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1962-1983: the years of fast racing 'mopeds'!


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#1 50cc racer

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 21:49

Hi there

I would like to turn the attention to the exciting years of 50cc racing.
As a result of boys toying with their first form of motorized transportation, the need for speed eventually led to organized racing and a world championship.

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I´m sure most of you can recognize this Itom- riding superstar , but where and when ?

Edited by 50cc racer, 14 November 2009 - 22:11.


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#2 sterling49

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 21:53

Sorry, I could not tell you who the rider is, or where, but I am sure TNF (Picblanc?) will furnish you with this info, you did however, remind me of the days at Brands when I was almost deafened regularly, by a grid full of these machines, which had to be seen to be believed (......and heard!!!)

Sterling U.K.

#3 Ray Bell

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 22:31

Originally posted by 50cc racer
Hi there

I would like to turn the attention to the exciting years of 50cc racing.
As a result of boys toying with their first form of motorized transportation, the need for speed eventually led to organized racing and a world championship.

Posted Image

I´m sure most of you can recognize this Itom- riding superstar, but where and when?


No... wouldn't have a clue...

But I guess our new poster, PilotesdeLegende, might have a chance.

#4 ghinzani

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 23:16

Superstar? Hailwood?? If not Ivey or Walter Villa I guess.

#5 picblanc

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 23:34

Originally posted by 50cc racer
Hi there

I would like to turn the attention to the exciting years of 50cc racing.
As a result of boys toying with their first form of motorized transportation, the need for speed eventually led to organized racing and a world championship.

[IMG]

[url=http://img147.imageshack.us/my.php?image=mhitommj8.jpg][img]http://imageshack.us/thumbnmail.png

I´m sure most of you can recognize this Itom- riding superstar , but where and when ?

Mike Hailwood Blanford Wiltshire/Dorset? 1957 his first win? just a guess!!

As I see your a slot car fan? somewhere on here there is a thread for them?

#6 ghinzani

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 23:36

Ah Blandford, I knew it looked familiar... ;)

#7 T54

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 02:11

Spanning Mike's career from his days as a novice in the mid-1950s to his late-1970s comeback, this wonderful collection ranges from what is believed to be his first ever trophy, awarded at Blandford on 10 June 1957 for a 3rd place finish on a 50cc Itom


Could it be?

T54

#8 barrykm

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 07:56

Kork Ballington started on 50s.

#9 T54

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 14:44

Lot of them did, but Kork was probably just past sucking his mom's breast when this picture was taken...

#10 barrykm

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 16:31

Originally posted by T54
Lot of them did, but Kork was probably just past sucking his mom's breast when this picture was taken...


Indeed.

#11 50cc racer

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 20:02

Sorry for the small size! I find it troublesome to link images from my site.

Mike Hailwood it is riding an Itom. - Does anybody know if it was his own and if he rode other tiddlers?
57 must be right - although he looks older.

Quite unusual the shrouding round the barrel - early ram air treatment?


Here is another one. He too became a formula 1 driver:

Posted Image

Edited by 50cc racer, 14 November 2009 - 22:13.


#12 barrykm

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 20:29

Originally posted by 50cc racer
Sorry for the small size! I find it troublesome to link images from my site.

Mike Hailwood it is riding an Itom. - Does anybody know if it was his own and if he rode other tiddlers?
57 must be right - although he looks older.

Quite unusual the shrouding round the barrel - early ram air treatment?


Here is another one. He too became a formula 1 driver: http://www.elsberg-tuning.dk/x.html

Can anybody help me with a correct image code :)


The rider is Emmerson Fittipaldi.

#13 ghinzani

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 21:53

As an aside the 50cc is still raced, details here : http://www.british50...g.com/index.php

My 50cc Suzuki X1 has been in the barn 20 years this coming year, I really must get round to getting it out and prepping it for this series, have been meaning to since 1986!

#14 50cc racer

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 21:53

That was quick!

Fittipaldi on a Mondial I believe, Interlagos track 1963.

What about this 50cc twin ? :

Posted Image


50cc racer

Edited by 50cc racer, 14 November 2009 - 22:16.


#15 ghinzani

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 21:59

must not forget the classic guys either... http://www.classic50racingclub.co.uk/

#16 T54

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Posted 26 December 2007 - 22:02

The Itom had a cast-iron cylinder that got really hot with hard use. So the use of a shroud to keep airflow concentrated around it was relatively common.
For some reason, the Itom became the most popular 50cc racer by the year 1961, while it was quite obvious that the Kreidlers were simply much faster. In fact a bone-stock Kreidler Florett "mockick" 4-speed touring bike would absolutely clean the clock of the 3-speed Itom Super Sport...
Even when the new Itom 4-speed came out in 1962, by that time it was simply obsolete. Both Jean-Pierre Beltoise and Jean-Claude Serre ran Itoms, but first the Spanish Ducson, then the Derbi came and won just about everything in France where the Sport and Course classes were well attended. In 1963, the Derbi Sport fitted with a proper expansion chamber was cleaning house in the sport class as well as the specially prepared Kreidler Florett of the French distributor Leconte, driven by the late Claude Vigreux. In the Course ("GP") class, the Derbis were untouchable. The Itoms were nowhere near the top anymore. In Germany, if you did not have a Kreidler, you did not stand a chance to win.

#17 T54

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 04:02

Emerson's Benelli is running way too much oil in the mixture...
And what is that mysterious (and apprently HEAVY) twin? Someone put a lot of work in it... and the old Del'Orto-like carbs look huge for a 50occ.

#18 dbw

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 06:50

no one can accuse a 50 of being slow...133.8mph!!

http://www.geocities...uddfab/buddfab3

john b is an old friend and top fabricator that has worked on many diverse projects.

#19 50cc racer

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 07:19

The twin was made in Chemnitz - finished six month before the ban of multi- cylindered engines ):

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Posted Image

Was it a Benelli Fittipaldi drove ? Well, it is hard to tell from that angle.

T54, You mention the Ducson. Was it an Itom built under license in Spain?


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#20 T54

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 14:59

Ducson made a whole line of Itom-inspired (but not licenced) 50cc motorcycles (moped as well as non-moped) until going out of business in the late 1970's. Ducson was based, as Derbi, in the same suburb of Barcelona called Mollet del Valles. Ducson bikes were successfully driven to many national-level wins in 1961 and 1962 especially in France.

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Picture courtesy of Cybermotorcycle.com

Pictures of the actual road racers with fairing are quite rare but I have a small color shot I took at Monthlery at the end of 1961 that I will scan and post. The racing version with fairly crude alloy faitings developed 7HP at 13000 RPM and had a 4-speed box and a Spanish-built Bing carburetor. They were good for 90MPH.
Juan Garcia finished 6th at the 1963 Spanish GP at Montjuich. That was the zenith of the Ducson racing adventure.

I had the priviledge of racing a Ducson at the French GP at Rouen in 1965, and my friend Denis Dayan also raced a Ducson in the production ("Sport") class in France in 1964. Unfortunately for Ducson, they were hopelessly uncompetitive with the much-more powerful Derbi machinery designed by a true genius of two-stroke design as well as chassis design, Francisco Tombas.

T54

#21 50cc racer

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 19:19

Interesting info on the Ducson! Thanks! I believe a Ducson did win the last race in the Motocup in 61 - driven by Cesar Gracia.

Francisco Tombas must have joined Derbi at a very young age, I mean producing race- winners in 64.


Added another "mystery" twin:

Posted Image

50cc racer

#22 T54

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 19:44

Looks like the Tohatsu, or could it be the first version of the road-going Bridgestone?

Francisco Tombas was in his mid-30's in 1964, I met him then and purchased a whole slew of parts for my own Derbi GP bike, only to be caught at the border and fined heavily by the French customs and spending the night in jail with a guy caught carrying a gun. Morality: always hide the invoices where they can't find them, mail them to yourself! :lol:
Happy days then... :)

Now, what is the amazing story about this fellow and his bike:

Posted Image

:)





#23 50cc racer

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 20:03

Fantastic story T54 - made my whole family laugh!

No, that 50 is believed to be the first twin built outside Japan - and its not a race engine.

Tombas looks younger than I am, especially today after a looong day at work ! :)

I know Jose Maria Busquets, not the story, please tell!!

#24 T54

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 20:40

So is this twin, Dutch? And who built it? The frame looks like an Italjet job...

Yes indeed the picture is of Jose Busquets, who surprised everyone (well, almost everyone...) by leading the Spanish GP on front of all the works Suzuki, Honda and Kreidler by nearly a minute when one lap from winning it, one of the two rear shock absorbers broke and that was it for the day. That day at Montjuich, the air-cooled 8-speed Derbi was the world's fastest moped!

Busquets later won against Anscheidt on the works Kreidler at Malaga, also beating his team mate Salvador Canellas.
There is little doubt in my mind that during 1962 through 1965, Derbi had the fastest 50cc racers, but reliability was marginal due to the use of Spanish-only materials such as Borgo pistons that constantly seized or collapsed. If they had more freedom to import decent alloys (forbidden under Franco's regime), the story of Suzuki and Honda winning the 50cc class could have been very different.

#25 50cc racer

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 21:42

No its not a Dutch- built engine.

You´ll have to follow the link, until I get the hang of these damn codes, to find the answer :

Posted Image

And another "mystery twin, which didnt see production either!

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Now I have to get some sleep! :yawn:

50cc racer

Edited by 50cc racer, 14 November 2009 - 22:24.


#26 T54

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 21:53

Yes of course, I remember the Guzzi now...

#27 50cc racer

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 07:34

Francisco Tombas was in his mid-30's in 1964, I met him then and purchased a whole slew of parts for my own Derbi GP bike



To get a picture on pricing back then, how would you compare Derbi against Kreidler- parts.

Half the price or one- third that of the Kreidler ?

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#28 T54

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 18:05

The Derbi was not that cheap then, but the Kreidler did not offer any "kit" parts until 1968 in the form of the RS engine kit. Derbi offered two versions of their machines, a "production-racer" for the French "Sport" class, and a "Carrera-Cliente" as a full GP machine patterned after the 1962 model used by Jacques Roca at Clermond-Ferrand to win the first international race for Derbi.
The "Sport" version had a cast-iron cylinder, an 18mm Del'Lorto carb and expansion chamber. It produced 7HP at 12000RPM. The "Carrera-Cliente" had a small triangular seat and a fairing, an alloy-finned cylinder with a cast-iron liner, more radical porting and a very usable 9HP. The "Sport" version could reach 120KM/H while the true racer was good for 150KM/H. Both had the 5-speed box and wet clutch. The price was FF1200.00 for the "Sport" and FF2300.00 for the "Carrera-Cliente". A STOCK, road-going Kreidler was FF1900.00, and the RS kit FF900.00. Then, one had to do all the cycle parts on the Kreidler, including a build of a tubular Earles-type front suspension, while the Derbis came with vented drum brakes, proper telescopic forks and decent shocks.
I raced both and no doubt that the Kreidler handled better but the Derbi was simply faster and had better brakes. However, while the Kreidler was a model or utter reliability with its Nikasil cylinder and forged piston (the VERY first EVER in motorcycle racing), the Derbi suffered from continual seizures due to their poor cast pistons. So winning a race with a Derbi also involved keeping it together. Never such a concern with the Kreidlers. Bultacos of course suffered of the same problems as the Derbi, and Kreidler had a special engine built for Hans Anscheidt's Bultaco TSS 125cc, using a forged Mahle piston, nikasil coated cylinder wall and better crank bearings. What they could not improve was the primary chain drive that kept snapping all the time until Bultaco introduced their gear-driven primary drive on the water-cooled TSS in 1967.
Below is a rare picture of the dyno room at Derbi in Mollet del Valles, taken in 1968. Frem left to right are Andres Rabasa, the president of the company, next to Francisco Tombas and Angel Nieto:

Posted Image

Regards,

T54

#29 50cc racer

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 18:46

Nice price for a GP replica. And youre right about the Mahle- products, they just ooze quality all over.
I´ve got a Mahle- piston comparison somewhere, early sixties. I´ll scan it when I get to it.

One of the 50cc racers sported a primary chain too ?

The Schenck- water brake dynamometer, is that the right thing to use when youre dealing with a peaky two- stroke engine?

#30 T54

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 19:34

That's what they had! Hard to argue with success anyway, because they ended winning quite a few championships and races...
Other 50cc had primary chain drives. I recall the Derbi did, and so did the Ducson.

Here is a picture of one of the mopeds that started it all, the Itom "Astor" of 1960:

Posted Image

Note that the dumb bicycle pedals were there strictly mandated by law with a big "L", since typical stupid Euro-regulations were already in place in France, Italy and Germany to restrict these vehicles from going over 50KM/H (and of course one needs a set of bycicle pedals to do that, don't they? : ), which of course most greatly exceeded, the Itom good for 90MK/H already. The young riders quickly unbolted the useless (and dangerous!) pedals, sometimes confronted by the brain-dead gendarme requiring a re-fitting of the devices. To make the bikes safer while cornering, we used to attach the pedals in horizontal mode with a rubber sandow. Those were the days, us in small gangs roaming the streets flat-out, no helmets, emulating our heroes Surtees, Ubbiali and Duke, already rubbing our toes on the greasy pavement...
Then, the European Cup began and changed all of it, with us kids now able to RACE these things on regular circuits. That was great news for all.
:lol:
Well, we DID survive, did we not? :)

T54

#31 50cc racer

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 20:02

50km/h ! You were lucky living in France. In Denmark it is 30km/h. Restrictions were very small carbs, as small as 9mm on some models. Goal was an output of 1hp!

My favorite the Honda CD50 were restricted with a smaller cam, a 5,5mm restrictor in cylinder head intake, and an ignition retarding device!

That made the otherwise lively Honda (5,25hp in German version) the slowest moped marketed here in DK.
A slow slow acceleration up to the point where the cam took command, just to fall on its nose due to the mechanical ignition retard ! They really made a mess of that one.

No pedals though ;)

Guazzoni too had a primary chain.

#32 T54

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 20:14

There was a Guazzoni with disc valve racing in France, driven by a huge (very nice) fellow called Le Toumelin. It was not fast enough to challenge the Kreidler RS that had pretty much taken over by that time.

#33 50cc racer

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 20:29

Yves le Toumelin later raced both Abf and Scrab, French built Kreidler specials.

I believe that all of the Guazzonis were disc- valved. That company made engines for Karting before going into two- wheel production.

I nearly bought one some years ago, but was warned off, because of lack of spares. Nice bike though.

The Kreidlers you raced, were race- kittet and further modified ?

#34 T54

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 20:41

The one I raced was the "official" works "Sports" bike entered by Leconte, previously driven by the late Claude Vigreux.
Only finished 2nd in the championship because Derbi had entered a virtual GP bikle in the class, only fitted with lights to be "legal". I could not compete witrh that one, but placed in second all year long.

I also drove Vigreux's works 12-speed but not in competition. I was with him when this was brought back to Unterturkheim and CRUSHED at the works... :eek:
Made me sick to my stomach.

#35 50cc racer

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 20:55

Company policies and all that :down:

Got any pictures from that period ?

Have you seen any 50cc action stateside?

#36 T54

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Posted 28 December 2007 - 21:09

I got pictures but little time. Indeed there was a 50cc class in the US and I remember driving a Suzuki and then a Ringhini, then a Villa.

#37 50cc racer

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Posted 29 December 2007 - 00:46

All in good time T54!

Posted Image

Can anybody recognize this one ?

50cc racer

#38 50cc racer

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 10:28

This 50cc racer is a bit of a puzzle to me, from 82 ?

Posted Image

If you look at the number and the name, there seems to be certain similarities to a MotoGP superstar!

Can anybody tell the story?


50cc racer

Edited by 50cc racer, 14 November 2009 - 22:31.


#39 raisinberry777

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 10:38

His father? IIRC Valentino Rossi used 46 because it was the number his father used?

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#40 fines

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 11:01

Naah, I don't think Graziano ever raced mopeds, "Rossi" must be a sponsor here. I believe "M. Mordenti" would be the rider's name!?

Edit: found it, a Mauro Mordenti finished 10th at Mugello, Sep 5 in 1982, riding a... Rossi!

#41 50cc racer

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 12:55

Yes Mauro Mordenti on a Kreidler- engined special built in Italy by Eddy Rossi.

A peculiar incidence when your familiar with that name and number - Rossi and 46!

The 50cc world champion of 73 had a special experience in the Spa/Francorchamps race that year - which?

Posted Image

50cc racer

#42 ESSEXBOY

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 18:13

Hi

in the spirit of this 50cc racer thread...

my first "legal" roadbike back in 1973 was an ex-production racing Ducati 50SL

i was 16 and just got caught out by the change in the law restricting learners to 50cc mopeds

my approach to avoid the indignity of being forced to ride a "moped" was to scan the racing

classifieds ads in the MCN and buy a 50cc racer and convert it to road use,

all the ads for Itoms,Demm,Maserati were circled,then to my delight the Ducati was spotted.

The bike was a beauty....it was road registered XGU 65G making it a 1968 model

it had the long slim twin filler tank,full jakeman fairing,borrani rims ,dunlop racing triangulars ,

it came with road silencer ,rearsets and a race expansion chamber and the horizontal Del Orto.

i paid £60 including the spares,The vendor was a Mr Brian Tuck a policeman from North London

i think he used to race it at Brands Hatch,

Despite many brushes with the boys in blue,i survived my learner year with my provisional licence

still intact ,, it's probably still out there somewhere :wave:

#43 50cc racer

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 18:50

Could it be this one ?

Posted Image


50cc racer

#44 ESSEXBOY

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 13:13

:clap:

thats the bike.................glad i didn't bullsh~t the spec too high ha ha! :rotfl:
you have made my day,thanks

The guy who raced it was P.C.Brian Tuck from Wood Green,North London.

he also raced a Greeves Silverstone.he sold the Ducati because the 50cc race class was being dropped.

When i bought it he had replaced the road parts (front and rear mudguards ,lights )to make it road legal again




was that photo from Brands Hatch 1972/73? :wave:

#45 50cc racer

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 23:41

Nice bike Essexboy, cant remember the details of this pic right now. I´ll get back to when and if !

Now is this art or ?

Posted Image

Posted Image

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#46 ESSEXBOY

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 17:23

:wave:

if only i wasn't 200kgs :o

#47 50cc racer

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 19:24

I need help to identify this British? rider

Posted Image

50cc racer

#48 T54

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 19:49

Obviously a CR110, and obviously an Irish rider if one is to believe the green cloverleaf... and obviously a fairly recent picture, or at least within the last 25 years.

#49 dbw

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 20:03

as you guys seem to be all over the 50 scene ....do i remember a monocoque 50cc bultaco?...if it existed maybe someone could post a photo as my memory fades.

#50 Paul Rochdale

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 20:23

Tom Herron?