Friday, 14 March 2008

Something for Easter Weekend

Red Marley, reborn in 2000, Classic Trial on the Sunday and legendary Hillclimb on the Monday.

Friday is also the official start of the 2008 RoundBritainRally with the A.R.S.E meet at LM#1, somewhere in sleepy Bedfordshire...... and auNTy hasn't been prepped yet!

Thursday, 13 March 2008


to all who supported with donations, discounts on kit & servicing and even just words of encouragement.
Finally got round to do the last bit of outstanding sponsorship collecting, including the can at Bullring Garage customer reception (thank you to Bullring customers).
During the 2007 RBR auNTy V raised:

Cancer Research UK
£ 136
Everyman (the UKs no1 charity for male cancer)
£ 304

TOTAL = £440

2007 Awards Dinner

Sunday, 2 March 2008

RBR 2007 Awards Presentation Dinner

The final landmark for the 2007 RBR was the Manor Hotel, Meriden.
Ale, food, more ale then the presentation of the awards, the biggest surprise was the presentation of the Cock-Up award to David Hancock (known to many as Dave the Disorganiser).
In the good cause of Air Ambulance fundraising, Graham Flint auctioned off some RBR shirts, then 2 memory sticks containing early release of the 2008 LM list. The night also gave some news of what was to come in the 2008 event, the number of landmarks has been increased to 100 (I'd guess there are now more counties with 2 LMs). Also, the rules have been ammended, the penalty points reduction for a mistaken landmark has been increased from minus 25% to minus 50% plus the points banding has been shifted higher. The all-rounder award now needs at least Platinum level points to qaulify. The start date was confirmed as GoodFriday...better get auNTy sorted then, MOT, Service, and a bit of a tart-up, maybe a new paintscheme if I find time.....
thanks to JJosey & Jack for the pics above

Friday, 8 February 2008

Something for the weekend.....

Still a few dates left this season including this Sunday (10th Feb 2008)

Wednesday, 23 January 2008

2008 UK BIKE Events, one for the diary: Banbury Run

Just checked the VMCC website, good news, looks like they found a home for the 2008 event... Sunday 22nd June

Monday, 14 January 2008

HM Government On-Line Petitions

OK whilst its quiet, have your shout/moan/tiny whisper at our elected representation....hahaha....exercise your right to express your view, have a browse on the Government Petitions site and support any you agree with.....examples:
VAT Free Motorcycle safety clothing...
Just as Important as the Kill Spills Campaign...
Free bike parking
NO to BIG BROTHER government
Extend Motorcycle access to Bus Lane Usage
Honour the greatest rider
Equality between young riders and young drivers
NO to Extortionate Private clamping firms

Monday, 10 December 2007

It's Official!

The RBR 2007 results were posted on the website today
entrant #70: position 45/255; points 1474/1900;
Gold Award
A good improvement on my first RBR in 2006:
entrant #225: position 135/240; points 330/1800;
Bronze Award
although 2006 I had a clean sheet no mistakes 2007 5 mistakes meant 41.25 points deducted!

101 days until the start of RBR 2008
2008 Target is a Silver Award plus ??? tbc. (and no mistakes!)

Friday, 30 November 2007

2008 Round Britain Rally

Wasn't sure whether I was going to re-enter, but I guess its a little addictive, plus there's an activity planned mid-May which seems interesting. Not that the 2007 RBR is totally over, I've sponsorship monies to collect and the awards dinner to attend, also auNTy needs a little tlc during the winter months and a makeover.

The 2008 entry form and cheque have been sent in the post, some planning started, but more discussion and whacky brainstorming might be required over a few beers with Tony and Jon C!

Saturday, 17 November 2007

more pink

This is for the 2 sponsors who pledged extra if a silly vest was worn...... I hate having my foto taken more than ever!

more pink waistcoat pics

Thursday, 15 November 2007


thanks Tony, Jon C & Redoakdirect

This is for the 2 sponsors who pledged extra if a silly vest was worn, and a foto taken at each of the landmarks wearing it (62/75 LMs)......

Monday, 29 October 2007


Having visited one outstanding North Wales LM last weekend, yesterday auNTy and I travelled to Disorganiser Dave's place for his open house hand-in day, complete with tea n biscuits, and the compulsory compare notes or misadventures with other Round Britain Rallyists. (75/89 Landmarks visited, 5 mistakes & points penalties incurred)
Also discussed was slight changes & additions to next years event including what will probably be my 2008 charity this space.

So the 2007 event is almost over, I've just got to collect the sponsorship monies, and look forward to an enjoyable (lots of ale) evening at the Awards Dinner Ceremony in February.

Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Almost Finished/Out of Time....

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Last weekend auNTy and I headed south, a Sunday rideout with John C netted all the South East landmarks. The West Sussex LM was an old petrol pump still displaying the price it was many years ago (approx 8p per gallon..... now over £1/litre...nearly £5/gal.....)

Thats all the English county landmarks visited, my work and family commitments haven't given a slot to do Scotland, so I'll settle for Gold. However with only 1 LM outstanding in North Wales, one more rideout remains before the finish, lets hope for another sunny Sunday.

LM completed status 17/10/07:- 74/89 [England 55/55 Wales 13/14 Scotland 6/20]

Friday, 28 September 2007

Friday: just caught LM 50 at sunset en route to my dads place in Sunderland. One thought: auNTy needs better lighting if nightime jaunts on unfamiliar roads were to become a habit!Saturday: did LMs 14, 31 & then a pilgrimage to LM 62 "Hizzy's Cairn" up in the hills near Teviothead marking the site of the Helicopter crash, all a little spooky considering the recent McCrae tragedy.
Sunday: a SW Scotland loop LMs 63; 64; 60; 71; and a "could not find LM" at 61, so pic of the bike next to Crook Inn to net some points.
Monday: return trip home via LMs 9 & 10 it was very very windy, and like a fool unplanned I went to look for LM 22 on Morecambe front. The location of our first "incident". Having rode the Morecambe seafront road twice, leaning and countersteering against the onshore gale force wind. I realised without any research about the LM location, it wasn't going to be a quick find, so I opted for reduced points and a bike pic next to the coastguard building. Whilst slowly manouvering the bike into a "good" spot for a pic, a gust of wind caught the bike and took it beyond the point of no return. Although I got my foot down the bike had gone too far to stop it going any further, and I had to press the kill switch and gently lay the bike down. OK we recovered from that I managed to lift auNTy back up to find her unscathed, phew! Everything OK for the "enjoyment " of a slow cruise down the M6 with gale force westerly sidewind all the way home

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

"Sorry I had other things on my mind"

Upate last Sunday was a run up to Sth Yorks for LM 54, over to W Yorks for #55. It was a bit blustery on the way up, then on the way to LM55, as is normal in the pennines, the weather did a quick change. It started to rain and the wind got stronger, the small country lane to LM#55 has vehicle access only restriction....the village has park n walk set up for the sunday tourists. Considering the time and weather, in the good cause of charity, I continued to the village and the LM a small packhorse bridge. I got the evil eye from a "Ranger" as I was taking the pictures so didn't hang about, made an instant but slow exit, being considerate to the ramblers with their brats and dogs rambling down the lane.
The battle with the sidewind stayed with me all the way down the M6 home..... True Brit perverted fun! So far I've reached 52/89 LMs with only a few weeks remaining, its difficult to get time off (vacation!) work to do all of Scotland, so it looks like I'll have to settle for 100% England 100% Wales and some Southern Scotland LMs.......the Gold Award is in the bag points wise, plenty LMs done even allowing for mistakes. A Platinum Award might be possible but the Allrounder is off......which is a bit disappointing.......

Also you got to feel sorry for this guy:

"Now for the bad news......Monday I left Poole, went down to Lands End then up to Minehead, doing 4 LM's on the way,had a glorious run doing 370 miles, next day set off aiming for Haverfordwest, just approaching the tiny village of Mells for my first LM of the day when, at a cross roads a lady in an estate car ignored the give way signs and shot across from my left to right at about 30 mph, I tried to avoid her but just clipped the back end of her car, careered across the road, hit the kerb, shot across a grass verge where the bike 'high sided' and I did a 'Flying Farmer' over the bars into a ditch.....Had it been judged I would probably have scored 9.2 for style and flair! Like Paul, I jumped up and wanted to carry on but realised the bike would only go round in circles as the front forkes were badly twisted, so had to suffer another ride home in a recovery van.
But it's ok, the lady said:

' sorry, I had other things on my mind '
So RBR finished early, still got 10 to do..... But.... I got up and walked away, thats the main thing.......
Ride Safe, Regards a badly bruised Bob"

Thursday, 6 September 2007

Keep the Faith....(still going.....)

Sunday, so auNTy and I went in search of religion! And found it by way of an afternoon ride out to visit LM#36 St Peters an old [1406] oak timbered church in Melverley, Shropshire, I even ventured inside! I signed the visitors book and left a small donation for the church's upkeep, thought it only right as I'd helped myself to some of the free apples from the basket at church entrance.
Then onto LM 89, the old river bridge at Bangor Is Y Coed before heading for home.

This Sunday is the testers run which finishes mid Wales so I think auNTy and I will venture once again into Wales, the run finishes at The National Cycle Museum (The Automobile Palace) at Llandrindod Wells, from here its onto LM86 and some more "motorhiking" to the hilltop Erwood Gun!

Although I did contemplate combining some south coast RBR LM's with a visit to the Brighton Speed Trials, I thought better of it, and will save this day out to be enjoyed exclusively at the 2008 event!

Monday, 27 August 2007

Landmarks Revisited

The title says it all really, after the lost digital fotos fiasco! Nice days ride to LMs #83 & #88 in Wales then over the new Severn bridge to repeat LMs #45 & #3, then Fosse Way north to home....

Not an ironbutt.....

Friday means a slightly earlier finish from work, so I decided to go for the Essex LM: a church at Bradwell on Sea. A non-motorway route from work to the LM of about 90 miles (thanks John C) with only one stop for fuel. LM pics taken using "old fashioned" film camera with some back ups on my mobile phone camera. A drink and a snack (bought at fuel stop) then hopefully a non-stop 162 miles home, mostly via the M25 and M40. At about 30 miles/30 mins from home I couldn't bare the numb-bum and stiff-ankles any longer so rolled into the Oxford services for a break, whereupon I met a lovely lady biker (GSXRthou) and to cut a short story even shorter, she was proudly wearing her Ironbutt Run badge!

Sunday, 19 August 2007

Digital age......time somebody broke the monopoly with a better product

The ultimate challenge:
Fuji Finepix Smartmedia card v MS Windows Vista (new home PC)
RESULT= Lost pics (and points! and sponsorship!) for 4/6 of the last LM's visited!

Worst Microsoft Operating System ever!

Ah well that screws up any chance of a 100% allrounder award, I should really have covered this possibility by back up pics on good old Kodak film!

Sunday, 12 August 2007

The West Country

After a disastrous July (more rain & floods) combined with small bike problems (battery, rear tyre puncture & LH fork seal again!) August rbr's started with some time off work and a trip to the west country. Even the sunshine order arrived on-time, allowing very cheap accommodation under canvas at the Caravan and Camping club sites in Devon & Cornwall.


6 Landmarks were visited (2 Cornwall, 1 Devon, 1 Dorset, 2 Somerset) plus the obligatory visits to Lands End and Lizard Point. The road from Penzance to Lands End was very enjoyable bend after bend almost the whole way, and parking for bikes is free at Lands End. Lizard Point was a different kettle of fish, auNTy and I ventured down the narrow lane to mainland UK's most southerly car park which was very small and consequently FULL. But worse still, it's on a steep incline with a surface made up of loose dirt & gravel, so even though there was space to squeeze in we opted not too and moved onto the horror of turning the laden bike around. All the while aware of the prying eyes of bored tourists hoping the idiot on the bike would drop it. So back up the lane to the upper car park, £1 for motorcycles, not a lot I know, but I'd already seen most of what I wanted, so I declined and settled for a quick pic of auNTy in front of the lighthouse and return to Lizard village to find lunch:

Just out of the village centre with it's touristy eateries and souvenir shop's I found Ann's Famous Cornish Pasties outlet: a bakery in the converted garage down her drive, one large "yummy" real Cornish pastie served with Helford Creek Cornish apple juice..... I sat with others "in the know" on the on the local recreation ground grass opposite the shop, under a clear blue sunshine sky and enjoyed my feast complete with begging seagulls waiting for any scraps......

Monday, 23 July 2007

offsetting the rbr "carbon footprint"

apparently a black PC screen uses less energy than a "non-black" std screen, so the people at GOOGLE have come up with this gimick!
every little helps, although it is wierd to use and not as comprehensive as the std google....

also has a link to where there's all sorts of Greenie info ...... including a section "how to green up your sexlife!" but a quick browse didn't find anything related to the transport of delight: the motorcycle

Tuesday, 10 July 2007


And so ends another month's RBR activities: I'm not a religous man but it would appear that someone above was looking after me, with the timely fitting of the new tyres by Bullring Garage at the beginning of month, just in time for what would turn out to be the wetest June in the UK, for just over 100yrs. However it wasn't all doom and gloom, the sun blessed the VMCC Banbury Run and kind donations on the day raised £34.
The "Inaugural RBR Camping Weekend" weather was bearable, auNTy and I were only caught in torrential downpours on the journeys to and from Peak District. Even then my kit kept me fairly dry except for the gloves, resulting in a subsequent investment in a pair of Hein Gericke Goretex lined gloves. It was good to meet the other entrants who attended the meet. The camping club site at Hayfield was basic yet good and the staff very friendly and helpful. I think everyone enjoyed the evening "commitee meetings" at "The Sportsman" pub, where "veteran" RBRers shared their tales and advice with the novices.
Having already done the Derbyshire landmark I opted out of the Saturday group ride and headed instead to Manchester and Merseyside. The morning started with a small northern Peak District loop because of an accidental wrong turn (honest). The Manchester landmark was another example of my 2nd hobby "motorhiking" ! Heading to the coast again brought the same result as experienced in North Wales, Rain Avoidance. After being charged to go through the Tyne Tunnel it was a nice surprise to find that the Mersey Tunnel is free for bikes. Later a friend (Ian W) told me of the legendary MAG ride en-mass through the Dartford Tunnel during rush hour. The toll booth routine: gloves off, helmet off, find money, pay, then put kit back on, for hundreds of bikers, caused such a delay that the management saw sense and changed to a no-charge policy for bikes. The 4 Merseyside LMs presented no problems, the only difficulty was avoiding the almost blind too old to be still driving metallic kermit frog green (proof they were blind!) Nissan Micra drivers in the Wirral. My return route to the campsite included the A537 Buxton to Macclesfield Rd, apparently otherwise known as the Cat & Fiddle, and featured in July 4th MCN's 10 best roads to ride in the UK (somebody up above is definitely looking after me ). Sunday return route home only 2 of an intended 5 LM's visited, so some catch up needed in July!

Friday, 22 June 2007

The Banbury Run

[Tony] Well it is down to me to make the report but as yet I have been a bit slack...

As some background to the event ,

BIKERS from across the country flocked to Banbury on Sunday to celebrate an annual event for what could be the last time.
Drayton School was engulfed in a haze of smoke as 500 motorcycle lovers arrived for the Vintage Motorcycle Club's 59th Banbury Run – its most important event.The bike enthusiasts tackle the roads around Banbury and surrounding villages with their vintage vehicles that date back to at least 1930.

Unfortunately this might be the last time Drayton School Hosts this event... more information here...

John and Nicola setup the Goodwill4 Charity Stand before 9:00 am conviently I did not manage to get there before 9:30...

John and the Goodwill4Charity Marquee.

To the side his trusty steed. (Note the UK map, it had raffle tickets in each landwark of this years RBR as a fund raising option during the day.)
The collection box and the raffle goodies all with a very pink theme to it, but lets not forget the focus of this fund raising is for the pink Cancer Research and EVERYMAN.
The Pink helmet was not the Stigs sister supporting the event, but the ingenious money box For the fund raise.
Well for me it was quite impressive to see, and as John pointed out, the smell is like nothing you get these days. Some of the machines where restored to even better condition, i think, than when they where new... some where works in progress and some...well... some where just lucky to be there... but don't be deceived, appearances can be deceptive.