Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1960's

Cycle News 1966 12 15

Cycle News is a weekly magazine that covers all aspects of motorcycling including Supercross, Motocross and MotoGP as well as new motorcycles

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.. You' II always see it FIRST in 6471 N, long Beach Blvd, long Beach, Calif. 90805 Or: Box 498, long Beach, Calif, Phone: 423-0431 {Area Code 213} From L,A, Phones: 636-8844 "THE VOICE OF CALIFORNIA" Charles Clayton •••••••••••••••••Editor Sharon Clayton •••Business Ma:Jager Gil Brown ••••••Advertising Manager Rohert Bradfnrd••••••••••A t. Ediinr Dennis Greene •••••••••• Photo Editor Gay Thomason .Circulation Manager. Published weekly exc pt the first and last week of the calendar year by C&S Publishing Company. P.O. Box 498. Long Beach. California. Second Class Postage Paid at Long Beach. calif. Any part of this newspaper may he used wi thout permission as long as credit is given. Editorial contributions, cartoons. photos are welcomed and will be PaId for upon publication. Self-addressed. stamped envelope assures return. Single Copy Price 15¢ Subscriptions: One year 2nd class • mail . • . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $7.50 Advertising rates will he sent on request. t Guest Editor ial RACERS ARE CHICKEN? true, we will occasionally have to show them at it. Cycle News reDects the motorcycle world as it really i , not always as we would like it to he.·) VOICES By John Shedd • My article, ·Worthless Gold·, has caused some controversy, so it gives me the opportunity to climb back on my soap box and spout off with some more opinions. For a start, I'll use some comments in a letter from Gahe Palmer of San Diego. Mr. Palmer states that he is proud of all of his eight trophies. Yet he fails to state how he received them. If Mr. Palmer earned them, he very well should be, but if he did something as unworthy as guessing the number of heans in a jar, I think that each trophy should have a bean on its top and not a motorcycle. Another point that Mr. Palmer brings out is that road riders love motorcycles more than racers, because the racers are afraid to ride 011 the highways. I cannot imagine the premise on which he based this masterpiece of logic. It appears that he thinks road riders are courageous, because they are brave enough to ride tbeir machines on the highway. As a correspondent for "Cycle ,News·, I have covered road runs and met many road riders. In this fearless group, I have yet to meet one that also races; however, some may exist. In the group of enthusiasts who race, there are many who manage to muster UP enough intestinal fortitude to brave the dangerous highway. If I might make an educated guess, I would say that most racers cut their motorcycling teeth on highways and city streets, and that the reason that many do not travel the highways and byways is because they cannot afford a motorcycle for each purpose. I do not mean to imply that road riders are a worthless group of motol'" cycling enthusiasts, but it seems they have an inferiority complex toward racers. Many times I have heard them run down racers when their ranks were attacked with criticism. I think this is due to the ·worthless gold" they receive for nO worthy cause. Road riders pride themsel ves in helping others in distress and this is a definite feather in their hat. They are the ooes who have the best opportunity to form a good image of motorcycling in the minds of all those do not IBIderstand this great two-wheel sport. Since I am a part of the two-wheeled world, I am concerned about its image, Outlaw clubs have done a great deal to hurt this image, and perhaps the hest weapon we have for improvin g our image is the road rider. And you, road rider, need to clean UP your backyard. Thos sparkling clean machines with well groomed riders do not comprise a large enough majority of your group. I would like to see a mandatory helmet law if for no other reason than to eliminate the ridiculous H-D hats with little ding-a-lings hanging from them. Do you think that Mr. and Mrs. Public understand these? I have heard many opinions of these hats, and believe me, the average Joe has no better opinion of ding-a-ling hats than he has of swastikas, onepercenter patches or Nazi helmets that outlaw clubs enjoy wearing. If you are one of the ding-a-ling hat riders who climbs aboard a dirt-covered wreck that would scare the label off of a selfrespecting can of paint, and pride youI'" self in wearing a cruddy pair of levis with matching shirt, you should he eliminated. There are too many road riders who strive for a good appearance to have you screwballs louse it UP. Nothing would please me more than to see clubs requlre helmets for riders and passengers that participate in their runs. A safe and clean machine along with appropriate dress would also be a desirable requirement. I know that this type of riders is in the minOrity, but if I might use a well worn expression, ·It only takes one bad apple to spoil the barrel.· Death Valley Da.ngers Tbe remarks of Jim Mann telling of three motorcycle pile-ups between Trona and Death Valley were well taken. His point regarding the wearing of adequate clothing is advice well spoken. It is strange, but in my eight consecutive trips to the Death Valley event I have never run across a single motol'" cycle accident with the exception of a colllsion at Furnace Creek Ranch headquarters this year. Accidents are bound to happen when so many people are involved - it is unfortunate when one perSOn finds so many of them in one trip. Jim's reference to speed wobble, though, in a BMW is something that is difficuit to understand. I have ridden machines, and I can't say that anyOne was ever troubled with a wobble at any speed. Accidents in and around Death Valley usually take place on unexpected curves, or on curves with gravel. Or in gravel beside the road-ridable shoulders are non-existent, or by just plain running into another machine or a car. There is one section of highway hetween Trona and Wildrose Station where I have witnessed many riders going into the turns too fast and dragging their footboards or pe gs, and another section between Wildrose and Townes Pass Junction where the sharpness and flatness of tnms are deceiving. The thrill of riding a nice motorcycle along this route can end in tragedy in a hurry if the operator runs too fast Or goes to sleep at the controls. It is a tribute to the many rescue groups, radio clubs, and patrol officers that the DV Tour is as safe and sane as it is today. Cautious and defensive riding is the answer-not an ambulance at every intersection. CLIFF BOSWELL Arroyo Grande Tell It Like It Is Why in the world do you allow pictures of motorcycle riders to be published that are not wearing helmets? This seems to me and others that I've talked to, that you aren't standing behind the motorcyclists who are so desperately urging people to protect themselves and help improve our image. The effort to put a helmet on, and the small price of one is so little, compared to what you get in return. Personally, I value my life much more than the people who don't wear them. True, I could still die as the result of an accident, but the chances are so large that it would not be of head injuries. I have many things to learn yet about motorcycles. but this was the very first-rule my husband taught me before he would allow me to ride behind him On his machine. I feel he is the greatest teacher, in as much as he won the World Speed Record for ·The Fastest Man On Two Wheels·, at Bonneville in 1962. That's right, he ~s Bill Johnson and even he does not think it is wise of you to allow these pictures to be published. I have talked to different doctors about the wearing apparel that some cyclist wear and have been told by them that the injuries would be less severe if their bodies had heen better protected. Therefore, since safety is being stressed so much to better OUI image, I would like a comment from you on this. I'm sure there are others who would be interested to hear your reply also. By the way, I counted seven pictures in the December I thru 7 issue Volume III Number 47 that had riders and not a helmet in sight. MRS. CAROLYN JOHNSON Anaheim ("Dear Carolyn, your husband is right. It is stupid to ride a motorcycle bareheaded. However, people still persist in their foolishness, and as long as that Is Helping Others I would like to compliment you on your gathering and handling of the facts of the Tony Soto incident. I was also delighted at your editorial comment. I am sure that 95% of the motol'" cyclists of the U.S. will continue to render any assistance possibl e to anyone they find in distress, when it is possible, whether they are competing for a prize or not. I am also sure that they will fee I that the reward of having been able to help some one in distress will be greater than any pretty trophy for them to place on a shelf in the back of the garage to collect cobwebs and dirt. I am also sure that they will not use the fact of having helped someone to gain them personal favor in evading an agreement they made when they entered some ven for the pleasure of the general public. Thanks. T.H. TURNER Downey A Letter From Santa devote to instructing each new customer and the system i breaking down. Just in time, a new teaching device is nearing completion, A machine called Motorcycle Experience Simulator Control Apparatus (Mesca) will take over the job of teaching intermediate riding 'skiils (sometimes called ·road wisdom") and testing student riders. The student • experiences· road situations which call for him to lean, bank, stop, tum, slow down and accelerate his machine, all "i thout actually moving forward, The road ahead appears on a screen In froot of the student and Mesca simulates the feel of a motorcycle. The student's brake, throttle and steering is relayed through tapes coded to interpret his responses. ADSIT NEW RRC CHIEF By Rohert O. Fee Just a note to tell you ·Thanks· for the good things you wrote about me, and the pictures your paper ran of me on my • warmer weather vehicle.· Thank you again. I've got to go back to work now. As you know, this is my busy season. SANTA CLAUS North Pole ("You're welcome, S.C. Just don't forget your buddies on Christmas Eve.·) New Chairman Bob Adsit. By Chuck Clayton ONCE AGAIN, MEET M.E.S.C.A. There is a very good chance that state departments of motor vel1icles next year will act on the recommendations of the motorcycl e trade associ ation and pass legislation requiring special operators licenses for motorcycle riding. It would appear that the only thing which prevented such measures from passing in 1966 was the crying inability of anyone to solve the problems of teaching and testing operators in the craft of motorcycle riding. Until a very short time ago, there was virtually no infonnation on the tecbniques of safe operation, no statistical guidelines that could be trusted to measure the problem, and no teaching aids or methods beyond the instruction a salesman could gi ve a customer learning to ride his new bike for the first time. The wonder of the dealer-instructor system is that it works as well as it does. Although California enjoyed a 500% increase in motorcycl e registrations in the last five years, cycle accident rates have only increased 253% in the same· period. Nevertheless, as sales increase, salesmen have less time to Bob Adsit of the Too Tired M.C. was chosen chairman of the Southern California Road Rider's Committee at their regular meeting Monday, December 6th. Bob has served the RRC for the past two years as treasurer and has a long history of club participation. Representatives of the 22 clubs present and voting elevated him to the offfce unapposed. Also elected without opposition was Lee Harrison to the office of treasurer. She served as Chart Steward in 1965. Other officers for 1967 are; Sherman Ames, Vice Chairman; Beverly Byrd, secretary; J.M. Jones, Referee; Bud Wilson, Chart Steward; and Darroll Steen, Sgt. at Arms. On a motion of the HI-Way Kings, the assembly voted to cast the entire RRC ballot for Lee Harrison as the most popular girl rider in the AMA's current contest. All clubs not committed to their Own contestants are asked to consider Mrs. Harrison for their entire or a portion of their ballot. RULES CHANGE The RRC Supplemental rules were changed to eliminate the use of AMA rules for poker runs. All riders should enter the following note In their copy of the rules under ART. II: Sec. 2. Deleted (12/66) BLOOD BANK BROADCAST Ken Jones reported that Radio KNX and a photographer from the Hollywood Citizen News covered the Nov. 14th Blood Bank. KNX's Bob Ferris broadcast a 20-minute interview with Ken later that evening and repeated It the following Sunday. Jones announced that there will be a club participation contest for the blood bank. Any chartered motorcycle club in District 37 will be eligible to compete for the 3 foot high trophy. The winner wiil be determined by the number of pints deposited by the club's members Or guests. DANCE SCHEDULED JAN, 28 The plcturt shows the third model of Mesca durlnc construction by Ray Wilkinson at Cycle News' expense. AlthouCh early models will not completely emulate t.. lee' 01 a real cycle, they will come clost tnOUch lor e"ect. You may have the chance to take a ride 011 Mesca _ ... Watch Cycle News lor detal's, Plans for the installation dance and the 1966 trophy awards were given the final go-ahead. The event will be January 28th, 8 p.m. at the Anaheim Bowl, 1925 West Lincoln in Anaheim. Admission is $1.50 per person, but admission is not necessary for those riders who merely wish to claim their 1966 29 Palms, AMA Tour Award.

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