For many people, “What you don’t know can’t hurt you” are words to live by. But when it comes to riding a motorcycle, they’re more likely to be words to die by. If you need convincing, not to worry; I’ve brought some evidence. Exhibit A: A sportbike rider is swiftly arcing through the turns on an unfamiliar, twisty road when something momentarily breaks his concentration.
Encouraging words from the inner sanctum of insurance
Steven L. Thompson
SOME KINDS OF ENVELOPES YOU JUST don't want to open. Anything from the Federal Government fits this category, as do most missives from law offices. But the kind of envelope that I've come to dread most is the one from an insurance company. This is not as irrational as it seems.
In reference to your March Editorial, "A Matter Of Opinion," be advised that I want a two-wheeler with aluminum/ magnesium spoked wheels, single front and rear disc brakes, monoshock suspension, aluminum frame, and a five-speed gearbox hooked to a single-cylinder, liquid-cooled, five-valve, dohc four-stroke displacing 350cc.
K&N claims its Honda Shadow 500/750 air filters reduce air-restriction to allow more horsepower and torque. The filters fit without modifying or rejetting, and should last the life of the motorcycle. Price is $13.95 from dealers. For more information contact K&N Engineering, 561 Iowa Ave., P.O. Box 1329, Riverside, CA 92502.
Elite Touring Gloves
Hondaline's newest touring gloves combine Thinsulate®thermal insulation, Gore-Tex® and nylon for a warm, dry ride. Other features include pre-curved fingers to prevent bunching, leather-reinforced palms and stress areas, and long gauntlet cuffs. Elite Touring Gloves are available from Honda dealers.
Premixing gas and oil is now simplified with the Accu-Mix container. The unit is divided into two chambers that are connected only at the top. Each chamber is calibrated, so perfect mixtures are as simple as picking the desired ratio and matching the number of the gas level with the same number on the oil gauge, then shaking until a uniform color is achieved in the clear container. Price is $9.95 at motorcycle dealers. For more information contact DC Pro-Motion, Box 7191, Riverside, CA 92503: (714) 351-0633.
The President is a loose. Italian-cut jacket fabricated of double-A-grade nappa dress leather. Features include a double-pleated action back, long sleeves, mandarin collar with snap closures, and an elastic waist band. The President goes for $239.95 in gray or wineberry. They are available at dealers or through Esprit, 455 McCormick Blvd., Columbus, OH 43213.
It’s 7 a.m. Sunday morning. And like every Sunday morning for years, riders are lined up outside the park gate, waiting to be let in so their day of riding and racing can begin. Except that this particular Sunday, the gates won’t open. And they’ll never open again.
The Street Hawk, television's newest crime-fighting vehicle, might have been able to leap tall buildings with a single blast from LS vertical lifters, but it came out second-best in a battle for ratings points and has been axed from ABC’s lineup.
Cagiva’s entry in the recent ParisDakar Rally might not have won the race, but in terms of fuel capacity, it was no contest. Cagiva’s guppy-like Paris-Dakar machine, based on the yet-to-bereleased Elephant 650 dual-purpose bike, has a hand-made, aluminum fuel tank that holds an astonishing 16 gallons.
Ducati, at one time the Italian motorcycle, and Cagiva, the new force in Italian motorcycling, are now even closer than ever. If you read Cycle World's Kawasaki Ninja/Cagiva Alazzurra shootout from two months ago, you already know that the 650cc Cagiva is basically a Ducati Pantah with an enlarged motor, recalibrated suspension and different bodywork.
There might be many reasons for not wearing helmets, but Dairyland Insurance has done away with one of them: the expense. The Arizonabased company is offering the Sentry, a DOT-approved full-face helmet, for $39.95. Dairyland’s president, Ed Davis, realizes that the wearing of helmets is a touchy subject with many motorcyclists.
FIFTY FEET AHEAR, THE SUZUKI GSX-R750 banks into the corner, leaning until just inches separate its highmounted footpegs from the road. Early morning light streaming through the trees dances across the GSX-R’s sculptured surfaces, alternately illuminating its rider, then returning him to the shadows.
IRELAND. The name provoked all kinds of response in England. You'd sit in a bar in Birmingham and the man who'd just bought you a pint would say, “Well, where are you two adventurers riding next?” You’d answer “Ireland,” and a strange hush would fall over the pub.
THE SHORTEST DISTANCE FROM THE TRACK TO THE TRAIL RUNS THROUGH AUSTRIA
ONCE UPON A TIME, YOU COULD buy an Open-class motocross bike that would work fairly well for practically any type of dirt riding. But no more. Open bikes these days are so specialized, with their close-ratio transmissions and explosively powerful engines, that they don’t make very good all-around off-road bikes.
DAYTONA BIKE WEEK IS MANY THINGS TO MANY PEOple. To the motorcycle enthusiasts who go there, it's an annual happening that marks the beginning of a new season of racing and riding. To the motorcycle industry, it's a focal point, a place to see and be seen.
RECORD BOOKS ARE MARELous, weighty things, volumes rife with statistics, and asterisks and addendums, And the record book for 1985 will dryly point out that Freddie Spencer, a 23-year-old Honda rider from Shreveport, Louisiana, won the Formula 2, Formula 1 and Superbike races at Daytona International Speedway during the 44th annual Speed Week festivities.
SCOTT GRAY STEPPED OUT OF the 1975 Econoline van and looked across the desolate mid-Texas plains, turning his back to the harsh, dusty wind. In less than 35 hours, he had to be in Florida, at Daytona Speedway, unloading motorcycles, zipping on leathers and preparing for the Formula One and Superbike races.
The Latest Chapter in America's V-Twin Love Affair
IT'S FUNNY HOW DIFFERENT COUNtries are identified by their motorized creations. Italy is known for its blood-red Ferraris whooshed along by elegant V-12 motors. and for any number of exoticsounding motorcycle engines, all close-pitch finned and double-overhead cammed.
After 25 years as head of Harley-Davidson's factory race team and nearly half a century of involvement with motorsports of some kind, he "retired" — by going racing with the Good 0I' Boys
FOR A QUARTER-CENTURY HE served as manager of Harley-Davidson's factory racing team. And for most of that time he reigned as “The Godfather” of American motorcycle competition. But following his retirement in 1983, Dick “O.B.” O’Brien quickly found a new outlet for his lifelong interest in motorsports; The white-haired.
DICK O'BRIEN IS RELUCTANT TO choose among the many brilliant riders who have graced his teams, hesitant to name a single, outstanding talent as the greatest dirt-track racer ever. But if the record book for O’Brien's 26½year slice of the sport’s history can be trusted as a yardstick, the accolade must surely fall to Jay Springsteen.“Jay is certainly one of the alltime greats,” O’Brien acknowledges, “and maybe the best ever.
There was no doubt about it; Honda owned Daytona. With victories in the Superbike, Formula One and Formula Two races, nothing could have made Honda’s week more successful. Except, perhaps, having someone to beat. It was almost like running unopposed in an election; to many race-watchers, Honda’s wins didn't really prove anything.
On June 22 and 23, 1985, the Tulsa Touring Riders will present its second annual poker run and bike show in Sapulpa, Oklahoma. Signup and registration start at 9:00 a.m. Saturday morning at the Creek County Fairgrounds. Field events are from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. followed by live music and dancing at 8:00 p.m. Bike show and other awards on Sunday after continental breakfast and church services.
I own six motorcycles, and do my own maintenance and modifications. That brings up my problem: Where do you obtain metric fasteners in bulk? I cannot seem to find some types of fasteners in metric sizes at all—things like “Rivnuts,” thumb screws, cap nuts and castle nuts (although my dealer will order the latter if I give him the size and wait two weeks).
We need your photos for Slipstream. We're looking for photos that make us smile because they say something about motorcycling. Submissions should be made to Slipstream, Cycle World, 1499 Monrovia, Newport Beach, Calif. 92663. Only black and white prints, 8 by 10 in., should be sent.