UNLIMITED FORGOTTEN ERA SUZUKI GSX1100
You can’t get much farther south than New Zealand’s Stewart Island. That’s where abalone diver and crayfisherman Russell ‘Rastus’ Keen hails from.
“I came over to the Island Classic a few years back as a spectator and went home to build up a suitable bike,” he said. He started with a GSX1100 frame and fitted a Mcintosh ‘replica’ swingarm and Katana front forks.
“Rex Wolfenden (a leading Aussie vintage racing technician) pointed me in the direction of Manta Racing in Melbourne, who helped me out with triple clamps, and a mechanic friend in Invercargill built the engine,” he said.
Russell has only ever raced the Suzi at Phillip Island in Australia, and Teretonga and Timaru in New Zealand’s South Island.
It was his third visit to the Island Classic, but he shouldn’t really have been there. “Now is the boom sale period for abalone as Chinese New Year kicks off,” he said. “I’m doing myself out of a lot of money, but Phillip Island is where I want to be.”