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Alan Cooper Riding History - The 1960's decade.

When home at lunchtimes from school Dad had me riding his Royal Enfield motorcycle in the garden drive.

This involved practising various maneuvers, balance, starting & stopping etc.

Maintenance training was an essential part of my evenings.

I purchased a Scooter (with Dad’s money) to continue the learning experience.

The test was passed in May 1959 a few days after my Birthday and later won a Road Safety event for motorcyclists and scooterists held by Nottingham City Council 

The first Scooter was a Vespa 125cc which was the only Scooter I actually fell off when being towed home in icy conditions following a breakdown.

First Scooter Club:

I immediately joined Nottingham Outlaws Scooter Club (all makes) and was a member for 6 years before I joined The Bowmen Nottingham Lambretta Club in 1965 who had a more competitive attitude. The Outlaws were predominantly a mixed scooter social event type club with which I attended many scooter rallies throughout the UK.

It was John who persuaded me to join the Bowmen and with Norman we have remained close friends since.

Others scooters owned when in the Outlaws were a DKR Dove and Heinkel Tourist followed some years later by a Ovetto ‘twist & go’ scooter that I won in a magazine competition. This was sold after a year as it was considered too slow to be safe in modern fast traffic.

Also had a BMW Isetta 4-wheel Bubble Car which was great fun to drive.

During all this time I never owned a Lambretta.

Awards: First year and later.

Prominent events

Ostend Belgium Scooter trial. Navigator for Norman

Cambrian Scoot 1964 & 1965 on my Heinkel with Jean Cresswell as navigator. (another close friend to this day) 

(For a full report see the Cambrian page on this website)

Belle Vue (Manchester) scooter rally.

Esso Scoot to Scotland in a Messerschmitt  bubble car with Ralph Hyde, again on a Lambretta and Sidecar with a member of the Outlaws.

ACU National Rally – an endurance ride over 24 hours non-stop starting from various locations around England, culminating in a common Finish and checking in as many controls as possible in exactly 600 miles. I achieved the Gold Award for zero penalties.

Snetterton trial Co-driver with John when I invented the on-board timing box to complement the visual pit signals.

The timing box shown here was made by me to be carried on the scooter for the Snetterton trial.

Isle of Man 1967

Manx 400 on a Lambretta loaned by John. '346 STV'

Druidale trial and sprint also ridden on this Lambretta.

Night Navigation Trials riding alone and navigating for John. I gained a Silver Award over the week.

I took Janice over to the IoM when she was expecting our Daughter in 1970 and to the horror of our landlady hired a Lambretta for the week for trips up Druidale and around the Manx TT course.

She told me off in no uncertain terms about ‘ear holing’ and grinding the under floor boards rivets down to the metal.

These images are on the Manx400 trial, Sprint  and the Druidale trial.

346 STV was on loan from John Ronald for the Isle of Man Scooter Week.

The Scrambler was an abortive project due to the unreliability of the Villers engine in a DKR frame.

In 1970 I joined a motor club for competitions on Road & Stage Rallies, including the Caravan Club Road & Stage Rallies and the RAC International Rally.

Team manager for Welsh International Rally and RAC International Rally for Swedish entries over 3 years and Team Manager for a relative’s private entry.

For over 20 years I was, together with two friends running the National Lorry Driver of the Year competition sponsored by Commercial Motor magazine which involved an observed road route, highway code questions and maneuvering tests mainly on Newark Showground.

Currently:

My interest in Scootering was rekindled when John and Norman asked me to take over the design of and running of the website ‘teamsequipe.com’

Interest grew in the Scooter World show at Newark Showground and Classical Scooterist magazine. I ran the Gymkhana for 2 years and the run the Tombola.

I do not currently ride on two wheels, but who knows about the future?