WAY WE WERE

Classic Bike (UK) - - CONTENTS -

Bar­gain buys, mem­o­rable jaunts and great mem­o­ries from your photo al­bums

These pho­tos were taken in the early ’80s when I trav­elled to the Isle of Man for the first time. I had a Du­cati 350 GTV par­al­lel twin back then, but it was a pain – no power, no sound and a rub­bish fin­ish. I re­mem­ber that even the BMW R50 out­fit you can see here was faster than me, be­cause I had to re­fuel ev­ery 120km or so – not to men­tion ex­pe­ri­enc­ing var­i­ous elec­tri­cal is­sues.

The group of us shown in the pho­tos met by chance while queue­ing up at the Rot­ter­dam to Hull ferry, as I re­mem­ber it. When we landed in Eng­land, we started trav­el­ling to­gether to­wards Liver­pool to catch the Steam Packet ferry – but I didn’t make it. I missed the boat, for the rea­sons above – it was so em­bar­rass­ing! I had to pay for quite a lot of beer to stop the guys laugh­ing at me...

Fi­nally, the bloody Duke’s engine died two weeks later on my way back home. One of the seat’s mount­ing bolts came loose and was in­haled by one of the (open, of course) Dell’or­tos. Sadly, the pho­tos of the com­pletely de­stroyed engine are lost, but I well re­mem­ber what I did with the rest of the bike – I stripped it and sold the parts for as­ton­ish­ing amounts of money!

Af­ter the Duke, I changed to Moto Guzzi, which turned out to be a long-term af­fair. I have owned sev­eral dif­fer­ent mod­els since then, and rid­den all over Europe, in­clud­ing Turkey and Egypt. This year, the brave 1979 V1000 SP took me on an in­ci­dent-free seven-day 2500-mile round trip through France, Devon, Corn­wall and Wales.

Olaf Pobantz, Wies­baden, Ger­many

ABOVE: Olaf on the Isle of Man with his re­cal­ci­trant 350 GTV

BE­LOW: Yes, they’re all laugh­ing at Olaf’s Du­cati

RIGHT: Olaf’s im­promptu trav­el­ling com­pan­ions

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