The fourth outing this season for project PX was a trip down to Tonbridge in Kent for the Big 7 National Rally. It’s a rally I’d really enjoyed last year, so I was looking forward to going back there again. The only difference being that last year I’d done the journey on my GTS 300 straight down the M1 to the M25 and then the M2. This year the ride was on quieter far nicer A roads, and to be honest much far more fun.
22 miles a litre
The first 30 miles were very wet, but after that the whole weekend’s weather got very warm and dry. I stopped every 50 miles or so, but I only needed fuel at every other stop, when your scooter covers 22 miles on a litre of fuel fill-ups are cheap, but I still ache and need a stretch between tank fulls.
Steady progress was helped on by some of the strange sights you see on smaller roads, and the Secret Bunker road sign I spotted near Brentwood in Essex made me chuckle and do a double take… Nearing the rally I managed to get lost (again) and do a few laps of the town of Strood near Rochester. I’m trying to do this year’s journeys old school style without a sat nav, just a very basic map, but thankfully I spotted a sign for Medway Scooters. The guys there were hospitable and very helpful, all willing to down tools to give me good clear instructions that got me straight to the rally campsite (top lads).
325 miles each way
325 miles from my driveway to the campsite entrance and again the humble 125cc Vespa didn’t miss a single beat. Pete ‘Booga’ Davies has already done a great write up from the rally, as well as supplied plenty of his top notch rally photos, but what he sadly failed to acknowledge fully, was the excitement generated on Saturday daytime by the Shiny Red Tuning team with their mobile dyno.
Everyone buying a weekend wristband for the event got a free blast for their scooter on the dyno, Gary and his team were kept very busy all day. He gave out some excellent advice completely free of charge and explained loads of stuff to those not quite sure of things, in a very non-patronising way. Things like that go a long way in my book. The guys had a big sound system with them announcing the performance of each scooter just leaving the dyno and also playing the most varied mix of tunes I’ve ever heard on a rally. Daz the DJ/compare is one of the true gents of the scooter scene and made a sunny Saturday on a scooter rally absolutely superb (what a star).
Normally it’s the lammy TS1, Monza, Casa or RB kitted scooters that rip it up on the dyno, but this weekend the PX Vespa was king, a long stroke Malossi 228cc came out tops, it made 32.5 bhp (home tuned I think.?) and the Atoms Scooter Shop yellow demonstrator PX Malossi made 31.8 bhp. Both scoots sounded awesome, a credit to the builder and tuners. Sadly though these two fell into the shadows of my PX at a whopping 8.5 bhp. Alright the last line’s bullshit, but hey watch and listen to the video. This is a completely stock 125cc geared metal bodied learner legal scooter with nothing more than a SIP Road 2 pipe fitted. I love scooters of ALL shapes, sizes and styles, but this scooter makes me smile to ride and that’s surely what it’s all about isn’t it?
Another weekend in the company of great people, all in it for the same reason as me. The journey back home was a long one, but well worth the effort it took. Another belting National rally in the 2017 season. Cleethorpes tomorrow, it’s a tough old life isn’t it. Ride safe on your journey there fellow SLUKers
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