary-DVD

Monday June 1st 2020

Monday, June 1st, 2020

Last week, we reported on our day out with Steve Howland from Beta Canada, and of course I was out on a Beta 200, but while I have never had any issues starting these - I made the mistake of wearing one of my big Wulf knee braces on my left knee as well as my really bad right knee. - The reason it was a mistake, was because it restricted my movement when trying to get my boot high enough ( being a short guy) to kick it over when on flat ground. Just a little thing, but when your energy level is low, this can be a real pain. ( How I longed for the magic button on my TRS)  -see here >http://www.trial-club.com/webzine-trial/actualites/2020/presentation-trrs-raga-avec-demarreur-electrique/ The route I took Steve was around 25 km - the same one we used in the 25th running of the Outlaw.

Here is a shot of Steve riding the one we called Laggan Rocks. - He did well and managed a “Clean” after a couple of tries.
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This  should have been TT week in the Isle of Man, but of course this exciting event has been cancelled like everything else.
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I didn’t get much done yesterday, as I started watching “The Americans” on TV a series that was run continuous for the day - very captivating, all about spies.
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video link …… https://shop.iomtt.com/prd5546/On-Bike-TT-Experience-1-DVD

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A visitor in the back yard this morning - this is the 2nd time we have seen him - he’s a BIG one.