Who’s News                February 2009

The Club web site at www.melbsportsbike.net.au accumulated 621 hits during February, down 20 on last month, but it was a short month. Total visits are 49,962 since April 1996. The counters on the other pages after another month indicate that the 2009 Calendar page took 503 hits (total 1406 since 28th October 2008) and Great Roads totals 164 hits (total 706). I made Ern’s article providing information to new riders on  what to expect when they come on their first Club ride accessible to the whole world. It was hiding under the Members area and needed a password. I was alerted to this by a new rider wishing to access it.

I know some people are having trouble accessing information using the Google way.  Here is the initial mailout from Ern Reeders explaining how. Ern will write a more in-depth spread sheet for next month’s magazine.

Hi all, Following some queries, if you were not already a member of a Google group or had not opened an account with Google, you will need one to access the Group website:

§   Go to http://groups.google.com/group/melbourne-sportsbike-riders?hl=en

§   Choose: Sign in to Google groups

§   Choose: Create an account now

Your email address and password for the account will allow you to login to the website, and can be used for other options like a customised Google homepage.  Google don't bother you with spam btw.

You should be able to upload photos and other files as a member. 

I've just added a page of links to some of the best websites for bikes I know of.  For new club members, check out the pic of the gathering to celebrate the Club's 50th anniversary. Cheers, Ern aka ziggy99

Seen at the Social Sip at Mark’s Place, Thursday 8th February  2009:  Ian Payne, Ben and Julie Warden, Trevor Harris and Barbara Rolfe, Dave Ward, Paul Southwell, Peter Philferan, Cliff Peters, Tim Emons, John Rousseaux, Kate Stewart, Lyn Duncan, Henry Wright, Mark Rigsby, Jean Eldridge, Dennis Lindemann, Renzo Cunico, Rob Langer, Peter Feistl, Ron Johnston and Kurn Bridgeman. 22 people. The main business of the meeting was transacted successfully. A motion was passed to move the financial year end date from April 30 to June 30. Hence, the AGM will move from May to July. This will align the Club financial year with the business community.

Committee members Trevor Harris and Barbara Rolfe were married in Ashburton (80 km south of Christchurch, NZ) on Friday 13th. They are now known mischievously as Mr and Mrs Rolfe-Harris. Family and friends attended the wedding ceremony at the local golf course and later the wedding reception in the club rooms. A fine time was had by all. See Barb or Trevor for photos. 

Ben and Julie Warden witnessed the Rolfe-Harris wedding and then continued 11 days touring the South Island via car. New Zealand is a beautiful place with spectacular scenery, very windy, well maintained roads, with little congestion; perfect for motorcycling. The population of all NZ is roughly 5 million, about the same as greater Melbourne, and most live on the North Island. Tourism appears to be the major source of income apart from breeding sheep and beef cows.

After much soul searching, Paul Southwell has acquired a new (2000 km old) 2008 Honda Fireblade, black and silver, similar markings to the Pres’ bike. Dave Ward tracked down the splendid example.

The fires on Saturday 7th of February resulting in 210 deaths (at last count), 2000 destroyed houses and devastation to large tracks of land, roads and other infrastructure have had a profound effect on many lives. The Club has made a donation of $200 to the Red Cross as a token of support for the survivors.  Our condolences and heartfelt best wishes to any persons caught up in this incredible disaster.

The impact on Sunday rides has been drastic with routes passing through such places as Whittlesea,  Kinglake, Kinglake West, Toolangi, Myers and Chum Creek Roads, Flowerdale, Marysville, Noojee, Hill End, Mt Baw Baw, Kyneton, Wandong, Boolarra, Boolarra South, Churchill and many more nolonger accessible. This has necessitated frequent itinerary changes including destinations, leaders and route revisions on an ongoing basis as the devastation, road damage, still burning fires (after 3 weeks) and town/area lockouts continues, possibly for some months. Please keep your eye on the 2009 Rides web page for the most up to date information.

Despite the terrible fire toll, ride numbers have been very strong. The Club Participant of the Year is based on aggregate points accumulated at 1 point per ride, an extra point for leading or being rear rider, and 1 point per magazine article (maximum 2 per magazine). Attending one or more days of a weekend event scores 3 points for leading, 3 for rear riding duties and 2 points for participating.

The count is for the 2008/9 year ending at the 2009 AGM in July. The count after ten months is Ben Warden (80), Pina Garasi (66), Ron Johnston (58), Ian Payne (57), Paul Southwell (55), Dave Ward (50.5), Misho Zrakic (44), Geoff Jones (40.5), Cliff Peters (37) and Ken Goederee (36).  Cliff and Ken swapped places and Geoff scored 8 points with his many leading and rear riding duties over the period.

Front Cover: Taken on the Meredith Ride, 22nd February, Gisborne breakup. Back Row: Ron Johnston, Ivan Radywonik, Paul Southwell, Geoff Jones, Brett Cornwill, Chris Tran and Cliff Peters. Middle row: Michael Srb, Pina Garasi, Ta Hu, Bronwyn Manifold and Dave Ward. Front Row: Dennis Lindemann, Misho Zrakic and Mal Standish. Ben Warden behind the lens.

Pina Garasi’s bike is almost back on the road again after the kangaroo strike. It should be ready for the Tasmania Epic. The poor running seems to have eased with the introduction of coils from Ben’s spare 954 motor and playing with the programmable mixture settings. The proof of the pudding will be when the bike is taken to high altitude where the poor running seems to exhibit itself most frequently. Tassy should answer that question.

Tassie Tigers, leaving Wednesday 4th March and arriving home Sunday 14th March: Ben and Julie Warden, Danny Hawker and Katrina Hollis, Ron and Julie Johnston, Verna McIntosh and Doreen Anderson (friends of the Johnstons), Cliff Peters, Misho Zrakic and Pina Garasi, Peter Feistl, Paul Southwell, Ian Payne, Dave Ward, Tony Stegmar, Rob Langer and Renzo Cunico.  At the same time Rob Jones and mates will be in Tassy and we hope to meet up for some rides.

Positive feedback in Australian Motorcycle News latest edition, page 24, letters:   Make New Friends  I had trouble finding people as keen as myself to go riding with on weekends, and I would like to say a Massive thanks to the Melbourne Sportsbike Riders club.  I attended my first ride today, after checking out what they’re about online, and had a blast on a ride that had so many beautiful views and corners I thought they would never end. I chuckled like a spoilt child all the way home. If you are having trouble looking for people to ride with, check these guys out online. They are a great bunch of people with a variety of ages and bikes to go riding with. Garth Fry. He was on a “Ben’s Special” Gippsland ride. …Ed.