Gary John­son

Fast Bikes - - COLUMNIST -

Al­righty, who’s ready to go rac­ing? Not me. Well, not quite. I’ve got to that point of the sea­son where rac­ing’s sud­denly upon us and I’m about as ready for it as snow­men are for heat-waves. Still, this is noth­ing new to me, and I reckon it’s the same score for most rac­ers out there, what­ever their dis­ci­pline. Any­way, ex­cuses aside, the main thing is that with a bit of hard graft and a few nights burn­ing the mid­night oil, all will be well. I’ve been par­tic­u­larly busy with the lit­tle Light­weight TT bike; I’ve lost count of what it­er­a­tion we’re on now, but the thing’s set to be the best it’s ever been… as­sum­ing I can re­mem­ber how to put it all back to­gether. Last year I built my Suzuki su­per­bike in the con­ser­va­tory, and this year the WK’s been treated to a prime spot in my lounge so I can work on it while watch­ing CBeebies – how else am I meant to keep up on cur­rent af­fairs? To be fair, it’s look­ing pretty damn trick and adds a dash of flair to the place.

I love rid­ing that bike. It’s not fast or par­tic­u­larly spe­cial (just like me), but it’s a proper en­gag­ing racer. You have to wring its nuts off ev­ery­where, which is some­thing you can’t prop­erly do on the big bikes. The Light­weight class has re­ally come good in the last few years. I think peo­ple saw it as a bit of a new­bie class when it first came about, but the pace is hot­ter than ever, with most of the top names con­test­ing it, and some crazy lap times com­ing as a re­sult. The dream’s still there to get a Chi­nese bike on the podium, and I’m sure it’ll hap­pen be­fore too long.

We’ve not bust our nuts to give up just now. The plan is to be out test­ing the WK in the next few days and I’ve got quite a bit of test­ing sched­uled from my Trum­pet and the Kwack­ers, too. I’ve still not had a blast of any of them this year, which is also quite typ­i­cal for me. My mates joke that I’d be dan­ger­ous if I got time to test, and they might be on to some­thing there. Truth is, the UK’s weather’s been pretty ming­ing of late and I’m not one for get­ting wet un­less it’s bath night. No, thank you. I’d sooner bang in a load of dry laps at the first sign of dou­ble fig­ures, which the weather man keeps promis­ing isn’t too far from now.

Any­way, worst case I’ll use the North­west as a bit of a shake­down. That’s what most of us do, and it seems to find any grem­lins that might be lurk­ing. I’ll prob­a­bly be head­ing there to race by the time you’re read­ing this, so come and say hello if you’re about. On one fi­nal note, I just want to send my best to Bruce An­stey. He’s a top bloke, an amaz­ing racer and I’m truly gut­ted to hear he’s poorly. There’s no friend­lier a face in road rac­ing and I reckon just about ev­ery other racer and team in our scene joins me in wish­ing him the very best. Fix up soon, fella.

Gaz wants to be a Ze­bra when he grows up.

And­h­eloves a good­striptease...­pe­cially when it’s in his­liv­in­groom.

Gaz’s 2018 Su­pers­port steed.

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