34hp and 60 years of progress?

If there’s one thing that classic motorcycling canteach us, it’s that the passage of time does not always equate with developments and improvements, as Chris Coote tells us.

I own a 60-year-old Venom, which I built up from a number of large lumps and is known as my ‘Christmas Velo’ because it was completed and run in just before Christmas of 2015.

It has seen quite a bit of use since then, including a trip to the Classic TT and entry into the VMCC Manx Rally, too.

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Recently I sold my modern big TT100 Triumph and replaced it with a new baby BMW 310GS. This has a single cylinder 310cc engine, rated at 34hp.

The Venom, as we all know, is similarly rated at 34hp or thereabouts. So recent riding of both bikes provides an interesting comparison.

The Venom is easily capable of out-accelerating modern traffic and cruises easily at 50 to 60mph on dual carriageways.

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My last 25-mile trip to the big classic vehicle show at Powderham Castle, down here in Devon, involved both dual carriageway cruising and a spirited ride up through Mamhead Woods, back to the A380 and home to Brixham.

Read more and view more images in the August 2019 issue of OBM – on sale now!

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