Honda RS125 GP bike gets rebuilt
With the season over, Emma has time to repair her RS’S war wounds
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