Project TVR Cerbera. Wow…..

This is an interesting and unexpected development for sure. I love the TV programme Wheeler Dealers with Edd and Mike….these pictures I found on the web. But the car is real.

I recently spotted a rather unusual car for sale here in Italy, a 1997 TVR Cerbera. The car is RHD and has only 42k miles on the clock, she dates from 1997 and was then transferred onto Italian registration plates in 2007. I aim to go and see her this weekend. This car has the TVR-made 4 litre V8 engine. The story is that this plus another TVR were owned by an enthusiast and his wife is looking to sell them as he has passed away. Very sad.

So what is the plan?? Well, this car is far too beautiful to keep here in Roma and given that she is RHD she is not readily usable nor saleable here in Italy. So, my idea is to take her back to the UK and sell her there where there is a reasonable market for these very specialist cars. TVR is a UK manufacturer which survived on a shoestring but made some truly stunning cars.

I have my trusty Vito van and I can borrow a car trailer from a friend so I have contacted some specialised UK dealers for their opinions. One is very interested and has suggested how I should proceed so I think that I will take the car to him first.

I went to see the stunning Cerbera last weekend and goodness, what a car. I have made an offer so let’s see what happens. And here below are some pictures of the car for sale…

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Valentino Rossi and Tavullia

As most residents of planet earth will know, Valentino Rossi is Mr Moto GP. Valentino  has been racing for 20 years and has won the Moto GP title 9 times now, he fought for his  10th win with Yamaha this year but Marc Marques and Honda denied him. Rats.

His home town is Tavullia which is on the East Coast of Italy near to to Rimini and to the Misano World Circuit. Rossi has very strong links with his home town and he is now involved in the the Sky Racing Team VR46 which is intended to help young riders who are invited to his famous ranch for fun and games and training.

Well if you fancy visiting his home town to see the ranch, I can take ya!! We could also visit the wonderful Ducati museum in Bologna. Tell me how many are in your group and I will collect you with a minibus or a car. No worries!!!

Call or text or whatsapp me on +39 333 8153190 or email me on simon.f@spirometry.com.

 

Ok so how can I help you to discover Italy and the Italian way of life…lets see a few examples

So how about you wanna fly into Roma, and then spend a week in beautiful Amalfi and a few days exploring Roma?

Or perhaps you fly into Roma and you fancy exploring the areas of Abruzzo and Umbria. Or you really want to visit Tavullia and see the famous Valentini Rossi ranch???

Or you really fancy visiting the Ducati factory in Bologna, and or the Bimota factory in Rimini, or you would like to see one or more of the Italian race circuits Mugello, Vallelunga, Misano, Monza or others. You fancy some cooking classes, or you would love to see some Italian wine makers or olive oil producers. Maybe you and your partner want to follow two different programs??

Well it could work like this:

You tell me what you need, you give me an idea of the proposed itinerary plus some idea of the hotels you fancy (look on booking.com so I have an idea of the level of hotels you fancy). Tell me how many are in your party and I can work out the rest. Collection from the airport (Roma has two, Ciampino and Fiumicino), then I can take you to your hotel. Then collect you and take you around Italy, and of course I speak Italian so I can help.

Call or text or whatsapp me on +39 333 8153190 or email me on simon.f@spirometry.com.

The new Yamaha MT10. A truly amazing bike and what fun…

Over the years, indeed since I was 14, I have owned and ridden a lot of motorbikes. Since my first Honda 50 in 1973 for which I paid a princely 15 pounds from my pocket money and managed to break my collar bone in the fields, to my latest Yamahas I must have owned at least 25 ‘bikes.

Honda C100, BSA Bantam 175, Suzuki GT185, Yamaha RD400, Honda CB750, Honda CBR1000, goodness I really wish that I still had them all!. I remember that when I bought an almost-new CBR1000 tourer in 1989 it was seen as a “watershed” bike as it developed 132bhp and the EU was discussing a power limit of 100bhp (and indeed Germany still applies this limit, as far as I know). So this seemed like a possible last fast bike before the ban, big brother and all that. Here is a pic I found and mine was the same colour and model in white and red.

honda-cbr1000

Well the CBR weighed some 270 kg and so had 1 bhp to push each 2 kilo of the bikes weight. At that time the performance was amazing and I felt like I was riding the Starship Enterprise. I rode the bike down to Roma in 1990 and really enjoyed myself, the CBR was a fantastic motorway cruiser with great wind protection and a very strong engine.

Yamaha R6, Yamaha R1, Yamaha R1, track Yamaha R1 and track Suzuki GSXR1000, Yamaha XJR1300, Yamaha FJR1300, Yamaha MT09, Yamaha Raptor 700R, Yamaha SuperTenere 1200 and now the stunning Yamaha MT10. I still have the last 3 mentioned.

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Goodness. Truly amazing and the MT10 gave me the same initial feeling as I remember from the old CBR1000 but this bike weighs only 190 kg and produces 160 bhp from a detuned crossplane R1 engine. In a recent track test by Tony Rutter for Performance Bikes Magazine, he suggests that most “ordinary” riders could get round a track faster on the MT10 than on the R1 with the full 200 bhp engine, as its combination of shorter gearing and riding position makes it much easier to ride fast.

The MT10 has a combination of features that make it amazing fun to ride. Great suspension which is multi-adjustable, very comfortable riding position, slick gearbox plus a very comprehensive set of electronic features including cruise control, traction control and 3 power settings. I have just fitted an aftermarket exhaust system so that I can get rid of the heavy catalytic converter system and let the bike breathe better and lose a bit of weight too, and I will shortly fit the electonic gearchanger too.

To describe the riding experience is not easy. The MT10 is a compact bike (it feels like a 600) with a relatively short wheelbase. The clutch and gearbox are both very light and positive and cluthless changes are very easy. The bike pulls like a train in every gear regardless of the revs, and even in top still pulls very strongly. When I rode the bike 2,000 km from the UK down to Roma recently I could not believe the speed as well as the ease of the bikes performance. I had a small screen fitted plus the comfort seat and this was enough for me to cover the distance in 2 days with ease and it was really great fun too, at silly cruising speeds. And when my wrists were tired I switched to cruise control and had a rest…..

And all this for almost 15 km/litre, which is about 42 mpg I think. Truly amazing engine and amazing bike. I look forward to getting to know her better!!

Call or text or whatsapp me on +39 333 8153190 or email me on simon.f@spirometry.com.

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Discover Challenge: Animal

via Discover Challenge: Animal

I have loved animals ever since I was a kid, as I grew up with dogs plus 2 sisters and generally got on better with the mutts (sorry sis)!!. We had many dogs over the years but the three I remember best were William the boxer, Shambles the border collie mix and Joe the small black poodle who kind of ran the show, despite his size.

I did a paper-round in those days to raise some cash for my numerous motorcycle projects, so each morning they woke me up at 6am ready to head out into the cold and dark UK morning. William usually shared my bed and if he stretched during the night then one of us usually fell out of bed, such was his strength. He never really understood his size and he often tried to climb onto a lap which could never really work, once he leaned on our little Gran and pushed her onto the settee by mistake. What a guy.

Now I live in Italy and this year I spent my summer holiday in stunning Amalfi, on the wonderful Amalfi coast. I took my Yamaha Raptor 700R quad with me and used it to explore the area, almost every day. Well one day I was off road, just exploring an area above Scala when I met three lovely dogs, they kind of greeted me in a very friendly way and they seemed to be telling me that they were rather hungry. As I looked around I could see that they were indeed quite slim (2 out of 3) and they did not appear to have any form of food or water available.

So well I kind of “adopted” them. I guessed that they already had names as they were so friendly that they were not strays so I did not make up any names, but in the countryside the locals keep dogs but perhaps do not feed them every day. So having made friends with all 3 I headed off to the local shops to get some dog food and some aluminium dishes to feed and water them.

I decided that I should not feed them every day as that would perhaps ensure that they gave up any hunting activities as I guessed that they could perhaps catch some mice or other small snacks. So I started to visit them every second day and we became the best of friends. The largest and oldest of the three was obviously the boss but as he is almost blind the other two manage to grab some of his food. But when I gave them everything in a single bowl he would eat about 70%, the black and white guy might get 20% and the runt of the group managed to grab the remaining crumbs.

So I refined my feeding strategy and using 3 bowls placed a good distance apart I managed to get them to share the food rather more equally. And over the 3 weeks of our friendship the runt grew a little as the other guys allowed him to get a bit more of the food, so really it worked quite well. And then one day I met their owner and he proved to be a really nice guy called Antonio and he thanked me profusely for looking after them and he confessed that he sometimes did not come every day so yes, sometimes they got hungry BUT they had plenty of water.

Well that was August. Now I go most weekends to Amalfi and of course I go to see the guys. They are great!!!

Call or text or whatsapp me on +39 333 8153190 or email me on simon.f@spirometry.com.