Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1990's

Cycle News 1996 05 01

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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Page 74 of 75

' B e ing an editor at Cycle News ma y or ma y not be a lot harder work than most people think, but it does ave its privileges. For example, we can' t think of too an y occupations that allow the averge Joe to cruise, ride or race the ewest, latest, trickest motorcycles and hen tell people what we think. If the ike is cool, then we say it's cool. If it ucks, then so be it . If it breaks, well, ey, it's not m y bike. The point is that e editors rarely find ourselves in the osition of actually havin g to purchase a otorcycle of our own, a machine for hich we will nave to pay the registraio n , t he insu ra nce and the mainteance, and w hen th e th ing inevitably oaks under the abuse of someone who ormally never ha s to purchase, register r maint ain the thing in the first place, e don' t have to go through the ago ny f seIli ng it for way less th an we paid or it in the first place. . Then again, I've been thinking latel y hat it wouldn' t be su ch a bad idea to ave a bike of m y own. An old standb y at I cou ld jump on whe n the tes t pool ot sha llow, or just w hen I felt like a ange of pace. The problem was that I ou ldn't just set t le on on e make o r odel, and that go t m e t o thinking. efore I knew it, I was fan tasizing how 001 it wo uld be to open the gar age door nd find a row of my dream machines. eing a p ractical dream er, I decided that wou ld probab ly n ot ow n 50 bikes. hey would not fit in m y ga rage nor ould th e y all ever ge t ridden, and sides that I hate to dust - jus t ask m y om the next time that you see her. So I ecided to limit m y choices to five. If, in his life or some other, I could own an y ive motorcycles , w hat would they be? ive Harl eys? Five vin tage Ducatis? Five onda MB5s? Hey, could happen. And t's my dream . Wh o said you meet th e icest people on a Honda anyway? 1. A Harley-Davi ds on Wide Glide ey, 1'-11 make no apo logies for my pride n being Milwaukee -born. It' s where my arliest memori es originate, and among _ hem are the countless times tha t w e pent driving past H-D's Capital Drive ngin e p lant, seei n g rows and rows of hin y m achinery in the parking lot out ron t - all of th em personal m achines hat belonged to the company's proud m p loyee s. Now, tha t was d uring the 5YEARS AGO... AY 11,19 71 arl y -morning ra in produced a m ountain of ud, at th e AMXT enefit Motocross n Livermore, Caliorn ia . As shown n the cover , any rid er s ha d ifficul ty wit h the curse , but mud- INTHETAPES ' ,' ". By S Rousse cott au '70s, th e AMF era, and th at was a lso lon g before I realized tha t the dark circles u nderneath each bike were not kickstand mats. And I've still got a full-line model brochure, a so uven ir claimed whi le in the airline terminal at Mitche ll Field during a visit in 1981, that shows the new Wide Glide in all its black and orange-flamed sp lendor . A whole lot of chrome, a whole lot of styl e, an d that classic V-twi n sound emana ting from a machine that w ou ld always rem ind me where I came from. Of course, I'm older now, an d more sensible. I may never live in Milwaukee again and doubt that I'd scour the classified s in sea rch of an '81 Sh ov elhead, b ut that 1995 Dyna Wide Glide we tested last yea r sure felt good as it rumbled aro und underneath me. There wou ld be one in my dream garage, and if it jus t happened to spo rt the flame job of the original (it woul d) so mu ch th e be tt er . It co u ld take m e _home anytime I rode it, and no matter w here I was going. 2. A vintag e Triumph 500 or BSA Sp itf ire Scramb le r - Th is one's pre tty sim p le, and com pli cated. I'd want a vintage bi ke... I wan t a vintage bi ke, but w hether or no t I w ill actually ever be in the positio n to pu rchase one is anoth er story. I'd want Triumph 500, becau se m y dad had one . More roo ts. It was a pre-unit job with low, straight pipe s and th ose silly ape- hanger bars. But it was cool, because it was a -Triump h, which I guess is what mo torcycli n g was a ll about in those d ays. I' d t hrow ou t the bars, and m aybe opt for more reasonable muffle rs, but other th an tha t, I'd w ant it to b e ju st lik e his, the sole re mi n der of which is a small ph ot ograph o f th e m a ch in e parked on th e lawn in fr ont of th e h ouse where he grew up. It was just sitti ng there shi ning in the su n, th at sh ini ng blu e paint and tha t cu rvy seat beckoning so meone to clim b on and take 'er for a sp in. If no t the Triumph, than the Beezer would do nicel y. One of m y favorite adolescent books was entitled Two-Wheeled Thunder by William Cam pbell Gault. It was a fictional account of a scrambler's rise to the pinnacl e of the sp ort from the humb lest of beginnin gs. The sto ry leads the r e ad e r to a fict ion a l b r a n d - a new model for w hic h the kid's d ad invests the family nest egg, but the kid's first b ike w a s a BSA Spi t fire Scr amb ler ,- a com plete with a headlight and a vo ltage re gul ator for street rid in g - how cool ! The author's description of the motorcycle fueled my imaginatio n, and when I finall y came face to face with on e several years later, I could see why. Ma ybe one of these tw o wou ld get its own personal st all in the gar age, behind the. othe r four . 3. A 1996 Suzuki GS XR750-T - Up until ju st a w e ek ago, I would ha v e reserved th is spot in the ga ra ge for a Honda CBR600F3, m y best frien d on the street heretofore. But the new 'Zook flat hauls, is w ay mor e friendly when negotiating the civil infrastructu re than I eve r thou gh t it wou ld be and more comfo rt- ble (for my diminutive frame anyway) a than an y hard-core sporting scalpel ha s a right. It' s an honest-to -God superbike and a better candidate for dream garage status than wo uld be, say, a Ducati 916 or Harley-David son VR1000, because I could maybe afford to kee p the thing ru nn ing. Th at bulbous, w in d-cheating tail section ha s a certain en dearing look to it as far as I'm concerned anyway. My personal copy w ou ld fea ture th e ye llow / carbon paint sch em e, an d n ot be too far from stock save for the swapp ing o f Pe rf orm an ce Machine bra kes and wheels on both ends and perhap s a bit more throaty, bu t not offensi ve, exhau st sys tem com plete wit h a "tough" carbo nfiber can ister. The thin g would be just the ticket for one of those weekend tou rs through the double-fine zones of Southern Califo rnia's Ortega High w ay on the way to breakfast at the Lookout Roadhou se. Or m aybe we ' would head north and take a spin on Angeles Cr est w ith th e p sych o s ? Then aga in, the GSXR might be just the ticket for, uh, a ticket u nd er those conditions . But equal happiness cou ld be foun d on the Stree ts of Willow Springs or w hi le sewing wild oa ts on the Laguna Seca tarmac during one of Dennis Pegelow 's safety schools. Sounds like the mo st fun you can have with your leathers on . 4. A Honda RS 750 - While not th e m ost definitive of dirt trackers - that spot would certainly have to be reserved for the riva l XR - the RS750 is probably the coolest-sounding motorcycle ever to take to the miles and h alf m iles of th e fairs circuit, so long as you discount that be astl y 750cc oi l-burner th at Ke l and 5. My 1977 Honda Z50A Somewhere in th e d a rkest corner of m y p a ren ts ' shed is m y "first" bike . Tho ugh no t first . in number, it is number one in m y heart, because the p eople who ga ve it to me are no longer with me . It is neit h er a mar vel of engine ering nor is it a bl uechip investmen t, and yet it is far mor e priceless tha n any or all of the others on this list . It' s just one of those litt le keepsakes tha t was hardly rid den and probabl y rid den too hard be fore it was put away in favo r of ano ther bigger, faster stepping sto ne . But it' s still in there, and I'll never sell it. It' s a motorcy cle that stan ds for something, a rem n ant of an ex tremely happy childhood w hen th e da ys we re longe r and spaces were wider, and the onl y thing that stopped me fro m go ing any fart her was t he amount of gas in the tank. And I sup pose the rea l irony is that even with its diminutive one-gallon cell, th at little Honda took me further th an any bike ever has or ev er will. It got me all the way here, m aking it the most ul tim ate of. dream machines . L~ capaci ty, 3000 wo uld-be ~~nnr;lI~~'!"'l~.2 "Hurricane" when he w on spectators did not get to f1 round eigh t of the AMA see Bi ll Co d y. w in the Supercr oss Serie s in Ponfea ture race . tiac, Michigan. 15 YEARS AGO... MAY 6,1981 5Y AR E SAGO... APRIL M 8, 1991 AY W C o v e r boy Damon e a th e r le n t a ha nd in tro un cBradshaw lassoed the win a t the Dallas ing the Yanks at Supercross. The 18-year-old the o pen ing ro u n d of thus took ov er second in the t h e Angl o - Am e ri can s e r ie s from defend ing Speedway Test Serie s in Manchester, England . champ Jeff Stan ton, who finish ed fif th a fter si tting ou t p en Expert ~ -~ Be cau s e of a freak lass... J.N. Roberts qu iet- - - storm, Ron n ie Pr es ton --o::u:i1iIi!'ll~~" t h e thre e p re vi ou s main even t s with a s epara ted and Scott Autrey were unable to y conquered the Master Links Hare and get to the track in time for the first race... shoul der. Jean-Michel Bayle ound at Kra mer Corners, California. m aintained the lead ... It was a big day Jac k Joh nso n sewed up the Open-class n ad dition to his overall w in, Roberts for little Robbie Reynard at the NMA wi n at rou nd tw o of the AMA Tw o-Day eceived a special awa rd for winning his Wo rld Mini Grand Prix hel d at the new Q ual ifier Series 'at Red Mo untain, Calilass on a sile nced m achine... An estiLas Vega s Motocross Park. The 13-year forni a . Jo h nson was rid ing w ith 30 ated 10,500 Sout hern California speedold wunderkind took first in SOcc Stock stitc hes in h is arm as the result of a ay fans tu rne d out for th e season an d Modified (12-13 ) and Su permini crash the previous week... Bob Hannah p ene r at th e Orang e Co u nty (12-18)... Ron Na ylor won the National remi nded everyone why they called him airgrounds. Because o f lim ited se at o;;:s~f sweptB~~ !.;;;"'""ii.ili-"""",'Ii/' : " "" Kenny spru ng on the boys back in 1975. It's definitely got the best bark of any V-twin. And it' s representative of a tim e when the Japanese were still interested in dirt track racing to the po in t that they went after it with a vengeance, hirin g factory riders Ricky Graham and Bubba Shobert, and, almost overnight, develop ing a tool that allowed them to pl ace a chokeh old on the title for four years. Mine wo uld have th e sa me p a int job as on e of Bub ba 's , and every once in a while I' d p ull that su cker out and b u m p it off, just long enough to hear the rump-rump-rump of the exha usts singi ng in uni son wi th the so und of th e carb slides rattling ba ck and for th in th eir bores . Heady stuff. The n I' d shut it down and tu ck it away befor e the neighbo rs started com p laining. Ca n you im agine that? Ne igh bors objecting to the soul-stirri ng sound of 'a truly affordable works bike ? If on ly they k new. Ma y be someda y H o nd a wi ll come to it s senses, bu ild a few m ore, replenish the supposed ly dwindling parts su p ply and pay a contingency to the faithful p rivateers w ho have con tinued to u se them since the factory abandoned sh ip . Oh, so rry. That's another dream. ~ bl u _ Beta Zero B lockM ; st a9i Aprilia 300 Clim:; Sh asta Dam Grand Prix at Red d ing, California for the sixth year s traigh t. Naylo r rode with torn knee liga ments from a ra ce two weeks p rior, and said, "I was doing all I cou ld L~ just to keep it steady and ho ld on."

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