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ARTICLES

Winter 2010, Volume 48 No. 4 Editor / Designer Tim Lee editor@hoc.org.uk Diary Co-ordinator Andy Stryczko webmaster@hoc.org.uk Advertising Co-ordinator Erica Gassor advertising@hoc.org.uk Thanks to all contributors All feedback regarding the content and delivery of Golden Wing should be addressed to The Editor at the address below or e-mailed to: editor@hoc.org.uk. Golden Wing Honda Owners Club (GB) 232 Leigh Road Chandlers Ford Eastleigh Hants SO53 3AW Tel: 023 8025 2113 Web Page: www.hoc.org.uk Spring Issue Copy Date 20th February 2011 Published by end of March 2011 Printing & Distribution by: LPC Printing Ltd Hardley Industrial Estate Hythe,Southampton Tel: 023 8084 6334 We believe the contents of Golden Wing to be correct at the time of publication. The Honda Owners Club (GB) cannot be held responsible for any errors, omissions, or for subsequent changes to details given in this publication or for the consequence of any reliance on the information. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the Honda Owners Club (GB) or the Executive Committee

© Honda Owners Club (GB) 2010

Dibble Rattle’s On .................................................. 3 Membership Matters ............................................. 5 Editor Says ............................................................. 6 Pigeon Post ............................................................ 8 Kicking Back ........................................................ 10 Ron Does Europe ................................................ 14 Racing Report ...................................................... 22 Classic Corner ..................................................... 24 Regalia Ramblings ............................................... 28 Shop@HOC ......................................................... 32 A Grand Day Out .................................................. 34 Testing Times ....................................................... 30 Down Your Way .................................................... 36 Reports from: Bedfordshire, Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Devon, Eastern, East Midlands, Kent, Lakes & Coast, Manchester, Manx Offshore, Norfolk, Northants & MK, North Downs, North London, Oxford, Reading, Solent, South Wales, West Coast Riders, West London, West Yorks, Wiltshire

Members Free Ads ............................................. 128

MEMBERS INFORMATION

Diary ................................................................... 129 Dealer Discounts ................................................ 132 Specialist Discounts ........................................... 134 Branch Contacts ................................................ 139

PLACES TO GO & THINGS TO DO

National Rally ....................................................... 12 Manchester Internatinal Evening ......................... 72 Three Shires s’ No Rally ...................................... 72 Reading Cock & Bull Rally ................................. 106 Solent New Forest Rally .................................... 107 Wiltshire Spring Rally ......................................... 125


CHAIRMAN DIBBLE RATTLE’S ON! from Andy “Dibble” Young - Club Chairman News as it happens? Join Andy’Andy’s email list by sending an email to

chairman@hoc.org.uk

HONDA BSB WEEKEND I was lucky enough to get along to the Silverstone round of the BSB as the guest of Honda UK and I have to say this was a brilliant event for those who attended and hopefully a style of event that Honda will be able to repeat next year.

AGM 2010

The National Motorcycle museum at Birmingham was again a superb venue and a few very pleasant duties were carried out. It was a pleasure to introduce back to the family of the HOC, our founder member Mike Evans member No 001, who we rewarded with a special thanks badge for actually starting the club in conjunction with Pete Goodger all those years ago. Thanks badges were also awarded to Trevor Thompson, Steve Davenport, Jennie Clarke, Gareth and Donna Richards, Dave and Sue White and Keven Luldum for all their hard work at branch level, and with their various other roles within the club. Then of course there was the award to Dave Ayesthorpe whose face was an absolute picture as was Victoria’s who he has supported at the Gloucester branch. Although Dave is unknown to many, he has been a very long standing member indeed. Having joined the club in 1961 with Mike Evans, he went on to form the Yorkshire branch. Since receiving the award at the AGM Dave has mentioned that it was a shame I did not mention his wife Gill without whom he would not have been able to do all the things WINTER 2010

he has done with the HOC over the years. So Gill, here is a sincere thank you that all the members will see. Phil and Rona Bell were then the gobsmacked recipients of the brand new Alan Augustine trophy (not a new award but a new trophy as the old one was full up). Well done to them. Then of course we welcomed the secretary of MAG to have a general input to the meeting being as we have now affiliated to the group. A well attended meeting, full of mostly pleasant stuff and hopefully enjoyed by the many who attended.

WE ARE 50!

Well after a year of telling you all it was coming it is finally here. The Honda Owners Club (GB) is 50 years old this year. We are the oldest single marque Japanese motorcycle club in the world and it is time to celebrate. In 2011 we are looking to party all year around with regular events tweaked, old events revamped and new events all with the purpose of celebrating 50 years of the club. I have a special plea to our members who own classic and vintage Honda. Please try and come along to the BMF show and to our special one day event on August the 7th at Boughton House in Northants. We would love to show your bike at the shows, and are interested in any Honda made between 1959 and today. cont.... 3


There will of course be some restrictions on the newer bikes as we expect they will be in greater supply. However if you have a 60’s, 70’s or 80’s bike then they will be most welcome. We are looking for landmark vehicles, good examples and regularly used machines of all dates. The event already has a Spitfire flying display booked and hoped that stunt shows and bike supplies will be available. Read elsewhere about the National Rally which promises to be a birthday party to remember. Any way enough from me. Happy New Year to you all and Happy Birthday HOC. “Ride on but most of all ride safe” Cheers

“Dibble” FRONT COVER The front cover photo for this edition shows Philip James with grandaughter Amy as pillion. As members of South Wales branch they attended the ‘Hoggin The Bridge’ event in October. This is an annual event attended by bikers to raise funds for various charities. The ride crosses the old Severn Bridge from England to Wales and progresses through various villages along the A48 and finishing at Chepstow. Here the town is closed to all traffic, with only bikes on the run allowed to enter. This results in three to four thousand bikes desending on Chepstow. Shops and traders are open with live bands playing music, giving the town a carnival feel. Phil & Amy say that the atmosphere is really great and well worth it. 4

President

Trevor Thompson

Vice Presidents Dave Barton, Tony Eldridge, Graham Gull

Chairman

Andy ‘Dibble’ Young 1 Severn Way, Kettering, Northants. NN16 9HN  01536 359659  chairman@hoc.org.uk

General Secretary

Graham Seymour 6 Kestrel Road, Flitwick, Bedfordshire, MK45 1RB 01525 633169  gensec@hoc.org.uk

Membership Secretary

Graham Gull 61 Vicarage Road, Ware SG12 7BE membership@hoc.org.uk

Saddle Sore Shield Co-ordinator Stephen Davenport  07968 810435 saddlesore@hoc.org.uk

Regalia Co-ordinator

Jennie Clarke 6 Bugby Way, Raunds, Northants, NN9 6SX  01933 399463 / 07759 805181  regalia@hoc.org.uk

Treasurer

Ruth Stryczko, 38 Bower Street, Bedford MK40 3RE.  treasurer@hoc.org.uk

Advertising Manager

Erica Gassor,  07799 49 2235  advertising@hoc.org.uk

Webmaster

Andy (Stritchy) Stryczko 38 Bower Street, Bedford MK40 3RE  webmaster@hoc.org.uk

BMF Liaison Officer

Jim Peel-Cross 11 The Green, Wilcot, Pewsey, Wilts. SN9 5NN  01672 563450

Classic Secretary

Dave Barton 53 Northlands Road, Totton Southampton. S040 3HA

WINTER 2010


MEMBERSHIP MATTERS WELCOME Welcome to all new members who have joined the club in recent months, especially those from the recent NEC show. I hope you enjoy your membership of the club and I know that some of you have already attended branch meetings and received a warm welcome.

MOVING? Don’t forget if you move, let me know, and no other club official, as I keep the address files up to date, (You can write or send an email). 15 of you did so in the last few months but 2 Autumn magazines were returned by Royal Mail with no forwarding address, so don’t let it be YOU who we lose contact with.

subscriptions using PayPal. Just go to our Website and follow the simple instructions.

OUR GOLDEN YEAR I know that the festive season has passed, and outdoor biking activities have scaled down for the Winter, but as you can see we have lots of events planned for our anniversary year, and I hope to see many of you at many of our gatherings, so that you can see that I really exist and am just not a name chasing you for your well earned cash!

DIRECT DEBIT Don’t forget that it makes life so much simpler to sign up for Direct Debit, so you needn’t worry about letting your membership lapse. All you need to do is return the renewal form when you receive it with your bank details and we will do the rest. Remember subscription rates are guaranteed until 2012.

PAYPAL When you receive a renewal reminder, don’t forget that you can also renew your

WINTER 2010

See Members Information pages at the rear for a list of those events which have already been arranged for our 50th anniversary year

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EDITOR SAYS... By the time you receive this issue of Golden Wing it will be well into the New Year, and so once again, my apologies for the wait. The reason for the delay is twofold, neither of which is likely to happen again for some while. Firstly, you may notice some subtle changes to the appearance of the magazine, especially the photographs, which I hope are brighter and a little more vibrant than was previously the case, especially the Autumn Issue. This is mainly due to a switch from Quark Express to Adobe InDesign as the program which is used to design and construct the pages of the magazine. InDesign offers a number of advantages, including the ability to import and deal with PDF documents and images within the program itself, and the ability to output the magazine direct to the printer as a press quality PDF, rather than a host of layout, picture and font files as has previously been the case. Whilst we confirmed at the AGM that we could never

envisage a time when Golden Wing would not be a printed publication, the output abilities of InDesign do offer us a number of options if we decided to produce an electronic copy as well as a printed copy in the future. The one drawback is that nine years worth of saved formatting and structure from the old program has had to be created from scratch, and that has taken quite a while, as has learning even the basics of the new program! As some of you know, I am now employed by the printer who produces Golden Wing, and that brings me to the second reason for the delay. In the last month or so, LPC Printing Ltd has invested over £2million in new printing technology, including a new 10 colour Heidelberg perfecting press, a new state of the art Heidelberg stitching line and a new Heidelberg folder. All offer significant gains in terms of both speed and quality and are right at the cutting edge of print technology. The new press in particular is superb, and whilst most of LPC’s work is full colour brochures and leaflets for the insurance, finance and banking sectors, it can, if needed, produce no less than 64,000 A4 letterheads in a single hour. Of course, with machines like this, you simply don’t buy one and plug it in! The press itself was transported from Germany in sections, and took a week, much heavy lifting machinery and a team of specialised engineers to assemble it on site. Once assembled, it had to be commissioned, and training completed,

HEIDELBERG XL 10 COLOUR PRESS

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HEIDELBERG STITCHMASTER ST450 and so, a factory which normally runs 24/7 at full speed had very restricted production capabilities for a few weeks. The only time this was at all feasible was during December and over Christmas, but this inevitably led to a backlog, hence the fact that Golden Wing could not have been printed, even if I had completed it in time. It therefore seemed the ideal opportunity to carry out the switch from one program to another. Thank you to those members who heard my plea for front cover pictures, but I still need more! Just to recap, pictures for the front cover must have enough “scenery” above and below the main subject to allow for the magazine title and issue plaques to be inserted, and need to be sharp and big. There were some great

pictures which I couldn’t use because they were slightly blurred, or had been taken from websites and weren’t big enough. It is but a moments work to make a big photo small, but impossible to make a small photo big and keep enough detail to be able to print. To finish, I woud like to apologise to those who have sent in articles and reports that haven’t made this issue. Especially, thank you to the four of you that sent in reports about the Honda Dreamfields experience. The frequency with which this has been reported in the branch reports, and the fact that four unconnected members were sufficiently impressed to independently write a report for the magazine shows that Honda really did hit the nail on the head with this event. Thank you Honda UK. In the next issue, we will hear about the Reading branch trip to Milau, and how Ian & Kim Felmeri fared when they attended the Joey Dunlop Foundation Dinner. Sorry there was no room this time guys. It only remains for me to wish one and all a Happy New Year, and wish the HOC a happy 50th birthday. I look forward to getting the first of our anniversary year magazine to you by the end of March. Keep it tidy

Tim

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PIGEON POST... General Secretary - Graham Seymour It seems to have been an exciting three months in the world of the HOC and Honda since the last Golden Wing. Plans for our 2011 50th birthday celebrations are gathering momentum with new events being added to the diary almost daily and sales of the anniversary regalia going through the roof. Caravans for the National Rally are being snapped up with the speed of Wayne and Sharon sun visor stickers at an Essex hot rod convention. We have had our AGM at the excellent National Motorcycle Museum venue near Birmingham, packed with interesting (and sometimes vigorous) debate, the re-election of the executive committee and an interesting talk from the General Secretary of the Motorcycle Action Group. (Who we have now joined as an affiliate club) The awards section of the AGM was, as ever, an absolute pleasure, with every recipient being completely deserving of the recognition for their contributions to the club, not just necessarily over the last twelve months. As ever, hats off to Richard Hartland for attending three times as many events as his nearest rival on a bike which can politely be described as “past its prime”. A perfect example that you don’t have to have the latest and most expensive machinery to rack up serious miles, take part and have fun! Well done Richard (who has magnanimously stood down from the competition next year “to give someone else a chance” – condescending git, I never liked him (only joking) It is interesting to note that second and third places were taken by ladies. What is this club coming to, tut, tut……….. Honda invited all of the members of the 8

management committee to Silverstone BSB as their guests and trust me when I say that if they ever decide to get out of manufacturing, they could dominate the world of catering instead! The invite was for the Saturday and the Sunday with all the necessary passes, our own exclusive area with catering and welfare facilities, garage tour and dinner with the HM Plant Honda team, including the soon-to-be BSB champion. Honda’s representative took time to talk to all of the guests and listen to opinions which hopefully indicates a closer cooperation between the two organisations in the future. We are after all, a rolling advertisement for the brand! To cap it all, after a couple of years of new paint schemes, Honda appear to have a veritable plethora of new models in the pipeline. Most of which seem to have been made especially for me……… Whilst not overly enthusiastic about the new VFR1200 (I do of course already own one of the finest machines ever to come out of Japan, by which I naturally refer to the Blackbird), when that engine appears in an adventure bike………. Oh yes please! And the Crossrunner don’t look ‘arf bad either. I can sense my bank manager weeping quietly in a corner already! The next management meeting is to be held on 30th January where I look forward to ratifying North Downs as a full branch of the HOC. Our thanks to Chris Ward and those that have assisted him in getting the new branch up and running, including those from surrounding branches that have offered tremendous support. Now if I wish you all seasons greeting, will they reach you before Christmas? Tim has WINTER 2010


been the butt of much good natured ribbing over the years about our ability to get Golden Wing on the doormat in time for the festive holiday. If Tim’s foundations don’t collapse again (that’ll be the house not Tim’s cuddly frame), we all get our articles in on time (ish, I’m writing this the day after the copy date……..) and there are no hold up’s at the printers, who knows, stranger things have happened. But as ever, I will extend Tim the benefit of the doubt; Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and I look forward to seeing you all in the near future. Happy riding

Graham

CHANGE OF ADDRESS Please send change of address details to the

Membership Secretary membership@hoc.org.uk

Please do not send change of address details to Golden Wing as we are unable to make changes to the mambership register.

Thanks........Ed

WINTER 2010

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KICKING BACK....

Something to Say - Say it here

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT’S DUE Just a few words to praise the nice people in life. Last year after passing my bike test I was in no doubt going to buy a Honda, and so I did, a 2002 Deauville. I joined the HOC and living in the North East my nearest branch was HOC Northumbria. I went to their meeting place at Seghill Rugby Club and was quickly made welcome and it was not long before I was chatting about bikes, where i’ve been and what i’ve done etc. However, there was a very dodgy and peculiar quiz which was a good laugh. I went home that night as if I had been a member for years. The new year came (2010) and I managed to get on a few ride outs. I was impressed, Riding mostly around Northumberland and nipping over the borders to Scotland, absolutely stunning and the company in which I was riding matched the scenery, superb. The rides were well organised carefully planned and carried out with impeccable on road discipline. I felt safe and gained a lot of riding knowledge and skills from the group. Everyone one was happy to answer any queries about biking no matter how trivial they were, I have never met such a nicer bunch of people. What an excellent club many thanks to Graeme Burrough and his team of organisers and leaders for running an excellent, welcoming, organised and friendly club and all the lads and lasses who have made me welcome. I’m looking forward to 2011.

Peter Watson 31554

Northumbria Branch

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Thanks for your letter Peter, I am glad you have had a good year with Northumbria branch. I have to say that the same can be said for most branches, and members who do not yet attend a branch should pop along and say hello. If there was ever a time to get involved, this year has to be it!....Ed

LAPEL BADGES Dear Editor, I would like to appeal to the readers of the Honda Owners magazine for help. I am an amateur collector of motorcycle lapel badges. I am looking to buy Honda lapel badges for most years connected to the Honda rally that has been held each year from 1965 at Laxey Isle of Man during TT week. If any of your readers can help please make contact by phone 07703 888857 or by email on wab1@btinternet.com Yours faithfully

William Boyd Thanks for your letter William, and I wish you all the best in your endeavours. William lives in Northern Ireland, and has supplied his address in case there are any members who wish to contact him by post. Please email editor@hoc.org.uk with a note of your membersip number and I will happily pass the address on....Ed WINTER 2010


THANKS TO DAVE

GOODWOOD REVIVAL

Dear Tim I just wanted to thank Dave Barton for the article about the CB650Z. As some may remember, my late hubby Andy Martindale had a lovely blue CB650Z that he had from new. I remember when he got it how jealous his mates were as they had all just got their Superdreams (nothing wrong with Superdreams!) We spent many happy journeys on that bike and we took part in the BMF road rally on a number of occasions, usually fundraising for the Special Care Baby Unit at the Luton & Dunstable Hospital. It was our way of thanking them for saving our daughter Sarah’s life when she was born; now she’s a stunning 23yr old! Anyway, the bike was wonderful, very comfy for a pillion, in fact so comfy that I fell asleep on numerous occasions! One of the best trips we had was down to Marazion in Cornwall. It was the summer that Charles and Di got married and we managed to miss all the hype as we were busy getting sunburnt on the beaches! We were fully loaded up with all the gear for a fortnight’s camping and boy we had fun! We attended numerous rallies too with our very first HOC rally being at Whitchurch Canonicorum in a sloping field with a drunken landlord...happy days! So, thanks again Dave for jogging the memory banks with your article on CB650Z’s. I shall always think of them very fondly.

Dear Tim I thought you might like to see a couple of photos from the visit Wendy and I made to the Goodwood Revival back in the Autumn. We had a great time and I would recommend it to any other members who like a bit of nostalgia.

Keith Burkill

Solent Branch

Hi Keith, the photos are great....such a shame they wouldn’t let you fly any Spitfires!....Ed

Jennie Clarke (Member 12127)

Hi Jennie, I am glad you liked the article on the CB650Z, Dave does an excellent job, and has such a wealth of knowledge. If any members would like a particular model covered in the future, please let me know and I will ask Dave....Ed WINTER 2010

Letters for the next issue to arrive by 20th February 2011 E-mail editor@hoc.org.uk 11


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Unique layered fairing with optimal air ow and heat management for bike stability and rider comfort. VFR1200F. A masterpiece of engineering art.

Honda Contact Centre: 0845 200 8000

WINTER 2010

www.honda.co.uk

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Ron Does Europe on a Wing Now retired, and having the Goldwing in the garage, I decided at fairly short notice to “do” Europe. My initial thoughts were: where did I want to go? what did I want to see? And in just a few weeks, I had planned my route, set all locations and stopping points in the Wing sat nav., booked hotels & ferries; and on Monday 6th September, I set off from my home just outside Maidstone!

Not a particularly auspicious start though. Checking the bike over on the day before (Sunday 5th), I found that the rear tyre was virtually flat! Not a lot I could do about it, as all garages were obviously closed. And my Eurotunnel shuttle was leaving at 0720 the following morning, and I had a planned route to Germany consisting of more than 300 miles...! Down to Chambers of Maidstone first thing on Monday morning, and fortunately they looked at the tyre immediately, but no puncture or damage at all. The puzzled mechanic cleaned the rim and also replaced 14

the valve. Once completed, it was on the bike and into Maidstone for the M20. And hope it would last the trip! So I was away! A good run down to Junction 11A of the M20 for Eurotunnel, and on to the shuttle just the three hours late, having been able to change my train time at no extra charge (thanks - Eurotunnel!!). It was a beautiful day for zooming along the French, Belgian and German motorways, and my sat nav. set me a route for my first stop at the pretty West German town of Cochem, on the shores of the Mosel River. I found my hotel easily and checked in a lot later than initially planned, but I had arrived for a two night stop, and after a small snack from the bar settled in for the night! On Tuesday 7th, I spent the day exploring the pretty town despite some inclement weather. When I woke, it was raining, but it did clear up later in the day. I walked around the town centre, admiring shops and buildings built in that typical Germanic / Austrian style. I took to the Mosel for the short trip to Beilstein, an even smaller town a mile or so away. The town boasted a castle overlooking the valley, and so I climbed up to explore the structure - and what an impressive view from the top! Eventually I returned to the boat, and made the return journey to Cochem. WINTER 2010


Thursday 9th was a slightly easier day today, as I travelled down through the rest of Germany and into Austria, bypassing Munich on the A8. Fortunately no rain today, but still fairly cloudy for most of the day. However, on arriving for a look around Salzburg, the sun came out and it became quite warm.

This town has a castle too, and as the weather had improved significantly, I hiked up through the streets to see the castle. During my conducted tour, views of the valley from the high vantage point were again impressive, and once the tour was over, I made my way back to the hotel for a sauna and early night - as I had an early start in the morning! On Wednesday 8th, I had more motorway driving to get south and nearer to Austria and Switzerland; unfortunately the weather was still not the best, as it rained for most of the day. I travelled down to the southern German town of Augsburg via Koblenz and adjacent to the river Rhine, and my evening at a hotel in Dasing nearby. Checked out the station at Augsburg on my way through to Dasing, and took photographs of many of the trains likely to be seen through Eurotunnel in the near future, including the ICE train (Inter-City Express). Another relaxed evening thanks to the sauna and an early night. WINTER 2010

Very pleasant!, I took the funicular railway up to the Hohensalzburg Fortress for the views over the city and surrounding countryside. Once back at ground level again, I continued on my way towards the small town of Abtenau, where I was to stay the night. The hotel proprietors obviously were in jovial mood when they changed the name of their hotel and didn’t tell anyone, and it was only after a visit to the local tourist information office that I was let in on the secret! Other than that, it was another good choice of resting places, and I had a pleasant meal before retiring for the night - via the sauna of course... cont.... 15


Friday 10th - Today was the day!! The day to drive up the highest mountain in Austria - the Grossglockner!! At 3798m, the “holy mountain” is among the highest peaks in the eastern Alps. The high alpine road, built between 1930 and 1935 extends to 2502m, and is well known as a biker’s road due to the 36 hairpin bends. The whole area is endowed with spectacular views of this and other mountain ranges. At the base of the mountain it was sunny and about 25C. On the way up quite misty and getting colder...and at the top, snowing and 4C!

Many bikes of various makes parked up, many using locker space specifically for bikers at the car park! Having had lunch at the restaurant overlooking the Pasterze glacier and looked around the very interesting museum, I continued on my way. Through the town of Lienz and then north towards the Tauerntal valley, my next stop was the sleepy meadow-fringed resort of Matrei and a trip up the Goldriedbahn gondola to the top of the mountain! Onward towards Kitzbuhel and through the arrow straight 10Km long Felbertauerntunnel, then onto some minor roads with incredible views, hairpin bends, and the Krimmler Waterfall. Leaving the waterfall 16

behind, I continued on past the pretty town of Mayrhofen and finally reached the small village of Tux, where I was booked into a hotel for two nights - to rest my bones, and give the Wing a break! Nice spa here - sauna, steam room, jacuzzi....... By far the best hotel so far; very attentive staff and helpful owners who came and gave me advice on what to do today. Many walks (no, I don’t think so), cable cars (perhaps) and mountain ranges to ski down (no thanks!) in the valley. In the end, I took the free bus up to Hintertux at the head of the valley. Then back on the bus and travelled on another cable car up the Eggalmbahn ski lift on the Grublspitze mountain (2395m). Then I thought it might be a “good idea” to walk down the mountain, even though I had a return ticket on the cable car. Three hours later I got back to my hotel, cream crackered and ready for bed! Well, via the sauna of course....!! I had planned to do the Stelvio pass in Italy today (Sunday 12th), but niggling problems with the tyres meant I decided to keep the miles to a minimum. So I set off from Tux in bright sunshine, and travelled towards Innsbruck and Switzerland on the A12. The road meandered through mountain passes and tunnels in incredibly dramatic fashion Quite a road! It follows the River Inn for a small part of the rivers 500Km total length. I turned off the A12 at Landeck and headed south west, again alongside the River Inn, before taking another break at a roadside cafe for lunch. It’s one thing I particularly liked about Austria and Switzerland - no shortage of these cafes, not only in the towns or villages, but on the roads between too. WINTER 2010


I parked in the car park alongside another few bikes, and took my lunch at a table under an umbrella - as it was so hot!! A Ferrari with a UK plate and two Maserati’s were parked alongside - the Wing was in exalted company!! And finally to Chur in Switzerland and a welcome nights rest in the Hotel Chur after a meal in one of the bars.

with its cobbled streets and quaint buildings for lunch. After lunch I had a choice of routes, either the St Gotthard Pass, or the Furkapass. As it was less miles, I took the latter. Now following the River Rhone, I travelled on to Brig, which is a picturesque small town in Upper Valais, situated at the foot of the northern slope of the Simplon Pass. I left Route 19 and turned west on Route 9, before travelling south on a minor road at Visp. This no-through road led through the Mattertal to my next overnight stop at Tasch, which is a few miles from the popular tourist destination of Zermatt and the Matterhorn mountain. Parking the Wing in the hotel’s garage (very handy), I took to the train and travelled up to Zermatt. cont....

Monday 13th. A rainy start from Chur, but the further west I travelled it became brighter. Another day of spectacular views, this time on minor roads all the way. The route 19 from just outside Chur was really interesting due to the variety of scenery and roads. Some high up in the mountains, other parts following rivers in the valley, sweeping bends, tight hairpin bends, and fortunately very little traffic, other than a whole host of bikes travelling in the other direction, groups of up to 20 or so together. Interestingly, very few waved as a I went by - bloody foreigners! Except other Wing riders of course. They ALL waved!! Up and over the Oberalppass a few miles from Andermatt, and over the top of the 57 km long Gotthard Base Tunnel, which is currently under construction. Then into the pretty town of Andermatt WINTER 2010

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On a previous visit to the area I had taken the funicular railway up to the base of the Matterhorn glacier; this time I just gazed in awe at the great peak, and enjoyed coffee and cakes at one of the restaurants in Zermatt, before returning to my hotel for the night. No spa facilities, however! Back up the Mattertal valley on Tuesday 14th from Tasch and onto the Route 9 westwards. This time the valley followed the River Rhone and I came to Martigny, a Swiss town having a junction of roads joining Italy, France and Switzerland. Once through the town and climbing the side of a steep hill, I found a cafe for morning coffee with the most spectacular views of the valley below. Continuing onwards, I soon came to the beautiful town of Chamonix, sitting at the base of Mont Blanc (4810m – the White Mountain). From Montenvers, on the outskirts

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of Chamonix, I took a funicular railway up the mountain to the base of its glacier called The Mer de Glace (Sea of Ice). It is located on the northern slopes of Mont Blanc, and is the longest glacier in France. The views from the railway over Chamonix and up to the summit were stunning. Included within the price of the ticket was a ride down on the cable car to the glacier, via 350 steps!!Once I had regained the Wing after a splendid trip to see and walk inside the glacier, I continued through France until I came to my next overnight stop, this time in the small village of Brides les Baines. Wednesday 15th was a longer day on the bike today as I had planned to get down to the south coast of France to the holiday town of Menton, approximately 300 miles away. An early start after breakfast saw me visit the skiing centre Val D’Isere, but this time of the year, it was like a ghost town! Nice views

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though - and a tremendous mountain road out of town! Once over the exciting mountain passes, I travelled into Italy at Susa, and followed the main roads bypassing Torino and continued south to arrive on the south coast at Menton. Had a bit of a mix up with the toll booths on the French motorways, but once fixed, found my hotel and parked up for the night. Menton quite impressed me - one of those harbours where the filthy rich moor their yachts, but none the less quite attractive.

Thursday 16th was another long day on the bike to get me through France and on to my ultimate destination of southern Spain to visit my brother and his wife. Took the A8 coast road all the way from Menton to near Marseille, calling in on Monaco to drive round the F1 circuit! It was another beautiful day, very hot and sunny, but unfortunately I had problems not only in finding Monaco, but in finding the F1 circuit itself. Although it’s a street circuit, many of the roads are barred from traffic, and I got a bit lost after driving up the pit straight. Tried to go down the road I thought would lead me to Casino square, but was stopped by Police, who told me the road was barred to bikes and cars!! Getting very hot and frustrated by now, WINTER 2010

so decided to cut my losses, and do the miles on the road. Set the sat nav. for Rivesaltes (near Perpignan), and got on my way again! The coast road was very attractive, as much of the road had been built at the same level (about 500ft), and if a mountain or hill got in the way, tunnels were made to keep the traffic flowing smoothly, around sweeping bends, unlike other hairpin bends seen previously! Views to the sea and the smaller towns dotted along the coast were spectacular; but no time to take photos today! Made it to my hotel in Rivesaltes, a small community a few miles inland from the larger town of Perpignan, and chilled out! I left France on Friday 17th to travel into Spain, again on the main road, as I had a fair journey to the next overnighter. Had initially thought that I would visit Andorra (another country to add to the list), but didn’t, as the tyres on the Wing were still making strange noises, so didn’t want to tempt fate. Onwards via Barcelona, down the Costa Brava and Costa Dorada, and on to my destination a few miles above Valencia. On the motorway driving south the weather turned rather nasty - torrential rain with hailstones - sky as black as black ink....In the end had to stop and pull over on the road - just couldn’t see the road ahead. Isn’t it typical that when you need a bridge to shelter under, there aren’t any! So I just sat there getting soaked! Cars continued to go past very slowly, and when the rain relented a little, I was away again. Finally made it to my hotel, parked the Wing and found my bungalow for the night. 19


Saturday 18th was the last part of my journey to see my brother and his wife, along the coast road bypassing the large town of Valencia. And then inland towards Requina, Cofrentes and finally Jalance. Up the hill with its fair share of hairpin bends, and then park the Wing for a well earned rest! Today was actually Will’s 59th birthday (hehe), and so I had arrived at exactly the right time, as Heather had organised a party at a friend’s house, and so after an hour or two chilling out, it was in the car for some serious partying! And over the next week I enjoyed their hospitality, visiting friends, visiting waterfalls, waterwheels, mountains, windmills, picking almonds from their trees, and generally catching up on a bit of sun to top up my all over tan....... Sunday 26th. All too soon it was time to pack my bags and get the Wing ready for the final instalment of my trip around Europe. Today I travelled from Jalance through Albacete and on towards Madrid on some very good biking roads. Fast sweeping bends, lovely long straights, and all the while beautiful scenery. Bloody cold to start with though (1C). Bypassing Madrid to the east, I rode on the A1 towards Burgos, then turned off at Cerezo de Abajo and took the minor road direct into San Esteban de Gormaz. I stayed at a converted convent, and it had been done to an excellent standard, with very good facilities, including a sauna and jacuzzi (of course...!) Monday 27th. After an excellent breakfast, I set off for Bilbao, arriving at 11:30am after an easy journey on good roads. Once on board the ferry, I settled down for the 28 hour crossing. And it was a journey on board the Pride of Bilbao that I won’t forget. I hadn’t realised that the ferry company P&O were pulling out of the Portsmouth to Bilbao route, and this was the very last sailing!!! Tuesday 28th. On schedule, the ship arrived at Portsmouth, and after untying the Wing I continued on up the A3, M25 and M20 and home!! 20

What a journey! What sights! What a bike!! The Wing carried me and my luggage for almost 3,500 miles without a problem (other than those tyres...!); as we know a bike to be relied on! It is good to be back home, but this was a holiday I will always remember. Next year - Stelvio and perhaps Grossglockner again? For the complete text and many more photographs, see www.ronkemp.co.uk Final facts: Miles – 3425; Petrol - 68 gallons; Fuel consumption - 50.1mpg

Ron Perhaps you have been on an adventure, or taken part in something a little different. How about telling us about how it went? We love to get articles from members, especially with photos. Please send to: editor@hoc.org.uk WINTER 2010


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I have to admit, when it was announced that the 250 cc Moto GP class was to be discontinued I groaned and was sceptical that the new Moto2 would fill its place. But, I have to put my hands up and say I was wrong. Of all the racing this season, the Moto2 has given us some of the closest duelling and greatest excitement of all the different classes. Is it the uniform bike specification ensuring that all competitors start from a level playing field, the large number of teams taking part or the differing experience of the riders, or a bit of each? Despite starting the season with an injury picked up in practice and not having won a race since 2006, Toni Elias became a worthy champion and his performance (with 7 closely fought wins) has earned him a ride in the premier class with LCR Honda in 2011. Beating rivals such as Julian Simon, Andrea Iannone, Thomas Luthi, Simon Corsi and Gabor Talmacsi is no mean feat and with the closeness of the racing, the podium positions could often have been so different. Our own Brit, Scott Redding finished 8th in the championship and is being joined by Mika Kallio in 2011, the Marc VDS Racing team will have a strong representation this coming season. Not to mention Bradley Smith joining the Moto2 fray in 2011 to add to our patriotic interest. Also enhancing the quality of the field next year is Kenan Sofuoglu who will be a permanent rider with the Technomag team for 2011, obviously having impressed them when he temporarily stood in for the last two races of 22

this season. Another addition to the quality in 2011 is the young Marc Marquez who became the second youngest ever World Champion by taking the 125cc title this year. With ten wins and two other podiums Marc became a clear winner and will, I am sure, make his mark (!) on the Moto2 next year. I would never detract from the fun and dicing of the 125’s or the power and duelling of the Moto GP but Moto2 has most definitely established itself this year as a series ‘not to miss’ and next year promises to be just as competitive. Bring it on!

Stiggette Are you selling your bike? Want to get rid of some kit? Too many spares cluttering the garage? Members can advertise in the Free Ads section of Golden Wing simply be emailing the Editor on editor@hoc.org.uk or writing to the address on the inside front cover WINTER 2010


MASTER-TEC When it comes to technical expertise and experience there are few who can match Keith Goldsmith. Prior to starting Master-Tec, Keith was Service Manager for one of the largest Motorcycle dealerships in the country, and has been a lecturer in Motorcycle Engineering at a Swindon College. Recently, he was contracted to Honda UK as a Technical Support Engineer, and was tasked with providing technical advice to both dealerships and the media. Keith has also been involved in preparing (and repairing) the test fleets used by journalists. It would be easy to think that such expertise came at a price, but Keith is proud of the fact that his labour rates are generally half those charged by main dealers.

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Keith’s services range from pre-MOT checks to full engine rebuilds, and he prides himself on being able to solve almost all fuel injections faults. Master-Tec have all the necessary specialist tools to enable full electrical and mechanical diagnostics and repair. Services start from as little as £45, and a full service on a VFR800 Vetec comes in at only £240 including oil and filter, as long as there are no shim replacements needed. Keith even tries to take the hassle out of servicing and repairs, and offers a collection and return service, even to your place of work. To find out more about what Keith can offer, or to book an appointment, call 07534537086 or Email Keith at - master.tec@hotmail.co.uk

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CBX ULTRA SPORTS SIX (1981)

At the end of 1978 Honda released the bike that we had all been waiting for; the CBX Six. With a large crescendo of applause from the motorcycle world, the Six had landed and showed us what an amazing machine that it was.

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I was told in 1977 that Honda were producing a six cylinder machine, but they would not tell me the capacity that it would be. The prestige and success of the racing machines ridden by Jim Redman and Mike Hailwood has gone down as part of our history and I half suspected that the new machine might be a 250cc. Then early in 1979 I had a phone call from Honda asking “Would I like to ride a CBX and put 1,000 miles on it before they let the press have it?” Would I ever! Gee! Picking up the first CBX to be WINTER 2010


put on the road from Chiswick Honda is something that I will never forget, and is part of my history, and, a few months later I purchased number 25 off the production line. The ride home that first day had me on cloud nine. There I was, me, riding a Honda Six. We all know that the six cylinder engine is smoother than a turbine offering total liquid power and pulls like a high speed train clocking up miles forever. However, with no flywheels on the crankshaft there was no engine braking, and you certainly did need the three disc brakes to pull down the speed.. As there was no vibration Honda spent their time cutting weight and trimming down components to try and develop the ultimate machine. The engine was only one and a half inches wider that the inline four 750 cc machines, and formed the bottom section of the main frame, offering even more weight saving. The frame itself was a “T” section unit similar to the smaller engined machines from the sixties. The first model Six stayed in production for just two years, and was an out and out sports machine designed for performance. The preoccupation with weight reduction meant that sacrifices had to be made in other areas and at high speed when you were wringing the throttle against the stop, it could sometimes unbalance itself. This had the effect of making life much more interesting, but what a bike! In 1981 Honda WINTER 2010

re- assessed the Six and made it into the CBX-B Sports Touring motorcycle, and fitted a full fairing and side fitting panniers. The frame was lengthened to make the bike more stable, and the front fork angle was changed. The wheelbase was lengthened from 58.9 inches to 60.43 inches, making the CBX more stable with the characteristics of a touring machine. In addition, tubeless tyres and engine crash bars were now to be fitted as standard. The addition of a new mono shock prolink rear suspension made the rear firmer for better progressive riding, especially when clocking those long distances in a day. The fairing was similar to the units fitted to the CB750F2 and CB900F2 and did provide good weather protection. I found that once on the move in the rain (English Summer) the only part of me getting wet was my hands, arms and big feet. You could also buy a higher screen for the fairing if needed, and this had the effect of making life much cosier on long journeys. The side panniers were a bit on the small side for serious touring, and so there was good reason to fit a rear carrier and top box.

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I would have to say the original 1979 version would win hands down. I could take it for a fast spin and come back with a big smile on my face. The Honda Six; there will never be a machine quite the same. Let the good times roll. F u e l consumption was about forty five miles per gallon which resulted in a range of over one hundred and fifty version would winllhands down. I could take it for a fast spin and come back with a big miles before a re-fi was required. smile on my face. The Honda Six;changed there will never be a machine quite the same. In summary, the Honda Six had Let the good times roll. from a boy’s racer to a gentlemen’s touring Dave Barton. machine. If you ask me which model I preferred,

Dave Barton

CBX B Specification Engine

Six Cylinder in line, DOHC, 24 Valve, 4-Stroke.

Bore & Stroke

64.5 x 54.3mm 1,047cc

Compression Ratio.

9.3 : 1

Max Horsepower

100ps / 9,000rpm.

Max Torque

8.5kgm / 7/500rpm

Carburetion

6 x CV type 28mm with accelerator pump

Lubrication

Wet sump duel pump system with oil cooler

Ignition

Transistorized Pointless

Starting System

Electric

Frame

Backbone style diamond configuration

Suspension

Tyres

Front air-assisted telescopic low-friction fork, 160mm Travel

Rear air-assisted Pro-Link with adjustable damping, 105mm travel

Front 3.50V-19 Tubeless

Rear 130/90V-18 Tubeless

Wheelbase

60.43ins

Fuel tank capacity

22lit / 4.84gal

Dry Weight

599.6 lbs

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REGALIA RELATED RAMBLINGS… Well, I thought it was about time I put a few words together about what’s on offer to my fellow members of the HOC in Regalia! I took up the role as regalia secretary 3 years ago and since then have introduced Buffs, Wallets, Knitted hats, Embroidered Patches and Neck Warmers to the range

of items now available! All have proved to be very popular and in 2010 we have JUST brought another new item to the list of general regalia: Baseball Caps! A real bargain costing from just £6 at HOC events! We launched them at the NEC show in December and were thrilled to bits when Danny JohnJules (of “CAT” fame in Red Dwarf) and our very own Treasurer Ruth gave them the thumbs up! 28

I am happy to report that things seem to be doing ok and that sales actually made a profit this year, thanks to you guys and gals for not only buying things but also for promoting the club with regalia at events too. It was fantastic to see a sea of “Living The Dream” t-shirts at the NEC, BMF & the Honda day at the Ace!

What a fantastic year it’s been! Lots of new items to complement the general range and now, our very special, exclusive, limited edition 50th Anniversary range! If you didn’t make it to the AGM or the NEC show, and don’t have access to the internet then you probably won’t know what I’m waffling on about! I am very excited to announce the launch of the 50th Anniversary Limited Edition Regalia! WINTER 2010


pewter tankards and umbrellas too! To see the whole range visit the website www.hoc.org.uk

year were treated to a sneak preview price list and, as you will see from the website now and also the photos in this article there are lots of wonderful items available for you to celebrate this mammoth birthday celebration! We have a whole host of clothing available to order including Rugby Shirts, Sweatshirts, T’s and Polo shirts!

Strictly limited numbers have been produced and it has been agreed that at least 50% profits from the sale of 50th Anniversary Regalia will be donated to the appointed charity for the anniversary year – the Air Ambulance. A very worthwhile cause I am sure you will agree. So, dig deep, and buy lots! Remember – if you purchase from me in person it will cost you less! A special page is on the website thanks to Stritchy, and, a special anniversary price list & order form has been printed for you to hand to friends and fellow club members. Copies are available in pdf form for you to print out, email regalia@hoc.org.uk or can be obtained from any of the shows and events we will be attending this year

In addition there are embossed key fobs, stickers, badges, bags, pens, buffs,

I am also offering to gift wrap goods if you order online and specify they are a gift and to whom you want them sent. In the event of a gift being sent I shall email to confirm despatch to the person ordering. All orders are sent via First Class Royal Mail. For non-UK mainland deliveries additional costs may apply – please ask me! cont....

Those who attended the National Rally this

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Anniversary clothing and the Pewter Tankards are by advance order and advance payment only – this is to reduce the risks of over-stocking and also will ensure limited numbers being produced.

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If there is an item of regalia that you think needs adding to the list then let me know... I am always happy to hear folk’s ideas and suggestions! That’s how the wallets and baseball caps came about! Although – despite it’s popularity at the AGM, I have decided not to add Mankinis at this time!

covers PayPal and postage and packaging costs). We do not make huge profits with regalia, but, as we are a not-for profit organisation and my aim is always to provide the membership with affordable club branded items then, as long as we do not make a loss then I feel that my efforts are worthwhile. Here’s to a very special anniversary year filled with good things for each and every one of us! I look forward to seeing you all at one (if not most!) of the many events on the packed diary for this 50th Anniversary year! Safe travels & happy biking!

Jennie

I shall be endeavouring to attend as many events as possible during the year in person and will have at least samples of the anniversary items as well as our great standard items too. Don’t forget – if you have an event coming up and want me to come along with the regalia then let me know. If I can, I shall be delighted to be there to support your event and the club by offering regalia at the discounted “events” prices whenever possible. Please see Shop@HOC on page 32 for current non event pricing. Remember - there are two pricings for regalia. An ‘event’ price list (discounted prices) and an ‘on line’ / mail order price list (which 30

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NEW CBR600F

THE RETURN OF THE LEGEND.

Pearl Cool White / Hyper Red

Pearl Cool White / Moody Blue Metallic

Pearl Nightstar Black / Mat Cynos Grey Metallic

Honda Contact Centre: 0845 200 8000

www.honda.co.uk


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KEITH WICKS RIDES THE HONDA MT125 If like me you never enter competitions this might change your mind it certainly has mine. A few months ago I saw the Bennetts Insurance win a Biker Dream. I entered and forgot all about it as usual. A couple of weeks ago when working late my wife rang me and said I would get a phone call in 5 minutes which I must answer, she would say no more and I racked my brains as to who it could be. The mobile duly rang and a voice said, “Are you Keith Wicks?” I said “yes” and he said, “This is Bennetts and you have won your dream!” My dream was to ride a modern 125cc racer to compare it with the Honda MT125 I used to race 35 years ago, hopefully in the company of a recent champion. I pinched myself to see if this was a nightmare, but no, sure enough it was actually happening to me. “One possible problem, can you be at Donington next Thursday at 9am?” Could I, all the devils in hell couldn’t stop me, I would be there. My wife and I drove to stay overnight at my son’s house in Nuneaton so as to get there early. The ride was to take place on a track day so that the circuit has all the safety marshals etc. 34

We arrived at 8.30 to be greeted by Joshua Van Den Bos from RBP International, Bennetts promotion company who introduced me to Michael Mann the Bennett’s representative and Jason Critchell a Motorcycle photography specialist. The track briefing, all about flags and lights etc and safety rules, followed this. Then I was introduced to Niall MacKenzie, 3 times British Superbike champion, who’s 14 year old son Tarren was lending

me his British 125 Championship bike for the day. We chatted about the spec of the bike and things I should bear in mind on the track, not least of all the fact that I was going to ride slicks for the first time. Niall started the bike and warmed it up for a while and also got the WINTER 2010


tyre warmers sorted, cold slicks do not work! And cold 2 stroke engines seize. Soon it was time to get on track and bearing in mind racing bike gearshifts are the opposite to road bikes I got under way. A couple of fairly gentle laps to get a feel for the tyres and make sure all was up to temperature and then I opened up a bit more. Although I never was a knee down rider the slicks gave me great confidence and I felt strangely at home instantly, almost like I never stopped riding a 125. I didn’t break any lap records or bones, I was very conscious that it’s easy to get over confident, I haven’t ridden Donington for some years and never on a 125 so I didn’t want to bin it. Niall and Tarren wouldn’t appreciate a bent bike, and my embarrassment would have lasted a lifetime. Anyway I did some fair laps, enjoyed myself immensely, the comparison of my 1978 125 of 26bhp and tops of 120mph with this 45bhp 140mph rocket were most enjoyable and I dare say would have been even better had I not added two stone to my racing nine back then.

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At the end of my first stint I came back in with a smile as wide as the track! Absolutely brilliant! I then met up with a journalist from Fast Bikes who’s name I have lost track of at the moment. I understand he will be doing an article in Fast Bikes magazine about the comparison of Yamaha 600 and 125 road bikes and the 125 racer that I had just ridden. Hopefully I will appear in the article as well, we’ll see. In the second session I know he was following me on the 600 some of the time. We finished off the morning as lunch guests of Bennetts and said a final farewell and enormous thanks Niall MacKenzie for the loan of the bike, a real DREAM experience. Finally I have to thank Dean from Keith Martin Photography who is the official track photographer at Silverstone for Haslam Racing, he sent me a great personalised CD of excellent quality photos to remind me of the day for as long as I live. My advice is enter every competition you can, from now on I will be.

Keith Wicks

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BEDFORDSHIRE Secretary: Glen Pringle - 07702 233 524

Summer finally over and runs out are now quite scarce and I’m not surprised. A few hardy members still commute to work, however, as a fair weather biker I shall only venture out on the odd mild Sunday until spring arrives. The National rally came and went and was greatly enjoyed by many, we went on a ride out over the bridge to Wales and past the beautiful Tintern Abbey (make note to visit for a club run next year). Great amusement was had when poor old Peter marked a turn and everyone travelling at the speed limit flew past and had to do a u-turn. It was sad to hear the other group had a mishap on their ride and I hope all is well now. The following day we had a lovely ride including Zig-Zag hill to Bourton on the Water (another lovely place for a rideout next year).

A branch trip to the Northants classic show was very worthwhile, but unfortunately an important football match was on the same day so I had to leave early. 36

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Some fantastic bikes were on show Our AGM has come and gone and the old guard is still in place, again I had to apologise for my slapdash and disorganised way of running the branch. cont.... WINTER 2010

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Our Christmas party is due soon and 33 of us are to spend the weekend in a hotel in Caister, Norfolk, which has been well organised by Ian and Sally Parris. We recently conducted a raid on Sue Beck’s well run Quiz and Chips night at the Northants & Milton Keynes branch, and as usual we won! Sorry, not! However I am sure revenge will be theirs at the Xmas bowling night as we stink at that especially me. Have fun

Glen

However, I must admit I do get quite a bit of help from Graham our national secretary, plus all the branch members that make turning up every week so pleasurable. It’s the end of the year so I have to get all my thank you’s in – thank you everyone.) 38

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BIRMINGHAM

Branch Contact: Nick Parton - 0121 603 8983

We have all had a great summer; weather could have been better but Hey. Our rides all completed in a safe and professional manner, and almost all of us are wearing his vis- jackets, which is great help for keeping track of members on ride outs. Several of us now have biker to bike communications, and this also eases the task of leading rides, especially with a good back man.

volunteered to feed us all. Ann is a fabulous cook and hostess, and Dave? Well, he’s just Dave! We are all again really looking forward to a fun night out. Ann, I understand is planning a feast on a Biblical scale. A few of the members attended the HOC AGM at the Motor Cycle Museum and they all thoroughly enjoyed it and found it extremely interesting and informative. Several of the members, yours included, attended the Staffordshire Classic Bike show in October, and what a great day out that is; if you have never been, then do it! JPR organised a great night seeing Al Murray ‘The Pub Landlord’ Live at the International Convention Centre in Birmingham. We all arrived early and had a meal at the ‘Big Wok’ in the Chinese Quarter. This was a fantastic event and our thanks go to you John.

The ‘HOC Lost in France 2’ Trip was a brilliant a few days spent in Normandy, based a Mers-les-Bains. Yet again Dave and Ann have organised and led an impeccably organised and executed adventure, resulting in memories that will last a lifetime. Many thanks for that. The Christmas meal this year is again at Ann and Dave’s place, and they have 40

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Any time you want to organise another one, feel free. Thanks. By the time you read this we will have held our branch AGM at the Plough and Harrow in December. We usually have a good turn out to this, probably because of the free food. The usual suspects and yours truly, again look like they are all up for another year in ofďŹ ce. Thanks to our new member Martin for volunteering to join the general committee. It’s much appreciated. Thanks to all my friends at HOC Birmingham you are just the best. We have adventures together, we laugh together and we some times even cry together, its all-great fun. I am looking forward to the next instalment in 2011. Take care

Nick Parton WINTER 2010

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BRISTOL

Branch Contact: Pete Casling - 01454 416417

Hi everyone. Once again, none of you have responded to my appeal for you to turn up, so we’ve still not seen any new faces at meetings or rides. I thought being in a club meant you wanted actually join in............ Anyway, back in August, the monthly ride was to North Devon. Due to another commitment, I wasn’t able to go along. John and Maxine, Andy and Tracey, and JJ had a sunny day for it (judging by the photos), and they ended up in Lynmouth, which is always one of our favourite destinations for a day out.

Lynmouth While we were on our holiday in France way back in June, it was suggested that us in Bristol could go and discover some of the roads in North Wales which our new friends Tim and Brian (the ‘gooseberry crew’) were telling us about. It’s much too far for us to ride there and 42

back in a day, and have a good ride around, so it was decided we’d make a weekend trip of it with an overnight stop. Maxine located a good biker-friendly B&B in Betws-y-Coed, so both she and John, Andy and Tracey, Tim and me booked up for a Saturday night stop there. Unfortunately for Brian, by the time he tried to book up it was full, but he found somewhere to stay just down the road. That Saturday, maintenance work was being carried out on the Severn Bridge, meaning that it was closed (we found out a few days before!), so we changed our originally-planned route slightly, using the Second Severn Crossing instead, which meant we missed starting out one of the best biking roads around here (Chepstow to Abergavenny via Usk). Never mind. Meeting up at Magor Services at 7:30am, it was surprisingly chilly for early September! At least there wasn’t much traffic around at that time of the morning as we headed towards Abergavenny, and onwards into the Brecons on some fantastic and quiet roads (apart from sheep!). A tea stop was planned in a layby, but the trailer hadn’t arrived yet, so we carried on to Brecon, and had a breakfast break there. Then on to Builth Wells, and the twisty A483 to Newtown to meet up with Tim and Brian, who were going to be our guides for the weekend. They took the lead over some fantastic routes which were new to the WINTER 2010


rest of us, stopping for lunch in Tywyn, at a cafe facing out to sea. The local Fire Brigade were washing cars for charity, and it was their fault it started raining just before we were going to get on our way again. Well, it wasn’t much, and even though we all had our waterproofs with us, (this is Wales, mind), it wasn’t really worth bothering with the effort of putting them on. After more super scenery and a circuitous route, we eventually arrived in Betws-y-Coed for the evening. The B&B’s also a Chinese restaurant, so after a muchneeded pint in the bar, we met up for dinner. We’d already booked a table, and we chose a fantastic banquet. Now, I like Chinese food, but I don’t really know what it really is that I’m eating, or if it’s actually any good. Maxine, who knows about these things, said it was probably the best she’d had. Sorted! After that, we walked our dinner down, going into town for another pint, then back to our B&B’s for the night. The following morning was dry, but the forecast wasn’t looking too good. We only hoped they’d got it wrong. So after a really good ‘full English’ breakfast, Brian appeared on “I like cake!” his bike, all ready for day two. Tim took the lead, taking us over towards Caernarfon, where we stopped for a coffee (some even had room for cake!), as well as an all-too-brief look around the town. Naturally, I went to seek out the nearby terminus of the Welsh Highland Railway, but sadly, travelling on it was not on the cards today. The faint possibility of having a completely dry day was now gone, with it now drizzling on and off. Brian unfortunately had to make an earlierthan-planned departure for home, leaving just Tim as our guide for the rest of Sunday. Hope you got it fixed Brian. WINTER 2010

Welsh Highland Railway From Caernarfon, we headed south, but we soon ran into rather more wet stuff, but it wasn’t enough to make us think our waterproofs were really needed yet. We soon gave in. Later we overtook a train running on the line alongside the road, then stopped to watch it pass us again, before stopping for a break and leg-stretch in Beddgelert, now in the dry.

Singin’ in the rain Later, when it started raining again and we’d stopped for petrol, it was waterproofs on again! Then, as expected, it almost immediately stopped raining! cont.... 43


Arriving rather late in Machynlleth at 5:30pm for a spot of tea, we found somewhere for a fish and chip supper, and with the time now heading towards 7:00pm, we said our goodbyes and thanks to Tim, and headed our respective ways home. ‘Making progress’, through the intermittent rain, and with a fair distance to cover, mostly in the dark, we made good time. Our bikes got somewhat dirty too, except Andy’s, which just got dirtier. He’d been hoping the rain would wash some of it off, as it still had some of France on it! A great weekend totalling well over five hundred miles, which we’d like to repeat. In the summer, when the rain’s warmer..........

Our September ride was to the Black Country museum. John and Maxine, and Richard Hewison (for the first time in two years, and sans his video camera!), joined me for a ride up to Dudley (or is that Doodlay?), on what turned out later to be a very warm day. We took a scenic route I literally picked off the map, and it was very pleasant riding unfamiliar roads through parts of Herefordshire and Worcestershire, with the area’s many orchard fruit trees in full crop. A coffee stop in Stourport en route (I think they missed out the coffee, but we were too polite to say anything), then a few hours at the museum in Dudley. It’s quite a place, with lots of old Black Country houses, shops and industrial buildings saved from demolition and rebuilt in an interesting town setting by the canal. We sampled the tasty fish and chips from the old-fashioned shop (seems that’s our usual Sunday fare!), and among others, had a look round the motorcycle, wireless and hardware shops, all typically as they would have been pre-war.

Caernarfon

In trouble with the law again!

Black Country Museum 44

Needless to say, the motorcycle shop didn’t have anything with a Honda badge on it........... WINTER 2010


Coming home was a quick-ish blast down the motorway as far as Tewkesbury (Apologies to Richard. Naked Hornet........ tee hee!), then A38 home. Another fine day out.

‘’I’ve always wanted one of these’’

Honda’s Steve Plater with Maxine and John As many of you will know, All HOC branches were invited by Honda UK to join them in a camping weekend at the BSB racing in September. Not having any camping equipment myself, I didn’t want this opportunity to be wasted, so John and Maxine represented Bristol at what was a fantastic weekend hosted by Honda UK. They said that the hospitality and catering was excellent, with HOC members being able to mingle and chat with the Honda team, and there were several photo opportunities too! The overnight camping was so f-f-flippin’ cold though, some ‘campers’ even slept in their cars! Not John and Maxine, as they went on the bike so had to brave it out in their tent.........fully clothed! Oh, the racing wasn’t bad either! Thank you, Honda UK. October found us going to the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon. Ram joined John and Maxine, and me on our last planned ride of the season. It was a dry but murky day to start, but it started to brighten up as the morning went on. We took a route over the WINTER 2010

Cotswolds, then continued via Banbury, past the historic Cross and the statue of the ‘fine lady on her white horse’. Both totally unnoticed by Ram! The museum had no special events that day, so it wasn’t busy at all, which also meant no queues in the cafe! We returned home via the Fosse Way, calling in at Bourton-on-the-Water for a break on the way home. Unfortunately all the tea shops seemed by then to be shuttingup for the day, but we did find somewhere still open, so we had an ice cream instead! Finally, John and I attended the AGM at the National Motorcycle Museum. Nice to meet a lot of members from other areas again, and also HOC member ‘number one’. Lots of presentations were given out, and Jennie Clarke (the Regalia Secretary), bless her, even presented me with a unique, specially prepared piece of HOC regalia. It was a little joke we were having, and I’m not saying any more, but I suspect there may be a photo of me wearing it somewhere in this issue, but hopefully not! I’ve not yet worked out how I’m going to retaliate............ As I was saying at the beginning, we’ve not seen anyone new for a long while, so how about it being you this year perhaps? Until next time, bye,

Pete. 45


CAMBRIDGE

Secretary: Kim Woodruff - 01353 740883 Hi everyone Well here we are again, looking forward to reading about what you have all been doing. So what has Cambs been up to? Well, five of us enjoyed the National Rally in Wiltshire, where the weather behaved itself for the weekend which was nice. Everything was very well organised and we would like to thank everyone involved, you all did a superb job. The welcome from the Pirates was great and the ride outs were very good and enjoyable, here’s to next year! Since the National we haven’t been on the bikes for a ride out due to other commitments but we have remained social enjoying the usual Tuesday and Wednesday night meet ups. I organised a Ghost Tour round Ely which took place on the 12th November. Ely is a very old city and it is also the second smallest city in the UK. It has royal connections as well as being home to Oliver Cromwell for a few years too. Twenty two of us walked the circuit near the cathedral hearing sightings of Oliver himself, the Lady in White, The Faceless Monk, who is the only nasty spirit we have, St Etheldred’s hand, Cavaliers, Nell Gwynn, Monks and soldiers. We hope to have a Sunday afternoon looking round the cathedral, which is beautiful, then lunch sometime in the New Year. We held our AGM on the 17th and the only change of position we have to report is the Treasurer. Andy Gilson has stepped down due to other commitments and Anita Turnbull has agreed to take the post. Our Christmas dinner takes place at The Dolphin Hotel on the 11th December and a new frock has been purchased (and shoes of course). We are all looking forward to it. 46

We are all looking forward to 2011 and celebrating the 50th Anniversary of The Honda Owners Club with our own organised ride outs, special events and meeting up with others too. We will again be organising the HOC stand at the BMF show this year and our appeal for helpers, volunteers and bikes can be seen below. As many as possible are needed, so please contact us as soon as you can to volunteer. Well that is it for now, see you soon Ride safe , Love

Kim x

SHOW 14th & 15th MAY, 2011 PETERBOROUGH SHOWGROUND CAMBRIDGE HOC REQUIRE HELP, VOLUNTEERS & BIKES FROM THE 60’s,70’s & 80’s WITH ANYTHING UNUSUAL ESPECIALLY A HONDA RUNE IF YOU CAN BE OF HELP PLEASE CONTACT PAUL AND KIM WOODRUFF on 01353 740883 or E-MAIL

Paul@woodyanddot.orangehome.co.uk WINTER 2010


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DEVON

Secretary: Steve Letheren - 01392 431982 Hi Everyone After our unreliable weather again this year, we still managed to get out for some rides. This was cut short for me when my rectiďŹ er decided to blow up my battery, damage my alarm and even to this day I am still waiting for a new ECU to arrive from Japan. The weather for our Social Weekend in October was not too bad during the day but it did rain at night. I hope those who came down enjoyed themselves

rider from Poland who pulled a stoppie which was only cut short by the fence at the end of the arena. It was 82m before he stopped, on a Triumph 600 which has a short wheelbase, which I am told is one of the best bikes for stoppies. The rest of the show was ok, but there was a lot of stands missing with a lot of the bike shops not on display. The word was that they wanted too much money to display the bikes and goods and were struggling to break even, and even lost of money in most cases last year. We always enjoy our weekend and borrowed one of the gazebos from HOC which are brill. They were easy to put up and looked good at the show. We had some interest in the club and had a good time talking about bikes to other bikers.

In August we attended the Southwest Motorcycle Show at WestPoint, there was a ÂŁ7000 stunt show with all the riders coming from all over Europe to take part. Some of the riders were riding in just shorts and tee shirts and others in full leathers; I would not like to see them fall off, but just shorts etc does not seem right. The highlight of the stunts was a 48

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Four of us camped there over the weekend and with helping hand from Hank, Denise, Julian, Peter, Malcolm, Steve and Andy from the club, we had a good time. The highlight of my year has got to be the weekend with Honda at Silverstone which was great. They could not have done anymore for us and it was great to see all of you from the other branches, and have the chance to sit down and chat and not forgetting the night with the H M Plant riders and team. I had my meal with Josh Brooks and then the quiz with Ryuichi Kiyonari and Harvey the team manager who was helping Kiyo with his English. Steve Gill came with me and we won’t forget a great weekend with plenty of pictures taken; I have just received my signed photo with all the riders. We are not sure where our weekend will be yet at this time of writing, but we will be having

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some ride outs and other things going on to make the weekend more interesting (look in Golden Wing or online for details). We have had a few people come along to our meetings at our new meeting place, and some said they would get back in touch when the weather changes next year for rides etc. We will have a break over Xmas but if any one wants to come down to our meeting we can always have a game of darts or pool which are in the Crawford pub where we meet. Please give me a phone call and have a chat. Lets hope we have a great 50th year and hope to see some of you sometime Take care on the roads

Steve

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EASTERN

Secretary: John Hewson - 01469 560306

I am writing this on a cold wet November day with snow forecast for the end of the week; it must be NEC motorcycle show time again. However, I can reect on an excellent motorcycling summer, if a little damp at times. As well as the 65th FIM Rally at Herentals I mentioned in the autumn report, I attended the FIM Motocamp at Donovaly in Slovakia. My route from Rotterdam saw me visit Colditz Castle and the Wieliczka Salt mine near Krakow in Poland. I spent 6 days at the Motocamp and stopped for 2 nights at Prague on the return journey. If any members are interested in attending any of the FIM touring events please read the article by Keith Freak in the 2009 winter edition of Golden Wing. The FIM Rally in 2011 will held near Vienna in Austria. For more information please follow the link www.ďŹ mrally2011.com/baustelle.htm.

The Motocamp at Donovaly, Slovakia 50

Colditz Castle

The famous clock at Prague WINTER 2010


Donovaly, Slovakia Tatra Mountains, Slovakia

Charles Bridge, Prague

Hot air balloon at Krakow

The Motocamp at Donovaly, Slovakia WINTER 2010

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On Sunday 8th September, Martin, Lorrie and I went on a charity motorcycle ride organised by Louth Friends, it attracted around 500 bikers, and was hailed as the “best yet”. The run set off from the popular meeting point of Willingham Woods near Market Rasen and travelled to the Woodcocks Inn at Burton Waters, and then to The Adam And Eve at Wragby, before finishing at The Splash at Little Cawthorpe near Louth. Up to £5,000 was expected to have been raised for St Andrew’s Children’s Hospice. The third weekend in September found Martin & Lorrie at the BMF Tailend show at its new venue of the Lincolnshire Show Ground. I hope its move from Peterborough will be successful and encourage more people to attend.

Matt on the run through Carrick Forest (yes, the wing does have stabilisers)

Carrick Forest The same weekend I rode with Janet to the Squires Rally at Moniaive in Scotland. On the Saturday, Janet, Matt and I enjoyed a ride through Carrick Forest to the Bruce’s Stone at Glen Trool Lodge. The rain eventually found 52

Janet at the Bruce’s Stone us, so after coffee and cake at the visitors’ centre it was a wet ride back to the rally. WINTER 2010


Honda UK ‘Dream Fields’ Martin and I represented the Eastern Branch at the excellent ‘Dream Fields’ event organised by Honda UK at the BSB round at Silverstone. The hospitality was first class and we got to meet the riders competing for the HM Plant team in the various classes in the BSB series. For the quiz, our table was fortunate enough to have, TT hero, John McGuinness as team captain. Our subsequent success resulted in our team being awarded official HM Plant t-shirts. Unfortunately the weather was atrocious for the racing on Sunday. Thank you Honda UK for a very good weekend. cont....

Neil talks about tyres

Neil Tuxworth, HM Plant team manager John & Martin with the HM Plant team

Honda UK hospitality WINTER 2010

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Classic Mechanics Show at Stafford. It was really good to see Ray at the Club meeting on 4th November after a 3 week stay in Hospital. I know you will be looking forward to be out and about on your Pan. On Saturday 6th November, Martin & Lorrie had a run out to the autojumble held at Rufforth Park near York.

The memorial wall built by the troops in Iraq, rebuilt at the National arboretum On Saturday 2nd October, Martin, Lorrie and I took part in the Ride To The Wall (RTTW). The run started at Drayton Manor Park and ended at the National Arboretum in Staffordshire. This event was very well attended and supported by members of the public lining the route. Although this event is organised by the Harley Owners Group all bikers are welcome, not just Harley riders.

The wall While I was sunning myself in Portugal, a last minute opportunity I couldn’t refuse, Martin & Lorrie made the annual pilgrimage to the 54

Lorrie & Martin at the RTTW The Eastern branch has a problem in attracting members to branch meetings and runs. As you can see from the branch reports, we go on runs, visit various events and even go touring abroad. All these activities are open to all branch members, so for the Honda Owners Club 50th anniversary in 2011 come and get involved. Remember you are members not customers and any branches survival needs their members to take part. If any member knows of a better location for branch meetings, then let me know. There is no problem in moving one or both of our meetings if it assists with members attending meetings and taking part in activities.

John Hewson WINTER 2010


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EAST MIDLANDS

Secretary: Rita Woodcock – 01332 515767

National Rally 17th to 20th September Friday evening was a late start for Steve & I, we thought that we would be the last to get there, but to our surprise Andy & Karen (our adopted members from Oldham) were way behind us. We arrived too late to get a meal so we had to settle for a burger and a pint. Saturday morning, Steve & I decided to go for a walk after breakfast, into the village of South Cerney. Before we got into the village we heard the distinctive drone of a pair of BMWs, it was Andy & Karen off on their way to visit relatives in Gloucester. A minute or so later we were passed by Alan (Manchester Branch) on his Triumph Tiger – so far not a Honda in sight but it’s not that surprising as the main ride out left quite early.

way through the village and out the other side. It was thirsty work all this walking so we decided to sit a while and have a drink outside the Eliot Arms, it was such a lovely day and such a nice location that we stayed and had a bite to eat. While we were sat there one or two Hondas were wandering back and forth in small groups. It was the sort of place that would be really nice for a weekend break. On the way back to the caravan there was a familiar hum as we were passed by Honda after Honda (with the occasional interloper) many of which we recognised. Back at the site, Les, Di John & Beth were already back, so we joined them for a while and heard all about Les & Di’s run in with a lorry on one of those stupid little painted roundabouts, the driver of course failed to stop! Another idiot behind the wheel and supposedly in control of several tons of steel. Following the raffle in the club room was the evening’s entertainment provided by HOC members wearing the loudest shirts that they could find and

South Cerney The village centre was very small but very typically Cotswold picturesque. It was a glorious sunny day so we walked all of the 56

Sat evening WINTER 2010


the resident comedian with his dentist chair act (involving audience participation) all done in mime followed by the usual disco. Sunday was a late start. John & Beth had already packed up and gone home by the time that we emerged (well most of us). We all just had a chill out day, wandering around the holiday park with it’s numerous lakes. We had entered a team for the games in the afternoon, but it didn’t seem fair to ask the slightly battered and bruised Les & Di to start throwing sticks to try and knock Aunt Sally off a post, and one of our reserves was a little delicate when she finally emerged at about 3:30 in the afternoon. The evening was a much quieter affair with quite a few people having gone home. Monday morning and Les & Di had made an early start of it leaving just Steve, myself, Karen & Andy. We almost managed to be last off the site, but not quite, there was one other party still to go.

Now for John Measures account of events.

Oh dear, the National Rally seems to signify the end of the summer biking season. Had it gone already? Is winter looming? Am I ready to go to work in the dark and come home in the dark? Putting those thoughts to one side, Beth and I were ready to go, the Blackbird was packed and it was dry, warm and sunny. We had a lovely ride down, avoiding motorways and stopping for a bite to eat. After arriving at wherever it was (Chichester I think but the Sat Nav took us where we needed to go!) and booking in, we arrived at our caravan. Les and Di were waiting for us with a hot cup WINTER 2010

of tea. What a fantastic start to the weekend. A quick shop later where we saw Graham, Karen, Phil and Delice, and after another cup of tea, we adjourned to the bar for the customary beer and food. I have to say that the quality of the food was quite good as was the beer (or two). However, the excitement of Sammy the Sea Horse, or was it Sid the Prawn who were entertaining the kids and some adults, was too much, so, Beth and I decided that we will

National trust retire to the caravan for another cup of tea, or was it a glass of wine! Although there was a ride out planned for the next day, Les and Di had mentioned a National Trust country house which was not too far away. So Sat Nav programmed, Beth and I set off for a mystery trip. The day again was absolutely gorgeous after what was rather a cold night. We arrived at where ever it was (I really must try and find out where I actually went) and having travelled some lovely country lanes, the bike was parked. We managed to find a small space in the main car park to the annoyance of a bloke who had to walk from the overflow car park muttering something about motorcycles. cont.... 57


Silverstone – Round 11 British SuperBikes 25th to 26th September Arriving at the Honda Dreamfields camping area at around 11:00am, John Measures was already there, fighting with his tent poles and setting up a repartee with Graham Seymore that set the tone for the whole weekend.

National trust The house had been owned by a famous collector who had travelled the world, whose name escapes me at the moment….well I was on holiday, so I put my brain in sleep mode! The house was full of wondrous things of all shapes and sizes. There were ancient Samurai warrior outfits to suits of armour; penny farthing to perambulators. It was all very interesting such that Beth and I had to have a home made ice cream. Saturday evening saw an alternative type of comedian at the club house and I have to say, he was really quite funny. For some reason, I thought that it finished on the Sunday, so I had not booked Monday off work…Muppet! So I made up some lame excuse that I was so busy at work that I had to be in on Monday but I guess no-one actually believed that. We always seem to have a good time at the National which is down to Les and Di who are excellent caravan companions together with the other members of East Midlands and a last chance to say cheerio to other friends of HOC until next year. A special thanks go to Steve and Rita for organising our accommodation. Can’t wait until next year…that is after the summer, of course. 58

Honda Dreamfield Tents erected it was time to check out the portaloos, usually only used as a last resort, but very surprisingly they were rather luxurious. On a scale of 1 to 10 they had to be at least a 12.

Trying out the bike WINTER 2010


At 12:30 we were all invited into the hospitality suite for a welcome talk and lunch then left to our own devices for the afternoon. We took in some of the practices and wandered around the paddock looking at the differences between the privateer teams and the factory owned teams. At one extreme were some of the sidecar outfits, literally held together with string and sticky tape (actually it was filler and duck tape) and a bloke in a boiler suit with a couple of spanners and a hammer, and at the other were the fully fitted out garages, trained mechanics and the luxury wagons with extending side pods. Back on the other side of the track were the trade stands with display bikes to sit on and souvenirs to spend your money on.

In the Honda garage WINTER 2010

Late afternoon we all gathered at the back of the HM Plant Garage and were taken in 20 at a time for a garage tour and a talk by Neil Tuxworth (Manager – Honda Racing) a very knowledgeable person. In the evening we were invited into the Paddock hospitality suite where we were photographed with the HM Plant riders as we arrived and then they and other team members were distributed between the tables to sit down and have dinner with us all.

Later we were shuffled into teams each led by one of the HM Plant Team Members and treated to a quiz, supposedly a pub style quiz, the difference being that you had to shout out your team name and then you could answer the question rather than writing down all of the answers. Our team was obviously not shouting loud enough because we were frequently overlooked and needless to say we came last. At the end of the evening there was an opportunity to get autographs from the riders, with John McGuiness being the most popular by far. After breakfast on Sunday the weather started to turn cloudy and windy but the rain held off as we watched the first race of the day. cont.... 59


This was the Sidecar challenge, and how some of those outfits were holding together at those speeds I don’t know. This was followed by the Superstock 600, unfortunately there were no Hondas running. Back to the hospitality suite for lunch (oh, it’s such a hard life you know being VIP guests) and a chat with the Honda promotions team before watching the first British Superbike Challenge race which took place over 10 laps and was won by Michael Rutter on a Ducati with the HM Plant Honda of Josh Brookes taking second place and Kiyonari crossing the line in 5th place. The weather was worsening and so we decided to pack up all of our gear before it got a good soaking and then returned to watch the British Supersport race where there was an almighty pile up just after the first corner (Copse) due to the bad weather conditions. It took some time to clear the track of the debris and to ensure that all of the riders who had taken a tumble were taken care of.

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The race was re-started as a shortened 8 lap race and passed without further dramatic incidents. There were no HM Plant Honda riders in the race but it was however won by Sam Lowes on a GNS Racing Honda. The last race of the day was the second Superbike Challenge race another fiercely fought race with Kiyonari finishing second and Josh Brookes finishing third, behind James Ellison on a Swan Honda, Hondas 1,2 & 3. A great finish to a great weekend.

Rita

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KENT

Secretary: Mike Gallafent - 01322 400775

I missed the Autumn 2010 GW deadline for my report so have decided to use this report to review our activities throughout this year. And what a year it’s been. We have seen numerous new active members and been on lots of rides. I believe it’s fair to say this has been our most active year ever and together with better support has been our most enjoyable and eventful year since the Kent Branch was re-formed by Bill and Julie Brown (now back at Cambridge Branch) four years ago. An appraise of where we have gone and what we have done follows. Kent began the year visiting the ExCel and then the Ally Pally shows in February. These followed the NEC show in December 2009. Why are these shows all in the worst weather months of the year? Then in March a few of us (not me) attended the Wootton Bassett Mothers Day Parade and then followed with a visit to the Shepherd Neame Brewery in Faversham, which is well worth a visit. In April we rode to Southend, where the ACE Cafe had arranged their annual ride out to. Avoiding the ACE main road route we had a good ride using local and back roads but it was very crowded once we arrived in Southend. There, at a fish and chippy, we bumped into Bill and Julie who had come down with Cambridge Branch. We then attended the Ready to Ride event at Haslemere Fire Station and the following week we visited the Canterbury Motor Museum (small independent museum, attend by appointment only but well worth a visit), the Dover Transport Museum and on the way home stopped at Kent Motorcycles and H’s Cafe on the A2 out of Dover (very friendly Honda main dealer open on Sundays). 62

We then made our now annual pilgrimage to Hastings on the first May Bank Holiday, and the following week it was to the Amberly Veteran and Vintage Bike Show. It was time for the highlight of Kent Branch events to date, a long weekend French trip to Rouen and surrounds. There was a good turnout for this event which we intend to repeat in 2011, albeit to a different location yet to be agreed. We even got our picture in MCN at the Monet House and Gardens (see opposite). Fame at last! The Honda Day/Monkey Bike Day ride to the ACE Cafe was cancelled as was the ACE Cafe ride to Margate as we were going to Margate and Thanet a couple of weeks later. We find the ACE Cafe rides tend to use major roads whereas we tend to prefer using A and B type roads which are more varied and therefore more exiting and interesting to ride. Motorways tend to be so boring and are avoided unless we have a tight timescale or we are on our way home. Six or us attended the IoM TT races in June. We went in three independent groups of two but met up on a few occassions. This was a new experience for me and was most enjoyable. I might try the Manx in 2011! The BMF GEMS show was next but only two of us could make the Saturday. This event was generally poorly supported by the public in 2009 and in 2010 and unless it is re-invigorated should be dropped from the calendar and reestablished elsewhere to rejuvenate it. Pity because we had thought about having a stall there but at present it would not be cost or time effective. At the end of June we had a jellied eels ride to Whitstable. In July four of us attended Brede Steam WINTER 2010


Engine Society near Rye/Hastings. The various steam pumps were interesting to see but there was not a lot else to do there and most visitors would surely be enthusiasts. However, a second ride went there a few weeks after because some members were unable to attend the first visit. Then followed a visit to Wesson’s Cafe (Orgri’s) at Horan. Mid June then saw six of us attended a BikeSafe course at Bromley with the Metropolitan Police. Some of us had previously attended such a course, and it is an interesting experience to ride with a fully kitted out policeman on a fully dressed police bike. I would recommend this to you all. We then went on another trip to Amberly for the Classic Bike Show. At the end of the month we attended the Honda Roast organised by Chris and Marion of the North Downs Branch at their meeting place, the Crown at Capel. In August we began with a visit to the Marston Museum on Thanet then the next week a south coast ride to Whiteways Cafe

near Arundle. We then did a Hythe and Folkstone ride. We were then to meet Bill and Julie Brown in their new home county but this was cancelled at short notice, so a few of us decided to ride to Rye. Always a good late decision place to visit. We ended August with a ride to the Devil’s Punchbowl at Hindhead and then went on to Rykas Cafe at Box Hill. In September we attended a charity ride organised with Aspire, in respect of spinal injuries, to Beaulieu Motor Museum. The ACE Cafe ride to Brighton was cancelled at short notice but the next week we attended the Ready to Ride event at Haslemere. This is the bigger of the two events organised by firefighters at Haslemere Fire Station and is worth a visit if you have not attended before. Unfortunately we had to cancel the Bletchly Park at Milton Keynes visit but will include it in our 2011 calendar. On 10 October we had our best attended ride to date, to Brugge, Belgium, with twenty riders setting out via Eurotunnel. cont....

Kent HOC at Monet House and Gardens May 2010 as taken by Mike Coulter and featured in MCN WINTER 2010

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A really good time was had by all despite a few concerns using petrol stations and some of us missing our return train after getting a little lost! Then, one week later eleven of us did an Isle of Wight weekend. The weather was excellent and it helped that one of our riders, Ron, lived on the IoW for five years and he led us to some very good places we would not have seen if he was not with us. Thank you Ron. I then attended the HOC AGM at the National Motorcycle Museum and apart from our bi-monthly meetings have not ridden out since with HOC. However, we intend to plan a ride for early December and then do a Toy Run to Fairlawn Children’s Home in Ashford on 19 December. We have a Christmas dinner booked at the Windmill in Hollingbourne for the 8th December. I would like to thank a few people for helping me throughout the year. First, Laurie F for reliably riding rear guard for our safety on so many of the rides. Second, Ron K for taking over the website. Unfortunately Ron is leaving us to buy an MG so that his wife can enjoy their retirement runs together. Let us hope he cannot sell his Goldwing so he stays with us! Only joking. Looks like I will need to learn how to do the website again. Any volunteers? Tony B for leading each of our overseas ventures for the past few years. Mike O and Don I for planning and leading several of the rides.

Pauline and John A for many suggestions for rides. Last but not least Nigel B for collecting subs to assist with some of our running costs. I apologise for not mentioning everyone. Most of our rides are roundabout routes where we intentionally use non direct routes to attain our target venue. We use A and B roads wherever possible as these are more interesting and enjoyable, but there are some exceptions where M roads are used. We would still like to see and meet more of our membership. Out of about eighty five Kent members we have met less than thirty and of those only about twenty have come on some rides. Our average rides are with about ten or so, sometimes more, mostly less. Many members do not appear to have email contact, or if they do I do not have their details. To the ‘quiet’ members out there, if you do not hear from me via email, please contact me either by email or telephone (number at the top) and it would be really good to hear from you and any ‘new’ members. Thanks to all of you for making this a good year for those of us that are active, and I hope to see more of you at either of our two meeting venues; The Windmill at Hollingbourne near Maidstone and Pied Bull at Farningham near Dartford. We meet on 1st and 3rd Wednesdays respectively from 8pm.

Mike Gallafent

Branch Secretaries: The deadline for the next Golden Wing is; 20th February 2011 These pages are your advertising space, to let members who are local to you know the real benefits of active membership. Tell them what is happening in your area 64

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LAKES & COAST Secretary: Mike Bell - 07738 830917

With all the heavy rain in the autumn, we still had a hosepipe ban in place since July. It was on a fatefull Friday that it started to rain, and it never stopped until United Utilities removed the ban. We then had some great fine days, but by now the nights had started getting longer, and with clear skies, followed by cold mornings, activities were reduced. The mists lifting off the Lakes, Meres, Waters, Tarns etc is a wonderful early morning sight, as the sun rises from behind the mountains and the valleys burst into a stunning light show. OK, the weather is a small price to pay for living in this The Most Beautiful Corner of England, and we look forward to getting out next year to explore again; the routes the touroids don’t find. Planning for the 2011 Windermere Air Show on the last week-end of July, is taking shape. We intend to follow the pattern of previous years with a week-end of BBQ’s, Ride Outs and watching (and listening) to the RAF in our

far front garden. Camping can be organised in the garden, or for the more sophisticated, Bed and Breakfast, many within 200 yards of here. If you want more details, send me an email. More details of the Air Show itself can be found on the web site, www.windermereairshow.co.uk This is also the week-end of the HOC Roast, so maybe we shall be hosts again for the Northern branches, and build on the success of this year. More details to follow. Next year we again hope to meet on some Wednesday nights for the weekly bike meet at Knott-End-On-Sea, and Monday’s at Lytham St Annes, including the Illuminations ride through which I think is the 3rd Monday of September. We will be getting out again into the English Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the Scottish Borders, which are our usual playgrounds when they are not shrouded in clouds and mist. Although the roads are still likely to be wet with stones and puddles, and as for the potholes, well that is another subject! Still, the roads are fantastic, and the views amongst the best in the UK. If you don’t believe me, come and have a look, and we will prove it! Make a day of it, or stay longer. Part of Peter’s commute into work. Bassenthwaite, the only lake in the whole of the Lake District!

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Glasson Dock and we hope to get over to Squires Café again, and up to Tan Hill. The list of possibilities is endless and we would love you to join us, but please get in touch. We are a large geographically area, and have so much to offer. Send us an email, at Lakes@hoc.org.uk and let’s meet up in 2011, and enjoy the fun to be had in Bass, another part of Peter’s commute into work. this area. It is not just for In addition to the above, we hope to get over the tourists; we can and do enjoy ourselves! to Devil’s Bridge at Kirkby, Lonsdale, which is Meet soon another popular meeting place, together with Hawes, Middleton Teesside, Hartside and

Peter & Mike

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MANCHESTER

Secretary: Stephen Davenport - 07968 810435

It’s been a very satisfying last quarter, even if some of the rides have been less well attended (but not all – see below). Attendance at the meetings is still good and we all seem to have a good time when we meet up. We have had quite a few “AdHoc” rides when the weather has permitted it and these seem to attract a good crowd. A number of us have been to the BSB racing, courtesy of Tim “Twister” Hastings and have had a great time cheering him on (Superstock 600 if you are interested). Planning for our 50th anniversary celebrations are well under way. Not only are we having a run on January 2nd, we have invited a French and a German bike club to join us for a long weekend in June. All HOC members are welcome to join us for the Saturday evening do and the Sunday ride (see the advert elsewhere in the magazine). Other events are being planned but this is taking a lot of our time (and money). We now have the 2011 rides all planned thanks to our new Rides Coordinator – yes, please welcome Keith Ogden to the happy job of whipping boy when it all goes wrong! Our Sore-Ass award was convincingly won by Phil this year. Competition was fierce but friendly and we will be presenting the prizes at our Christmas dinner in December (so look for the report in the next edition of Golden Wing). 68

We are still happily ensconced with Rochdale Honda and have plans for events with them. More details later. And so to our ride reports. In the interest of keeping the magazine to a manageable size, there is only one report from us this time. For all the others, please visit www.manhoc.co.uk/ride_pictures.htm Ride to the Wild Boar Park Well, where do we start? Probably the shortest, most attended and most eventful ride Manhoc has had for years. The day started OK – in fact better than that because Norma was coming out on a ride. She appeared clad in leather (a vision in itself) and announced she was ready to go. So we did.We set off for the meeting point in plenty of time. A quick trundle up the A56 and we were there. Except we weren’t. The road to the services was closed and there was no way (we could see) to get there.

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No problem (I thought) – Norma could nip over to Winfields car park and I would wait at the roundabout and point anyone there. Sounded good and it seemed to work but I only saw 3 of our crowd in the next 20 minutes. By 10:30, I’d given up and joined the others. Then someone (Judy?) suggested I call Mark who we had heard on the radio and see where he was. I did that and found that there was a whole bunch of them sitting in the services car park having negotiated a way around the roadworks. Oops – red faced to match my bike. So we togged back and headed off to the services the long way round (about 4 miles to do 200 yards).

When we got there, there was a sea of bikes. Not only the regular Manhoc riders but a refugee (Richard) from West Coast Riders and Jean and all her friends who had wanted to get out for the day. Over 20 bikes, I think (I lost count with them all milling around). A quick chat, apologies for being late even though I was 20 minutes early and we set off. We actually left about 30 minutes later than planned but never mind. With the radios working fine (at least 5 of us had them at last count), there was little fear of anyone getting lost so we made progress up WINTER 2010

the A56 and over Sabden onto the Clitheroe road. By the time we got to Waddington, we were getting split up so I arranged for us all to regroup at the car park at Slaidburn.

This worked well (apart from Pete complaining he didn’t have enough time for a fag) and we set off again in formation to head North into the Trough of Bowland. That is a lovely road if a bit narrow and has great scenery to look at. After about 20 minutes we reached the end at High Bentham when suddenly over the radio “Stop – we’ve had a faller”. I couldn’t really understand this since it was a straight road, but I pulled over at the next convenient space (double yellow lines, but the cars could get round) and waited. Peter (Medic) turned back to see if he could help and the rest of us awaited instructions from the people behind. [The radios were a brilliant help and worked well]. It turned out that Pam had braked too hard when negotiating a parked car and had been flipped sideways when the front wheel tucked in. She was conscious but hurting and 69


an ambulance had been called. Once I knew this, I got all the ones with me to move over to the nearby pub (the Horse and Farrier) and wait and I said to Norma that we would use the mobile phones once I got there (more on the pub later). There was no point in us going back, there were already quite a few people at the crash site and more would only have got in the way. We all parked up (eventually, the car park had quite a slope on it) and went inside to get food and drink and await reports.

No phone reception inside (unless you were at the window) so every few minutes I went outside to check on progress. About the third call I got an excited Norma – “Guess what – an Air Ambulance has arrived”. Yes, that’s right, a helicopter had drifted in on the breeze to help out. Wonderful stuff and very quick. It turns out he was in the area anyway having attended another call. He got there about 20 minutes before the ground based ambulance, but soon there were lots of them looking after Pam. 70

Everyone else was contributing in their own way including Mark and friend directing the traffic and the rest giving advice and consolation. Norma called out the RAC (more on this later) but we didn’t wait for them. The bike was wheeled into a helpful neighbours drive. An RAC van turned up but since they thought they were picking up a car, they went away again. Meanwhile, back in the pub, food had arrived and was being consumed. It turns out the owner was learning to ride and had a 125 in her garage, so she was very supportive. She was also the chef and the portions and quality were superb. Highly recommended and we may well go back there on a future ride. Finally, we heard that the Air Ambulance had taken off with Pam [Picture 5] and that some riders were coming to the pub and some had gone over the Lancaster hospital to check on Pam. So, I ordered some food for Norma and waited for them to arrive and regale us with the latest news and gossip.

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Sure enough the tales started and the conversation carried on for a while. Eventually the subject came around to where we should go next. By this time it was around 2:30 and too late for a visit to the Wild Boar Park. We had a discussion and decided to just have a bit of a ride along various country roads and see how we got on. As it turned out, the ride was great apart from me leading everyone around a village with no exit road. We stopped for refreshments at Slaidburn again and quite a few came back to our house for a last brew before heading off home.

F u r t h e r updates on Pam and her bike: Pam had a punctured lung and was being kept in until it had settled down. She eventually came home on Thursday. She is still dead keen to go out on a bike again, but probably not a cruiser. The saga of the bike: At 8:30pm that evening I got a call from the gentleman (Pete) who had got the bike on his drive. No-one had been to pick it up. He offered to store it WINTER 2010

until the weekend but we thought that was an imposition and said we’d deal with it. I rang Jean who contacted Pam to get her address. Norma then rang the RAC and told them in no uncertain terms to get it sorted (that was the short version of the conversation!). We thought the situation was resolved and went to bed. At 12:03am, I got a missed call from a Blackpool number. On Monday evening, I rang it and it was Ffylde Motorcycles who were supposed to pick the bike up. They had got the bike, but no-one had signed for it and they had not taken the keys because Pete was in bed (we had asked them to ring him first but that message had not got through. Norma asked where the bike was and they “thought” it was at Pams house. Wednesday, Pam rings me to thank everyone. I asked her whether her bike was home and she said it wasn’t. I explained what had gone on and she said she’d ring the RAC because she was bored and wanted something to do. Friday, I log onto Facebook and the bike has been found, but I don’t know any more of the story than that. So, all in all, quite an adventure – but one I don’t want to repeat. Keep riding and keep it rubber side down.

Alan Sharkey

Chairman – Manchester HOC 71


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MANX OFFSHORE

Secretary: Karen Angela - 01624 629299

Well, wow! What an incredible year we’ve had, but does it have to go so fast?. Unfortunately missed the deadline for the last magazine due to pressure of work so will have to try and fit two into one, so here goes. Apart from the best year for racing so far it has been tinged with sadness from the inevitable tragedies that follow road racing wherever you race in the world. However, Dobbsy got the best send off ever. Riders and racers turned up on every conceivable machine imaginable and then some, and the hearse left them all standing! I have to say it was the best ride out I’ve ever been on, police at all the junctions waving us all through. How often as a non racer would you get to ride the famous TT mountain course all the way round at those speeds! As we approached Ballagarey (commonly known as Ballascary) where the incident happened all the marshals who dealt with the incident had a line of flags held lowered in respect, it was a sight none us will ever forget and I will never again ride through there without slowing down, even on four wheels. These were the same marshals who had to deal with Guy Martins incident, thankfully with a much happier outcome, and as we all know now, he will be back next year riding for Tass Suzuki, but we will still be rooting for him cos we like him! I believe there’s going to be a TV series made featuring Guy restoring a canal narrow boat and visiting various heritage sites, WINTER 2010

a bit like Fred Dibnah but with a Lincolnshire accent, should be interesting! Due to work commitments we didn’t make it for the Joey Dunlop 10 year memorial lap which took place in the same week as Dobbsy’s funeral. Officially 400 riders took part, unofficially it was well over 500. It was quite a sight when you saw it on TV. The finale of the TT was the White Helmets / Purple Helmets confrontation on Douglas promenade! This was a brilliant display of riding skills but still hilarious to watch and attracted so many people we went home to get our step ladders to be able to see over the crowds, much to the amusement of many people, but who cares! Good job its only two minutes from our house.

John on White Helmets bike We actually met and chatted with some of the White Helmets while they were in Laxey at the Mhoddy Dhoo bike show and John & I got a photo with him sat on one of their bikes. 73


No doubt Ian will have many more pictures of this and other events as he is rarely seen without his camera. Can you believe it, the White Helmets had to ask our tourist board if they could come over to do a show! Needless to say, they snatched their hands off and they will definitely be back for 2011! Thanks to all the guys from other branches who called in for a cuppa and chat during the week, we are looking forward to seeing you all next year. For a total change from bikes, on June 19th John & I went on a round the Island cruise aboard the Ben-my-Chree. It was an evening trip in glorious sunshine leaving Douglas at around 7pm. We headed south first, saw all the Calf of Man before heading North to take in a perfect sunset as we rounded the Point of Ayre at the northern tip. We arrived back in port around 11.30 just in time for a pint before heading home. The trip included a three course hot meal and was fantastic value at only £19 each. Full marks to the Steam Packet Co. for once!

bike racing! August saw us visit Jurby Airfield for some short circuit racing, Port Erin for the Beach Cross one evening, bl***y freezing but a good fish & chip supper. Later in the month, during a general ride round, Port Erin again for ice cream and a ride down to the sound (our equivalent of lands End) for a good chillout. John was made redundant at the end of August so we got to marshal all practice week. He was wanting to retire anyway so race week was a bit of a celebration! The weather was great this year to everyone’s relief as last year was a complete washout! The result was superb racing, enough interesting guests to keep us busy and lots of Vintage club activities to keep John amused. He’s finally got his little Ducati 160 back on the road about three years later than planned but better late than never. It served him well over race week getting to all the VMCC events and even won third prize at the Italian Motorcycle Club’s meeting in Port Erin justifying all the work put into it, both by him and its previous owner. Maybe next year Ian will join in on the Triumph Bonneville project he’s acquired, meanwhile Kim & I still believe the old adage, of one bum, one bike.

Sunset at Point of Ayre Its been a brilliant year for riding, I think I’ve done more miles this year than the last three put together! In July we had the branch outing at the World Championship Tin Bath racing in Castletown Harbour, much hilarity and cash raised for local charities but Chris Palmer really should stick to 74

Tin baths WINTER 2010


The only blot on all this were the midges & mosquito’s, has anyone else had a problem? I got bitten loads of times and John was badly affected during MGP, even ending up in A & E, who’s breeding the little b*****s. Great pictures, John from Eastern branch, good to see a photo of Heather and her Brough, she now lives with a mate of our John’s in Bradford.

Jurby The big event here in the VMCC calendar is the Festival of Jurby. Started last year, we saw around 8000 visitors in pouring rain. This year the attendance was estimated at 12500 and there is talk of making it a two day event next year with even more bikes and attractions for all the family. For anyone interested in the older bikes this event is a must, lots of on track action for road and competition machines with many famous racers, past and present for the autograph hunters. Get it booked now and bring the cameras! You can see lots of photo’s on both Ian’s HOC Manx website and www.vmcciom.org. Other events we’ve been to over the summer include the Red Hot Chilli Pipers (described in the press as a Glaswegian bagrock band!), The Billy Fury Story, Richard Digance and Rhod Gilbert, all excellent in their different ways. WINTER 2010

Snow on the beach! Bonfire night was our sixth anniversary of living here and was celebrated with the usual brilliant firework display. With John not working now I’m hoping to get the house renovations done a bit quicker, we just managed to get four of the five pairs of sash windows we had out for repair, back in a day before the gales hit in November! The surf in the bay was good though! Kim has finally got Ian to start insulating their loft, unfortunately he got tired after the first half, the rest will have to be done next year, well it is a big loft. Jim meanwhile is busy renovating his cottage in Wales as well as living and racing here. Speaking of his racing, we went to Jurby airfield to watch him ride his VFR400 and take photos, enjoyed it so much we signed up to marshal there. This is organised by the Andreas Racing Association and we did the last two meetings of their season, the endurance race and the inter Celtic match race which is a two day event. This is normally between the Manx, Irish, Scots and Welsh and is held alternately in each country but the Irish couldn’t make it due to the economic climate, next year it will be in Anglesey, hopefully they will return, well worth a visit if you can get there. For anyone interested the Manx won! Home tarmac advantage I suppose. cont.... 75


version of a state funeral, the applause along the route was like a Mexican wave and the whole event was broadcast live on Manx radio for the world to hear. He had become as much a part of Island life as the bike racing and it seemed as though the whole Island was there to wave goodbye.

James Because this clashed with the HOC AGM and we couldn’t be in two places at once, paradise won out but our thoughts were with you.

Honda Pump

Sir Norman Wisdom This was also the weekend that the Island said its fond farewell’s to Sir Norman Wisdom. A huge crowd lined up along the promenade all through the town to St. Georges church as he was taken on his final journey, it was our 76

All this leads up to our last branch outing of the year, five of us went to the Big Wheel Blues Benefit gig in Peel where a special guest appearance by the now legendary Davy Knowles put the icing on the cake, see photo on following page of Moi with Davy and guitar. This was a fantastic evening of all local musicians and a small sample is on you-tube. The filming was done by John using the bass players camcorder after about 10 seconds tuition, well we were sat on the front row and he is a mate! I think you search for it under Centenary Centre Peel, but don’t hold me to that. WINTER 2010


Karen & Davy Knowles So the final meeting of 2010 will be the Christmas do, we’ve invited the local BMW lot to join us for a meal at out usual meeting place, the Creek Inn before five of us go off Island until after New Year, a holiday at last.

For next year Kim our social secretary is already compiling the calendar, a Fairport Convention gig in February first and she is talking about holding our first local rally, probably just a one day affair in the summer but who knows, watch this space as they say. Must dash now as a: this is late & b: we are off to Ian the webmaster’s so he can make sure the write up and photo’s go together! Keep your fingers crossed. Until 2011 then, this is M.O.B. signing off, Be safe, be happy.

Karen, ably assisted by John,Kim,Ian & Jim Dave WINTER 2010

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NORFOLK

Contact: Julian Richards - 07717 306 201

Well we have had such a busy time this summer that we can only give a flavour of what we have been up to in the Norfolk Branch. We started this quarter with an excellent visit organised by Rob to the EAST ANGLIAN AIR AMBULANCE on 26TH AUG 2010. On a very miserable wet evening, thirteen of us met at The Firs public house on Cromer Road Norwich. Soon we were ready to move off en-masse to Hangar D at Norwich Airport for our visit to the EAAA. Hannah Clay had the dubious honour of escorting us around. On arrival she took us to the hangar where we were issued with visitors passes once the previously completed security form was checked. The first helicopter Hannah talked about was their first air ambulance - MBB 105DBS5, G-EYNL - which although still does sterling work is very much for training and a back-up aircraft. Hannah explained the loading and crew positions of a fairly cramped workspace.

Air Ambulance 78

Next we moved onto their newer and larger helicopter, a Eurocopter BK-117C-1, G-RESC which is usually based at RAF Wyton to cover the southern area of the EAAA territory. This aircraft is “Anglia 2”, the normal Norwich Airport based “Anglia 1” another BK-117C1, G-OEMT was not in the hangar on this evening. As Hannah opened up the aft of the cabin she demonstrated that the BK-117’s are much more user friendly and gives patients, paramedics, and doctors a lot more room in which to work and care for the injured person. Indeed sometimes they are able to carry a loved one which makes the patient much more comfortable.

Hannah outlined the diverse nature of the 10,000 odd call-outs they’ve had during their very successful 10 years of operation. They cover an area of 5,500 square miles serving a population of approx 3.2 million people and they shockingly don’t receive a penny from the Government or National Lottery so rely solely on public fundraising. Therefore if everyone donated £1 per head in the WINTER 2010


area covered by our air ambulance they would get £3.2 million of the £3.5 million they need per year to operate – if only it was that simple! Hannah continued very professionally with her information telling us of the specialised circumstances the doctors, paramedics, and flight crew find themselves in, but most of all the very quick transfer times compared with land ambulances, some of which cannot get to the rural places in our counties. She answered our questions throughout the visit and we concluded with the inevitable group photos to record a very bright interlude to the cold and wet night outside. We departed giving Hannah a donation from the Branch and our thanks for a thoroughly enjoyable and informative visit. We hope to see her and Jess again sometime soon. The majority of the group adjourned to “The Firs” to complete the night socially. Since this trip we have heard the GREAT news that next year HOC (GB) will be supporting the Air Ambulances across the country with fundraising to support their vital work.

have been reversing round Burgh on the Goldwing SO much that the battery was flat. which was a real shame for them both. The weather was very windy as we set off for Clare and there was the threat of rain all the way there but mixed with sunny spells too. Roy and Meg led us on a nice route through the countryside – a good mix of nippy and twisty sections and Geoff and Pat were tail end Charlies – making sure that John and Margaret kept up with those of us on 2 wheels.! After we arrived in Clare we all went off on our own – Sue and Dave went round the Church that has many interesting features and then on to the Museum while the rain passed over. We did learn about the royal gold Reliquary cross and chain that were dug up in the Castle in the very early 1900s but VERY sadly is kept in a drawer at The British Museum. After the rain stopped we went to the Clare Priory – again a very interesting place with lots of history and enthralling features. Finally we headed for the Antique Shop recommended by Meg. It is a huge shop over 5 storeys that serves AWESOME home made cakes and drinks. We had 2 cakes each and they were LOVELY. If you like the teapot or cups and saucers served to you then you can buy them from the owners. We saw 2 Claris Cliff cups and saucers sold that way. cont....

Clare Our next event was an interesting Branch ride-out to Clare on 29th August. We met at The Breckland Lodge for a fortifying breakfast at 10am where the food was lovely – freshly cooked, tasty and nothing was too much trouble for the staff. Unfortunately John and Margaret had to turn up on 4 wheels – they WINTER 2010

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Inside is a veritable cornucopia of things for sale. When we left the wind had got even stronger so we had a blustery trip back after a really enjoyable ride out to a lovely place.

Fenman Next stop was the annual Fenman Classic Bike Show at Wimbotsham on Monday 30th August. Dave and Sue went to help EACH run a stall at the show and also to represent our Norfolk Branch of HOC. We arrived there at 8am (on a Bank Holiday!) and set up the stall with Les from the Downham Market EACH shop. Even this early on there were bikes making their way in to the village. Everyone we met who lived there was extremely friendly and we were made very welcome. The village was getting full of bikes from about 9am onwards and by 11, when the event opened, there were people and bikes everywhere. It was so good to see and hear the classic and vintage bikes being ridden in to the show. hardly any came on trailers. The range was awesome, Greeves, BSA, Triumph, Matchless, Ariel, Velocette, Norton and many other makes, even some early Japanese bikes and beautiful 6-cylinder Hondas and Kwakas. There were lots of stalls selling new and second hand bike parts and gear, even old specialist tyres. The food was available from an early hour and at lunch we 80

sampled the pub’s bbq and real ale – mmmmm it was LOVELY! The hot drinks were a good size too and a lifesaver as we were placed on the windiest corner of the village green. By lunchtime the whole village was crammed with bikes and people enjoying an excellent show, good music, brilliant bikes and lovely hospitality. All the money raised supports the village charities and facilities, a really good idea. We put lots of our Branch cards on Hondas and hopefully we might get some enquiries from this.we had a good talk to a couple with a 6-cylinder Honda who live near Watton and who sounded very interested in our Branch, what we do and the fact that we are informal and LOVE food and fun! Since then we have welcomed Andy and Denise in to our Branch and they are great members. We got home after 5pm, tired but very glad we have found such a lovely gem of a bike show. We will put this one in next year’s diary for sure. We had planned a Branch visit to the MUCKLEBOROUGH Collection on 12th September. Unfortunately all the regular members who turn out for ride outs were otherwise occupied on Sunday, so Roy Wicks and our new member Andy went together. At the start Roy tried to convince Andy that this is really a one off by just 1 other person turning up. They met up at the Firs public house at just after 11 am and took a leisurely ride to the Muckleborough Military collection. When they got there they found a large car boot sale plus entry to the museum was free and went and had a look. Roy and Andy felt that that they had to pay a visit to the cafe for a bite - well that’s what Dave would have done if he were there. As they sat and talked about bikes an announcement came over the tannoy - if there is anybody wishing to see the WINTER 2010


tank demonstration please go to the children’s play area. Roy and Andy said that they didn’t want to see a load of kiddies being crushed so stayed and carried on eating and finally left at about 15.30 and went their separate ways back home and, unlike the Clare run, the weather was perfect.

Treehouse Ride Our next event was a sponsored one for the East Anglia Children’s Hospice Treehouse appeal Motorcycle run 5-9-10. Dave and Sue set off to the Orwell truck stop in Ipswich at 8.15 am. The morning was warm and sunny. They arrived to find several hundred bikes were already lined up and were put into a group of about 20 bikes, with the lead rider on a burgundy Pan. Do you think someone is trying to tell Sue something! After a few minutes everyone gathered in front of a trailer and were introduced to Bev Lambert who organised the event and Patsy Johnson from EACH. Bev introduced Dave Rout, an ex police officer, a biker, and more importantly a granddad. He told a very moving tale about his 8-year-old grandson Tyler Ford, who has severe cerebral palsy and cannot walk or talk. Tyler has been in the Ipswich Hospice WINTER 2010

on several occasions for respite care and was due to visit there this weekend and to also appear at the motorbike run. Unfortunately this was not possible as the hospice had an end of life situation, which just brought home how important the Treehouse appeal is, and how it will make such a difference having a much larger hospice that will accommodate more children at any one time, their families, and all their needs. James Hazell from Radio Suffolk chatted to the crowd from the trailer stage and officially started the motorbike run by asking everyone to rev his or her engines.The noise was awesome as 400 bike engines leapt into life! The groups set of in intervals of 90 seconds, starting at 9.30. We were in group 14 and left the truck stop at 9.45 to follow a well planned route of 73 miles incorporating A roads, B roads with some nice twisty bits too. The route took us to Melton, Rendlesham, Clopton, Yoxford, Coddenham and back into Ipswich. The run was met in the villages and on some of the bridges by the public waving and clapping, obviously having heard the coverage on Radio Suffolk that morning. Two hours later everyone arrived back at the truck stop having taken in a very enjoyable route. Having downed two cuppas each, Dave and Sue turned to the next important issue of the day, FOOD. There was plenty of choice with burger van and ice cream vans onsite and a live band playing. But they opted to go in the truck stop restaurant and settled for the carvery which was excellent value for money and tasty too. This rounded of the morning well and they arrived home at 3.30. cont.... 81


The organisers, marshals and lead riders did a brilliant job. The total won’t be in for a couple of weeks but at least £6,000 has been raised to date and there is talk of another one for next year. Sue thinks Dave wants to go and support EACH again, oh and possibly wants another carvery; no change there then!

Quidenham Open Following on from this event, the Branch had a visit to EACH Quidenham Hospice Open Evening on 22nd Sept. 12 of us met outside the Hospice at 7pm for a tour of their new facilities and to present the craft materials and goodies for the staff that our Branch “Quid for Quidenham” collections had bought. This year we raised some £175 pounds - £100 more than last year. Sue and Dave have been busy buying craft kits and materials throughout the year as and when they have been on special offer. All but £0.51 of the money raised has been spent. We also met our new EACH link, Claire Lelievre (French for Hare) as well as Danielle, Jess and some of the care and activity staff. The tour was very good, showing us just what a huge difference the building work has made to the whole feel of the Hospice. The extra end-of-life suite will make such a huge difference to the families and children as well as allowing the rest of the Hospice to function without stopping. 82

Unfortunately when the group Dave was in finally made it to the refreshments at the end of the tour there were just a few crumbs left. Apparently some bikers had been in and scoffed the lot! We then presented the craft materials to Claire – the Play Therapist – and Claire and Danielle. We also bought the staff a selection of Hot Chocolate, tea and coffee materials as well as some nice chocolates and luxury biscuits. We felt that often their enormous contribution to the Hospice can be easily overlooked. Since the visit Claire assures us that they have been really enjoying their donation. Everyone in the Branch is happy that this is a charity that needs our support and which really works well with the Branch and values our support hugely. They will be keeping us abreast of events where we can help and also take part – the Ride for Life at Santon Downham and next year’s quiz to name but two. Eight of the Branch then attended the HOC Rally 2010 - 4 of us had a caravan and 4 shared a log cabin. The venue at Hoburne was great with good facilities and excellent countryside all round it with awesome rides. Graham and Chris won the “Furthest distance travelled” award that was a good start to the weekend. In our caravan food was cooked by Dave, supervised by Penny, and quickly eaten by all 4 of us – stunning full English Breakfasts rolled off the production line like clockwork. this was just as well as the caravan next to us contained, amongst others, Jenny Regalia with her tasty tins of cakes! The weather was stunning all weekend and we joined a really good crowd of HOC friends for a fun-filled 3 days. As they had arrived Thursday night, Dave and Sue went out on the Friday, while everyone was arriving, to spend a wonderful day at Avebury and the surrounding areas of Silbury Hill and the West Kennett Long WINTER 2010


having fun too! Bourton on the Water where we stopped was a picture-postcard place – lovely

HOC Rally

Barrow. The sites were just stunningly good to visit. We didn’t go on the Saturday ride-out. preferring to see Tintern Abbey – just over the Avon in to Wales. On the way back we spent some time watching the last flying Vulcan displaying at a local air show.Tony and Penny had seen the Lancaster doing the same just before that. However we did join in the Sunday run in the morning – a superbly planned ride that had everything a biker loves – fast flowing sections, an AWESOME hill down and then back up. While we were cranked over at erm.60mph (HONEST!) on the way up the hill Steve (from West London Branch) undertook us on his new VFR just to show us he was WINTER 2010

tea and Tony got a very tasty ice cream there too. In the afternoon we had the friendly inter-branch games which were really well organised – Aunt Sally, Horseshoe Pitching and Wi-games.Dave was absolutely stunned to win the trophy for the highest score on the Horseshoes.and all of the Branch members showed their abilities well at the games. Each evening there was entertainment laid on at the site – a good mixture of singers and entertainers. Thanks MUST go to Erica and her Oxford Branch team who were such brilliant hosts who made this a very special weekend. We can’t wait for the 50th Rally in 2011 for another excellent weekend away having fun with a great crowd of like-minded HOC bikers. This year’s Ride for Ryder was on 24th September 2010. Sue and Dave’s challenge for this year’s Ride for Ryder was to ride the whole Norfolk County boundary within a working day – between 9am and 5pm on our motorbike. cont.... 83


This equates to approximately a 300-mile journey. We set off at 9am on Friday morning. The weather was far from promising, grey, cold, raining and very breezy. We decided to ride clockwise round the County so aimed for Wisbech via small villages like Feltwell and Southery. We were wearing our Sue Ryder tshirts that started off the day clean and dry!

The person behind the till remembered us from the HOC (GB) Rally outing and, after hearing what we were doing, gave us lunch on the house, a LOVELY gesture of support. One of his customers – also a biker – donated £10 to our challenge total, which was really nice. By this time we were 2/3rds of the way round the challenge. After warming up a bit we pushed on for Happisburgh, Yarmouth and then the long haul down past Beccles, Bungay and through Diss to home. When we arrived back at ours around 4pm we were VERY cold and wet.but delighted that we had accomplished what was a good, hard challenge, especially given the grim weather conditions. NEVER has a hot bath been so welcome!

Ride for Ryder From Wisbech we headed to Kings Lynn and then to the coast at Hunstanton. “Sunny Hunny” it was definitely NOT. The weather got worse and worse with heavier rain, stronger winds and much colder. By this time we were feeling the cold and so stopped for a lovely hot chocolate there. We hugged the North Norfolk coast road, being blown hither and thither as we passed field gates and gaps in the hedging, and it was hard work keeping the bike straight. On we went to Cromer where the wind was gale force, the seas round the pier were rough and the rain was lashing horizontally. At last we made the Kingfisher Cafe at Walcott, a wonderful sanctuary from the awful weather. 84

The amount we raised ended up at £265.78. Thanks to everyone who donated money or sponsored us on this challenge people at the HOC Rally were very generous. Our last trip out this quarter was a visit to Andybuysbikes on 13th November 2010. Six of us met up at Framlingham to visit Andybuysbikes. Andy buys, restores and sells WINTER 2010


classic and vintage bikes all over the world and was mentioned in an interesting MCN article in the summer. His workshop is awesome. We were welcomed with a cuppa – very good on a nippy morning – and allowed to wander through the sea of gorgeous bikes.having many nostalgic moments. The bikes ranged there were a good mix of English and rest-of-the-world.all laid out and presented very well. There were some interesting notices on some – for example one bike apparently previously belonged to a lion tamer! Andy and his staff were available to answer questions and Roy was reminded of one bike that he really wished he had not sold – a WW2 machine that now commands upwards of £4000!

Andybuysbikes

The top price there was over £20,000 for a pre-WW2 English bike. Andy also had lots of posters and adverts – many with very worrying images of dodgy blokes with no protective gear on chatting up young ladies who seemed very sporty! After about an hour we left for lunch at The Railway Pub – just next to Andy’s place. Dave HAD to try a pint of Gannet – locally brewed and GORGEOUS! This was followed by some tasty food but, judging by the prices, Framlingham is quite a wealthy area. When the Branch buys a lottery ticket (never bought one yet) and WINS, we will certainly return there to purchase some stunning, classic Saturday show bikes. Do visit his website www.andybuysbikes.com On a personal note, Dave and Sue were overwhelmed at the HOC AGM when Andy presented them with their Chairman’s Awards. We really enjoy being members of a very active Branch and taking a part in all that it does. We are now busy in the run-up to Xmas and our start to 2011 and the HOC 50th celebrations – LOTS of plans coming to fruition for this. It will be nice to be the first HOC Branch to see the sun rise on another brilliant year of biking fun. Ride safe, have a VERY merry Christmas and see all our HOC friends in 2011, Ride safe

Dave & Sue

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NORTHANTS & M.K Secretary: Sue Beck - 07863 599992

As usual we have been very busy here at the Northants and Milton Keynes branch. Our fantastic attendance at The National Rally saw us walk away with the trophy for the largest branch turnout. A great time was had by us all over the weekend with a slightly impromptu late night drinking party in our lodge being a good laugh. Thanks must go to Erica and the Oxford branch for a brilliant rally. Our EOR’s continued with good turnouts on each one despite the sometimes dodgy weather.

DreamďŹ elds area, but we still spent as much time on our club stand as we did away from it. The highlight once again was me managing to get the gang some laps round the track.

Just two days later on September 28th, we had an enjoyable ride up to Louth to visit the Honda Race Workshop.

The 22nd September was cake time as we had 2 birthdays Gordon (Prof) and Mickey 2 hornets. From the 24th to 26th September and we were once again back to Silverstone for the British Superbikes. Dan & I joined other members of the HOC as guests of Honda in their 86

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Nearly everyone present signed up ensuring our continued support of the charity. Our last EOR was on October 13th and was dedicated to the memory of our dear departed friend John Childs as this was always his run. As is the norm we went to Stibbington Diner.

Fifteen members were treated to an interesting and informative tour of the plant. It is well worth any of you going and it’s free, so if any other branches would like to arrange a visit email me for contacts etc. On October 6th we had a talk by Shaun Denholm of the Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance Lottery. On October 20th we welcomed Andy Giddings from Northamptonshire Police to chat about Bike Kraft. Hopefully he will be back next year to give assessed rides. It was the winter Quiz and Chip night was on 3rd November and this time there was forty four of us crammed into our small watering hole for a fun ďŹ lled evening of questions and delicious grub. WINTER 2010

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Just one week later we saw a return visit from fellow member and biking solicitor John Measures from East Midlands Branch who yet again gave us a very informative presentation. It just so happened that our Phil the spill had a birthday that day, so yours truly got baking and made him a special cake. 88

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We are off to Kushboo’s of Burton Latimer on 24th November to celebrate national Curry week and on Wednesday 1st December we are having a talk on French Biking from Paul from JtheB’s. On January 1st 2011 we will be doing our Chilly run which is usually all of about 10 miles to a pub serving food, and our Branch Christmas Dinner will be on January 7th at the Tollemache Arms in Harrington. I hope you all have/had a good Christmas Ride safe

Sue Beck

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NORTH DOWNS

Contact: Chris Ward - 07827 393237

Our ride out on the 12th of September took us to Brighton for the Ace Café Rockers Reunion. Thousands of bikes converged in the sun for a great day at the seaside resort. Hopefully next year the HOC will be represented at this prestigious event.

Paul’s beautiful CB750 The National Rally at the Cotswold Water Park was once again a highlight of the HOC year. Due to the timing of the formation of the branch the majority of members were unable to attend but hopefully in future years many more will be able to enjoy this special get together. Oxford Branch is to be congratulated on organising a superb event. 90

Over the weekend of 25th and 26th of September, Chris and Marion represented the branch at the Honda Dreamfields, British Superbike round at Silverstone. Branch member Julian was also at the event representing CB1000R.com but was sporting an HOC tee shirt, nice one Julian. Further details can be found in the separate report. The first AGM of the North Downs Branch was held on 21st October 2010. Chris was voted in as Secretary and Marion was confirmed as Treasurer. No nominations were received for the posts of Chairman or Ride Out Co-ordinator so these posts are currently unfilled. We attended the HOC AGM at the National Motorcycle Museum on 24th October, where once again it was great to meet up with old friends and make some new acquaintances.

Dinner and drinks at the National Rally WINTER 2010


Rona, Dibble and Phil On the 10th November we were invited over to the Admiral Hawke in Sunbury for the visit of Fiona Cole from Honda UK who was hosting a question and answers evening. Steve Hill did a sterling job as the chat show host and TV presenters should be on their guard. It was a very enjoyable evening with members from North Downs, Reading and West London all getting together. Thanks to West London for their hospitality which included a great buffet.

The audience at The Admiral Hawke WINTER 2010

Our ride out on the 21st November saw us meet up with West London Branch for a run to Wessons Café at Horam near Hailsham in East Sussex. Formerly the Ogri Café, it’s a great biker friendly venue which serves up great food. West London riders met up at The Admiral Hawke before joining us at Rykas at Box Hill. We were just about to leave when we were joined by a new couple from West London, Raul and Cat on a VFR800. A total of eight bikes, three with pillions, left to make our way down through the Surrey and Sussex countryside to our destination. Mike (CBF1000) led the way, guided by his sat nav, which managed to give us a great sightseeing tour of Haywards Heath, not once but twice. We arrived around midday, just in time to get stuck in to a hearty breakfast. On the return leg led by Jon and Jude (Hornet 600) we stopped off at Hailsham for fuel before heading off up the A22. Howard (CBR1100XX) left us here to head directly home. At East Grindstead, Dave (CB500) peeled off and when we reached Godstone, Steve and Maureen (VFR1200) departed. We joined the A25 and headed for Reigate where I left the pack leaving just four bikes to head back to West London. It was a good winter ride out to a great café which we will repeat again next year. cont.... 91


Maureen, Dave and Steve at Box Hill North Downs would like wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We look forward to seeing you all in 2011 and if you’re passing make sure you drop in and see us, we meet on the first and third Thursday of each month. Until next time, ride safe.

Chris

Dave’s ‘Big Boy’ breakfast at Wessons 92

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The F stands for FUN

Downsized grips allow young riders to take full control while the simple-to-use, semi-automatic gearboxes in the CRF50F and CRF70F and a full 5-speed 窶話ox in the CRF100F start their shifting skills in the right direction. Proven and reliable four-stroke engines provide smooth, safe power that will keep the off-road adventures rolling on. The rugged chassis and suspension can easily handle the roughest terrrain keeping the rider comfortable and in complete control.

Honda Contact Centre: 0845 200 8000

www.honda.co.uk


NORTH LONDON Secretary: Roland Murphy - 07504 104908

Since the club’s last report quite a few ride outs have taken place. July We rode in support of “Help The Hero’s” from the Victoria Pub in Witham to Merville Barracks in Colchester, in honour of the East Anglian Regiment. There was a large attendance at this ride out from various clubs in the region. From our branch there was Graham, Alan and Ken.

We then had a ride out around Herts followed by a BBQ back at Ken’s ranch. The weather was great this day and everyone had a great ride and swollen bellies after the large spread laid on. Well done Ken. This will be repeated again next year. 94

We had the HOC roast at the Tollemache Arms in Harrington, our host being Northants. West London, Bedfordshire and Cambridge also attended. The Arms is a nice restaurant and serves good food. (We actually stopped there on our return from Yorkshire because the setting and food was excellent).

August Seven of us rode out to the motorcycle show at the Museum of Power, Langford, Essex. WINTER 2010


They were Ken, Alan, John G, Biff, Barry, Kieran and myself. We did quite well here, as we arrived the stewards stated that if we would show our bikes in the show we could get free entry, so we did. Biff made a new friend here as well.

We went to Northants branch Charity Bike Show at the 10 o clock on the Bank holiday Monday and a good time was had by all attending.

September Nine club members Brackley Festival of motorcycling. They were Graham, Alan Ken, Phil & Thelma, Barry, Richard, Biff and Keith. This event was in aid of Warwickshire/ Northamptonshire Air Ambulance. They all thoroughly enjoyed the day and the atmosphere there. WINTER 2010

attended

the

Between the 9th and 13th three of the NLHOC members joined Cambridge branch members on the Dambusters Tour visiting the Ruhr Dams. Our members were Graham, Barry and Keith, whilst Cambridge had Roger H, David and Roger C. Part of the ride to Germany was in very heavy rain. cont.... 95


The rest of the trip went very well with everyone enjoying themselves. This is certainly a trip that will happen again sometime in the future with more members of the NLHOC taking part. (This trip was organised by Dambuster Motorcycle Tours, part of British Legion Riders Club)

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We then had a day riding around France. A 6am start again with a late arrival back home. 5 of us went on this trip, Alan, Steve K, Mike O, Richard and myself. It was a great sunny day from start to finish. We took in Boulogne, Le Touquet, St Omer and then home. We had a coffee break beside the lovely beach in Boulogne taking in the sun watching the French people going by. We then had a smashing lunch in a café called JEANS CAFÉ in Le Touquet. Good food, good service and the prices were right. We then went over to St Omer for another coffee break in the main square. The roads were great, the sun shone all day and the company was excellent.

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On the same day as the French trip Ian took part in the Essex Air Ambulance annual run from Dunton in Essex to Harwich. Also on the same day as the French trip Biff, Kieran, Phil, John G & Lynn, Simon and Phil took part in the Brighton Burn Up Run. The weather was sunny all day and the trip there and back was excellent. The day was attended by thousands of bikers.

to be overcast in the morning with rain in the afternoon. After coffee we headed off towards the Tollmarche Arms in Harrington (This is where the Northants branch had the HOC Roast), near Kettering. A lovely lunch was had by all. The weather men had got it right, the clouds were rolling in so we got our wet weather gear on. After lunch we headed off to St Neots for the afternoon coffee stop. And then the last leg home with people peeling off where necessary. We all agreed it was a great weekend, which we need to repeat, which I intend to see that we do. cont....

We then had the second trip of the year to Sammy Millers Motorcycle Museum in the New Forest. Again we were lucky with the weather. The ride down there and back was excellent, Graham leading the pack both ways. We then had the weekend away, Friday afternoon to Sunday evening, riding around the South Yorkshire moors. We rode up to Wakefield for our first overnight stop. It was a bit drizzly riding up there, but the rain soon stopped. We set off Saturday morning in sunny weather. The weather stayed dry and sunny for us all day. We rode across the moors taking in Snake Pass, lunch by Ladybower Reservoir and stopping off at the Cat & Fiddle Pub, which we found unwelcoming, so rode down into Macclesfield for a break. We had another stop at the Coach and Horses pub in Fenny Bentley before we reached our next overnight stop in Derby. On Sunday we rode to Melton Mowbray for a coffee stop. The weather was forecast WINTER 2010

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October Ken attended the Copdock Motorcycle show on his own. He had a great time and the weather was good. We then held our third quiz night of the year. It was well attended and the oldies won the quiz. Well done the oldies. We then had a ride out to Hunstanton. The weather was sunny all day, which made the ride a treat. We stopped at St Neots for coffee on the way up there. We had lovely fish and chips on the sea front. On the way home we stopped at SUBWAY in Haverhill for a coffee break. All in all it was a great day out.

I have arranged so far this year. Watch this space for next year). We had an afternoon/evening ride out for Halloween. There was only one requirement, you had to dress for the occasion. We meet up at McDonalds in Harlow before riding off on a long route to Finchingfield, where we had something to eat and drink. As it was getting dark we set off for the haunted control tower on the old RAF station at Matching Green. Fred was an Officer who was killed in action at the control tower during the Second World War. He is seen regularly inside and outside of the control tower. We spent 45 minutes there looking for him. It was evident that he was out Tricking And Treating so we made our way back to the McDonalds at Harlow for another coffee before setting off for home. On this trip we had Graham, Phil & Thelma, Alan, Richard, Ken, Biff, Nick and myself enjoying the night. You may have seen a rider in a lime green outfit on a CBR600. Spooky.

A couple of club members attended the Red Oktober day at the ACE Café. We held our AGM on the 21st where I was elected in as Branch Secretary. I am still going to remain the Events Organiser, a post that I have held since November 2009. (The club has never had it so good with all the ride outs 98

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November We held our firework display on Thursday 4th, our club night. It was well attended by club members and their families. Most people bought fireworks along for the display. Alan and Richard V were our arsonists for the night with Graham keeping a watchful eye on the proceedings. We even had the pub staff come out and watch the display. I thank Lindsay, the Landlady of the Kings Oak for allowing us to use the side garden for the display.

On this trip there was Phil & Thelma, Graham, John & Lynn, Simon B, Jim and Marian and Myself. We attended the Remembrance Day Service at Duxford Airfield on the 14th. It was our chance to pay respect to those that have fallen or been injured in the name of freedom. We thank them all. On this trip we had Ken, Phil, Alan, John G, Ian, Asif. Jim and myself.

We then had a ride out to Clacton. The weather was a bit of a mixed bag this day, sunny, overcast, drizzle and cold, we still had a great day though. We stopped on the way to Clacton at the McDonalds in Maldon for coffee. For the second time we went to the Unique Cafe in Pallister Road. Friendly staff, good food and the prices are reasonable. We certainly will use them again. As you can see we have had a very busy time and the future holds even more exciting trips for the club. Ride safely.

Roland

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OXFORD

Secretary: Erica Gassor - 07799 492235

With the nights drawing in and long summer days a distant memory, you would think we are all slowing down to hibernate but nope, none of it. September saw the valiant members of the Oxford Branch all muck in and knuckle down to the final arrangements for the National Rally. I personally was amazed everyone was still talking to me after ‘volunteering’ our branch to organize the event! Although no event is ever perfect and one or two things didn’t go 100% as planned, folk seemed to have a really good time and a great laugh………..including those from our Branch – amidst all the activity.

It was so good to see so many members from different areas. With Plum doing an excellent job as chief photographer, the DVD detailing everyone’s exploits was expertly assembled by Gavin from Reading as a permanent reminder of all the antics and, whilst writing this report, I am just about to send out the cheques to our three chosen charities, SERV, the Air Ambulance and Katherine’s Hospice splitting a total of just under £800 between them. Well done to everyone who came along. 100

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gave an interesting insight into the Honda Institute and its technical expertise. This was a fascinating evening enjoyed by all. cont....

In the background to all the National arrangements, we have been continuing with our other Branch activities. The Best Bike Night and BBQ brought keen competition to the fore (photo’s please) with no favouritism being shown by the independent judge (i.e. my VFR did not win but Dave’s did!).

We have also enjoyed a firework night with silly games and yummy sweets and have had excellent presentations from visitors such as Master-Tec. Keith is an ex Honda Master Technician who, after their cut backs were made, started Master-Tec and now offers servicing and repairs through his own company. Keith WINTER 2010

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and update was followed by a wander round the museum and then we wended our way home. Having to do some of the own ofďŹ cial stuff, we have just had our AGM. After two excellent years organising and guiding our ride out’s, Pete and Jen are taking a slightly more back seat and Ted has taken over as ride out coordinator for 2011. We are looking

Our ride on the back roads to the National AGM on a chilly but sunny day was greatly enjoyed and the bacon butties and coffee were much appreciated when we got there. An interesting, good humoured meeting

at updating and perhaps changing our web site and further down the line, after sterling work over many years, Alan will be able to take a back seat and Jim will be stepping more to the fore. The Oxford Branch Fantasy Road Race winners 102

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The 50th Anniversary Year for HOC is progressing well as we can all see and Oxford are busily planning and organizing their events to mark this special year………….watch this space!

Erica were announced and prizes allocated. Once again thanks were expressed to Don for his diligent work over the season in keep us up to date on who was leading the league. WINTER 2010

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READING

Secretary: Justin (Taz) Bellhouse - 07976 853 531

Well yet again the last few months have 8th of September we had a charity auction flown past. The last entry in the autumn edition at the Swan. Many people donated items and of Goldwing saw Reading branch about to thanks to the generosity of all we managed have their AGM. The existing branch officials to raise over £300 for the Thames Valley and were re-elected so on into another year we Oxford Air Ambulance. This is now becoming go, hopefully as successful and enjoyable as an annual event and would love to see other the previous one. The end of the AGM saw the branches join us in 2011. members struggling to answer quiz questions. Thanks go out to Witchy Poo (Angie) for setting the Quiz although most of the answers were relatives of hers! The lucky winners (well losers) were Erica and Debbie who came last, their prize …. to set the next quiz which is due on the 8th of December. Anyone in the neighbourhood please drop in and join in - a fun time is sure to be had. Gavin (Bananaman) had organised a ride out to Cheddar Gorge on 5th September. A group of us set off to sample burgers at various places on the journey. As we left the Reading at National Rally A4 for some nice country roads (before the first burger unfortunately) Bob decided the 17th – 20th of September The National! Well Blackbird needed to go to the scrap heap the water park brought out the pirate in us. A in the sky after sliding off into an oncoming good time was had by all and we can’t wait for car. Luckily Bob next year’s rally. It was really good and Rachel were only bruised and to see the whole after a visit to of the branch turn up together and A&E were sent off home being be together. We picked up by have developed a real identity one of the guys from the branch. and a feeling of The rest of us belonging within the branch which abandoned the ride out, but only makes for fun in after we found a everything we do. café to top up with a bacon roll. Bob’d dead blackbird 104

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Aarrghh some of the Reading Pitayes 1st – 5th October Reading went over the water (well under it) to France to the Millau Viaduct. 10 of us (9 bikes) set off. The rain was hard the wind was strong, and the red wine flowed (and there was certainly “nothing wrong with the wine”). Six bikes made it down to the bridge,

tempers frayed, opinions were shared. On the return journey Roger, unfortunately, decided to see if sliding on his side with the bike would help make progress through the rain. Again luckily just bumps and bruises and battered pride. A plane journey home for him, the back of a van for the bike. The difficulties encountered on the journey brought a bunch of friends closer and made us all realise the camaraderie within the group. As many of us were off in France a number of others went to the Ride to the Wall. An emotional trip with a lot of like minded bikers for a worthy cause. One for the club diaries for next year. On the 10th October the RAF museum at Hendon beckoned. The run was ably led by Ian on the Golden Goddess (without the satnag on the back!). Setting off from the Swan Alan was nowhere to be seen. He had been told burgers were likely, we were worried, where was he? No need to worry as the guys arrived at the museum there he was in the café, not sure how many he had already gone through but it must have been more than one. Photos of all our ride outs and a more detailed account of our trip to Millau can be found on the website. The diary for next year is starting to fill up already, it looks like another busy year coming up with some plans for the 50th Anniversary, Reading Cock and Bull Rally 2 the sequel! And more international journeys – Wales, Scotland and the Isle of Wight already in the plans. Best wishes and safe riding to you all for the coming year from all at the Reading branch.

Bryan Reading on the way to Milau WINTER 2010

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17th SOLENT NEW FOREST RALLY 17th - 19th JUNE 2011

Green Hill Holiday Park, New Road, Landford, Wiltshire. SP5 2AZ www.greenhillholidays.co.uk

BOOKING FORM NAME ADDRESS POST CODE Contact Tel Number HOC MEMBERSHIP No.

VEHICLE REG. No. CAR BIKE

No. OF NIGHTS @ £8.00 PER UNIT (pre-book) or £10.00 per unit (pay on the gate) No. OF BREAKFASTS ON SAT @ £3.50

No.

COST

No. OF BREAKFASTS ON SUN @ £3.50 No. OF BBQ SAL ADS @ £1.50 TOTAL OF CHEQUE

£

RETURN TO:- HOC SOLENT RALLY CLUB, BARBARA PEACE, 17 QUEEN STREET, LIT TLEHAMPTON, BN17 6EP CHEQUES PAYABLE TO: HOC SOLENT RALLY CLUB PLEASE WRITE YOUR NAME AND ADDRESS ON BACK OF CHEQUE AND ENCLOSE S.A .E. One unit consists of a tent or caravan plus awning WINTER 2010

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SOLENT

Secretary: Tim Lee - 023 8025 2113

Here at Solent we have had a steady year in 2010 and have continued with our first Sunday of the month runs and our bi-weekly Wednesday evening runs to “somewhere nice”. We have seen a few new faces over the year, some of which have come back, and others who haven’t. We would be really pleased to hear from those who haven’t returned so that we can reappraise what we do and see where what we offer can be improved. It has been bought to my attention that a couple of members have telephoned, and for whatever reason, the messages have not made it through to me. If this is the case I apologise; I have a thirteen year old son, and as I am sure other parents will testify, their memory span when it comes to passing on telephone messages is somewhat shorter than that of a goldfish! If you do call and get a series of grunts in reply, you have got through to Charlie, so please ask him to read back the number you have given him and possibly email as well to solent@hoc. org.uk. Mind you, he did pass on one message before Christmas stating that “one of your friends from bike club called”. There was of course no name and no number to go with the message, but investigation uncovered the fact that the call had actually come from his grandfather in Spain! 108

Personally, my bike riding in the last half of the year has been somewhat hampered by the fact that my bike is still off the road, but the rest of the branch have had some good times. In August, it was decided to take a trip via the circuitous route to Avebury in Wiltshire. The meeting place as always was Wickham Square, and before setting off it was nice to be able to say “Hi” to Alan & Val who were on their way to Portsdown hill to meet up with another branch who were having a ride out to there. The ride passed without incident, and as always involved a stop for refreshments en route.

In September, the branch run was to Devils Dyke. We have been here before, but it is difficult not to feel awed by the views. The weather was good, and so it was decided to proceed on to Box Hill and extend the day. WINTER 2010


Later in September, we had a smaller than usual contingent attend the National Rally, and we would like to pass our thanks on to Erica and her crew from Oxford for what was a really well run and excellent event. They say that the HOC is the place to meet people and make new friends, but I feel my daughter Jadie has somewhat taken this

to extremes. If Graham ever loses the membership list, I am sure Jadie can reproduce at least half of it from her list of Facebook friends! In October, a number of members from Solent attended the National AGM and it was great to meet so many members from other branches. The National Motorcycle Museum is proving to be an excellent venue. cont.... WINTER 2010

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evening included a disco, and there was much fun to be had by asking for requests, saying they were for Keith. By the end of the evening, “Keith” had requested among other things the “The Birdie Song” and “YMCA”. We were of course, the last to leave! Plans for 2011 are progressing well, and our rally location has already been booked for June. We will be continuing with our normal runs, and there is rumour of a branch BBQ at some point. We will of course be joining in with other branches for the HOC Roast, the Honda Show and other events, and many of us have already booked our places at the National Rally. Best wishes and a happy New Year from all at Solent.

Tim

At the beginning of December we attended the Roundabout Hotel in Fareham for our Christmas dinner, and a great time was had by all. I have to say that the food was absolutely superb, and the Christmas menu had a much wider than normal choice. The 110

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SOUTH WALES

Secretary: Donna Richards - 01639 766406

Well, don’t the months fly past? Summer isn’t far behind us and we are already planning for next summer’s exciting events. Once Christmas is out of the way, it’ll be upon us. Anyway, since the last report we’ve been keeping busy. At the beginning of September, we enjoyed a rideout to Dolaucothi Gold Mines in Mid Wales. There are two sets of mine-workings there: the Roman and the Victorian. It was really good value. On this occasion, we went on the Roman Mine guided tour. It was very informative and exciting and we had a superb lunch in the small café on site, which had lots of home cooked food. Alun

would recommend the fresh cream scones and even took one home for Sonya as she couldn’t make it. The ride up to Mid Wales was excellent, with some of the best biking roads in the country. We were lucky that the sun smiled on us that day and made it all the more enjoyable.

While we were waiting for our guide, we were able to pan for gold in the stream that runs through the site. We all came away with a few small nuggets. I don’t think they are worth much, though; we shan’t be retiring yet. It seems we were only getting, ’Fool’s Gold’ for all our efforts. I have included a photo of us gold-diggers! cont.... WINTER 2010

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Also, in September, Gareth and I were lucky enough to be invited to Stage 3 of the Tour of Britain Cycle Race by Fiona Cole of Honda (UK). The stage ended in Swansea, which is just a stone’s throw from where we are based, so we were delighted to attend. The race, itself was very exciting, even though the weather could have been better. We were certainly spoiled by Fiona and the team and there was an excellent buffet and as much tea and coffee as we could drink. Fiona was very personable and really cared about how Honda is perceived by our club members. She asked a lot of questions and we did our best to give the viewpoint of the members of our branch. It was a very enjoyable day and it was really nice to meet Fiona. I have included a photo of us with Fiona on the day. 112

This year, Gareth and I weren’t expecting to make the National Rally due to other commitments. Most of the other members were unable to attend also. However, two days before the rally, we were unexpectedly released from our previous engagement and we were now able to go. Luckily, Erica was able to arrange a last minute caravan for us and we went. While we were there, we had an excellent time. It was so nice to catch up with the management team and the other chairs and secs like ourselves. We were also surprised to find one of our newer members, Mark, there with his family. It was a lovely site and the bar had Stowford Press on draft, so I was happy! My favourite thing had to be the entertainment on Saturday night. I thought that the combination of mime, comedy and magic was superb. I wanted to buy a magic bag at the end with the magic finger lights in them, but Gareth wouldn’t let me. He said they were for the children. Well, really! It was a shame we had to leave on Sunday and miss the Wii games and the Aunt Sally. (I’ve still to see what she looks like!) But from the DVD of the weekend, it looks like everyone had a good time. Moving on to October and we had a rideout to Cheddar. It was a glorious day, but we did have a few little mishaps. We had quite a few new members with us and there was some confusion over the buddy system. As a result, we managed to lose Tony en route. He’s forgiven us though. He still went to Cheddar, but unfortunately didn’t meet up with us. Apart from this, it was a lovely ride WINTER 2010


through beautiful scenery and he enjoyed it. Gareth has been the butt of a few jokes since, however, for ending up at the back of the group, twice, even though he was leading. Ah well, age doesn’t come alone!

Also in that month, the club went on a rideout up to Stratford. Gareth and I didn’t go on this one, due to the AGM, but by all accounts it was very enjoyable. I had a lovely email from new member, Sue, saying that she felt really welcome and thoroughly enjoyed it. Thanks go to Alun and Terry for organising this one. Well done, boys! Talking of the AGM, it was a very interesting meeting. As usual, I took some Welsh Cakes, which went done well; but I have to say that Jennie’s fairy cakes are my favourite. They are so light and fluffy and I lost count of how many I had in the end. I must say that I enjoyed the speech by Nich Brown of MAG. It was very informative and I could have listened to him all day. He seemed so knowledgeable and genuine. It made me realise how much MAG do for the biking fraternity. Of course, the biggest surprise of the day was that Gareth and I received a ‘Thanks Award’. I couldn’t believe it when our names were called out. I thought there was a mistake. However, we were absolutely thrilled. Thanks WINTER 2010

to the management team for selecting us. It’s nice to get an award for something you enjoy doing. Next weekend, we’re off to the NEC for the annual bike show. We always look forward to it and it never disappoints. So, I can’t wait. After that, there’s the Christmas Party to look forward to. I am excited about seeing the 70s costumes that our members come up with. I’ll be sure to take lots of pics for the next edition of Golden Wing.

At the moment, we are putting together our diary of events for next year. As it’s the 50th anniversary, we are hoping to put together some interesting and exciting events. We are planning an event for early in the New Year. I don’t think it’ll be on January 1st, but we do intend to hold something on January 2nd, (after the hangovers have worn off!) We are looking forward to all the National planned events, too; especially the National Rally. We’ve booked our caravan. Come on everyone, let’s make it an event to remember! Have a good winter and take care. Hwyl Fawr!

Donna 113


WEST COAST RIDERS

Secretary: Phil Bell - 07900 507187

OK peeps, just a follow on from the last mag about our Mustang. Just to let you know that he is all nice and shiny and un-dented now, and looking even sexier than he did before if that’s at all possible! I just thought you’d like to know, he had a full re-spray and his rear wheel arch is very much no longer dented. The boys did an amazing job on him and mummy is very proud to have him back.

And so onto biking news from our end of the woods. First was our day out on the Manchester Ship Canal, followed by a couple of hours shopping in Liverpool then a coach trip back to Manchester to pick up the car. Yes you heard it right, we all went in the car. There were five of us and they were going to charge £6 for each vehicle, bikes included to park. 114

So, as Brian and Jean were going in the car anyway, they very kindly offered to take us all, so we accepted. Phil and I had to take Richards VFR back to him (you’ll remember that story from the last episode). We rode the bike to Richard’s with Brian & Jean following us, then we got changed and all piled in the car and off to the Lowry centre to park the car and jump onboard the boat. The weather started out a bit grey, but by the time we got to Liverpool it was scorching and we had an awesome day. You’ve gotta do this if you ever get the chance guys, it’s a fantastic day out. The commentator is very funny and the wildlife and scenery is amazing. We saw kingfishers, herons and swans by the tons and loads of other things. WINTER 2010


normally allowed. It was then off for a wander and some great photo ops, and off into town for a drink and snack then a lovely ride back through Wales and home.

You’re on the boat for about 5 hours going through 5 locks and down a very interesting waterway, getting to see very familiar places and things in a very different light. A must do! Then it was a wander round the shops at Liverpool One and back on the coach for the trip back to Manchester, all for £36 each, not bad for all that we thought.

Then it was time to go visit the Shropshire castle and regiment museum. First stop was Lynn’s Raven café near Prees for brekkie, and then off to the castle. The guys in there were very informative and very kind, letting us leave all our gear by the entrance so we didn’t have to lug it all around, as it was a very warm day. They even showed us a few private areas where the general public aren’t WINTER 2010

Next was our three day trip to Hadrian’s Wall and a special visit to the Northumberland guys. cont.... 115


(looking like drowned rabbits by this point) and then to Ponteland and our two cottages that we were staying in. What fantastic places. If anyone wants to stay in that part of the world, please give me a shout and I’ll send

The weather did everything in its power to ruin this trip, with torrential rain and gale force winds, but we had a brilliant few days despite that. We set off on Monday, met up with Julie on the way, stopped at the Wendsleydale Creameries for lunch 116

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you the details. Claire who owns them is brilliant and loves bikers, so a great time was had by us all. Monday night was our visit with the Northumberland guys, who’d put on a special quiz and chippy night for us. Well, long story short, our team whooped their asses and nicked their trophy, hahahahha; bring on the re-match guys! But really, we’d like to say a massive thanks for the hospitality and fun night guys, love you all xxx

Tuesday saw a slightly better day rain wise, with us at least getting some nice sunshine, even if the gales were getting worse. We went for a ride along the length of Hadrian’s Wall, stopping a few times for piccies etc. The main stop was at Vindalanda, which is an amazing place and we had a great time here. This is another must visit place. Then it was off for a play around Keilder Forest, across the border for some pix, then back to the cottages. Wednesday was going home day and what an awful day it was. It couldn’t have rained and galed more if it’d tried. Riding along the A69 was a testament to Phil’s and Richard’s and Julie’s riding, that’s all I can say. They are braver than I would’ve been. We stopped at a few of the services on the M6 on the way down just to dry out a bit. Everyone was bone dry on the inside, thanks to wearing all the right gear, but our coats were dripping on the WINTER 2010

outside, leaving puddles in our wake wherever we went! However, a few hot choccies and coffees later, and we were home and dry. That was our trip; very much a fun time, but the weather couldn’t have been worse. We will just have to hope for better luck next time eh!

Next on the list was mine and Phil’s first ever National Rally. What can I say except, what a fantastic and brilliantly funny weekend. cont.... 117


Bourton on the Water on Sunday was a gorgeous place. Then it was home on the Monday for Phil and I, via Tintern Abbey which is beautiful.

Thanks a huge million to everyone we shared it with for making it soooooooooo good. The weather was totally opposite to what Hadrian’s Wall had been only a day previous to our arrival, with wall to wall sunshine, and the company was faultless. The rides on Saturday and Sunday were great, even with the little hiccup on Saturday with someone coming of; only bruising occurred so not too bad at all. 118

Richard, Phil & I went to Caernarfon Castle in October. The weather was very cold but sunny and so was a great day for a local ride. We had a really good time and spent hours wandering the castle, although my legs were killing me climbing up and down all those spiral staircases up to towers etc. It was my fault for being nosey really I guess! WINTER 2010


more on that in the next issue. But thanks to all those who volunteered, we can’t do it without you guys, so huge thanks xxx. I hope those of you that came along to visit the show enjoyed yourselves. So here’s to 2011 and lets hope the celebrations for the 50th are more fun than normal years, we should all be very proud

Next came the AGM, where Phil and I got a very big surprise by being awarded the Allan Augustin memorial trophy for services to the club with our work organising the NEC every year. That was wonderful and very humbling. Thank you so much to everyone who voted for us, we very much appreciate it. Lastly, our branch sponsors a T.T. and road racer called Paul Owen who held an after season party in November to say thanks to all those that sponsored him. It was a brilliant night and anyone who visited the stand at the NEC last year will have seen his bikes and possibly met the man himself. So a massive thanks to Paul for being there and lending me his bikes.

to be involved in such a great club that’s been going for so long. Ride safe and have a brilliant 2011. Love

Ro & Phil xxx 2011 50th ANNIVERSARY NATIONAL RALLY

The next thing on the list is the NEC but I’ve had to write this before it starts, so will say WINTER 2010

A plea from 2 waifs and strays…… Phil and I are going to the rally and have no-one to share a caravan with…..has anyone got a spare floor or even better a bed LOL for us both???? We’re not serial killers honest judge!!!!! And we don’t snore I promise, well Phil does but not so loudly. So please let me know if you can put up with us for 3 nights and how much you’ll need towards the cost of the caravan and food etc from us. Thanks guys. Love Ro & Phil xxx 119


WEST LONDON

Secretary: Steve Hill - 01689 850999

Hi All To say the least I was surprised to receive an e-mail from Kristy Dean who asked if I would like to have lunch with Fiona Cole of Honda UK who is their Communications Manager. The proposed venue was Glastonbury where Honda was sponsoring a tour of Britain cycle race. So I had no idea who Fiona is and most of ALL why would Fiona would like to meet me for lunch. After a longish ride I made Glastonbury about 0915 so I had few hours to kill before lunch with Fiona A few Honda personnel come over and said Fiona was running a bit late. Fine, I have all day to pass the time. Still not knowing who I’m looking for I glanced up from my paper to see a young woman walk in. This young and good looking I must say, lady was Fiona Cole, the main contact for the Honda club and this lunch is all about meeting and putting names to a face. It was good lunch and was worth doing and gave Fiona a chance to learn more about the club. Fiona is taking the working relationships to a new level. Our National rally in the west was run by Oxford. Fives us went, Jude, Jon, Mike, Steve and Maureen from West London and we all booked cabins. We all met at the pub so we could ride up together on what turned out to be a warm day. The rally was having a very good turn out meeting with old mates in the night time with two rides out over the weekend and the weather holding it was great weekend. And I was the only one on the VFR1200.A (I thought Maureen was with u Steve?) a great weekend Erica and her team did a wonderful job Just after the rally Honda UK sent e-mails to all club officials to ask whether either the 120

sec or chairman plus one guest would like to come to the Honda Dream field event at Silverstone BSB weekend. All you had to do was camp and meet the Honda racing team and meet the likes of Dave Hancock, Helen Turner, Fiona Cole and Steve the manger of Honda UK. We were wined and dined and what a great weekend. On the Saturday night we had pub quiz night, wow what a night, and such a good fun with all the riders and their families. The riders were each asked to lead a group in the quiz and ours was called the Horn. Another was called the Clutch but Fiona misheard and said Crutch. This resulted in them thenceforth being referred to as the clutch Crutch group. The evening lasted until about11.30 ish. On Sunday we had the company of the General Manger and Dave Hancock to talk to. Many thanks to Fiona for inviting us for the weekend. On Saturday the 16th October we had a curry night in Zest, lower Sunbury where seven of us went. I am not a fan of curries but I did enjoy the four different meals. It’s only my 2nd time with curries so I am warming to them. Many thanks to Jude for setting this up. On the 6th of November we had a fireworks night with a few friends and food, and a good night was had by all. Once again, thanks Jon and Jude for hosting the night which was also Chris Ward’s birthday. His wife Marion had brought a cake along, and so we put some candles on it and sang happy birthday. On the 10th November, the branch met Fiona Cole and we were supported by North Downs, Reading and Oxford Branches. Fiona introduced herself as the liaison between Honda UK and the Honda Owners WINTER 2010


Clubs including Honda single model clubs, she got this job on merit and by passing an interview, to prove a point to her male colleagues she passed her bike test first time Her manner is very relaxed, confident and knowledgeable, the whole aim is to gauge opinion for Honda both positive and negative opinions. This is part of Honda’s long term survey on which way the market is going and to identify trends. Fiona explained that the UK market is part of Europe, Russia and Africa, Honda sells around 37Million bikes worldwide mostly to Asia and emerging economies, the UK’s 17 thousand ish. Honda bike sales hardly register at 0.02% so the fact that Honda has appointed Fiona to this role must mean that we do matter to Honda Japan. Steve primed Fiona with questions and the members joined in to put their questions. Fiona answered in a way that encouraged some debate and during the evening she stated that Honda sells 5 models at a loss, however she would not be drawn on which ones. The reintroduction of the CBR600F and the new 250cc model was welcomed and provoked discussion on a 400cc model, Honda will not be making a 400cc model for the UK market as there is no demand so say Honda. Part of Fiona’s role is to keep in contact with the Honda dealers and revealed that all dealers are encouraged to support at least one HOC club event, this could be in the form of an open evening, test rides or attending a rally with a stand etc. we were told to contact our local dealers, Erica has arranged an event with Oxfords local dealer for early in the new year. Fiona is also in contact with the motor cycle press and was challenged by MCN Marc Potter as to why Honda will not be releasing certain new models to the UK, a bike in question is the new CB1100 air cooled retro which is to be made for the USA market, Fiona’s response WINTER 2010

was to suggest that MCN poll their readers and ask if the bike was priced at £10K, £12K and £14K “would you buy one” the result several maybe’s if the price was at the lower end and 6 definite at any price, the results of this survey was not published in MCN as the answers it didn’t suit them. The meeting closed at 10pm and the general opinion was of a good meeting and I feel that we should have another in 12 months time to see what’s changed. Our next run was to Wessons Café (complete with Ogri memorabilia) in Horam West Sussex. It was a longish run on a cold day and we thoroughly tested Mike’s new satnav! The food at Wessons was good and there was plenty of room inside. I think Chris is organising a run there in the spring. As I will be on the Honda UK Stand on the 1st weekend of the NEC, I was asked to attend a training day so that we would all be singing from the same song sheet. Helen Turner set this up with Fiona Cole at Honda HQ and it was well worth going. Its nice to have an insight into how Honda works the show. We are now looking forward to our Xmas Party and another year of fun and runs with all you HOCers!!! Merry Christmas everybody.

Steve

121


WEST YORKSHIRE

Secretary: Big Steve 01274 772970

Well after missing the last Golden Wing there’s a bit to get through. First I would like to thank Richard who has taken on the runs this year, and what a job he has done. We have been to some great places down some fantastic roads and have had some lovely days out with some great company. I’m sure me and Maria are not alone in saying a BIG thanks to him and hopefully he will carry on next year where we have left off… Now to what’s been going on up here in Yorkshire? Me and Maria went to Normandy with the Cambridge HOC and had a great time, so we would like to thank them for making us very welcome

After that we had the Yorkshire Lavender/ Picnic Run which again was well attended and the weather held just.

The Pyeratz Open day was next, where as always we had a stand and had quite a bit of interest, so thanks go to Clive and Ursula for manning the stand all day. Then there were some runs to the Lakes and the Peaks, one of which me and Maria couldn’t go on, but Richard took some nice photos.

Six of us went to the National Rally and had a good time. The Oxford Branch did a great 122

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job and it was one of the best we have been too. We are all looking forward to next year where so far we have thirteen going, so that will be great.

The AGM went off well with seven from West Yorks there at the Bike Museum. Me and Maria made a weekend of it and went to Cadburys World on the Saturday “Yum Yum”. I only just ate all the chocolate they gave us, but I did it, but then couldn’t fit in a Magnum (the ice cream).

Killhope Lead Mine was wet, but we still had a good day with a few turning up for the run. Lakeland Motor Museum also went down well.

If you haven’t got on a run with us please try to do so as we always have a good ride out and normally don’t get wet, and go to some great places. Just keep an eye on the web site for any runs coming up as we have started getting ideas for next year so check them out. WINTER 2010

By the time you read this we will of have had our Christmas dinner in our new meeting place The Hitching Post, so more of that in the next Golden Wing. We have had some new members come to a couple of meetings so welcome to Mick and Kath and hopefully we will keep seeing new members, so if you haven’t been come to a meeting I’m sure you’ll have a good time. We are trying to think up something for the HOC’s 50th and have a few ideas, so again watch the web site. However, some sort of Show/Open Day with music and food hopefully. cont.... 123


In addition, Leeds Honda is now open and will be having their opening next year which we are hoping to attend. You can get to their web site on our links page. We as a branch will be getting to as many things as we can next year and we have a page on the web site for events, so if you having one, send me details/ a link, and I will include it on the site. That’s it, I hope I have covered everything on this report, if I have missed something im sorry and if you let me no I will put it in the next report…. A big Hi to all who no us and Me & Maria hope everybody has a great Christmas and a Fantastic new year and hopefully we’ll be bumping into some of you next year….

I would just like to finish off by thanking our members for the support they show in attending the ride outs and meetings but mostly I would send a massive thank you to my husband Stevie for the upkeep of the website and for everything he does for the members. Without him their would be no website or West Yorkshire H O C Ta Love

Maria

Steve & Maria.

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125


WILTSHIRE

Secretary: Ian Hammond - 07989 531121 Well we’re now into some nice autumn riding weather, and so it was that saw us at the start of September with having an enlightening talk given on our Tuesday evening meet by John Stepney from the Oxford Bloodrunners. He made us all very aware of the invaluable work they do as volunteers in transporting essential medical supplies between their nominated hospital and medical centres. It was quite surprising to know how big the operation is that’s being operated over the whole country by such dedicated people and good to know our county is setting up a service. Now, a few days later and some of us were off to the National Rally at South Cerney, just down the road. It is so close to some members that their tyres didn’t get warm. We certainly all had a good time and I, like many others enjoyed the rideouts on both days. On the Saturday we went across the Severn bridge and into the Forest of Dean, and on the Sunday a nice compact run with a lunch stop at Bourton on the Water, and then everyone ‘flying’ back to camp on the Sunday for the games. On the 26th Glyn, Robin and Claire all went and enjoyed the BSB weekend at Silverstone as guests, along with other branch and club management who attended, in enjoying the hospitality of Honda UK, and being able to meet the riders and going trackside. More details from a report from Glyn himself at the end of this. 126

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Now in October we turned things around and had a rideout before our monthly members meet, which saw some of the guys take a trip down to Weymouth beach races, instead of going to the bigger Weston races the following weekend. The weather again was kind although usual morning mists to start with for this time of year, but it turned quite warm in the end. Now was I certainly looking forward to our speaker Keith Goldsmith who was a past master technician with Honda and is also one of branch members, who is running his own bike service and preparation business. Well it was worth listening as he had a few facts that were quite an eyeopener to how Honda operate, especially keeping the journalists happy, but as always its the information which is still confidential which I’m sure would have been even more extraordinary. Now also about this time I received an e-mail and some pictures attached from one of our guys, Keith Wick. Judging by the expression, he certainly was the cat that had got the cream, as the lucky so-n-so had entered a dream wish competition with Bennetts Insurance and won a prize. So it pays to say somebody has to win, and he said he certainly enjoyed his track time riding McKenzies 125 racer. WINTER 2010

It seems that business are getting more proactive in their fields of industry where connected with biking, as for our November meeting, we had Rodney Gooch the commercial director from the Castle Combe racing circuit. He gave a very good talk about his own racing experiences aboard BSA Bantams, together with facts relating to his involvement and connections with big players in the racing business in the days of the Trans Atlantic bike races. It has helped make Castle Combe the great little circuit it is today, and certainly seems how amazing that being it the right place at the right time seems to help in making progress. And as such we are going to be at their bike meet in September promoting the club. Now this months rideout date fell on Rememberance Sunday and one or two decided to rideout and go to Shaftsbury for respected ceremony held that day, which unfortunately was a little damp. Now by the time this hits the door mat some of us will have been up to the Motorcycle Live show at the NEC, both as volunteers on our club stand and purely visitors. We should also have taken part in joining the local Harley group in Swindon on their annual toy run, which is normally good with the weather. Then it will be a speaker for the Bikesafe events and also a few days later the Christmas meal. Plus depending on the weather, we’ll see who wants to kick the celebrations for our 50th year with a rideout right at the beginning of year. Well its out with the thermals and on into a busy 2011.

Ian 127


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Golden Wing 2010 Winter  

Quarterly magazine of the Honda Owners Club (GB), sent free to all members. Established in 1961, the Honda Owners Club (GB) is the oldest on...

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