Norton Motorcycles and Chris ‘Stalker’ Walker got the second round of the World Superbike Championship weekend off to a good start by performing a few installation/demonstration laps of the re-modelled circuit in Derbyshire next to Norton’s headquarters.
Chris and Norton were helping to assist the BBC television network with their build up to the World SBK weekends festivities. Riding Norton’s special Panther signature model, Stalker lapped at pace around the 2.498 mile Grand Prix circuit with onboard camera equipment, which will help to provide the viewing audience with a small taste of what it will be like to perform a lap of the circuit.
Stalker said – “The new re-modelled Donington Park circuit is in A1 condition in readiness for this weekends World Superbike races. Kevin Wheatcroft and his team have worked tirelessly over the winter months to bring the circuit back to life. It was an honour to make a few laps today and what made it even more special was to do it on none other than our Norton Cafe Racer SP.”
The Norton Cafe Racer SP (Panther) certainly looked sleek and fast in the sunny conditions out on track just like its namesake. You can view the footage of the fast lap of the circuit on BBC1 East Midlands Today at 6:45pm on the 25th March 2011. Residents not living in the region will need to tune to channel 980 on your Sky box to view the broadcast.
Norton Motorcycles recently tested at the world renowned aerodynamic testing facility at MIRA. Transport iNet and CENEX organised the session for us and were very helpful in the build up to the test, making sure we were able to get the most out of it.
Once at MIRA and in the wind tunnel, our design engineers looked at the airflow over a number of key areas of the bike, but particularly concentrated on the airflow around the engine and oil cooler.
Head of design – Simon Skinner said:
“Due to aerodynamic testing at MIRA’s wind tunnel, Norton Motorcycles have been able to accurately assess the airflow around the oil cooler and fins of our Commando 961 engine. With this data we will be able to make step changes in the quality of the vehicle cooling, which is imperative as the vehicle will need to cope with hot climates around the world. The data will also prove useful when laying out our range of new vehicles.”
Chris ‘Stalker’ Walker said:
“Not only was it great in terms of adjusting my riding position to get the most aerodynamic racing tuck, it also gave us a great steer for the new race programme.
It was awesome spending time on the Cafe Racer Panther and for sure this will help my forthcoming assault on the Thundersprint.”
Overall, we came away with useful information that would not have been possible without the assistance from Transport iNet and CENEX, and we look forward to working with the team again in the future.
To celebrate the 100th year of the mountain course at the Isle of Man TT, the island’s post office held a competition allowing fans to vote for their favourite TT race through the ages from ten all time classics.
A distinguished panel of judges including current TT riders John McGuinness, Ian Hutchinson, Michael Dunlop and Dave Molyneux, commentators – and former riders – Charlie Williams and Steve Parrish, journalists John Watterson (Isle of Man Newspapers) and Gary Pinchin (MCN) and TT archivist Bill Snelling from Fottofinders were given the opportunity to select ten classic races that truly captured the thrill and excitement of the greatest road race of them all.
Once the ten finalists were selected the poll was opened up to the fans, who had the unenviable task of selecting their favourite.
When all was said and done, the race that the fans voted their number 1, was the classic battle between Steve Hislop on the Norton and Carl Fogerty on the Yamaha back in 1992.
The race was a classic that has long lived on in the memories of the fans, with the pair exchanging new lap records in a duel for supremacy. Hislop eventually won the race by 4.4 seconds, taking Norton first victory on the Isle in the Senior TT since 1961.
To commemorate the competition, the Isle of Man post office has released a set of collectable stamps featuring scenes from the ten fantastic races designed by renowned artist Pete Jones.
Dot Tilbury, General Manager Philatelic Bureau, Isle of Man Post Office said: “TT fans have really got behind the vote and although there was a clear winner, many of the races also received lots of votes which hopefully proves that the shortlist was correct. However, I’m sure that the debate will continue up to this year’s TT when more races will be added to its illustrious history.”
If you would like to obtain a copy of these stamps then please visit http://www.iompostoffice.com/
We are always looking at different ways in which we can enhance the quality of our service to the customer at Norton, which is why we have just doubled the size of our sales team.
Craig Lormor and Hayden Murphy were recently welcomed to Nortons UK headquarters at Donington Park by UK Sales Manager Chris Walker and Dealer/Distribution Manager Mark Fisher. Both Craig and Hayden have been given the job of providing our customers a first class service.
They bring with them a wealth of experience from other areas of the motoring sector and will help to manage the sales process of our UK based clients .
Craig said “I am absolutely over the moon to be part of the team and the success story here at Norton motorcycles, having been in the motorcycle industry for over 10 years now this is the most exciting opportunity I have had and look forward to a long and prosperous future with this iconic and quintessentially British motorcycle brand”.
“Two interviews with the Stalker and a box of Devonshire clotted cream fudge and here I am!!!! Says Hayden. No seriously….. “ I am really looking forward to making a significant contribution and being a part of a fantastic British motorcycle success story. Coming from a background in the automotive industry and with a real passion for motorcycles, I look forward to building on the success Norton Motorcycles has already achieved.”