A January Ride-Out

At last the weather in January turned in our favour and although there was some cloud cover at times, overall today has been a sunny day for us.  And it was not just us who had the idea that today was the day to give the bikes a run out, we came across no end of motorcyclists out which was great to see.

The month of January can seem to drag in the world of motorcycling, no MotoGP, World Super Bike or British Super Bike racing to watch on a cold Sunday afternoon and whilst there are plenty who ride in all weathers there are not that many who want to be venturing out when the temperatures are hardly rising above freezing and there is salt on the roads.  But, today was a good day, in fact at one point the temp gauge registered 8 degrees and that seemed positively tropical when you think back over the past few days and weeks here in the UK.

We set off mid morning for a ride-out through Cheshire, crossing the borders of Staffordshire and Shropshire a few times before ending up at cropped-10940524_997296310284783_2715909745442065661_n.jpgLynn’s Raven Cafe on the outskirts of Whitchurch for a warming brew and lots of chat with like minded riders.  We had several comments about the handlebar mitts that Jan has on her motorbike and whilst they may not necessarily be that aesthetically pleasing to the eye they most definitely are a very welcome addition to her Kawasaki during the winter months 🙂

From coffee we headed north on the A49 and got to enjoy a virtually empty road apart from the Kawasaki Z1000 who was ahead of us and who seemed to be enjoying the flowing bends just as much as us!  It was good also to pass other motorbikes and we ended up at J&S Motorcycle Accessories shop at Oakmere where there were loads of bikes parked up making the most of the weather.  We caught up with some of the lads who have been out with us on ride-outs who were looking for some new kit and we had time to call in on the girls in the Fourways Cafe and Grill for a natter before heading back.

Of course with riding at this time of year there comes the need for bike washing at the end of it, but all things considered there was not that much muck to wash off and when all said and done it is a small price to pay when we have been able to get out and about on two wheels…. what better way to spend a Sunday!  🙂

 

 

 

London Classic Car Show January 2015

From the 8th to 11th January 2015 there was the London Classic Car Show at the Excel  which we had the opportunity to attend.  This was the first event of it’s kind and although on first appearance it seemed quite small when compared to other events we have been to such as MotorcycleLive at the NEC last November, it was well laid out with an excellent “motorised cat walk” running through the centre of the show and with some great background music to give the whole show a very relaxed feeling.

The show was divided into sections with classic cars and Classic Kawasakimotorcycles on display such as the Kawasaki 900 pictured here, a fantastic array of GrandPrix cars from all eras, an area devoted to a feature called “13 cars which changed the world” as picked by James May and a fascinating section devoted to the life and works of Adrian Newey.

As you may have gathered, our passion is for all things motorcycling and whilst this show was specifically geared to Classic Cars, there were still plenty of motorbikes on display to Indian Board Racerkeep us entertained such as this Indian “Board Racer” which was in tiptop condition.  These machines were raced by some very brave riders on wooden 60 degree velodromes at upto speeds of 90+mph and there were no brakes!!!  Perhaps not surprisingly, “Board Racing” went into decline in the 1920’s due to the dangers involved, not sure this would be very comfortable at 90 mph even on a flat surface 🙂

Below are a few others which we were able to view on display all in immaculate condition as you can see….

Classic BikesBenz MotorwagenThe first “car” in the James May feature looked more like cross between a trap from a “horse & trap” and a pushbike with a motorised element.  This was a 1885 Benz Patent-Motorwagen and we particularly liked one line in the description where James points out that “no-one involved in the design had yet realised that driving should be an indoor activity” 🙂   As any motorcyclist reading this will know when you are in a car the scenery is framed by the windscreen but when riding a motorbike you are in the picture, seems that even back in the 1880’s there were some budding motorcyclists at work!!!

Twice during the day there was a running display of some of the classic cars from all eras which was undertaken on the aptly named “Grand Avenue” – it was a short section of road marked out with turning circles at either end, and the show we saw was devoted to some truly classic Italian designed cars, Ferrari’s, Lamborghini, Maserati and Lancia.  We felt this was a very clever way of showing off the cars and congratulations have to go to the owners of the cars who had clearly spent a lot of time keeping these wonderful machines in excellent condition.

The show is to return in February 2016 and if we have the opportunity to visit again, we will….  a few more motorbikes on display would make it just perfect images