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22nd March 2006


2006 Malvern RealClassic Bike Show & Jumble

Last autumn the Malvern Show was struck by torrential rain and floods. This spring we got… snow. Half a foot of the stuff. And some folk still rode their bikes to the event!

We must have done something to offend the weather gods. Last autumn, the RC Roadshow failed to make it to the Malvern Show when the little blue van got damaged while wading through floodwaters. This spring we only had 20 miles to travel to get to the event - and it still took two hours! On the Sunday morning we all awoke to a carpet of snow on the Malvern Hills, extending westwards into Wales. A few braves souls travelled over the from the east and only encountered bad weather for the last few miles, but we couldn't blame the Leominster Club for taking one look outside the window and scuttling back to the safety of the duvet! It wasn't very good weather for riding classic bikes, that's for sure.

Vincent. Cool.

So it's even more remarkable that so many people came out to play, and all those who rode their classics to the show deserve (1) a round of applause, and (2) a helping hand to clean off the salt and slush! In the end, the competition for the concours classes was still tricky to judge, with several machines vying for top honours. RC writer Dave Minton opted for a controversial choice (for a change…) with his Bike of the Show, and chose Alan Curtis' 1928 Francis-Barnett Pullman. Although Alan has faithfully renovated the F-B he decided not to re-chrome or re-paint it, preferring instead to preserve the bike's ancient ambience. Dave applauded his decision - but that didn't stop half a dozen other entrants bending Mr Minton's ear about his choice at the end of the event!

Alan Curtis' 1928 Francis-Barnett Pullman Alan Curtis' 1928 Francis-Barnett Pullman
Random Fanny Bs on eBay.co.uk

The RealClassic stand was graced by RC Clubman Andy Stait's splendid Interceptor Mk1A. This is the shiniest of Andy's Interceptor collection, a bike which he repatriated last autumn. When Andy left home the weather was clear… so he deserves extra credit for travelling the final five miles in appalling conditions, and then mopping off the resultant muck from his marvellous machine.

The argument over who had the best headwear raged on all afternoon. Andy S (left) and Dave Minton

Steve Gardner also gets full marks for riding in on his 1967 Thunderbolt, as does Rob Norton, who'd been spending the weekend with the Vincent Owners' Club (www.voc.uk.com) in Wales. Rob had a pretty action-packed journey to the show - a big Vin can be something of a handful in icy conditions -- and as you can see from the photos, the VOC event got more than its fair share of snow!

Vincent and riders. Cold.

In all, over 1200 people turned out to enjoy the Malvern show. Although the snow kept many of the bikes at home, it was amazing to see how many people just kept turning up. A steady stream of CXs whiffled in to join the display on the Honda Turbo Association, and the local VMCC section were well represented.

Obrut. Honda are never one to back down from a pointless challenge, as the CX Turbo proves.

BikerMarc and G3Cal. Very Cold.And just when we'd given up hope of seeing any RC Dribblers, BikerMarc and G3Cal arrived - aboard just the one bike, after an escapade of the AA variety. Full marks, folks, for not slinking off home when the going got tough.

Next weekend, the RC Roadshow heads south to the South of England Motorcycle Show at Ardingly near Gatwick. We've been promised a couple of extra special café racers to join Jerry Fiford's Café Race Collection on the RC stand, and the RC team would be delighted to see readers and riders from the south-east.

Is there any chance of some decent weather for a change?

The next event for the RC Roadshow is the South of England RealClassic Bike Show and Autojumble on Sunday March 26th. The Showground is on the B2028, five miles from J10 off the M23. Adult admission is £5: RC Club members should show their cards to be admitted for £4 instead. More info from 01484 452002 or see www.classicshows.org

Honda C200. One of my mates (hi Cyril) had one of these when we were in the 6th form. We thought it was very cool.

The next date for the Malvern RealClassic Bike Show is Sunday 5th November. See www.RealClassic.co.uk/greenwood for details of how to enter your bike for the concours competition

Steve Gardner's 1967 Thunderbolt.

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