Daily Archives: January 8, 2013

Gixxer Glam

Winter Gixxer 002The wraps came off my gixxer today – but not for long. A quick once-over and she went back under the covers again for another month at least.

I found this PTFE based protective spray in Halfords during the Christmas break and have been waiting for a dry day to uncover my bike and givit a blast – just from the spray can unfortunately.

It will be a few weeks yet before she is on the road but we’ve had early mild weather for the past two years so I best be prepared to catch the chance of dry roads when they come.

A hospital visit put paid to my plans to run her last autumn which means it is over a year since she was on the road as the Tenere tends to take precedence. Perhaps this year will be different.

I fitted new handlebars to the Gixxer a few months back and I am hoping they will improve the riding position but it’s hard to tell without a long day in the saddle. I will give her every opportunity to impress because I like her light weight and eager performance from what is a genuine 600 sports bike motor and chassis.

OK – I’ve had her double-wrapped for freshness under two bike covers long enough —

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Let’s get ’em off and see how she is faring back there during what has been a very damp twelve months of being idle —

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M-mmm — not bad from this angle. There’s a bit of moisture here and there that a quick wipe with an old T shirt will fix —

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Then spray some of that Muck-off about her – let her sit for a bit then wipe off the excess —

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Hey! I almost forgot – there’s a barely used 190 section rear tyre in there this year courtesy of my Yorkshire mate Jaffa Cake —

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Something else to look forward to trying out. Childish I know but that’s how it is with ‘boys and their toys’ – we do like to play —

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She’s lookin good 🙂

Must remember to take it easy for the first few miles because the overspray from that Muck-off left the damp paving around the bike slippery as ice and no doubt some of it will transfer to the tyres where it will possibly have the same effect. The blurb on the can reckons all the bike will need after a ride is a quick wash to retain her shine. Magic!

I’ve also decided to splash out on a new battery for her as the old one was getting rather tired and needed to be regularly refreshed. With less than ten thousand miles on the clock in ten years including long spells off the road it’s not really the way to treat a battery. So ebay here I come.

Wraps off the Gixxer

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Posted by on January 8, 2013 in Uncategorized



Fun Times at Grobnik GP Circuit

In 2008 I was in Croatia for the summer – staying at Zelena Laguna near Porec in my caravan about a two hour drive from Grobnik the former GP circuit in the foothills above Rijeka. I had kept in touch with my Zagreb friend Cobra from the previous year and would occasionally meet him at the circuit. There amongst other things he would regale me with stories of the antics of a certain Carl Fogarty who would come to Grobnik for tyre testing with Honda and Michelin long after the circuit had ceased to be used for GP’s and World Superbike. It would appear that Foggy can party with the best of them when he doesn’t have his ‘race face’ on!

Grobnik GP Circuit —

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The best supported meeting of the year at Grobnik is a Sports/Racing meeting. Riders can run what they bring in different categories and there was everything from an old BSA 500cc side valve with solid rear and girder forks to the latest Aprillia sports bike. As you can imagine I was having a field day with my camera. When I came to the biggest team in the paddock it got even better! They were a bunch of enthusiasts from Italy equipped with ex-works bikes garnered from World Superbike paddocks!

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I was clicking away at this bike and that. Being Italian these guys automatically pose as the lens swings their way. After a while we got chatting and I happened to name drop as I do! Well it’s not everbody who has a World Champion in the making ride their bike at Daytona!

Next minute the world has gone crazy! Corks are a-poppin and the bubbly is – a bubblin —

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Well my World Champion in-the-making was none other than our own Neil Hodgson who rode my Ducati Corsa 956 at Daytona and who some years later went on to win the World Championship  as a works rider with Ducati.

Recognition at last! It was as if I’d won the World Championship!

It was lunchtime and these guys race on their stomachs. Like good Italian girls everywhere the ladies had the pasta ready so we retired to the mess tent and got stuck in.

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But not without the requisite bottles of red and white plus everything else they could put in front of me —

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Suitably lubricated and with a full belly I didn’t need much encouragement to sign on the dotted line when my new manager led me outside and showed me the bike he wanted me to ride the following season —

The NEW for 2008 Ducati 848 —

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First off I tried it for size —

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M-mmm — not bad but are you sure I can ride this bke —

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No problemo my friend – just wave to the camera one more time —


The deal was slightly better than the one offered by my friend Cobra the previous season to race for the Zagreb Cobra on the NortonRacing Club and live with his grannie and her cow in her old stone cottage halfway up a mountain with a sea view through a hole in the wall.

Here on the left we have Cobra with the soft ‘C’ on his well prepared twin cylinder Norton in pole position for an earlier classic race. He is one fast rider and certainly knows his way round Grobnik.

With Zobra I would have to prepare and race my own bikes although he did say he would send a girl down from Zagreb to ‘do’ for me. By that I think he meant doing my laundry and teaching me Serbo-Croat although there might have been something lost in the translation.

With my new Italian team I could have all the pasta I could eat and all the wine I needed to wash it down – plus – I could ride their beautiful prepared 848 Ducati!

The clincher if it was needed was that the Italian lingo flows more easily off the tongue than the gutteral Serbo-Croat.

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Bellisimo! Pass me the pen!!!

With lunch over some of my new team mates were thinking about getting back out on the track.

Green Meanies —

green meanies

Suzuki —

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Ducati —

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and another —

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and more —

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Happy Days!

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Posted by on January 8, 2013 in Uncategorized