~ Festival of Italian Motorcycles ~
Sept 2002 - Melbourne, Australia
(Not for reprint - for viewing purposes only)

Festival of Italian Motorcycles
Melbourne, Australia

Festival of Italian motorcycles. Sounds pretty impressive and thatís exactly what it was. A gathering of around 200 Italian bikes of various marques and eras all in one place and at one time. From the modern Ducatis, there in abundance, to much rarer and older bikes which are seldom seen, if at all, except in books or museums. There was the exotic which we all dream of one day owning to those that are available to the everyday enthusiast. Some in concourse condition and others which had obviously seen better days. But they were all Italian and there to be viewed and photographed, up close by one and all.

And take photographs is exactly what I did although I must admit, my passion and hence the camera lens tends to favour the MVs and Ducatis. I also have a tendency to try for the more unusual photos as well as getting the little details of a bike. Perhaps one day a "coffee table" book may appear. Unfortunately, and for which I must apologise, this sometimes means I forget to take a photo of the whole bike as was the case of the beautifully restored Ducati 175 Formula 3 race bike.

I expect many of you know of MVs and more so since the launch of the F4. Iím fortunate to own a 1970 125 GTLS which is used regularly and primarily for trips to my local coffee shop. It is affectionately referred to as my latte bike. However, my guess is there only a few of you who have heard an MV in particular a 750 from the Ď70s. The owner of the 750S was kind enough to treat those present to just such an experience. To say the least the exhaust note of the 750S, a 4 cylinder 4 stroke with straight through pipes, is arguably the most awesome, spine tingling, attention grabbing sound you will ever hear from a motorbike with the exception being a MV Agusta race bike. I now understand why Barry Sheen continually bags the 125db noise restrictions on the Moto GP bikes.

While I could ramble on about the various bikes for ages but itís probably better if I let the photos do the talking (I find it much easier and far more enjoyable to be behind the lens than in front of the keyboard). Suffice to say an excellent day was had by all.

Thanks must go to the Italian Motorcycle Clubs of Melbourne, Australia, for organising the day along with the Melbourne Museum for providing amongst other things the excellent venue.

Ciao and enjoy
Russ Murray <russmurray@bigpond.com.au>


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