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Discussion Starter #1
Here's a great older pic...taken a few months before I was born actually.


The last GP Kenny Roberts Sr. competed in at Imola. I believe he won the race, but lost the championship to Freddie Spencer. Found it on superbikeplanet.com.

Anybody know where to find a hi-res version? I hope they make a poster out of this :D
 

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oh WOW, push start... classic!! if you find out the info, give it to me... that's cool
 

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You're absolutely right. That would make one sweet poster. Find it and let us all know!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
japbike said:
oh WOW, push start... classic!! if you find out the info, give it to me... that's cool
the good ol' 2-Stroke 3 Step :D
 

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Which one is roberts?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'm not positive, but the I think he's number 4. I think Freddie Spencer is number 3. Corrections anyone?
 

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I think your correct friend.. but how would you remember, you werent even born yet?!?! :flipa geesh, You even missed the world premier of MTV! lol

OMG,, IM OLD!! :cry :cry
 

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Contact Dunlop marketing department. They should be able to give an answer
 

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roberts is #4
spencer is #3
Barry Sheene is #10
Eddie Lawson is #27
randy mamola is #6
number 5 may be Ron haslam...i'm not sure anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
japbike said:
I think your correct friend.. but how would you remember, you werent even born yet?!?! :flipa geesh, You even missed the world premier of MTV! lol

OMG,, IM OLD!! :cry :cry
hehe :flipa :D MTV sucks!

Somewhere in that pack there is a number 46 and his last name is Rossi...Graziano that is.
 

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malik ross said:
roberts is #4
spencer is #3
Barry Sheene is #10
Eddie Lawson is #27
randy mamola is #6
number 5 may be Ron haslam...i'm not sure anymore.
Marco Lucchinelli was #5
Franco Uncini was #10
Wasn't Sheene #7?
Ron Haslam was #35 in '82... maybe '83?
Anybody know the rest? All of us *cough* mature riders, let's name 'em all!

Roberts, Spencer, Randy Mamola, Eddie Lawson, Marco Luchinelli, Virginio Ferrari, Raymond Roche, Ron Haslam, Anton Mang and Valentino Rossi's father, Grazioni Rossi are in there somewhere...

I've been looking for that print or high-res of that everywhere!
I've contacted Dunlop with no response as of yet... :mad:

I want that thing bad, in a HUGE size to cover half my garage.
It's an awesome print on so many levels...
 

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That is a cool looking poster, wish it was for sale
 

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Discussion Starter #15
anyone want to petition Dunlop to make that in poster form?
 

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Heh, King Kenny remarking about his battles with his TZ750 4 cylinder Stroker Dirt Track Bike...... This is absolutly classic stuff...

There are those that say this is the bike and the race that made Kenny Roberts an icon. From nearly a dead last start, Kenny had spun and slid his way to the win. On a bike soem thought unridable. There are those that say this is the bike and the race that made Kenny Roberts an icon. From nearly a dead last start, Kenny had spun and slid his way to the win. On a bike soem thought unridable.

To put this machine's horsepower into perspective for a younger enthusiast, piloting this it would not be unlike racing a modern big bore Suzuki fitted with nitrous--in six inches of water.

Even today the Champion Yamaha 750 is considered the definitive unbridled motorcycle, so much so that Roberts, when he got off the bike after narrowly winning Indy, spewed the immortal Roberts quote, "They don't pay me enough to ride that thing," he said.
The AMA, with the help of level-headed Kel Carruthers, banned the bike and the formula that brought it into existence. The argument that if the machine was allowed to breed it would eventually kill someone, won the sanctioning body over.
Once the AMA banned the bike from competition several persons wanted to get their mitts on it for historical purposes, including Carruthers whom as builder probably had more claim to ownership than anyone save Roberts.

But Yamaha America would have nothing to do with it and sent the bike to Europe for a promotional campaign. It was seen in late 1976 at a dealer show and one brave soul actually rode it at an English Speedway event, but the machine failed to bite former world champion Peter Collins as he was not able to shift beyond second on a very slick track.

From there the engine was removed from the chassis, the wheels sent back to the roadracing shop and the bike compressed to a neat little cube where it couldn't hurt anyone. Or so the story goes. A little chicanery occurred in this period as the bike never really went to its intended execution. Perhaps another bike tagged as this one went in its place or someone mistakenly checked the bike off the roster, but the machine never went to its demise. For a long while it sat in the back of the Amsterdam race shop with other racebikes put out to pasture. With most of its cosmetics removed save the tank, it looked like just another R&D exercise gone horribly wrong. Which really it was. It sat in that condition for a number of years until former Yamaha manager Kenny Clark, looking through the cadavers of this graveyard, began to study this particular machine. Although it was faded by constant exposure to the elements and sun, the phrase, "Prepared by Kel Carruthers, El Cajon" in Seventies hippie script on the fuel tank, raised the hairs on the back of his neck.

It didn't take a rocket scientist to determine this was not a machine that belonged in a graveyard but in a museum. He packed the bike up and sent it back to the States where he intended to restore it himself. Upon leaving Yamaha, Clark sold the machine in its dilapidated condition to Wright.

Determined, he set out to make the machine right again. Much damage had been done though. The ground up restoration would be the relatively easy part of the process. The difficulties lay in finding the correct parts, considering Champion only made five kits before the AMA banned the machine and this machine, being a factory built and developed racer, was in some ways very different from the kitted bikes.

Wright spent a good deal of time searching through the attics and garages of racers of the era, trying to find correct decals and other bits. With time and the help of many individuals such as former Roberts mechanic Merrill Vanderslice, Wright collected the assembled pieces and finished the machine just prior to 1994.

Flash to the 1994 USGP, behind the Marlboro Roberts garage. Roberts was obviously surprised and somewhat shaken by seeing this old steed in the flesh. He kept repeating, "I can't believe it, just can't believe it." For Roberts, a man who has done and seen plenty, the sight of this old machine unnerved him. He laughed nervously and spoke in broken sentences as the memories, both good and bad, rushed back.

Roberts wanted to own the machine. Wright wasn't ready to part with the noble racing steed just yet, but when that day came, said he would sell it.

The man almost most responsible, Kel Carruthers, wearing a blood red Cagiva uniform walked over and took a gander at the machine as well. He examined many of the pieces individually, the foot peg and brake arm where Roberts hadn't been able to pull the machine back from the edge and it smashed into a wall at San Jose along with the resulting welds where Ken Maley put the pieces back together again. He looked at the TZ700 pipes and the unique mounting system he had built to enable the exhaust to tuck in tighter than the kit allowed; the places he relocated the engine later that season. He said to no-one and everyone, "It's the bike," and walked back to Doug Chandler's V585, yet another in a line of machines he would help create but would never own.

There was talk of Roberts doing a lap of honor on the machine at Laguna, someone mentioned that they thought Roberts might fit into Luca Cadalora's or Beattie's leathers.

However after a few moments' consideration, most thought it a bad idea. He escaped with his wits intact twenty years ago, let's not push the issue.




God I love that yellow and black color scheme on his 1980 championship GP Bike..... and those 4 stroker pipes just make me want to ahhhh..... nm :leghump :leghump
 

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King Kenny has always been my motorcycle Hero. Top of my list, to include:
John Surtees
Hailwood
Agostini
Rainey
Cooley
Lawson
Schwantz
Doohan
Rossi
And
Joey Dunlop

T. E. Lawrence - Honorable Mention
 
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