|More Triumph Twin gone vintage racing...|
|Backing up for a moment... In 1992 I was a guest at Sears Point for a private track-day, so I hauled out the 250 Ducati and the 750 Triumph. I did lap after lap, after lap. It was getting late in the day so I said to myself, " one more quick lap and we'll head home". With that in mind I screwed it on coming out of turn-11,. 3rd gear, 4th gear... just as I was pulling it into 5th I heard something go off-song, I clutched it and engine stopped! On the track, in the pits, and even back at the shop, I was unable to get the engine to turn at all! Later we found that the left piston had broken up and locked everything solid!
Shortly after moving to our new shop in Livermore we began a complete overhaul of the Triumph, even painting the frame blue to match our Ducati's. The plan was to take it to Steamboat in '93, but that didn't happen. WCBR1 wouldn't again come out until summer 1997 when we ran it at the Donner Hill Climb (Right). Since '97 it again sat in the back of the shop with a sheet over it... that is until VMOTO invited me to bring it out in November 2003. The photo below is from Laguna Seca 2003. Though not really a "race" in the true sense of the word... it still was a race. The track regulations that day were that of noise, we weren't allowed to be over 90 db (far too low for any old motorcycle, even with stock 1970's era mufflers!). We had packed the megaphones with fiberglass packing before the main race, having already received two noise warnings. When the flag dropped I went nowhere, so to speak. The power was gone due to the blocked pipes... bunch of dummies we were trying to beat the sound rules with a gaggle of vintage machines. The opening lap noise about blew the track officials meter out the window! I was nearly dead last on lap one... moved up to 17th on lap-2, then made headway on lap-3 as the fiberglass began to burn away. FINALLY the fiberglass was gone and my power was back... I headed for the front, passing everyone in my way. As I exited turn-11 at the end of lap five I could see I was up to third overall and closing... then the damn checkered flag appeared without warning and my race was done. A good time was had by all... and I must say I really enjoyed myself that weekend getting to ride the 750 once again in anger at a wonderful race track!
I hope to take the Triumph out again in 2004... AHRMA now dictate that an "oil catching device" must be placed under the engine. With that said, I guess AHRMA is out, as I have no reason to change a bike that has raced since the 1970s without one. Maybe I'll drag the Triumph out to Portland, Seattle and Canada in 2004. MG
|Right: Hard on the brakes at Daytona while leading the 750 Sportsman race, and finishing 2nd in 1987.
Right-Below: Locking in a battle with a 750 Norton at Steamboat Springs in 1988 - in a wild shot by Carmen Lynaugh; The Norton rider wasn't much of a gentleman racer, as he'd shut MG off everytime Mike showed him a wheel... here the pair collide in turn-1, the Triunph's front wheel stuck against the Norton's rear wheel... the Norton towing the Triumph around turn-1. Green took the lead to win on the last lap with 2 turns to go!