The Racing of the
Here we get to the real fun! This is what it's all about, the racing.
The exilaration of throwing the bike into the corner, feeling it squirm and twitch as you push it just that little bit further...
Now if you listen down the pub to all the talk you'll hear all about "getting your knee down" Not in Hillclimbing. The syle is much different to the GP racing on the short circuits, or to road racing. Here the courses change very quickly from one direction to another and it's all about control of the bike. Here we have 355, Paul Jeffery on his way to securing the Fastest Time of Day and his championship leading position.
Hill Climbing is the oldest motorsport, but the style has a lot of its origins in grass track and "scrambles" or motocross. The sport of supermotards has a number of ex hillclimbers - owing its racers as well as some of its origins to Hill Climbing.
Now some of the tracks are not exactly smooth - but that's all the fun of the sport. Here's Pete Short demonstrating what happens when the track drops mid corner, and you are still cranked over! This man has great class!
Now just because it rains, we don't stop play! Times are slower obviously, but if the track is wet all day, then everybody has the same problems. Well so you'd think, in fact wet tracks tend to be a bonus for the less powerful bikes, the big bangers have trouble getting the power down.
As well as keeping both wheels on the ground , N° 70 is Favre.
Sometimes it goes wrong...
How's about this, here's a man with a really determined style
This is Paul again - keeping the front wheel down can be a real challenge!
Here's Jon, showing the style needed on a 'Crosser - try leaving your foot on the peg, and it'll get crushed, so Kneedown is a no-no.
Just pottering along eh? Wrong! Rob is one of the fast boys, and is "on the rostrum" most years
Bikes of the
Here we have some of the bikes that are raced.
Bikes from Ian's "Noddy" in all it pre season glory, recently painted and cleaned and polished and serviced ready for the first off-track excursion of the season!
The KTM is a popular choice for the open class, though more expensivethan some others it is very capable. In the hands of people like Robin Sims can be a class leader
Or bikes like the
Armstrong – a cheap Rotax powered machine that in standard form is a good machine to learn on,
it doesn’t bite and can be
quite competitive in the right hands.
Unlike the YZ490 – now fallen out of favour as a competive bike due to it’s age and power delivery – downright vicious!
The specials can be fun -
some very competive - others not so!
(It's a Harley Ironhead Sportster in a FZ400 chassis by the way)
The Honda CR is D*^n fast and very good horses for money too. Consequently it's a very popular and competitive bike.
Motocrossers, somewhat ubiqutious, but for a good reason
TDR 250 is a fun machine for the road legal class, quick, light
- but not with tyres like this!This one now has a set of stickies on it
Now this is a machine I'd
not expect to see on the hills,
and not suprisingly it's not the fastest. But the fun of Hill Climbing
is that speed is not all - it's getting the best out of whatever it is you are riding and besting your best time.
Oh, and having fun making a good looking bike that's great fun for not many pennies.
Classics of the
Now this is a classic, and beautifully prepared
As is this - perhaps the most famous "Racer" of the era.
Now I thought this is was Rudge but I have been corrected by Graham Proctor who informs me "is in fact a Velocette. That weird and wonderful shaped timing chest known as the "Map of Africa" for obvious reasons, and the bike is a 250 MOV or a 350 MAC. Cheers Graham!
Here we have Richard Cobb on Simon Duff's Triumph at Gurston
Well here is a splendid machine (Well as it's mine I'm a little biased) For those of you with eagle eyes it's a Triumph Trophy motor in a Ducati 250 frame - the tank? an early 250 Yamaha
Now - this is a beautiful machine! fantastically prepared and very photogenic A problem though, It's not eligible for the classic class as it's a little on the young side and that disc excludes it I'm afraid
As it does with our newsletter editor, John Woods Weslake, which I kid you not he really knows how to ride - in this he takes after his father
And this is Andrew Bennet on "Phobos" a 1000 JAP motor beautifully prepared and ridden by a master (Well I can't get anywhere near him - how about you?)
Three wheelers of the
Now this is a three wheeler
an outfit, a combo, a bike and sidecar, but lower than normal and built specially for task.
Well you could be wrong...
Well, when it comes to Hill Climbing they can be like this
Well, it's a three wheeler! we do allow some of these as they are bike engined, however some of them look like this...
With a supercharged Morris 1000 motor!
Fun, but not really competitve.For that we have to go more like this...
Which is a very quick
machine, very fast on the quick corners,
but has difficulty getting the power down on coming out
of the slower ones (and my does it have some power!)
Now, what's different here? This is Curly one one of the evolutions of his
Now this is what has become the "Hill Climb trike", based on F1 technology they are scarily quick - but maybe not quite as quick as the two in front layout on the very fast corners. But maybe, just maybe that's the rider...
That'll be Jason Reeve then...
"Entertaining" is a good description of them in the wet
Not exactly low technology...