Telford Classic Offroad Show

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Telford Classic Offroad Show

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Telford Classic Offroad Show

Report: Telford Classic Offroadshow
Typical English mix: chrome and rusty scrap iron

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MOTORRAD colleague Gert Thole once flew “gswift” over the weekend to the Classic Offroadshow in Telford / GB, where a typical English mixture could be seen: on the one hand glistening chrome, on the other hand rusty scrap iron.

Gert Thole


A gray-haired little man – estimated age well over 80 years – limps purposefully towards a trial telescopic fork exhibited at a stand, puts the cane aside, presses the fork several times and then engages the seller in an intensive discussion about the damping adjustment nice example of the typical English sporting spirit: Never give up.

In any case, the scene that meets every year at the Classic Offroadshow looks very British. Nobody goes there in a suit, you put on a Belstaff jacket or oil-soaked overalls. A very grounded audience in a double sense with that very special charm that can only be found in England. But no matter how weird and bizarre some trade fair visitors appear, you can meet sympathetic, open-hearted people with a lot of expertise everywhere. 

A weekend trip to England gives you enough time to get an overview in peace and quiet. The rush of visitors was limited this year because on Saturday, February 4th, of all places, a snow catastrophe struck England. Fewer visitors made it to Telford, and few vendors ventured out into the frosty grounds. But at least hundreds of exhibitors cavorted in the three halls of the International Center.

From enduros to trial machines to speedway racers, you will find everything here that has to do with a cleat profile. The attempt to attract a wider audience to the show this year with classic road racing machines, however, failed. The really interesting historical racers stood lonely between surrounded off-road machines.

Anyone who wants to go on a shopping spree gets a comparatively large range. However, even in England, bargains are no longer to be found on every corner. The exchange rate of the British pound is unfavorable, and sought-after classics now also have their price here.

The spectrum of exhibitors ranges from private individuals who offer disused old material from all eras and in all stages of decay, to professionals and specialists who offer old and new parts. There are even professional restorers for private commissioned work in England. For example Rod Spry, who exhibited a few fine cross classics. If you want, you can build a classic Rickman, CCM or Cheney crosser yourself from new parts. Some insiders even claim that the reproduced parts are better than their historical models.

Telford Classic Offroad Show


Guaranteed better than then: “new” 490 Maico from Maico Onlys for Twinshock races.

The focus of this year’s show was the Husqvarna brand. There was a whole range of great two-stroke huskies from all eras to see. And the title “Best of Show” was won by one of the few existing factory four-stroke engines with the Albin / Hedlund engine from the 1960s.

And former off-road heroes were also there. For example, the friendly and talkative Sammy Miller, one of the most successful motorcycle athletes ever, who now trades in accessories and runs a museum. On the other hand, Heikki Mikkola, four-time cross-country world champion from the 1970s, who has been living in seclusion in the Finnish forests since retiring, is more audience-shy. Other heroes of the past can only be recognized by insiders, such as the 1981 world cross-country champion, Neil Hudson, who sold parts at his brother’s Yamaha stand. Until last year, Neil drove twinshock races on highly bred Maicos.

Speaking of maico. Here in England, too, the 1981 490s have a legendary reputation. At Maico Onlys you can easily get rid of up to 10,000 pounds (around 12,000 euros) for a machine that has been pepped up with all the goodies. But it can be cheaper: The owner only wanted 700 pounds for a twin shock Kawasaki KLX 250 in its original condition. Maybe next time you should drive instead of fly.

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