October 19, 2006

Brands Oct 06 - Moldy Storms It, Longy Blows It!

Without team boss Martin Strong Man, and Matt "Vimto" Strong Jnr still in semi-retirement, the depleted SandM Racing Team head off to Brands. Bleary eyed after a 5am rise, but safe in the knowledge of shedding 1 pound between both riders through an intense work out at the gym, the sun is shining and things are looking good for the team. However, on arrival at the circuit things start to wobble. An angry Sound of Thunder racer has taken possession of their garage #10 and refuses entry to "those shopping trolleys". Moldy, fully trained in armed combat, takes to him by swiftly removing his collapsible chairs from the garage and Longy apologises and offers him a sandwich from his packed lunch. Garage #25 it was then.Practice goes well. Today is the day when Moldy #40 loses his baby bib. Qualifying on second row of the CB500 race and beating his personal best by nearly 2 seconds, knee down, head down chin on the tank, he's flying.

Longy #4, scrubs in some new rubber, but then gets baulked by twenty 400's but still manages to put in a reasonable 55.1 s lap to qualify third Hornet and sixth on a big grid - it's gonna be showdown time between him and the bionic man, Sean Hardwicke, an 18 year old, seven foot giant, crash-or-win merchant who was recently rebuilt with an integrated HRC unit.

But then Longy's plan goes completely pear shaped. As the Hornet arrives back at garage #25, the beast explodes into a fit of steam. They wonder if this had something to do with the angry Sound Of Thunder rider in garage 10.....but it's terminal - a head gasket has gone and his race is run .... Longy wishes he had not taken the Chief Mechanics advice to run the Hornet on Sunflower Mineral Oil.

So it's down to Moldy to bring back the winners laurels....He gets off to a blinding start in race one cleverly rolling the bike on the starting grid in anticipation of the green light. Piling into Paddock Hill he's almost leading the pack. With immaculate lines on every bend, looking well ahead of the corner, belly pan and exhaust scraping the tarmac, Jon is on the limit of the bikes capabilities. Lap after lap the tension builds, superbly driving the 50bhp monster out of Clearways for the last time Moldy crosses the chequered flag in second...........but then a serious miscalculation - a heavily disguised blue and white CB500 with a Suzuki paint job finished ahead of him - it's still a third!

Moldy and Longy head off to the New Era awards dept to collect the silverware, only to find the club has cut its budget even further and are only handing out the Egg Cups to the first rider now. (If only they hadn't run three championships last year!)

The final CB500 race of the day brings a 4th spot for Moldy and meantime the bionic man, Hardwicke #37, brings home his body and bike behind the blindingly quick Banana coloured bike of Chaz Beale #94 - most improved rider of the year.

Epilogue:
Moldy and Longy decide to take advantage of the steaming Hornet and shed a few more pounds in garage #25 before taking to the pub for 10 pints and a Vindaloo. The SOT rider was also invited but refused politely...Watch out for the next episode at Mallory when Matt "Vimto" Strong Jnr returns to the track after a 12 month lay-off. Yes...he's back! and Chief Mechanic Strong Man, diagnoses the broken Hornet in the workshop.