This Week In...
1996 – and Foggy is King!
Motorcycling was booming as we headed into the late 90s. Born-agains were bolstering sales and Britain was sportsbike-mad. At the top of the registrations chart were Honda’s CBR600F, Fireblade and Suzuki’s GSX-R750W-T.
These last two especially, were busy being prepared for the first production bike TT in seven years. Phil Mccallen on the Motorcycle City Fireblade was to come out victorious and the rules were used as a template for the return of Superstock racing.
We were in the last year of John Major’s run as Prime Minister and Brit pop ruled the charts. It was good time to be a Brit – Foggy was at the peak of his powers, domestic racing was more popular than ever and being a biker had suddenly become cool again. Wish you had a time machine, too?
SPANISH RACE FANS WERE MENTAL
Alex Criville blamed his own fervent supporters for causing him to crash out of the Jerez GP. Huge sections of the crowd invaded the track before the race was even over, distracting the Spaniard in his battle with Mick Doohan and forcing him to crash at the final corner. The fans were condemned by MCN for their actions, which included the standing on the track for the last few laps, letting off firecrackers and even a fan trying to drag Doohan off his bike on the slowdown lap. Chaos…
KING CARL HADN’T LOST IT
after King Carl was grabbing the headlines Honda nabbing his first win on the Castrol had made a RC45. The World Superbike legend ride for the controversial move from Ducati to early in the Uk-based squad, but had struggled at season. But a set-up change after looking the first team-mate Aaron Slight’s bike after second bout race gifted him the speed to win the year on the at Hockenheim. It was to be his only following Honda – Foggy returned to Ducati the to do. year. It seemed like the right thing
HONDA CREATED A BATTLE CRUISER
We were all amazed by Honda’s 1520cc six-cylinder F6C – aka the Valkyrie. MCN correspondent Kent Kunitsugu said of the 309kg, Us-built, Gold Wing-based behemoth “The Honda is so punchy, it can match a V-max for torque at just 2750rpm. The result is an
‘The result is armstretching stomp, which pulls hard to the 6000rpm redline in any gear’ MCN RIDES THE VALKYRIE
engine with arm-stretching stomp, which pulls hard to the 6000rpm redline in any gear.” £12,000 in 1996, now you can pick up a tidy one for £5k.