A Blog to Keep the Lizards Away. It's about posting and sharing the things I'm into. Hope you enjoy the show!

Monday, 23 May 2011

Mighty Monark ISDT

Monark 125cc ISDT 1972 Replica

I the early Seventies I was lucky enough to purchase one of six Monark 125cc motorcycles imported into Australia. Monark was a brand of purpose-built dirt bikes from Sweden. As you can see the blue and yellow colours of the bike match the Swedish flag and this particular model was made specially for Sweden's International Six Day Trials Team. The ISDT is a big deal in Europe and competing countries go all out to win it. Large teams of their best riders compete for National pride and individual status. They ride six days of special sections over difficult terrain similar to the car rallies we are familiar with.

My bike was a replica of the ISDT bikes and I raced it in Australian motocross, dirt track and enduro meetings and then rode it for fun over a 12 year period, before retiring it to the shed where it sat rusting for another 10 years.

One day in a fit of enthusiasm I dragged the bike into the house, pulled it down and commenced a long restoration process to get it to the stage you see in the pics. Almost as new.

Shortly after taking delivery of the bike I was exploring the tool kit when I came across six glass straw-like sticks in amongst the spanners etc. Puzzled, I started to read the owners manual and was amazed to discover the glass sticks contained amyl nitrate! The idea being when you were out on the trails and you crashed head first into a tree, dazed you could reach into the kit, break a stick under your nose, take a giant whiff of amyl and jump straight up onto the bike, ignoring any injury and get back on the pace.
It was then I realised this bike was a serious, competitive bit of machinery.

Fortunately I never had to resort using the amyl sticks but I do recall a rather wild New Years Eve .....

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