Blog: January 23. A good ride to Taree

It’s a sunny Sunday and I’m just tidying up after a good ride to the Troy Bayliss Classic with Dino and Darren AC.

Marty Blake said he was bored, so he mapped out a few possible routes and alternatives, mapped them on Google Maps in different colours, then wrote detailled descriptions on what all the colours meant, and the advantages and disadvantages of all the different routes and the possible combinations that might be used according weather conditions, time available and what was on telly that night.

I got so confused I didn’t know who I was or what my name was.

I ended up just loading three route sections that would get us from Taylors Arm to Taree.

Everything started well with Darren on his smart-looking DR650 and Dino on his newish 1290 rolling in pretty much on time for a chat with a passing Nambucca council bloke who saw the bikes and was keen to see what we thought of them because he was thinking of trading his TDM shortly.

He was a nice fella, and a yarn about bikes was a great start to the day.

From there we motored off in a leisurely way down to Willawarrin where Darren explained about the back room to a wide-eyed Dino.

After a very long and leisurely coffee stop – where Dino requested a ‘half-shot, skim latte’ – we bolted over the Toorooka bridge, took a few pics and generally enjoyed some very high humidity and fairly warm temperatures.

Darren generously agreed to ride the Ducati for a couple of pics, although it wasn’t like I had to twist his arm. He seemed to take things fairly easy.

It looked like he was being very sensible, but he kept disappearing up the road to turn the bike around. Late on he said he’d never experienced ABS before, and was that what the shuddering under his fingertips was about?

Hmm.

I left the bike in the Enduro setting to keep it tame, and the ABS setting allows some fairly aggressive braking. Hmm. I wonder what was going on out of sight around the corner?

In any case, the blokes were great riding partners, the pace was cruisey, the weather great, and we had a good time.

I don’t remember us actually pulling up for lunch. I don’t think we did.

Anyhoo, Dino nailled a rock and dinged his front rim. The tyre bead wouldn’t seal and it took a couple of hours to get the KTM back on the trail. Soon after that we found the trail blocked with a fallen tree. I cursed myself for not loading the pink, purple, red, stripey, black, indigo and yellow routes and notes as Marty had advised – in case we found ourselves in a situation like this one – so we did some backtracking and rolled into Port Mac just as it began raining. We drank cold drinks at the Subway until the rain pretty much passed, then bolted down the highway to Taree.

The Troy Bayliss Classic was a great spectacle.

It was always my intention to watch some racing then head home up the highway to be home Saturday night. Dino was keen for that too, but Darren, understandably, wanted to head back through some single trail, so he bolted in the morning and swerved the Classic. He had a spot of bother. In his words…

“Carri plateau on race coarse Rd -back end skipped on a rock,then slid out in the clay, hit the deck at about 40km, chunky rock in the middle of the road ripped the oil filter cap off, dumped a bit of oil and destroyed the filter – contemplated walking out but GPS said 45 km to Willawarran and it was 3pm – so fix-it ¬†became the priority, a few washers, a new 8mm bolt and a bucket of kneed-it quick steel and it was back together, with just a little drip of oil leaking-made it home but no oil showing in the sightglass”

Crikey!

He did an almighty job coping on his own. He’s a legend and a nice bloke.

But we all made it back and had a great time.

I’m stuck at my desk for the next week. There’s bit of pressure mounting from work.

Hope you guys are all riding as well.

TF

One Comment

  1. Holy crap AC Daz! Quick thinking and quick steel, what a combo. Tough bugger!

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