Dealer Visit

Bir­kett Mo­to­sport

Classic Trial - - CONTENTS - Words: Yoomee • Pic­tures: Yoomee Ar­chive

It’s quite strange in life how you end up with a well-re­spected knowl­edge of a brand but for Nigel Bir­kett the Yamaha con­nec­tion was a suit­able con­clu­sion to a long and suc­cess­ful tri­als ca­reer dom­i­nated by Ja­panese tri­als ma­chin­ery. This as­so­ci­a­tion with the brands from the land of the ‘Ris­ing Sun’ started way back in the early seven­ties with an ap­pren­tice­ship served in an early Ja­panese Suzuki deal­er­ship, Ed­die Crooks Mo­tor­cy­cles to be ex­act, as a teenager. Over the fol­low­ing years he rode fac­tory sup­plied ma­chin­ery from Kawasaki, Suzuki and Yamaha with an in­ter­rup­tion from the Euro­pean brands of Mon­tesa and Fan­tic.

The life and times of Nigel Bir­kett has been well doc­u­mented in our sis­ter pub­li­ca­tion, Trial Mag­a­zine, so we thought we may as well jump that and move straight onto the Bir­kett Mo­to­sport years of present times.

When the work with the Majesty monoshock Yamaha project was over and his tri­als rid­ing turned into a fun pas­time, he started to look at se­cur­ing the fu­ture for him­self and later his fam­ily. It seemed a nat­u­ral pro­gres­sion of his mo­tor­cy­cle tri­als ca­reer to move into the in­dus­try but this time with the open­ing of a shop and his own premises. He moved into rented premises in his home town of Broughton-on-Fur­ness in 1987 be­fore soon out grow­ing them in a short pe­riod of time.

Many people wanted to bring their mo­tor­cy­cle work to him, not only tri­als but other off road ma­chines as well. He then had an in­dus­trial unit built in the grounds of his fa­ther’s old coal yard to al­low the busi­ness to ex­pand.

He mar­ried his wife June in 1990 and moved into new premise as she was giv­ing birth to their daugh­ter Paige in 1993; they al­ready had a son Zak – talk about tri­als rid­ers and their tim­ing!

Go­ing For­ward

With the busi­ness now cel­e­brat­ing over over 25 years of trad­ing they have built up an ex­cel­lent work­ing re­la­tion­ship with a mas­sive cus­tomer data­base, not just in the UK but around the globe.

Nigel can of­fer sec­ond-to-none ad­vice on any form of rebuild or work­shop work on a wide va­ri­ety of ma­chines, al­though he still does have a pas­sion for the mono-shock Yamaha.

Re­mem­ber that he was the first Euro­pean rider to test the ma­chines way back in March 1983. He of­ten gets re­quest for spe­cialised work on the ma­chines and in par­tic­u­lar on how to im­prove the en­gine per­for­mance.

His wife June and other mem­bers of staff run the mail or­der ser­vice where you can find a mag­ni­tude of parts not just for older ma­chines but also for mod­ern ones as well. Nigel and June pride them­selves on what they term their ‘Fam­ily’ busi­ness and the ser­vice they pro­vide to cus­tomers both old and new.

To fur­ther ex­pand the busi­ness they are also the of­fi­cial UK im­porters for the Scorpa and Ossa brands. They first started with the Yamaha pow­ered Scorpa in 2005 be­fore tak­ing on the new Ossa range of ma­chines in 2011.

Nigel prides him­self on his mono-shock Yamaha knowl­edge.

1975: Out­side Ed­die Crooks Mo­tor­cy­cles with a batch of early Beamish Suzuki’s.

2014: With wife June in the shop

1980: On the Mon­tesa Cota 200cc. The change to an Amal car­bu­ret­tor trans­formed the ma­chine.

1983: He loved the Majesty 250S.

2014: He still owns one of the very

first Yamaha mono-shocks.

1982: WTC ac­tion on the 240 Fan­tic.

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