“Where is he? 11.0.clock he said. It’s quarter past & no sign of him.
Jeez I hope nothing’s worked loose.
Told him he should’ve taken it for a test run first.
Aha, there he is. Thank Gawd for that“.
It’s Saturday morning & I’ve rushed round my postal delivery, dashed home for a quick wash & change & I’m stood in a layby, waiting for Flap to arrive in his Landrover. Flap’s orange Reliant trike’s at the almost, very nearly, but not quite, complete stage now, after a very tedious two year build. Just a few odds & ends to finish off & it’s ready for the road. We’re off to the Berkshire Triumph Owners Club show, just ten miles up the road at the Tadley rugby club, so are trying out an ingenious trike towing arm, built by my brother, Steve. It’s basically an elongated tow hitch culminating in a pair of rubber sleeved clamps that bolt around the trike’s fork legs, enabling us to tow it behind the Landy like a trailer. Amazingly, it appears to work.
So off we go, trundling up to Lunatic’s paint workshop, where the rest of the gang are waiting for us. Marcus of Lunatic Fringe paintwork, & his parents are there with their VW trike, “Psycho Triko”, already safely hitched up to the back of the family BMW. We’re also greeted by Ska Man & his son, Chris, aboard his freshly MOT’d blue Reliant. Although his is the only machine currently road legal, I guess this is our first official MMMotors outing.
Unsurprisingly, the Triumph Owners’ show attracts a huge number of Brit bikes of all makes, but there’s also always a large contingent of Harleys, plenty of classic Japanese bikes, trikes, scooters, customs & specials of all kinds. This is a nice little event. No posing, no hooliganism, no showing off, just a gathering of enthusiasts from all over the South of England, getting together to celebrate their shared passion. The furthest travelled female rider rode up from Cornwall, while the furthest male came all the way from Sweden.
Once again we were lucky with the weather. For the 3rd or 4th year in a row the site was bathed in sunshine all afternoon, only clouding over as things drew to a close at tea-time. The burger & ice cream vans did a roaring trade, as did the bar. Lots of old friends to chat to, lots of lovingly tended machinery to admire. Lots of interest in our own little group too. The trikes seemed to go down well with plenty of questions being asked & photographs being taken.
The only criticism I can think of is that the rugby club carpark is too small. The show’s outgrown it. Literally hundreds of bikes were packed side by side on the tarmac, leaving little room to negotiate between them & even less to get decent photographs. Plans are already underway though to move to a bigger venue next year in Reading, Berks. It’s a sensible progression but I hope the Berks TOMC show manages to retain it’s friendly, chatty atmosphere. It’ll be a shame to lose it’s rural location too.
So did we win anything? Err, no. Jacko took the trophy with his Praying Mantis VW trike for the second year running. Well done jacko. Best in show went to a gorgeous Royal Enfield, proving that the Triumph Owners appreciate more than just their own Meriden & Hinckley steeds.
As things began to wind down we hitched up our machines again, said our goodbyes & headed for home, pausing only to unhitch them again & lift them over the speed bump in the carpark’s entrance. Hmm, a little more ground clearance next time I think!
So all in all, the first official MMMotors road trip was a success. Nothing broke or fell off, we made a favourable impression on the show crowd & we got home with the same number of trikes as we started with. Hopefully next year we’ll be back with a bigger troop of Monkies & more machines. I might even have my own one finished by then!