How much things have changed, I didn’t appreciate until the morning I got a letter from an old pal. Two previous lives ago, he and I were newspaper reporters, covering the same events for rival big city papers. We were professional rivals and personal friends, I suspect because the only people who knew how good a job we were doing was us.
Thanks for the Sherpa T test in the July issue. It’s nice to know there's a magazine that hasn't forgotten about us trials riders. Also, the pietures were excellent. Goes to show you that a trials bike in the hands of a good rider can be every bit as exciting, challenging and rewarding as a race across Baja or bustin' berms alongside Bob Hannah.
At last, after the judge told both sides to settle the case themselves or he’d take care of both sides, the Phantom Duck of the Desert and the Bureau of Land Management have reached an agreement and the Duck and his friends are not going to jail.
Subtle Refinements Prepare Yamaha’s Eleven for 1980
Forget the rumors. There’s no V-Four. No enlarged Elevens. Yamaha’s flagship, for the third year in a row, is the XS Eleven. And the most Eleven you can buy is still the Special, with low, stepped seat, handlebars that would look appropriate on the hood of a cowboy Cadillac, and the same clean styling that has made Yamaha’s Specials a success story.
41 Knobby Tires Compared on the Track and the Trail.
CROSS COUNTRY IMPRESSION
SAND MX COURSE RATING
HARD PACK MX TRACK RATING
FLAT TRACK RATING
At the beginning of this project, a comparison test of knobby tires, we approached every major tire manufacturer with two requests. First, we told them about the project and asked for tires. Second, we expressed concern about conducting scientific tests on a wide variety of surfaces, and we asked for advice.
They’re Expensive. They’re Complicated. And They Work.
Scott Motocross Boots
Scott motocross boots may have received the most preproduction publicity of any motorcycle accessory in history. Handmade prototypes were being worn and evaluated by guys like Gerrit Wolsink, Mark Blackwell, Danny LaPorte and Bob Hannah for a couple of years before the boots went on sale.
Husqvarna made major changes to the frames of their motocross and off-road/ enduro bikes last year. Refinement of that design is Husqvarna’s theme for the 1980 models. A larger displacement open class engine was rumored but didn’t appear.
It's Honda vs. History Again, as the Radical Four-Stroke V-Four Makes Its Debut and Goes Down in Flames
Last time this happened, we missed it. Then as now, world class road racing was conducted along clearly defined lines. There were two main groups; the English and the Italians, with occasional forays by the Germans. After experiments with exotic stuff like aerodynamics and supercharging, the rules were tightened and Grand Prix bikes became pretty much alike.
Winter Survival Is Easy for Carefully Prepared Motorcycles
It’s getting to be that time of year again, when you have to bundle up like an arctic explorer just to ride around the block. Time to put the bike in the shed and wait for spring. Store it properly and come spring, it'll be eager to go. Do it wrong and by the time winter’s over, you’ll have a restoration project on your hands.
Professor Roberts, Ph.D.,R.R., gives lessons while the racing returns to Formula 750
Rich Schlachter sat atop a case of oil in the back of the Kawasaki truck (his Superbike sponsors), soaking up the shade and large quantities of orange juice between heats of the Champion Spark Plug 200 F750 race at Laguna Seca. When asked about his second-place performance in the first 100 kilometer heat, he replied, “Boy, I just received one hell of a lesson in riding fast!” His teacher, of course, was Kenny Roberts, the man who, if such a thing were available, would surely hold a Ph.D. in motorcycle road racing.
Fast Freddie Spencer finds the way around the Bakersfield Line
"Maybe I should try that Bakersfield line,” said Freddie Spencer after his Superbike Production heat race at Laguna Seca. Spencer, 17, had just seen firsthand some of the tricks Ron Pierce, 30, has learned in 15 years of professional road racing.
We were sitting on the false grid, waiting for the signal to begin our, uh, exhibition, when the AMA official noticed Martin Vogel. Martin is a typical motocross kid; long hair, surfer style, etc. He was slouched on his Harley KR750 with his borrowed leathers making a perfect match, as the KR is what one would have to call unrestored; paint by brush, solid rear end with disc front brake and bars that would do justice to a Texas longhorn.
ROBERTS QUITS WINNERS. . . AND TAKES THE CIRCUS WITH HIM
KENNY TAKES IT AGAIN
SCHREIBER WINS WORLD TITLE
COLEMAN/BEVANS WIN LAGUNA SECA SIDECAR RACE
NMRA 1980 DRAG RACES
ROAD RACING IN HAWAII
Kenny Roberts won his second world 500cc roadracing championship in a dramatic finish at the French Grand Prix. And Roberts says he and the other top riders competing in the FIM series won’t be back next year. The French round was typically sensational in what has been one of the best seasons in years.
I purchased a new 1978 XS11 Yamaha this June and with 5000 km on the speedometer I am experiencing a problem with the front fork. When first starting off. especially over bumpy ground. I get a loose clunky feeling which can be felt through the handlebar.
White Bros. has developed three different engine kits for the KLX 250. Separate pieces including exhaust pipes, silencers, carburetors, big bore kits and head porting are available. Want more information? White Bros. Cycle Specialties, CW-12, 11611-M Salinaz Dr., Garden Grove, Calif. 92643
NMRA RULES BOOK
The National Motorcycle Racing Association has finalized the 1980 Rules Book for distribution November 1, 1979. The book has been compiled by experts in the field of motorcycle drag racing and is a must item for the competitor and enthusiast involved in motorcycle drag racing. Contact NMRA, CW-12, P.O. Box 1320. York, Penn. 17405
This new tank has an O-ring sealed cap, uses the standard Honda petcock, and bolts directly to the stock mounts in less than 10 min. It is constructed from Phillips crosslinkable polyethylene plastic and available in red, white, blue, orange, yellow, silver, or green. The large CR Honda tank maintains the distinctive Honda shape and comes with a one year guarantee. Check your local dealer or contact Clarke Manufacturing Co., CW-12, Rt. 1, Box 576, Mulino, Ore. 97042. Phone (503) 829-2156
HYDRON GRADIENT-TINT SHIELD
National Hydron’s MXL scratch-resistant and Hydron anti-fog face shields, are now available with a gradient tint. Price is approximately $1 more than that for a standard clear or full-tint MXL or Hydron treated shield. Available for most major brand helmets at motorcycle dealers or contact National Hydron lnc.,CW-IZ, 1764 Rohrerstown Road, P.O. Box 222, East Petersburg, Pa. 17520. Phone (717) 569-8711
LARGE SHELL SCOTT BOOTS
Scott’s large shell plastic boots are finally available. The medium size has been on the market for almost a year. The large shell accommodates feet in sizes 11.12 and 13. Like the medium shell jobs, outside dimensions are the same for the three sizes, and fitting is accomplished with high density foam liners. See any Scott dealer for more information.