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Chris' 2016 Season overview

Mallory Park practice:

The test session this March went well for the Triumph Kneeler outfit, Colin was rock steady in the chair and we had reasonable speed, it was bloody cold though, and we were ready for the new season. Little did we know what was in store for us...but more of that later.

Race Day Mallory Park:

This year I have converted an old caravan to carry the race outfit and gear and perfect for me and Daphne to live in over the weekend, it worked well all though the handling was a bit suspect until I got the balance right on the drive up, what a difference, beats a tent, very warm and we know how windy Mallory is. We did have a problem with a 12v coil but otherwise the Triumph went well and we passed the noise test, it was running like a train and we came away pleased with our efforts.

Miki, Phil and Colin were all present and the weekend started well, all the machines passed noise test and we prepared to practice for the first race. Phil's Triumph failed going around Gerrard's right hander and that was that for him, he decided to go home to investigate the cause. The Kneeler Ming was not having it also with oil pressure and electrical problems we only practiced and had a slow race on Sunday, this was not good, Thank you Colin for your support, Miki had a trouble free weekend after his efforts with only miner issues and looked fast, not sure of lap times, but his machine kept going. This was a test for a future event, Phil and Miki are going to push the bikes and themselves to the limit in a straight line and attempt to break the UK land speed record in their class, but more of that later. It was good to see Lenny and Trevor on Sunday along with Malcom and Donna, the weather was very good and the racing was excellent.

Cadwell Park VMCC 50th anniversary:

This event started on the Friday and there were many exotic machines and riders for that matter, the weather was a little unsettled starting with a monsoon just as we arrived on Thursday eve but it soon passed. I have a few pictures to look at and I stuck a GO Pro on the outfit for your viewing, we failed the noise test 3 times, just scraping through and after a big effort got it down to 107 db, thank Colin for your efforts, briefly on the Saturday we had flying stars but were down on straight line speed partly because the exhaust was blocked, damn BMWs got shunted by Andy Hunt on his quick Royal Enfield on Park straight, but always the gent he said sorry, its all part of racing I said, great fun.

Sunday race day was quite eventful. First race we were at the front briefly going up the hill to Park Straight when we were hit big time and spun out, Nick Weston commented afterwards and said well done for controlling it. Found out it was a 1000cc Vincent, Julian didn't say sorry, takes all sorts I suppose. Any way lost the concentration but was on it again, catching and passing several outfits, we had a right royal battle with Robin Blowers on his BSA A10, wheel to wheel like the good old days with Miki and Phil on the Bat. We passed him coming out of Barn and caught Mark and Sue Whitticker on their mint BSA A10, we were going flat out into Mansfield and the engine sounded ok, through the chicane and up the mountain wheel spinning past the club house into Barn then onto the straight. Then bang! it was like we were an old aircraft that had bean shot, oil and smoke everywhere, that was the end of that.

On stripping the motor the three piece crankshaft was in pieces, total wreck, now we had to rebuild it for Geddine, good job I had spares. I'd like to say thank you to Lenny for supplying parts.

Belgian classic TT Gedinne 2016: After a complete rebuild of the Triumph motor and a few oil cooling mods we were tested and ready, the ferry booked and a pre arranged meet with Colin in Dover to hitch the caravan to his van we left England for Belgium. Arriving Thursday eve and found a cracking little site in the paddock over the bridge, after signing on and scrutineering we had a beer and were surprised with seeing David Sykes, Adam Pope and Trevor Johnson... a very good turn out for the sidecar crews from GB.

Friday practice went well, the Triumph was pulling like a train and had good speed, it was dry but not as hot as last year. One note to self, GR1 side car next year. The group we were in GR2 was bloody quick and we were outclassed. In the race on Saturday although we did pass several BMW outfits they come by on the straight bits. Adam and John won their class on the Triumph big wheeler and David got a second on the Harley Davidson with his french passenger Albert, well done, so there is hope for us yet eh. On Sunday after a late night it was an early wet race. We were flying, drifting and spinning wheels, battling with another BMW after a cracking start carving my way through the grid. Although we finished at the back of the race we enjoyed ourselves and the bike did us proud, l think I used One Whitworth spanner all weekend to check the barrel nuts and spray the chains, that was it, fantastic.

2017 Season: Next year we are running a new Triumph engine supplied by Lenny Pallister, it has Thunder crankcases ,and some special bits inside, cant say what but its still a 749cc and we intend to race in the pre TT classic IOM at Southern 100 circuit and several BHR VMCC meetings, with Belguim on the list. Good luck to my team mates


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