Shannons Insurance Broadford Bike Bonanza
For the eleventh Easter in a row, the State Motorcycling Complex at Broadford burst into life for three days of motorcycling in all its various forms. Actually it was more than three days for many of the big crowd of spectators and contestants, with camping areas quickly filling by mid-week. This year’s themes were the celebration of 50 years of the Honda CB750, plus Sidecars in everything from road racing to trials. More than 100 examples of the Honda Four turned out for the event, plus dozens more ridden by spectators. One group of six rode various CB750 models all the way from Brisbane and return – a 3,770km round trip. There were numerous examples of the original ‘Sandcast” model, plus racers including the CR750 owned by Honda Australia and originally raced in Victoria by Tony Cacciotti. Of course, the Honda Four also had a big presence in sidecars and there were many of these present, including the replica of the very first such racing outfit, built and ridden by its creator Lindsay Urquhart. Unfortunately, a split oil tank spoilt its debut! The Speedway and Dirt Track arena was chock-a-block all weekend, and featured a swathe of famous names, including four generations of the Crump family; Phil and his father Bob, plus Phil’s son Jason and grandson Seth. Kiwi Mitch Shirra, who began his speedway career at 14 years of age, pulled his helmet on again and had the crowd in raptures with his sensational style that is still as fast
and smooth as ever at age 60. West Australian legend Dennis Nash brought his Vincent outfit over and had a ball until gearbox trouble set in. There was a significant increase in the number of motocross riders and machines, and the enduro was as popular as ever. Ron Angel brought truckloads of rare and priceless racing bikes for a mouth-watering display that was a feature of the road race pits all weekend.
Saturday night’s dinner featured the latest inductees to Motorcycling Australia’s Legend of Motorcycling awards, going to Shane Soutar, who has Australian Road Racing and Speedway Sidecar titles to his name, South Australian Clarrie Jones and his long-time sidecar passenger Peter Marriage, and another sidecar star from the ‘sixties, Barry Thompson who competed successfully at the Isle of Man and in Europe. In front of a big crowd, the 2019 Bonanza went off without incident, and for 2020 will be run to a slightly revised format. Action will commence at lunchtime on Good Friday and conclude at lunchtime on Sunday, giving people an early start to travel home. The theme for the 2020 SIBBB will be announced in the coming weeks.
Just one of the huge display of bikes from Ron Angel’s stable; the 1969 ex-works Kawasaki that won the 125cc World Championship in the hands of British rider Dave Simmonds.
LEFT Wayne Ware and passenger Geoffrey Bourke fire their 1000cc double-Triumph engined outfit around the speedway. Young and not so young listen intently to Ross Martin’s briefing.
More than one hundred CB750s gathered to celebrate the model’s half century.
Peter Tolley’s ex-Jon Heaviside Vincent speedway outfit soaks up the sun. Rod Hunter in action on the Yamaha Elstar originally built by Charlie Edwards. Now owned by Les Lewis, and fitted with 250cc barrels. Ben Henry gives the Bob Brown Ducati an airing.
Kiwi legend Mitch Shirra thrilled the speedway crowd with his classic style. Neville Hazelman in or on his Honda CBX-engined “Yellow Peril”. Geoffrey Pring goes dirt tracking on his 1938 MAC Velocette.