In 1996 I went to a BEARS (British European American Race Series) meeting at Thruxton to see the Raceco Guzzi Daytona racing against the Britten. I remember the year because I was on crutches after a motorcycle accident and so had to go in a car.
Looking round the bike park I saw a few bikes that caught my eye including the Ben Part Cafe Racer (I didn't know of him then) before it became what most now know it to look like.
At the end of the day when we were leaving we took another look round at the bikes and also happened to catch Ben in one piece black vintage looking leathers and puddin' basin helmet, complete with a small skull and crossbones on the back and young woman in,I think,one piece white vintage leathers and puddin' basin sit astride his Guzzi and she on a 50's / 60's BMW and casually - and cooly - ride off down the dirt track.
A few years later,when I ran a 'motorcycle accessory shop' in Bristol Ben came to the shop with his friend Jake Bowie - the latter I'd got to know,but had never met via the selling of used Moto Guzzi parts. By then I knew of Ben from,like many others,the Davida advert.
I never actually put the two together (the Guzzi at Thruxton) until Ben spotted a pic of his bike, in it's earlier incarnation, in a picture up on the shop wall.
|Ben Part's Guzzi at Thruxton|
|......and a few years later outside my shop|
Ben actually took some luggage off the top of what you see.
|The young women who was with him rode pillion on the seat hump|
with those 8mm bolts as footrests and they were riding up to Liverpool like that,a journey of approx 180 mls
|Here and below some other bikes in the car park that day|