IT STARTS AT STAFFORD
Sunny skies, busy turnstiles and acres of intriguing metal greeted showgoers as the classic year got well and truly underway...
International Classic Motorcycle Show kickstarts the 2018 season
It’s full steam ahead for the classic scene after the season-starter at Staffordshire County Showground on 21-22 April. The International Classic Motorcycle Show is, for many, the unofficial kickstart to their year – and the bustling halls and grounds delivered the expected mix of live action, dazzling machinery and crusty parts.
Saturday’s cheery weather made it the busier day of the weekend, with plenty of classic machinery in the bike park – the sights and sounds were a spectacle before you’d even got in. Through the gate and the noise, smells and action were supplied by the likes of trials demonstrations, race bikes with ear-splitting pipes in the startup area, and a cacophonous wall of death.
Inside the main hall, the centrepiece display of show-winning machinery was as dazzling as the sun outside. There were interesting machines and a giddy amount of awards were handed out (see Results, page 10). However, I have to question the logic in presenting the bikes in a large roped-off square – it makes it possible to only really see the machines positioned around the edges. Rows with walkways between would be far better.
Those hunting parts or a project had miles of stands to peruse, offering everything from rare plastics for 1980s superbikes to complete basket-case projects that looked more canal-find than barn-find. Prices for complete bikes indicated that values are still climbing, and not just for iconic British machinery – Japanese and European models which were almost disposably cheap a few years ago, displayed significant tags.
There were still deals to be had, mind. My eye was pulled by a neat Motobecane project and an eminently useable Suzuki T125 Stinger, and we were all taken by an original-looking Us-market Yamaha XT500 up for just a little over £2500. We weren’t alone – by the time editor Gary went back after counting his loose change, the Yam had been snapped up...
ABOVE: Plenty of tasty metal in the bike park to grab your attention before you’d even got in. Luggage-shod BMW R90S is ahead of Norton Commando with screen and boxes ABOVE: The pristine examples weren’t just inside – this delicious NORBSA looked fantastic bathing out in the sun BELOW: Moto Parilla’s superb ‘rotante’ race engines have to be one of the best-looking two-strokes of all time ABOVE: Fresh from the continent, there were ample Gallic projects – many looked like bargains next to their Brit equivalents