Monday, February 21, 2011

Victoria Vinduro Fun Day, Castella, Feb 13

This event was a kind of prelude to the 'real' vinduro season, and was intended as a testing/social occasion with the opportunity to get your bike registered under the 'red plate' scheme if so desired.

For me it was good opportunity to catch up with people, and best of all take the PE for a spin!

The last time we held this event was in November last year, and it poured rain all day, ensuring a muddy experience for those hardy enough to venture out. While we have had unseasonal rain this summer, yesterda was pretty much perfect with mostly clear skies and warm sunshine and not the excess mud and water that was present previously.

I was a bit put off when a mate did an early lap and reported to me that the track wasn't too good and he wouldn't be venturing out for a second one. I was quite apprehensive as I headed out, but I guess that's the difference between riding a big bike, and a little 175 - I found the loop really enjoyable. It was very tight, nearly all of it hand-cut single trail. There were some damp bits, and a few minor logs to hop over but nothing too hard. This is the sort of terrain where the PE175N really shines, and I ended up doing 13 laps of the 5km loop! It would've been hard work on a big bike.

One exposed tree root became a bit tricky by the end of the day, as the rear wheel would always skid off it into a deep rut. But once you were prepared for it, it was ok. Amazingly I have now fitted a decent rear tyre, finally getting rid of the ancient rock-hard retread that's been on the bike since I bought it, so this helped my forward progress on the day.

The 175 is in desperate need of new rings, possibly even piston, so the low compression is noticably affecting its performance, and making it almost impossible to kick start. It still roll starts easily enough though!

There was only about 20 or so bikes circulating, and I was the only PE rider. A guy was riding a really nice BSA, which made a glorious sound as he held the throttle open. There were a few Hondas, an Ossa, a Maico and a guy on a KDX200 who was very fast. All in all, I had a great day, and I can't wait for the first proper vinduro on March 20 at Three Bridges.

(Originally posted on PE Motorcycles Yahoo Group)