Mark Gra­ham Pro­duc­tion Edi­tor

Practical Sportsbikes (UK) - - PS Dream Garages -

1. OSSA/BYRA MAYOR It’s 1972. Span­ish fac­tory Ossa have a 250cc sin­gle. So, they make a 500cc twin, the Yan­kee. Now they have a 500 twin, the next step is a 1000cc four – a 115bhp air-cooled trans­verse twostroke four. How mad? They didn’t make many.

2. SUZUKI GSX-R750RK

I’m a sucker for GSX-RS, and this is a peach. They only made 500 of these with the (so­called) long stroke en­gine and 40mm carbs, but aside from the Ja­panese-mar­ket Hy­per En­durancer model, noth­ing looks bet­ter.

3. MAICO 440

OK it’s an MX bike, but I’d still have one, even though I couldn’t even jump a pud­dle on it. Check out the ra­di­ally-finned head, the cof­fin tank, the low-level pipe – one of the best­look­ing of the early open class beasts.

4. KAWASAKI H2C Yes, the ear­lier ones were slightly lairier, but they didn’t come in Candy Pur­ple. It would have to be ut­terly stock with the twin front disc op­tion. Noth­ing sounds quite as good as these, es­pe­cially on stock pipes.

5. DU­CATI PANTAH

TT2. This would have to be a Ver­lic­chi or Har­ris-framed ver­sion. I lusted af­ter one of these when there was no way I could af­ford even a cook­ing Pantah. Still do. Light, nim­ble, sim­ple, and just so de­sir­able still. 6. KAWASAKI Z1-R TURBO

Not of­fi­cially sanc­tioned by Kawasaki and only 1500 pro­duced. A raw, fast, nasty, fan­tas­tic-look­ing thing with the gold TC on the side­pan­els the ic­ing on this space cake of a mo­tor­cy­cle. Re­ally neat turbo in­stal­la­tion too. One day.

7. HAR­LEY-DAVID­SON XR1000

Used to gawp at one of these in Fred Warr’s shop win­dow ev­ery day on the way to work. Gen­uine XR heads, Del­lor­tos, high pipes, it just looked so cool. Es­pe­cially when you were sit­ting there on your MZ ES250 ding-ding­ing away in won­der.

8. MV750S

Saw one of these at at the 1976 Sil­ver­stone F750 round, and was trans­fixed by the red suede seat. It looked so ex­otic. You’d want the ’74 over the ’73 for the twin front discs in­stead of the drum. Prob­a­bly aw­ful to ride, but sure is good-look­ing.

SUZUKI GSX-R750 SRAD

And it has to be in the Kof­fee ’n’ Kreme colours too. These were the kid­dies in the late ’90s and are still so sharp to ride. Loved the styling then and still think it’s stand­out to­day. Only thing that comes close is a first gen 1100 Slab­bie. 9.

10. TRI­UMPH T150V

Gotta be the five-speed, has to have the square UK tank and the Ray­gun pipes. These sound fan­tas­tic. Sure, you’ve got to keep on top of them me­chan­i­cally, but I’d have one of these over any­thing else Bri­tish ev­ery day. Even over a first gen. Bloor Day­tona.

“Aside from the Ja­panese mar­ket Hy­per En­durancer model, noth­ing looks bet­ter”

Not that great, but oh-so-ex­otic The first – and the best

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