in the 70s and beyond...
|Being a long time road racing fan, I’d flip through the pages of MotorCycle Sport (UK) and read about idols such as Geoff Duke, Mike Hailwood, Ago, and Jim Redman. Later I'd be reading Cycle News about the likes of Dick Mann and later still, King Kenny Roberts -when he went to Europe..
I knew it was only time before I’d have to give road racing a try. I remember going to watch the AFM races at Vacaville with my dad during the 1960s, and again in the mid 1970’s with friend Chris Quinn. It was Chris that got me interested in the AFM, but first I’d have to buy/build a bike. In 1977 Chris Quinn, Bret Morshead and myself found ourselves employed at Cycle Salvage in Hayward (CA). While working there we found a number of cool machines hidden in the back, one of which was a 1969 Triumph Trident T150. Being a long time Triumph fan, I just had to have the 3-cylinder. So after a bit for hounding, I traded the boss my red SL100 for the Triumph. Before long Bret ended up with 3/4's of a 1969 BSA Rocket-3, plus a couple of Triumph 250s (TR25W), as did I.
With the Triumph home, dad and I pulled the engine and overhauled it… what a job that was! I was use to working on twins, I had never worked on a “Three”. The end result was promising. I rode the bike on the street some time… Then in spring 1978 Mr. Quinn reminded me of racing with the AFM. In April of that year I found myself sitting on the 750 Modified Production grid with a 3-cylinder Triumph and #805 on my number plates.
That first race was both good and bad; The good parts was I didn’t fall off, while the bad part was I hammered a big-end bearing in the engine from over-revving it (had Honda 100 on the brain and would wind it out till the valves floated and punch the shifter! Opps!). On my birthday (1978) I’d be back at Sears Point with the Trident for another go at road racing, where I finished mid-pack.
The photo below-left (#805) is from April ’78 at Sears Point Raceway.
|Road Racing Page Links...
Producation & Endurance
Battle of The Twins
Vintage Racing -Triumph-BSA
More Road Racing with WCBR
|What I Wanted to do... was to go racing with the AMA, but I needed experience first. With that in mind I looked at the AFM Endurance races. Every year the AFM would have two big events, the Annual 6-Hour at Ontario and the 4-Hour race at Sears Point. Now I'd have to find a team-mate or two and have a bike that was dependable enough to last. Using the above Links, click on Production & Endurance , then BoTT for the rest of the story.