12th February 2016
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Bristol Show Snapshots
Normally, we try not to go on about the weather when reporting on an event. But wow. This year's Bristol Classic Motor Cycle show was blessed with what can only be described as climatic conditions of biblical proportions...
Despite the fact that Noah’s ark sailed past at one point, and a river ran through even the main show hall, stalwart classic motorcyclists still put on an excellent display of old bikes last weekend (although kayaks might have been more use). RealClassic reader Angelo Conti saw the bright side: ‘cheers all the guys who stayed away – shorter queue, less waiting time for tickets, more bargains, yay! It was blooming windy though; some of those tent things were moving about a bit. Loved the guy outside who only left his stainless nuts and bolts on display – genius!’
Oily Boot Bob was able to get a good view of the various sectioned engines on club stands. ‘The Norton OC displayed a nice cutaway rotary engine that could be turned by hand to see all the workings, as did Panther OC with their sloping kinetic art, and there was a Moto Morini the same. Shame the Velocette MAC and Venom motors had a DO NOT TOUCH sign on them.’ Despite that disappointment, Bob didn’t go home empty-handed as you can see from the pic of a handsome pair of pipes somewhere hereabouts. ‘Mike Oldfield was at Shepton Mallet, knocked up these beautiful stainless pipes for my Enfield 250s. No? OK, PGW Engineering of Paignton made them. Peter is a real gent and a craftsman.’
Heaps of people braved the deluge to drop by the RC Roadshow and say hello. Some took sneaky pics when we weren’t paying attention, too. Robert Ward said: ‘we had a good day rummaging around the show and were able to talk Ariel and Harley-Davidson with FrankW.’ And thanks to all those folks who stopped by with life-saving coffee, life-saving chocolates, life-saving biscuits and such – although maybe a surf lifeguard might’ve been more appropriate this time around.
Mark Bailey also made the most of the occasion: ‘I caught up with friends, extolled the virtues of Morinis to many visitors to the stand, and bumped in to Sue and Ken, who I last saw in Kathmandu five years ago. And I picked up the Valentini fairing which kind Robin had brought back from the Netherlands for me. The weather on the way home was hideous, and the road was blocked by floods. By the time I got to London I needed a BIG gin and tonic!’
In light of all that, the extra special RC commendation goes to Roy Plowman, who arrived on Sunday, braving Storm Imogen – ON TWO WHEELS! Without water-wings! (Your prize ekranoplan is in the post, Roy).
Meanwhile, a spot of official news from the Gold Star Owners’ Club who were awarded the prize for the Best Club stand. The Gold Star exhibition team went for an eclectic mix of machines, showcasing a variety of road and race bikes including off-road examples. The group’s chairman Ron May said: ‘it just goes to prove that Gold Stars can do anything.’ RC regular Mike Curtis grabbed a snap of John Trible – one of the south-west’s star scrambles riders from back in the day – wishing he still had his own Goldie.
Coo. Wot a weekend. We’ll be back at Shepton for the VMCC jumble on 5 March 2016.
Meanwhile, the next big ClassicBikeShows event is the Carole Nash Classic Motor Cycle Show at Stafford on 23/24 April 2016. See www.classicbikeshows.com
Thanks to Mike Curtis, Robert Murdoch, Mark Bailey, Robert Ward, and anyone else whose photos we’ve used here...
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