CAROL NASH WINTER CLASSIC, NEWARK SHOWGROUND
The Carole Nash Winter Classic at the Newark Showground in Nottinghamshire kind of kicks off the bike show season. It follows up its quartet of annual classic shows with the very popular Bristol show over the weekend of February 4th/5th. The others are the two big Stafford events in April and October. Then there's the more mainstream Excel show in London's Docklands later in February, which Carol Nash sponsors in conjunction with Motorcycle News (MCN).
The weather, even in the north of England, has been quite benign so far. This would certainly have been a factor in tempting out the hundreds that turned up for the first of the two days over the January 8th/9th weekend. For the second year running, Newark incorporated a scooter show – Scooter 17 - as part of the affair. I was impressed with the scootering on display.
Even though these shows tend to attract the same range of traders and clubs, there are always bikes and displays that the eye and interest alight on. Among the flawlessly restored and refurbished bikes in the central display area, there was a 250cc Supercharged Dunelt with a winning rosette on the saddle. A 1927 model that was priced at just over £35 new.
At the other end of the spectrum, so to speak, were an eclectic selection of restorers for sale that always seems to be surrounded by a group of browsers. A Yamaha FS1E was attracting some contemplation. Further along, a Royal Enfield Interceptor that had been in a barn for thirty years, had a £6,000 price tag on it, as did a 1950 Triumph 6T. How many barn finds can there be left to unveil?
Among the club stands, the Gold Star Owners had made full use of their allotted space by squeezing in an impeccable display of these superb examples. While the Poachers pre '65 Classic Trials club kept it real by displaying a Matchless single with the dirt from its last outing clinging to it.
It now seems obligatory to include a stage and a series of interviews with race stars. This time round it was good to see prominence given to sidecar racers Ben and Tom Birchall, last year's world champions and TT regulars, and their machine. Steve Plater was on hand to ask the questions.
There was a time in recent history when motorcycles and scooters would not deign to share the same space together. But while the scoots were in a different exhibition shed at Newark, the days of 'mods and rockers' animosity - and at some disturbingly memorable points, violence - are thankfully long gone.
Scooters really do lend themselves to artistry and inspired imagery. Even the owners of racers and sprinters had let their creativity run amok, with impressive results. Small groups of parka-clad 'mature' blokes turned this into a social occasion. And through an open door at the rear of the exhibition area, those with tuned examples ran and revved engines to the approval and delight of other enthusiasts.
Lying about the place were small piles of leaflets advertising what they described as 'The ultimate Mod musical': All Or Nothing, based on the life and music of The Small Faces. I grabbed a few and mailed them to mates whose memories stretch back to that era. The show tours through 2017.
I rummaged through a few of the clothing discount stalls before leaving, but only came away with a couple of bargain ultra bungees that will help secure the track-day bike when transported. A good way to while away an afternoon, while snapping some dazzling machinery.
Did you go to the Carol Nash Winter Classic? Let us know what you thought of it by emailing email@example.com.
13/01/16 - Disapointed really, fewer bikes than last year. Could do it in 3 hours easy
13/01/16 - I thought the best bike was the TDR 250 on the VJMC stand
13/01/16 - Picked up a very good original chrome headlight shell for a GT Suzuki, well pleased! Loved the classic trials bikes and purple YCS3 that was for sale
13/01/16 - I thought the best bike there was Martin blands unrestored 350.c.c. 40m manx norton which he raced in the 60's.lovely.
13/01/16 - Great turn out of scooters
13/01/16 - nice great paint work
13/01/16 - www.flickr.com/photos/davehutch
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