This week in...
1957: Fuel shortages hit
The British bike industry was still going strong in 1957, although Norton had begun to struggle on the racetrack and the Italian firms had started to enjoy race success with MV Agusta, Gilera and Moto Guzzi leading the charge.
It was Gilera’s Libero Liberati who took top honours in the 500 GP series, with Bob Mcintyre, who was also on a Gilera in the runner-up spot. The only British rider to win a world crown in 1957 would be Cecil
Sandford in the 250 title chase.
Cecil took two wins in the sixround series aboard a Mondial. Former trials superstar Sammy Miller was third in the 250 world championship and fourth in the 125 series – also on Mondials. Italian racing superpower Mondial were approached in 1957 by Honda for a bike. Soichiro Honda wanted inspiration as he turned his attention to the track. An original Mondial 125cc racebike is now the first bike on display when entering the famous Honda museum in Motegi, Japan.
‘I said, let the foreign bikes in. If you don’t, you would never know what you were up against’