Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Like many before me I was introduced into motorcycling through my father who had a short racing career when a member of the Greenock Motorcycle Club, of which my Uncle, Jimmy Clark was the Secretary.

Races tended I think to be on the beach at Saltcoats on the West coast of Scotland but I think that they may also have used Ayr.

My father in the 1930's
Although he belonged to the era of Jimmy Guthrie as a hero he was young enough to be very upset when the news of the death of Bob McIntyre was announced in 1962. My father was not particularly technical but appeciated the work of Joe Potts in Bellshill and Joe Craig who kept Norton machines to the fore in the golden years.
Sand racing on beach at Saltcoats; Scotland 1937. the machines seemed to be mainly road going or road racing. Pretty sure that it is jimmy Valente in front .
Programme for sand race 1937
Riders in the above event; apart from knowing my father in the race; I recall as a boy meeting Andy Marr and Stuart McAuley on the programme. Jimmy Valente ran a  goodmotorcycle shop in Glasgow for many years on Great Western Road where all the main dealers had their outlets.
Some one must know who these chaps are-feel certain it is Andy Marr in front !
Smudge due to slow shutter speed back then.
 Look at the pre-WW2 crowds on a wet Scottish beach with no burger vans !
...and they are off...well some of them.....
...some interesting machinery there...
Looks like the tide is coming in. Bikes a sandy mess and no pressure washers then.
Think this was me on a Vincent about 1965/66...outside the town of Largs
My father had a liking for 350cc nortons he passed on to me. Indeed just before WW2 he rode with my mother from Greenock to tour the north of France and Begium- I told him when I understood such things he should have paid more attention to newspaper reports on what was likely to happen on continental europe !

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