Blez grounds FHR 942W during a 1984 BIKE photoshoot
This spark-filled photo of me in the Quasar was taken by Kel Edge for Bike magazine in August 1984.
The location was the roundabout on the A4 closest to Avebury and Silbury Hill. The machine was Neil Vass's, (then Shawn Grinter's, now in the National Motorcycle Museum) which Neil had generously lent me while he went off to South America.
The Bike magazine feature was written by then-editor Brecon Quaddy and appeared in the November 1984 edition, which also had Yours Truly riding the Z13 Quasar in a small photo on the front cover. There was also a unique action photo, used across a double page spread in the mag, which Kel took from the extremely cramped passenger place behind me in this Quasar, which showed both the original and the Z13 Quasar in the same shot.
This sparking photo subsequently appeared in several other publications, including the Daily Telegraph and Motorcycle News.
A lap or two after this shot was taken I ran out of ground clearance so hard that the front wheel lifted and down we went....
(I later realised that the right stand was not quite fully retracted, so reducing ground clearance slightly).
Damage was superficial however, so I continued to ride around the roundabout afterwards. I grazed my palm because I foolishly failed to hang on to the bars before things stopped moving - a lesson that was to stand me in good stead over the action-packed fortnight that followed, as related at some length in the January 1985 issue of Motorcycle Sport (and in a news item in Bike Jan '85)
However, damage to the bike included a crack in the standard windscreen; Malcolm Newell replaced it with a tinted one he had lying around. In retrospect this did nothing to help me see the upturned Renault 5 parked on its roof in the fast lane of the French autoroute near Carcassonne as night fell a couple of weeks later. Ironically the tinted windscreen survived this far more serious shunt unscathed and another one a week later when the drive shaft seized after some quick repairs in Carcassonne.
Neil was so horrified by the darkness of the tint that he changed the screen for a standard one at the earliest opportunity.
Over 20 years later, in 2005, I bought a Quasar of my own!
Paul Blezard (PNB)