Assen GP Advice. Viewing/accomodation.

Assen GP Advice. Viewing/accomodation.

Hi Lads

Anyone been to a GP in a**en?
For my birthday my brother is planning to take me for a weekend in Amsterdam and the race on Saturday.
Looking to arrive in the Dam Thursday, prob won’t head to a**en for qualifying as he isn’t into bikes so will take a train out Saturday morning for race day. Looks like its roughly two hours on the train to a**en?

Should I plan to stay in a**en on Saturday evening or is there anything in it other than the track?

And at the track where is a good spot to watch the race. I looked at the tickets for Grandstands today and Gert Timmer and Hoofdtribune are both booked out. Strubben and Haarbocht are available as is TT World or there is plenty of General Admission tickets available.
I have never been to the circuit so I’m not sure where is good/bad to view the race?

Any tips appreciated

Source: Assen GP Advice. Viewing/accomodation.

Top 10 military bikes

Top 10 military bikes

MILITARIA has always held a fascination for many – just check out the prices of most war-related trinkets to see how strong demand is.

But while a real tank or even a WW2 jeep is probably a bit too big and expensive for anyone but the most rabid re-enactment fanatics, a real ex-forces motorcycle can be far more attainable.

Immortalised in both history and endless movies – and we’re not talking about the Great Escape Triumph here – these are our top 10 military motorcycles.

10. Cagiva T4E

They might be a little on the young side, but the Cagiva 350s that were used by the French army from the 1980s onwards (no reverse gear jokes, please) are easy to find and probably the cheapest machines you’ll find on this list. These bikes were used in the Gulf War, and appear in various films, notably the Bond flick Goldeneye. Most appear to be 350cc, but there are also 500cc models out there. 

9. Cushman Model 53

It’s surprising that there haven’t been more bikes like the Cushman Model 53, which was specifically designed to be compact, lightweight and suitable for parachuting into combat. Just under 5,000 were made during WW2 for the US military. While they’re cool, the lack of suspension and the single-cylinder, 4.6bhp engine means they’re not really a practical proposition for any purpose other than simply turning up at military shows. 

8. Harley-Davidson J series

Motorcycles first got their chance to prove themselves in the military during WW1, and it was the two American firms, Indian and Harley-Davidson, that were most widely used. Although there were more Indians than Harleys in the US forces, the H-D gets the nod here for legendarily carrying the first American soldier to enter Germany after the signing of the Armistice, Cpl Roy Holtz, who was pictured on November 12, 1918 riding WW1’s most famous bike.

7. Welbike

A similar idea to the Cushman, the British Welbike was made specifically for the Special Operations Executive (SOE) and used in Operation Market Garden. They weren’t a success but they do stand out for being specifically designed for the job in hand rather than a conversion based on an existing bike. It later evolved into the Corgi scooter.

6. Vespa 150 TAP

We had to include the Vespa TAP because, well, it’s got a massive anti-armour cannon attached to it. Sadly you can put aside your ideas of using one against obstructive car drivers, since the cannon (more accurately an M20 recoilless rifle) actually has to be removed from the bike and set up on a tripod before it’s fired. Again, the idea of this 1950s machine was to drop it by parachute into war zones.

5. Harley-Davidson/Armstrong-CCM MT350/MT500

Despite being known by various names, the Armstrong MT500 and the later MT350 are the archetypal modern(ish) military motorcycles. Harley gained a licence to build them and all the later 350cc machine are Harley-branded, but the design was from Armstrong-CCM so feel free to gain a warm rush of patriotism if you’re a Brit. If you’re in the market for an ex-army bike, these are the easiest to find now.

4. Kawasaki/Hayes M1030

Bikes don’t get much more utilitarian and usable than the Kawasaki KLR650, and the US military M1030 is simply an even tougher version of the same bike modified by US firm Hayes Diversified Technologies. While the M1030B1 uses the familiar Kawasaki engine, the later M1030M1 gets a multi-fuel version, designed so it can run on diesel, kerosene or the JP4, JP5 and JP8 jet fuels used by the military. Before the 650, the US military also used the KLR250.

3. Norton WD16H

Tens of thousands of Norton WD16H – the ‘War Department’ version of the civilian 16H model – were churned out in the late 1930s and throughout WW2 as the UK’s staple military bike, making it one of the definitive military machines of the era. It’s by no means the only British WW2 bike though – the military also used the Royal Enfield Flying Flea, the James ML and the BSA M20

2. Harley-Davidson WLA

It would have been very easy to put the Harley WLA in the number one spot here, as it’s the single machine that looks most at home in olive drab with a leather rifle case strapped to the forks. Nearly 100,000 were made, with around a third being sold to the Russian army. Like the Jeep that’s perhaps the WLA’s four-wheeled equivalent, the Harley’s career extends beyond just WW2, with the bikes also serving in the Korean war. It’s thanks to the huge post-war surplus supply of ex-military bikes that Harleys became the bikes of choice among America’s youth, with many early custom bikes and choppers starting life as WLAs. Harley continues to reap the rewards today.

1. BMW R71 and R75 (and Dnepr M-72, and Chang Jiang M1)

While the Harley WLA might be the two-wheeled equivalent of the Willys Jeep, and therefore an essential piece of WW2 kit, it was its German rival that really set the standard. The BMW K71 and its later derivative, the more advanced K75, were unbelievably influential. They were so successful in both two-wheeled and sidecar-equipped three-wheel form that Harley even made a near-direct copy in the form of the flat-twin XA model. The other German bike of the war, the Zundapp KS750, shared as many as 70 percent of its components with the BMW R75, and both the Russian army’s Dnepr M-72 and the Chinese military Chang Jiang M1 are fairly straight copies of the German machine.

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Source: Top 10 military bikes

William Dunlop Running a RS125 Honda

William Dunlop Running a RS125 Honda

This year William will be running a RS125 Honda in the Irish National Road Racing Championship. This has been something that he has been wanting to do for a long time but never had the opportunity until this year. The class holds strong ties to William’s early career and he hopes that the involvement of these bikes in local races will continue for a few more years.

Sean O’Neill, from Athboy, will be riding the bike and debuting at the Cookstown 100. The decision to run a 125 has all been very last minute and Sean has yet to have a chance to actually test the bike so Cookstown will be a trial run for both the bike and its rider. Last year Sean took part in his local Road Race at Kells, where he finished in a very respectable third place. William is very excited to have Sean riding the bike as he is an extremely talented rider with a huge amount of potential.

The limited timescale in preparation for the bike’s first run out has meant that finishing touches have had to be postponed until later in the racing year but a huge thank you to Nick at Vinyl Touch, Coleraine for tidying up the fairings until they are painted.

William has known Sean for a long time, and hopes that he will achieve the results that his ability deserves.

Source: William Dunlop Running a RS125 Honda

Harrison aiming for Cookstown 100 success

Harrison aiming for Cookstown 100 success

Following on from a Spring Cup double just one week ago the Yamaha UK outfit head to the Orritor circuit in jubilant form as they continue their preparations for this year’s Internationals. After gifting Yamaha UK the first road race victory for the all new YZF-R1M machine on its first outing at Oliver’s Mount Harrison is sure to start as one of the favourites for the main KDM Hire Cookstown 100 feature race on Saturday afternoon.

The popular Bradford rider will also contest the Supersport and Superbike races on what will be his last competitive outing before the North West 200 as he looks to give team sponsors R&M Greenkeepers plenty to celebrate at their home circuit.

Team Principal – Tim Martin:

“I’m looking forward to this weekend’s event, we haven’t been able to race at home much this past few years so it is always special when we do. It was great to get the monkey off our back at Scarborough and give Yamaha UK our first wins, a lot of work went in over the winter so it was nice to reap some rewards so early on. We are still in the early stages of development and learning all the time so the Cookstown circuit will serve up another test for us but I am confident we can be near the front come Saturday afternoon.”

Rider – Dean Harrison:

“I’ve been doing some laps in the car this week and fair play to the organisers the circuit is looking absolutely mint so I can’t wait to get out in practice on Friday afternoon. I’ve only ridden the circuit once, in 2013, but I enjoyed it and seemed to go okay so we’ll just take it as it comes and hopefully put on a good show.”

Source: Harrison aiming for Cookstown 100 success

Man caught with a minivan strapped to his bike

Man caught with a minivan strapped to his bike

Caught on CCTV

THIS motorcyclist in China was pulled over by police when he was caught carrying an entire minivan on the back of his bike.

He was stopped after being spotted on CCTV hauling the one-tonne minivan held down by nothing but straps.

A police spokesperson said: ‘The man said the minivan had already been decommissioned and was on its way to the scrap yard.

‘But officers gave the man a stern warning and called for a tow truck to carry it the rest of its journey.

‘On top of that, the man had greatly exceeded the weight limit for his vehicle, which is around 150kg.’

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Source: Man caught with a minivan strapped to his bike

Yamaha R1M recalled in Canada and Australia

Yamaha R1M recalled in Canada and Australia

YAMAHA is recalling the new R1M in Canada and Australia over a faulty Ohlins rear shock which could come apart during use.

A statement published by Transport Canada and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, said: ‘On certain motorcycles, the rear shock absorber may not have been manufactured correctly. The piston rod nut may have been tightened before the piston had the correct full metal-to-metal contact. This could result in the nut loosening, which would prevent proper rear suspension action, and could cause poor handling that may result in a crash,’

The recall affects both stock and aftermarket TTX36, TTX GP, TTX RT and TTX36 MKII units produced from November 9, 2013 to February 20, 2015.

Yamaha dealers will inspect the shock and, if necessary, replace the unit free of charge.

Only two UK models were affected, both of which are owned by race teams.

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Source: Yamaha R1M recalled in Canada and Australia