Honda RS125 GP bike gets re­built

With the sea­son over, Emma has time to re­pair her RS’S war wounds

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Contents - emma.franklin@mo­tor­cy­cle­

And so another race sea­son ends. De­spite the fact that my 2016 cam­paign fin­ished with me stood at the armco at Mal­lory’s Lake Esses as I watched a sure-fire vic­tory slip into the jaws of de­feat, I’ve had a crack­ing sea­son on my Honda RS125 GP bike. Other than that one, critical, me­chan­i­cal fail­ure at Mal­lory – which I’ll come back to shortly – 2016 has been fairly epic. Highs in­cluded com­ing fourth in the in­au­gu­ral round of the ACU 125GP Na­tional Cham­pi­onship at Don­ing­ton Park, and also get­ting the chance to race at two new-to-me tracks in the form of the awe­some Oul­ton Park and the breath-tak­ing An­gle­sey Coastal cir­cuit; how I’ve been rid­ing this long and never rid­den round ei­ther be­fore re­mains a mys­tery.

Lows? Well, there’s been just one, re­ally. Mid-way through the race at Oul­ton Park back in May, I was tucked in tightly be­hind the 125 rider ahead of me on the Cheshire cir­cuit’s back straight, poised to break out of his slip­stream and pass him into Lodge cor­ner, when sud­denly I saw a puff of smoke from his bike. In the split sec­ond it took me to re­alise that what I was ac­tu­ally see­ing was his gear­box oil spilling out on to his hot ex­haust he’d al­ready high­sided, and I was next.

De­spite the mar­shals wav­ing their oil flags, a to­tal of seven other ma­chines joined us in the kitty lit­ter in the sub­se­quent few min­utes be­fore the race was red flagged. No one had been hurt but my bike had been tor­pe­doed by a cou­ple of oth­ers as it lay stricken at the side of the track and was quite badly dam­aged.

Ob­vi­ously we re­paired the ma­jor break­ages and raced at the next meet­ing but my Honda still car­ried with it the scars, scuffs and gaffa tape from that day at Oul­ton; I sim­ply didn’t have the spare cash to spend on mak­ing it pretty again.

So it’s at this time of year when all the rac­ing’s done that I can turn my at­ten­tions to mak­ing my Honda look good and go bet­ter once again. The crank failed at my fi­nal race of the year at Mal­lory, as I’d stupidly taken it be­yond its ser­vice limit of 1000 miles, so the en­gine’s been re­moved, the cylin­der taken off, gear­box whipped out, crankcases split and the crank sent to Hard­core Rac­ing in Ram­sey to be re­built. For­tu­nately there was no dam­age to the cylin­der when my crank nipped up so that’s one less thing to worry about. While that’s away I then need to re­fresh the chas­sis bear­ings and ser­vice the sus­pen­sion and brakes, then comes the fun stuff – some fresh body­work and a new-for-2017 paint job. Who said the off-sea­son was re­lax­ing? Watch this space.

The RS and Emm search out another apex at Dar­ley Moor

The fair­ing’s away get­ting a new lick of paint Oil is al­ways bestbest kept in­side the mo­tor Ser­vice in­ter­vals can’t be ig­nored

THE RIDER Emma Franklin, Act­ing Con­sumer Ed­i­tor HEIGHT 5ft 7in WEIGHT 60kg HER RID­ING: Ex­pe­ri­enced rider with a love of sports­bikes and two strokes 2004 HONDA RS125R EN­GINE 124cc (54.0mm x 54.4mm) liq­uid-cooled, two-stroke, sin­gle cylin­der POWER 45bhp (est) WEIGHT 70kg

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