ON ANY SUNDAY stars David Aldana and Gene Romero have staked their claims as the most popular Stafford bike show star guests, with thousands packing in to the huge annual event to meet their heroes.
Compere Steve Plater had his work cut out keeping the lively ‘comedy duo’ on track during on stage interviews at the Carole Nash Classic Motorcycle Mechanics Show – October 15-16 – as they covered a range of subjects including the iconic film, their racing experiences and some entertaining stories from the glory years.
Visitor Ian McDonald said: “Every year the guests of honour are great, this year they have gone up a gear… fantastic!”. Fellow showgoer Kev Hewitt added to the praise calling the pair “brilliant blokes and great characters”.
Attracting attention as well as the two stars was a Husqvarna previously owned by Hollywood legend Steve McQueen who part-funded the On Any Sunday film, while the addition of the Suzuki Village at Staffordshire County Showground proved to be a hit also. Large crowds headed to the marquee to see Barry Sheene’s two world championship-winning RG500s among a host of other machines from the famous marque.
And it was Suzuki which stole the headlines in the event awards with Heidi Cockerton’s rare 1965 K11T – displayed on the Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Club stand – scooping the honour of Best in Show.
Head judge Dennis Frost called the machine “a window on a world that’s now gone” and explained that it had been an easy decision to select it for the top award: “The work Heidi has done is fantastic, and the added history of the bike made it a show stand-out.
“Its documents reveal that it was imported by AMC in the mid-1960s as a road-going bike, but seems to have been modified to a trials machine with the addition of English wrist grips. There were probably only 20-30 of these made, and this is the only one we know of.
“The last registered owner was in March 1968, so where the bike was between then and now creates a mystery which only adds to the intrigue.”
Bonhams’ auction – another Stafford favourite – once again demonstrated the strength of the classic bike market as a 1924 Croft-Cameron Super Eight sold for £203,100, contributing to a sale total of £1,572,712.
Hundreds of trade stands reported profitable weekends, enthusiasts enjoyed live action in the Classic Racer GP Paddock, Classic Dirt Bike Experience and Cavalcade, and the Yamaha FS1-E Owners Club offered expert advice in the restoration theatre.
Exhibition manager Nick Mowbray said: “It’s been a superb weekend with a real sense of excitement around the venue. The clamour to see and hear from our two guest stars was unprecedented, and there were long queues after each interview with people wanting to meet the pair and have items signed.
“All in all the show has been an undoubted success, and we look forward to returning in April for yet another Stafford classic.”
Two-wheel action returns to Staffordshire County Showground on April 22-23 for the Carole Nash International Classic MotorCycle Show. Details for that, and other events, can be found on the HOMEPAGE.