Broadford Bike Bonanza

Mrs Tarsnakes & I have been attending  Broadford Bike Bonanza at Easter since its inception 6 years ago by Motorcycling Australia as a fund raiser for its historic / museum division. We don’t camp trackside, however, many folk do make a weekend of it. Previously the event has be sponsored by Honda, however, Penrite oils had the naming rights this year. Just to repeat from previous years’ posts, this is a historic event, with no racing, just demo laps and many disciplines of motorcycle sport represented – road race, motocross, trials and speedway – as the complex has specific tracks at the one site for all of these disciplines. The main theme this year for the road race track was the “Castrol 6 Hour Race“, which was a production motorcycle endurance race run in Australia between 1970 and 1987. This was a race where a win on Sunday meant sales on Monday, and Kawasaki had a great run on wins in the 1970’s with the mighty Z900, winning four years in a row from 1973.

However, I think a consequence of the “6 Hour” theme this year was that there were far fewer older British and American bikes present compared with previous years. The Velocette theme last year led to huge numbers of old Brit bikes being represented. Not that I mind Japanese bikes of the 1970’s, as they were my formative years of motorcycling!

I wish I could tell you the tale of a TX750 that was raced and podiumed by a Geelong motorcycle shop in one of the 6 Hours, however, I’ve been sworn to secrecy.

A famous 6 Hour winner, who was later disqualified, was Joe Eastmure on the 315 CC Suzuki. I still think he was brilliant, whether the little Suzi was ported or not. He later won in 1977 with Ken Blake on a BMW K100RS, stopping the big Kawasaki’s run of wins.

We always love looking at spectators’ bikes as well. This was a nice example of a mid 1970’s GT750. We enjoyed talking with Alain, the owner & restorer.

How neat is this tastefully modified 450 Ducati?

I also sneaked of few pics of my own when a photo shoot with Sir Alan Cathcart and Rex Wolfenden’s “T-Rex” Honda was being shot.Sir Al was giving the photographer all the instructions for a heap of static shots of the motorcycle before posing with Rex.

I suspect that you may see a pic like this one above in an upcoming feature article about the bike by Cathcart!

Others were having on track professional photo shoots done during the lunch break as well.

The beast!

We caught a shuttle bus over to the Speedway circuit for a 4.00-6.00pm speedway spectacular – which the Vincents in particular certainly provided. We were told by an official that the shuttle service had finished at 5.00pm so we walked all the way back to the track (a long way with a damn big hill), only to find the shuttle buses running again as we left around 6.15pm – a stuff up that I was not impressed with after a long day on my feet!

Not racing, just a demo – sure!

Again, there were all shapes and sizes of riders on all sorts of motorcycles riding in the demonstration laps – even a Vespa scooter sharing the track with Laverda’s, Nortons and some iconic 1970’s Japanese bikes. High budget to no budget at all , it is certainly an event that offers access for all levels of historic motorcycle enthusiasts.

 

 

Honda Broadford Bike Bonanza

Mrs Tarsnakes & I attended the Honda Broadford Bike Bonanza again this Easter and the crowd was the biggest we’ve seen. This is a historic event, with no racing, just demo laps and many disciplines of motorcycle sport represented – road race, motocross, trials and speedway.

It was a huge thrill to bump into Alan Cathcart, have a chat, get his autograph on the T-shirt I’d just bought and,of course, get a pic with him. He is a delightful ‘fella to speak with and very generous with his time.

Sir Al’s Groupie!

Velocette was the featured marque this year and there was a huge turnout, from the 1930’s right through to the last model in 1970. If you want to hear what a bunch of Velo’s sound like, then click HERE

Below is a shot of just a few of the Velos. The other pictures demonstrate the variety that was on display.  I’ve sorted through around 300 photos and posted  the best of them in high resolution HERE. Best viewed in ‘slideshow’ view. There are some beautifully turned out historic British motorcycles and some great classic Japanese bikes that I love.

Next weekend the Victorian historic road race titles are on at Broadford and I suspect that some riders were using this historic event to sort their bikes and get in some practice laps of the circuit. At the risk of repeating myself, I love these events where one can get in among the bikes and talk to the riders to get a real sense of the history of specific bikes. next weekend I will have to buy another T-shirt – I certainly can’t wear the one that Sir Al autographed for me!