Bathurst Easter Tour

Old Bike Australasia - - CONTENTS - Re­port Peter Drury Pho­tos Jim Scaysbrook

Over the years I’ve read about mo­tor­cy­cle ral­lies and events overseas which al­ways sound very ex­cit­ing and ex­otic. Tales of rid­ing var­i­ous ca­pac­ity ma­chines through small coun­try towns and ham­lets. Vis­it­ing var­i­ous lo­cal eater­ies and ho­tels for a feed or a bev­er­age, wav­ing to the res­i­dents, all while test­ing your rid­ing skills and mo­tor­cy­cle’s strengths and just en­joy­ing the coun­try­side; al­ways had some ap­peal and still does. Well I’ve come to re­alise that you do not have to go to Italy, Eng­land or even Amer­ica to en­joy this sort of mo­tor­cy­cling, you only have to en­ter the An­nual Bathurst Easter Mo­tor­cy­cle Tour. Now in its 43rd year the Tour runs for eight days, lead­ing up to and in­clud­ing Easter, and cen­tres it­self in the New South Wales cen­tral table­lands town of Bathurst from which it sets rides each day to dif­fer­ent vil­lages and lo­ca­tions. Peo­ple ar­rive through­out the week pre­ced­ing the Easter week­end, and Good Fri­day and Easter Satur­day in­vari­ably see the big­gest turnout of bikes, but the rally is well sup­ported from Day One, which in this case was Sun­day 9th April, with a ride to Trunkey Creek. The Tour is unique with the tra­di­tional ride on the Mon­day to Car­coar Dam, (ap­prox. 120km re­turn), pro­vid­ing re­fresh­ments of tea and cof­fee and of all things ‘Hot Dogs’, while on the Wed­nes­day a shorter ride (70km) pro­vides the mo­tor­cy­clist with a morn­ing tea of Hot Cross Buns. Oh and I al­most for­got to men­tion the Happy Hour at 4.30pm on each day of the rally where free beer and soft drinks are pro­vided giv­ing the par­tic­i­pants a chance to meet and share ex­pe­ri­ences and ad­vice of ‘Just how to get that prob­lem solved’. The nu­mer­ous mo­tor­cy­cles, of which there were more than 180 en­trants, ranged across the years from a 1908 Tri­umph through to nu­mer­ous makes of 1980 vin­tage. Many en­trants take more than one ma­chine which is handy es­pe­cially if a break­down oc­curs. It’s a rel­a­tively re­lax­ing rally with the older bikes leav­ing the Bathurst car­a­van park at 9.30am and those faster at 10.30am which gives you a chance for a sleep in af­ter per­haps a heavy night! If you like mo­tor­cy­cles it’s pretty in­dul­gent, the alarm clock be­ing the sounds of var­i­ous bikes be­ing warmed up each morn­ing.

Pick­ing a favourite is a dif­fi­cult task with the car­a­van park owner pro­vid­ing tro­phies for just two bikes he liked best; Don Lid­dell’s 1953 Har­ley FLE with side­car and Joe Wurston’s 1939 BSA B26 350cc gain­ing sec­ond best. This year’s Tour en­joyed al­most per­fect weather with only the Car­coar Mon­day ride chal­leng­ing the brave with seem­ingly near freez­ing wet and windy con­di­tions. The mo­tor­cy­clists were hud­dling like a wad­dle of Emperor Pen­guins in the sole pic­nic hut at the Dam while munch­ing through their Hot Dogs! If you dream of rid­ing those roads in far­away places per­haps they are not that far away af­ter all? Give the Bathurst Tour a go. Thanks to the Or­gan­iser; Lee Wright from the Vin­tage Mo­tor­cy­cle Club and his dili­gent team of helpers who once again have or­gan­ised a very suc­cess­ful and en­joy­able Bathurst Tour.

Suit­ably at­tired, Peter Robin­son and his 1928 AJS K8. Historic Hill End was the lunch stop on Thurs­day. Bri­tish bangers all in a hud­dle at Tues­day’s lunch stop at Bur­raga. Ready for hot cross buns at Chi­fley Dam on Wed­nes­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.