February 21, 2008

Dancing on Ice-The Kwaks are tested at Zero Deg C!

The first official test of the new 750 Kwaks was conducted at nearly freezing point at Mallory Park. The goal was to gently ease our way in and sort out the inevitable gremlins you get with any new machine. With the icy conditions, "Steady Eddie" was the order of the day.

The Kerker pipe of Long's bike sounds awesome, but unfortunately was decking out at about 15 degrees of lean making cornering nigh on impossible. Reworking of the pipe to tuck in the collector box is now required to get sensible cornering speeds. The big flat slide carbs also took some getting used to as you have to physically shut them to drop the revs - some gym work is required here to strengthen the right arm :) In general Longy's bike felt pretty good and seemed FAST enough - not your R1 of course but this is a 1982 design and requires a completely new mind set with less aggressive cornering and a heavy unit to lump around. Proper racing speeds will no doubt uncover a few more surprises.

Moldy never quite got going on his due to a severe misfire and only running on two cylinders - probably due to the bike being stood around for 6 months. The bike handled OK but was way down on power - his massive bulk adding to the problem. The carbs need stripping and cleaning, and HT leads checked etc. to sort the problem - so its into the Team SandM's workshop in Banbury for some serious fettling...and advice from Pops Sinclair and the Team Manager Strong Snr.

The bikes looked awesome side by side in the pits, but there is some work to do out on track to get the lap times even close to Hornet speeds of 59 second best and 1 - 1.01m average times. And give the riders the confidence to push as hard as on the previous Honda's. The pic on the left looks more like two plodding tourers on Gold Wings than proper "racers". However the boys will get there with some more fettling, ground clearance, a decent set of rubber and some WARMER weather!

Watch this space..........

Footnote: Devastating news...both bikes at risk of missing round 1 at Mallory - Moldy needs to sort and test the engine proper and Longy has been sanctioned to Las Vegas by his big boss.