Tuesday, 2 February 2010

1954 Clubman's TT Norton 350 International

These images show Isle of Man road racer Geoff Tanner re-united with his 1954 Clubman's TT Norton 350 for the feature in issue 138 of Classic Racer magazine in the Summer of 2009. Geoff finished 5th at a race speed of 81.54 mph for four laps of the 37 mile TT Mountain course with a fastest lap of 83mph. The first Norton home, Geoffs lap was the fastest set by a 350cc Norton in the entire Clubman's races.

He was delighted to see the bike in all its former glory, having not seen it in over 50 years! Accurately restored by Bernie Allen, the bike now runs beautifully and sounds fantastic through it's open pipe. Once sat on the bike, Geoff looked totally at home. Sporting a fixed grin whilst blipping the throttle and sounding like a true racer, he commented that he remembered it to be "Bloody slow!".

Essentially road bikes the Clubman's specification allowed only very minor race upgrades. Lights, silencer and centre stand were deleted whilst the addition of a fly screen, a set of Manx mudguards and seat were added. Rear-set foot rests completed the transformation from road bike to racer.

The following year in 1955 Geoff went on to win the Manx Grand Prix in both 350 and 500 classes cementing his talent as a racer. He also competed as part of the Continental Circus in Europe.

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  4. Used to know Geoff in his Isle of Man racing days, great guy. Derek Cooper, Chelmsford

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