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Review of 2019

It’s that time of year, with fewer events on the horizon a time to reflect on 2019, which has been a mixed but busy and fun year.

Starting with awful weather, then great weather, then off and on again to foul again, possibly accounted for why I felt unwell a lot this year, curtailing any camping at events and some recent Toy Runs. Thankfully the nurse has got me back up and running, well walking, we will see what 2020 brings.

January and a shock to the system as I realised Doris needed her first MOT can it really be 3 years already? Thankfully she passed with ease and then grandchild number 8 appeared.

Looking back at events, it’s been a pretty superb year with a mix of bikes, cars and scooters.  It was a shame that I cancelled one of the Brighton meets but I had to be sensible in the deluge I encountered. But the weather gods for most of the summer meets were kind.

While I have not made as many evening meets as previous years I have had a blast at many breakfast meets and still managed around 100 events and meets and that’s apart from those I briefly drop by at. There has been lots of ice-creams this year, but a lot less cakes.

I must thank all who sent me ideas, tickets and even products to try out, all are very welcome. Please keep the ideas coming as always looking for new events, and of course the days I needed the satnav holder were the days it was at home, bit like my waterproofs.

There have been lots of clashes of events, but I have done my best to be at as many as I can do along with lots of new events too.

Some of this year’s highlights have included in no particular order:

The final Bosuns Bike Bonanza was a blast despite the changeable weather and the interesting diesel rat type bike a pure joy to see.  

Guildford Harley Chopper show

The Goodwood “All Wheels but 4 breakfast-meet” was superb, with a great eclectic mix of vehicles from 2, 3, 6 and 8 wheels probably one of the best breakfast meets they have had.

The Irish motorcycle show once again showcased a vast array and diversity of bikes. Though it’s a shame the customs can be a bit squashed together and maybe swapping halls where the classics are would allow the customs to shine as it is lighter too. We had a great trip to Dublin, though the less said of our accommodation and the snow the better, but all solved with great Guinness.

The Pioneer run meet at the Plough had a great atmosphere and it was great to see the pre-1914 bikes chugg by, always a great spring event. I wasn’t up early enough for the downs as well.

The Berkshire Egg run was so well attended with happy smiley people and there must now be so many children with diabetes the amount of eggs that were collected.

The NEC Classic car and Bike show was amazing, and we only got to see half the halls on our visit, definitely one to do again.

The Middligard charity show was impressive. Looking so much like an established event it hid the impromptu nature, and a lot raised for a very good cause. It may be on the the to do list again next year.

The Bideford bike show, was a cool event where time flew by and it could easily have been longer. It was brilliant to see a completely different variety of bikes too. The ride to Devon was well worth it and seeing the verity statue.

In completely a different way its was Suffolk for the Stoneham Barns Bike show a great venue, friendly people and some great bikes with a different feel. As it’s not so close to Harley Dealers, but closer to Triumph and Indian this made for an interesting variety in the bike park. The Indian and sidecar was a superbly turned out machine.

A perfect way to spend a midsummers evening and afternoon was at the Cassington Bike night. Such a relaxed atmosphere it made me wish I had known of this before. it was amazingly organised with an huge mix of bikes, both in the town and the bike park and great to see the Millyard Flier at last.

Deciding to be educated I undertook a Bikerdown course which was very informative, and I would recommend attending one to anyone.

My let’s head for an Ice cream night in Brighton in July was fun even if blustery.

For silly sports both the nifty fifty racing and lawnmower racing proved the eccentric English style of events.

Being brave and heading to Berkshire (my nemesis), the Rebels Ride social was a new one for me and I wished I had done some of the earlier ones. Some nice bikes, lots of interesting stalls and a great atmosphere.

Despite having been there twice, it was as ever chaos, trying to find Kent frame and flames. I tagged along with an unknown bunch of riders I met along the way, but it was soon clear they really didn’t know the way either, but it was great fun ride. The show even though crowded had a fantastic array of machines. This includes the weird feet forward Yamaha which is high in my bikes of the year.

The Bad Wabbits shindig was as relaxed as ever though must have the longest bar queue of any event.

On a damp summer Saturday it was off to The Malle Mile, an event I have heard so much of. It was very interesting, a bit confused with what was going on where at times but there were lots of smiles and fun racing. But it was very muddy, and I felt sorry for any in wheelchairs as lots of the site inaccessible to them.

Dirtquake had a new venue now on the south coast. The venue was great as was the racing. But overall had a very different atmosphere, not bad but different and not just because of the stormy weather with lots of trees down locally.

This could have been because I missed the craziness of the old commentators and the “cough” interesting band or it may have been it’s a tad more professional now.  However, the chance to wander around the pits was a welcome return and while food was better than Kings Lynn the southern prices showed, even in tickets.

The Tiger MCC Soggy Moggy Rally what a jewel of a rally. It is no wonder that it has a great reputation with a fabulous venue, great atmosphere and superb participation in silly games.

Bedfordshire NCC Chops and Props show held at Biggleswade airdrome had an amazing array of bikes and cars styles for everyone. It was that good I never went around the aircraft collection, if in the area it is a must for 2020.

Sadly the second weekend in October brought rain of a biblical proportion, so the turn out at the final Rockers Run organised by Lenny, and Brightona was lower than usual but I still supported both.

Random amazing event of the year was when Albie the Artist chose one of my photographs to create a work of art, which I saw at his exhibition, stunning and if could afford would get a copy.

Both the London and NEC big bike shows were good too, as I do like to keep my eye on all styles and what’s coming up.

Bikes of the year? well Layla’s BSA must be high up there with its classic style and it is well used, most definitely not a “trailer queen”. There was also a twin turbo Suzuki chop at “Chops and Props” which was so useable and the odd covered Yamaha at Frame and Flames. But ultimately working on which bike would I like in my garage it would have to be the black diesel chop as seen at my show.

So, I say roll on 2020 which will also be 40th anniversary of me continuously riding bikes and 15 years of the Bosunsbikes website.

Plans for 2020? doing very much the same, maybe another Bosuns Bike Show or BBQ we shall see, discussions are underway. More ice-creams too and although I promised this year and failed, I must get to see my friends drag racing as it has been far too long.

I will probably be trying to visit some of the other events that clashed with ones I attended this year, such as the Bike shed show maybe something abroad too. I also still hope one day to film a NCC ride out as they are impressive even a local one just need to know a good vantage point.

A big thank you to everyone who takes the time to say hello at events this always gives me a boost. Please do keep sending me the ideas which I will share with all.