Saturday, 26 January 2013

Monte Carlo or Bust

Today there was a parade of classic rally cars in Glasgow Green. Nine of the cars were going to Monte Carlo for the Classic Rally.

 The oldest competitor - A 1951 Holden 48/215 (Holden are the Australian part of General Motors)

1972 Datsun 240Z

 1968 Volvo 122S

1979 Porsche 924 Turbo

 1977 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.0

1970 Lancia Fulvia Coupe 1.3S

 1972 Saab 96 V4

1976 Skoda 130RS

 Lancia Stratos replica

The Doulton Fountain in the park with Queen Vic on top

 Wardens bust car in motorcycle parking bay

Friday, 25 January 2013

Snow Fun #2

A look back to more biking in the snow.

 March 1980 and I'm practicing "powerslides" on my Suzuki TS100. This was the best "snow bike" I've owned. It was light, had knobbly tyres and high bars. I blame the naff eagle decal on the top box on brother Norman who, I'm sure, gave it to me.

Another good winter bike - an MZ ETZ125, December 1995 I think. It was brutally cold getting down to -20C at the end of the month. I rode the MZ to Hamilton were I was working at the time. The little bike started and ran ok in the extreme cold. At 50mph the wind chill made it feel that the heat was being sucked out of your body.

About 1986. My Honda CB250RS buried under snow outside my flat in Shawlands. 

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Kevin Ash

I was sad to read about the death of the Daily Telegraph motorcycle journalist Kevin Ash. Kevin died following an accident while testing the new BMW R1200GS in South Africa.

Kevin was a respected writer and I enjoyed his articles in the Sunday Telegraph.  

Read his articles here:

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Snow Fun

The West of Scotland hasn't had as much snow as the rest of the country during the recent cold spell but enough to make a run to the wind farm above Eaglesham interesting.

Monday, 21 January 2013


Despite the weather I made it out for my weekly visit to Lidl and found this unhelpful signage near East Kilbride.

Featured Bike - Norton P800

Continuing cold weather and snow precludes any "Tales from the Road" so I delved into the archive for another Norton prototype. This is the P800 of 1965. It was an 800cc double overhead camshaft unit twin with a five speed gearbox intended to replace the Atlas. As usual financial woes killed this project. Photographed at the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham in 2009.

article on bike

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Overtoun Bridge, Dumbarton

A short run today to Overtoun House. This is an impressive Scottish Baronial pile near Dumbarton. But it was not the house I came to see but the adjacent bridge. A sturdy stone arch over a gorge the bridge has a dark side. Since the 1950's this has been the site of a large number a apparent suicides - by dogs! Mutts jump off the bridge at a rate of up to one per month. Amazingly ones that survived the fall jump again when back on the bridge. A study found that the dogs jump from the same part of the bridge, typically in still, fine weather and they are usually long nosed types. The current theory is that the dogs smell mink that live in the gorge and jump the solid parapet not realising the drop on the other side.


CBF at the bridge

"Don't do it Rover!"
Overtoun Bridge
Overtoun House





Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Lauder Bridge, Kilmarnock

I'll always stop at an interesting bridge, especially one with a story. This footbridge was built in 1905 to carry people over the burn when the adjacent ford was flooded (as was certainly the case today) The bridge was the idea of local shopkeeper David Lauder. Unfortunately at the opening ceremony a large crowd gathered and surged onto the bridge causing it to collapsed tipping them into the water, luckily with no deaths. The bridge was rebuilt with three intermediate supports resulting in a rather odd looking hybrid. The supports do give the bridge a sturdy feel when I crossed it. There seems to a plan to replace the ford & footbridge. It would be a pity to lose such an interesting landmark. 

The bridge as built in 1905
Opening day collapse (sorry for the quality)
The old ford upstream was also a no-no today

Bad Suit

Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona wins the European Footballer of the Year Award. His tailor should get an award too.