Avon Tyres Dominate Goodwood Revival Top Ten
Avon Tyres were the dominant rubber at the recent Goodwood Revival. All top ten finishers rode on Avon tyres, while the top five were utilising a new race version of the 100/90-19 Roadrider on the rear, with an AM20 front. Top slot went to a Fred Walmsley machine, ridden by 1987 500cc GP champion Wayne Gardner. Walmsley remarked, “I know this is classic racing, but I’ve been using Avons and helping to develop them for the last 30 years. In all that time, I have to admit this recent development is truly impressive. In the past we’ve never had all the range of fitments we’ve required, but now we can get Avon’s latest in 18- and 19-inch sizes which are perfect for us – and they suit the bikes a treat! On classic machinery, no-one makes the original tyres anymore, so you’ve always got a trade-off when selecting rubber, but over the last 12 months Avon’s products have really come on.”
Walmsley and his bikes have been described as legendary on the classic racing scene; famous names to have enjoyed riding his Avon-shod bikes include Barry Sheene – the 1976/77 500 GP champ – and Damon Hill, the 1996 F1 champion. He adds, “It’s a testament to the tyres that when someone of Wayne Gardner’s calibre races on them and has nothing but praise for them, that is saying something.”
Avon Tyres’ Steve Smith explains: “Most of the machines at Goodwood were running on 19-inch wheels – the same size that these British bikes had originally. Earlier this year we experimented with the 100/90-19 Avon Roadrider using a race compound and it proved to be very successful as a rear tyre. This tyre is now available for all and we have started work on a 90/90-19 Racing Roadrider for the front and we will have that ready for the 2010 season.”
Avon Tyres has a long and distinguished history in motorcycle racing on two and three wheels. The company manufactured its first motorcycle tyre in 1911 and since then champions such as Geoff Duke, John Surtees, Mike Hailwood and Barry Sheene have won on Avon. More recently Avon riders have won 13 Supersport and four Production class championships, as well as Isle of Man TT victories on both three and two wheels – the most recent of which was Dave Molyneux’s historic fourteenth TT win at this year’s Isle of Man races in the Sidecar class.