In the classic off-road world the period 1950 to 1960 is widely regarded as The Golden Era; it was a decade when British riders and machines were almost unbeatable. A contributory factor was the intense rivalry between Birmingham based BSA and Associated Motor Cycles (AMC) in SE London, both prime suppliers to the all important competition market in an age when trials and scrambles machinery still bore a close resemblance to the street models on sale in dealer showrooms.
Dave Curtis had followed Geoff Ward and Brian Stonebridge to head up AMC’s effort in trade-supported Scrambles events. Often outnumbered by a battalion of BSAs Dave’s masterly riding of the 350cc and 500cc Matchless saw him gain innumerable popular victories, winning the prestigious ACU Scrambles Star in 1958, and taking a brilliant 3rd overall in the 1959 World Motocross Championship.
Mick Andrews joined the AJS factory Trials team soon after he began; it was astride the beautifully prepared Ajays that he evolved into one the sport’s best-known competitors, in addition to gaining many successes in the ISDT and scrambles. Thanks to his internationally renowned Trials Schools Mick is still in the saddle today. Having won the Scottish Six Days Trial on five separate occasions he is affectionately known as Monarch of the Glen.
Press release & image source: Beaulieu
Check out the Veloce book Off-Road Giants! – Heroes of 1960s Motorcycle Sport by Andrew Westlake which contains profiles of 17 famous riders of the 1960s (including Dave Curtis and Mike Jackson).
"Of interest to anyone who can remember watching motocross, trials and enduros way back in the 1960s, or indeed anyone interested in that era." – Nacelle, Triumph Owners’ Motor Cycle Club