Once upon a time, yves 1976

yves norton seeley

Feb 13, 2014
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Hello Friends,
The BMW was completely stock, I had just changed the tires for Dunlop K 81, I had come by road with a friend behind on the saddle.
After the race I had to plug the holes in the rocker covers with polyester to get home.
Of course, the BMW had flaws, like all motorcycles of the time, but it wasn't too difficult to adapt.
I see that Al does not comment on my Cromwell, after this race the Cromwell was banned from competition.

Removed joke due to complaint
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I walked out of my street one day and saw a taxi arrive. It was two weeks after the Bathurst Easter road races. My mate got out of that taxi carrying his bag and a pudding basin helmet. He had bounced off the fence at Murrays' Corner after running wide. A few years later Ross Barelli was killed there when the discs exploded off his RG500 Suzuki. His father had replaced the original with grey cast iron ones. Another mate ran into trouble there in about 1958 when he was riding the 500cc Triton I used to race. When you approach the corner too fast, you have a choice - left or right - both ways the angle is the same. One thing which you do NOT need is a pudding basin helmet. There has been no helmet ever invented, which would ever have saved Ross Barellii. But the pudding basin helmet saved my mate's life.
Motorcycles are not raced at Bathurst these days. I loved watching the races there, but I was always filled with apprehension. It is a magnificent race circuit.
At least Yve's BMW had disc brakes. The combination of a drum front brake and a pudding basin helmet can be deadly. The brake is unreliable and so is the helmet.
In Victoria from about 1948 to about 1968, there were not many fatalities in motorcycle road racing. , I think somebody might have been killed when they hit a building at Bandiana. But when the two strokes arrived, things changed.
These days, you can have really big crashes and walk away. But you don't have to be stupid.
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I had a R75/5 BMW, and with about 60mm of spacers on the front springs it could be ridden with great enthusiasm. Bumping the rocker covers on the road and hanging right off the saddle were the order of the day. A lot of other riders were surprised at how a stodgy old man's tourer could go. Standing start wheelies were another trick that I indulged in. With habitual 100 mph touring I became disenchanted with the front drum brake and fitted a 4ls drum off an early TZ Yamaha. It was a superb road brake, one finger for normal stops, two fingers for panic stops. I once applied it at 100 mph over a slight hump and picked the back wheel up. I have another such brake that is going on my current Norton Dominator build - massive overkill, but visually pleasing (Norton content for accessnorton)
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