Walther Luft at 70

Walter Luft Laggan locks
Walther Luft (Puch 250) on ‘Laggan Locks’ – Scottish Six Days Trial 1983 – Photo: Iain Lawrie, Kinlochleven, Scotland.

Walther Luft, former Austrian Trials Champion, Puch factory rider and exceptional machine developer and innovator is 70 years of age!

Happy Birthday Walther from Trials Guru!

Luft 1970 - SSDT
Walther Luft (crouched) examines the Walwin BSA of Ross Winwood at Gorgie Market, Edinburgh in 1970. Standing middle is Austrian Peter Bous and looking away is Scottish ACU secretary T. Arnott Moffat, a great friend of Luft and Bous. Photo: Hans Maiditz, Graz

Walther’s first Scottish Six Days Trial was in 1970 on a 169cc Puch which he made himself. He was accompanied by his good friend Peter Bous and Puch manager Hans Maiditz a former ISDT rider for Steyr-Daimler Puch A.G. (Graz).

1970 - SSDT - Gorgie Market. Bob Paterson (SACU) examines Walther Luft's 169cc Puch. (W-30823 Vienna registration)
1970 – SSDT – Gorgie Market, Edinburgh. Bob Paterson (SACU) examines Walther Luft’s 169cc Puch. (W-30823 Vienna registration)

Walther won the Edinburgh Trophy for the best foreign rider at his first attempt.

Luft developed the Puch trials machine virtually on his own with parts supplied by the factory at Graz. He took the Puch 169cc six speed motor out to a full 250cc displacement. It was a machine which was nearly 20 years in development.

Luft was always making components lighter, in fact well before his time the same processes were used many years later my mountain bike riders and manufacturers.

Walther was a talented engineer and exceptionally good at metal working as this was his trade or craft.

Much of the Puch was made from Nylon 66 material, such as the sump guard and chain tubes which was a feature of Luft’s machine and was copied by Montesa when they brought out the production Malcolm Rathmell Replica 348 machine in 1976.

Luft also went on to develop along with German champion, Felix Krahnstover the KTM trials machine. However the growing KTM concern decided to pursue motocross and enduro markets, as they were more lucrative and profitable for the Mattighoven based organisation.

A story here from the premier Austrian ‘Trial.at’ website:

click … http://www.trials.at/walter-luft-ist-70/#comment-884

Walther Luft Profile

Rob Edwards Story – now in Spanish – Todotrial!

As a direct result of full collaboration, the ‘Rob Edwards Story’ is now available in Spanish for the benefit of our Spanish and Catalan friends of trial.

Horacio San Martin (Todotrial owner) and John Moffat (Trials Guru owner) have been working together recently and the Rob Edwards serialisation is now on line.

It can be viewed by clicking on this link:

http://todotrial.com/en/reports/item/2932-historia-del-trial-rob-edwards-capitulo-1.html

 

Emma Picks up her WWTC award 2014!

Emma Bristow 2014 Womens Worls Trial Champion
Emma Bristow seen here with her boyfriend and fellow trials rider, James Fry at Jerez, Spain. (Photo FIM Press)

 

 

Emma Bristow, Lincolnshire, England was presented with the 2014 FIM Womens’ World Trials Championship during the FIM Gala at Jerez, Spain. Emma is also ACU British Ladies Champion 2014. Well done Emma what a year you have had!

Emma Bristow - Guru
Trials Guru, John Moffat has a quick word with FIM Womens World Trial Champion, Emma Bristow at the start of the 2014 Scott Centenary Trial in October. (Photo courtesy: Penny Hutchinson, Leeds)
Sammy Miller - Emma Bristow - Tony Bou - Mark Walters Photo
Sammy Miller; Emma Bristow & World Trials Champion Tony Bou at the FIM Gala in Jerez – Photo Copyright: Mark Walters Photography. Lochgilphead.

 

 

 

Rob Edwards Story – Part Six – Montesa Time!

We continue Rob Edwards’ story of a lifetime in trials. This is the part you have all probably been most interested to hear about – the Rob Edwards/Montesa connection!
RE2
Captive Audience! – Rob Edwards became an important part of the Montesa factory trials effort. Here he is at a coaching event a 2 day trials class held in Cerro Alarcón, Valdemorillo (Madrid, Spain) in 1971. Rob has the loud-haler in hand. Pere ‘Pedro’ Pi and Alberto Mallofre, Competitions Manager, Montesa are to Rob’s right. (Photo courtesy of Luis Munoz-Aycuens Ribas, Madrid)
My First Trip to MONTESA!
The day finally arrived to set off to Barcelona. I met up with  the lads at Charlie’s home in Redhill (Guru: Charlie Harris, Montesa UK based development rider) then off we went. It was the first time I had met Charlie. Previous to this, I only knew him as a top trials rider in the south of England. A friend of his was travelling with us, so we had a car full. There was plenty for me to see Paris: The Eifel Tower; Citroen cars and so on. I had not been abroad before, as I spent every penny I had on trials. Plus, I would be bored to tears!
We arrived at the Montesa Factory in Barcelona and I felt as if I was on another planet!
Two days later, it was the trial in Terrassa. The events for the European Championship were totally different to anything I had ridden before. The time limit was six hours, plus one hour with time penalties. Two laps had to be completed, approximately 50 sections (zonas) in this time. I was not hanging about, but it took five hours to complete one lap, leaving one hour to get to the finish. I didn’t think it was possible, but by riding flat out, I reached the finish losing only a couple of time penalty points. I finished second position overall, a result beyond my wildest dreams!
The following morning, we went to the Montesa factory before setting off for home. Alberto Mallofre and Pere ‘Pedro’ Pi took me into an office. After telling me how pleased they were with yesterdays results, Alberto spoke and I couldn’t believe my ears!
Could I go to America for six weeks to promote Montesa and trials in the States?
Montesa were owned by Permanyer s.a. and Senor Permanyer’s son Jorge would be travelling with me. He didn’t speak a lot of English and my Spanish was no better… if not worse!
A month later, I had my American visa, my ticket and I was ready for the off. I only had one thing left to do – to tell Head Wrightsons that I was quitting! I jokingly asked the workshop manager if I could take six weeks unpaid holiday. “You have got to be joking”, he said but he did pass on the news to the top factory manager who decided it was time for me to be put in my place!
“That’s it”, he said, “I’ve had enough, I’ve had as much as I can take of you and motorbikes – YOUR SACKED!”. “I’m glad about that”, I said “because I’m going to America tomorrow for six weeks!”.
I am sure I heard him whisper under his breath – “thank god for that” – Bye for now – Rob
To Be Continued…
To read all of Rob Edward’s story of his life in trials click… here

Bob MacGregor Road Run 2015 – Trials Guru

Bob MacGregor 1939
Bob MacGregor is the only Scotsman to have ever won the Scottish Six Days Trial, seen here on Kinloch Rannoch in 1939 on his factory Rudge.

 

The fourth annual ‘Bob MacGregor Memorial Road Run‘ open for classic motorcycles (or anything special) will be taking place at Killin, Perthshire on Tuesday 28th April, 2015.

In memory of Bob MacGregor, the only Scotsman to have ever won the Scottish Six Days Trial, the event takes place two days before the preamble to the Pre’65 Scottish Trial at Kinlochleven.

MacGregor won the SSDT twice, in 1932 and again in 1935 on Rudge machines and had a greengrocers’ business in the town of Killin, the shop is still there.

Guest of Honour this year will be John Moffat, the Trials Guru, who will start the event and will travel along with local trials rider Bobby Lafferty, the event organiser. Bobby also organises the annual national trial named after MacGregor.

The route will traverse through the picturesque Glen Lyon and pass some old SSDT sections along the way.

Moffat intends bringing his 350 AJS, JSC905, which is the very bike his late Father rode in the Scottish Six Days in 1953 & 1954, the same bike that his son, David rode sixty years later, at the very wet 2013 Pre’65 Scottish Trial.

Those who want to join in the fun and nostalgia can do so by contacting event secretary, Peter Remington on 01539 560695 or click on the website: www.cumbriaclassic.co.uk

Alvie 2013
John Moffat (Trials Guru) standing, checks over JSC905 with son David. Photo copyright: Mortons Motorcycle Media.

 

 

The Rob Edwards Story – Part Five

Rob Publicity Montesa
Montesa recognised at an early stage that Rob Edwards was a most suitable rider to promote the brand worldwide. (Montesa sales brochure from 1971)

Hi Again,
Many thanks for all your comments, I feel very honoured that so many of you have remembered me. Leaving Cotton Motorcycles was a necessary move if I was to improve, but I will always be grateful for the support Norman Crooks gave me.
I knew exactly what I wanted to ride… a Montesa!
Plucking up courage, I telephoned Montala Motors in London who were the UK importers at that time. I told them my name and some of my results.
I asked if there was any chance of riding for them?
I was told that they simply had no vacancies. Montala’s ‘dream team’ being Gordon Farley, Lawrence Telling and Don Smith. However, I asked that if a ride became available I would like to be considered. I had set my heart on riding for Montesa but as this was a no-go, I would have to try elsewhere.
Montesa Cota Prototype
An early Cota Prototype. Development work by Christian Rayer (France) Pedro Pi and Don Smith ensured that Rob Edwards had a well-proven machine when he switched camps to Montesa (Permayer S.A.)
The only other top bike in my estimation was a Bultaco Sherpa, so I took a sharp intake of breath and phoned up Comerfords in Thames Ditton, Surrey, the Bultaco importers. Most of the male employees who worked at Comerfords were trials riders. So much to my delight, things started to look a lot better.
Having a bike could be sorted immediately and they were sure that Bultaco Spain would give me a contract. “We will be back in touch as soon as we hear anything”, were their parting words.
I put the phone down and gave a big sigh of relief, things were really starting to move. Then the phone rang, but this time it was Montala Motors boss John Brise. Apparently seconds after I had talked with them, Montesa Competitions Manager, Alberto Mallofre phoned them. Unknown to me, it appeared that Alberto had been a fan of mine for a long time and he had wanted me on a Montesa.
I don’t think John Brise really knew anything about me and was being polite when I phoned him, but the factory did and that was the break I needed!
Montesa Trial prototype n1( 67)
The prototype Cota from 1967, you can see the similarities to the British built Cotton Minarelli. Rob decided that his bike of choice in 1969 would be Montesa.
It seemed that everybody knew about me at Montesa, they had been keeping an eye on my results.
They said everything was in hand, so don’t look elsewhere! Alberto was on the phone to me the next day asking me to go to the Spanish round of the European championships in Barcelona.
While I was there, he had a few things he would like to talk to me about.
I traveled there with fellow Montesa riders Charlie Harris and Ian Haydon.
Now that things were up and moving I was back on the phone to Comerfords to offer my thanks for trying so hard for me. I take this opportunity to thank everyone at Comerfords back then, even although I made the move to ride for Montesa. – Rob
Trials Guru: Montesa, by 1968, had made serious in-roads into the UK trials market with their Cota 247 Mk1 model. It was becoming a very popular machine which would allow British riders to make a name for themselves in national events. Rob mentions the Montesa ‘Dream Team’ and that is correct in that Lawrence ‘Sparky’ Telling, Don Smith and Gordon Farley had all left the Greeves marque for Montesa. Charlie Harris was effectively a development rider in the Uk for the Cota.
Alberto Mallofre, the competitions manager at Permanyer S.A., the company that manufactured Montesa, was a forward thinking individual. Don Smith was a well-known extrovert on the UK trials scene and promoted the Cota successfully from 1967-70. However, he became frustrated with the lack of development progress and quit the team in 1970 to develop his own machine called the Don Smith ‘Stag’. Utilising his own ideas and a Montesa Cota 247 motor with the ‘M’ symbol carefully removed from the crankcase covers, Smith entered the 1970 Scottish on the black and white machine.
Montala Motors ‘Montesa Dream Team’
L Telling - PB - SSDT crop
Lawrence Telling pictured here in the 1969 SSDT – Photo Courtesy, Peter Bremner, Inverness.
Gordon Farley - PB - SSDTcrop
Gordon Farley – 1969 SSDT – Photo courtesy, Peter Bremner, Inverness
DR Smith - PB - SSDT crop
Don ‘D.R.’ Smith – 1969 SSDT – Photo Courtesy, Peter Bremner, Inverness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Montesa ‘Ambassador’ Rob Edwards:

RE2
The beginning of Rob Edwards’ role as Montesa Ambassador. Seen here at a trials school in Spain, Rob (holding loud-haler) addresses the crowd, on his right are Alberto Mallofre and Pedro Pi. Photo courtesy of Luis Munoz, Madrid.

 

 

To Be Continued …

Copyright:

Words: Rob Edwards/Trials Guru, John Moffat 2014.

Acknowledgement: Peter Bremner, Chairman Edinburgh & District Motor Club Ltd. For Montesa Photographs used in this article.

To read all of Rob Edward’s story of his life in trials click… here

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