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C2C 2006 - the build up starts

by Peter Moore

In June 2005, four days before the start of the Coast to Coast Run, Herod the Humber met Helen of Troy for the first time, and their union begat Amos (named after Amos Milburn whom you will all recognise as the patron saint of cyclemotorists).  He turned out to be the only cyclemotor to complete the rnn, fending off stiff competition from the frighteningly professional and complex-looking PEP, and the intensively-prepared Team Zubi Ondo Cyclemaster, whilst enjoying the company of the Brzeski Magic Strimmer on the Saturday.

Herod (so named after his daunting 26" frame and 28" wheels) had been bought two years previously out of storage in a loft above a kitchen furniture factory where he was covered in a thick coat of MDF dust after previously having led a wearying life of hard use over much of the previous 66 years.  New tyres and tubes, and a strip and clean of everything else seemed enough to put him back on the road, although brake blocks would have been a good idea.

Helen was sent from the South by Mr Russell of Blossom Cottage (an idyllic mental picture arises) and was, as indeed he said, complete.  She came with her own mounting hoop, and was soon - how can I put this delicately? - mounted on Herod.  She had clearly seen some action, but performed well.

Off they went to Blackhall Rocks after the briefest of shakedowns about two miles (did I forget to mention paperwork and MoTs?  Oh well) and the rest is history.

But Wait!  In the Spring of 2006, on the sunlit plains of Central Lancashire Team 20S arose, and from their huge chrome and glass headquarters a Plan emerged as they took on this year's Coast to Coast Cyclemotor Challenge.  Never mind the rumoured Norfolk Ducati, this is serious.  All major areas of the challenge were addressed, multi-disciplinary expertise has been accessed, and solutions have been implemented.


Aerodynamics and Handling - modify frame, lower seat height, and reposition Helen, now sitting level and increasing effective fuel capacity for endurance rnnning and fewer pit stops.

Gas Flow - improve flow and eliminate wasteful leakage (tighten inlet and exhaust flange nuts).

Increase Fuel Delivery - clean out carb and fuel pipe (blocked solid) using the latest in digitally manipulated tooling (old bicycle spoke).  Result; free flow big bore petrol pipe.  Better take a spare in case it disintegrates altogether.

Improve Braking - fit brake blocks (note - not replace, just fit some!)

Audible Warning of Approach - vital in view of quantum increase in performance - fit oversize horn.

But now - We have Corporate Sponsorship!  Stelios remains, at the time of writing, strangely unconvinced by the sales pitch made by the 20S Marketing team and so the orange and white Easy logo'd aerofoil-section calf and arm spats remain on hold.

However, much more encouragingly and importantly we have a fuel sponsor.  Cuprinol, those makers of environmentally friendly wood treatment products, building on the knowledge that the new bio-ethanol fuels being developed with Government approval can have heat-release properties akin to aviation fuel, have taken the opportunity to diversify the applications for two of their products.  Their boffins have blended a two-stroke fuel for us from their highly volatile wood preservative, with lubrication added by their teak oil.  The mix is top secret, and if incorrect can have highly deleterious and paralysing effects on rings, bearings, jets, and following competitors!

This special brew is enabling us to take advantage of the Piston Inertia Compression Boost System (which utilises the enlarged clearances at small and large ends) a feature which Mr Russell neglected to mention!

Borrowing from Indianapolis practice, this year's entry will be under the name of The Cuprinol Teak Oil Special.  Team 20S? - That stands for Too Old and Sad, or, if wet, Too Old and Soft, and the entire team will be found standing at the Bar.  New recruits are welcome - the trick is to know which Bar!

Now, what have we forgotten?  Entry form?  Rider fitness training?

First published, June 2006

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