Welcome to our semi-regular installment of Friday Fudge. If it’s weird, funny, or strange motorcycle news, or it just plain won’t fit anywhere else on the site – you’ll find it here.
Licence to speed
We’ve got a whole load of wacky moto-news from the UK today, starting with racing hero Guy Martin. Martin’s not been as busy with roadracing lately, ever since he binned his Honda at the IOMTT a couple of years ago. So what’s he been doing?
Facing criminal charges is what he’s been doing. Martin has found himself in a pile of trouble with the bobbies after authorities allegedly discovered the racer was in possession of a fake Irish driver’s licence. Supposedly, Martin was using the qualifications on the Irish licence to upgrade his British licence, and was caught. Now, he has pleaded not guilty to the charge of possessing a licence with intent to deceive; he’s supposed to appear in court to defend himself in the next few days.
Considering Martin’s status as a world-class street racer and celebrity on motor-friendly television shows, how could something like this happen in the first place? Best guess: Martin tried to upgrade his driving licence the proper way, but failed because he wouldn’t obey the speed limit signs.
We’ve talked about two-wheeled bandits on here before; while their total takings may not reach those of their casino-based counterparts, the one-armed bandits, the scooter-riding crims of the UK are notorious purse-snatchers and general all-around hoodlums. And, for years, they’ve been using their step-throughs as get-out-of-jail-free cards, as police are afraid to chase them down for fear of causing a deadly crash.
But no longer! In the constantly changing PR battle that typifies police decision-making, enough people have gotten angry over the scooter trash that the British police are taking their fight on crime to the next level, announcing a plan to use “specially trained drivers” to knock escaping criminals off their scooters, even if they aren’t wearing helmets. So far, the plan seems to be working, with an official statement from London’s Metropolitan Police saying there has been a “reduction in offences.” Supposedly, moped crime is down 44 per cent compared to last year. Watching the video below should give you a good idea as to why.
Also from the UK: You’ve developed what you’re claiming is the world’s strongest padlock. Where will you launch it to the public? Perhaps at a hardware show? Maybe at a security conference. Oooooor, if you’re Squire, you launch it at the big NEC Motorcycle Show.
The SS100 padlock is part of Squire’s Motolok range. The very fact that a British padlock company has a range specifically aimed at protecting motorcycles should tell you just how bad the bike theft problem is over there. It comes with a 1.5-meter chain and weighs 4.3 kg, so if it doesn’t stop the baddies from stealing your bike, you can chase them down the street waving the whole arrangement like a medieval flail.
Death from above
Police in Dubai are the first law enforcement agency to adopt what’s been called a “flying motorcycle.”
These sorts of oddball airborne contraptions have graced the pages of Friday Fudge before, often inexplicably linked to police usage, but frankly, we never thought any cop would be crazy enough to want to ride them. Turns out, they are, in Dubai. While the Middle East isn’t typically a place known for light-hearted fun and games, the coppers there have purchased a fleet of S3 Hoverbikes from California-based Hoversurf, and now they’re being trained on the new machines.
What on earth would the Dubai police want with these devices, as opposed to a standard motorcycle, or even a car? Supposedly, they’re to access “hard to reach areas,” or as we’d translate it, “make doughnut runs without worrying about traffic.” Wait, do they even eat doughnuts in Dubai?
It’s a bad idea to put a noob on board a motorcycle without giving them a basic rundown of the controls. It’s a really, really bad idea.
And finally, here’s a tale of celebrity endorsement gone wrong. Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton has a longstanding interest in motorcycles, or at least a long-standing interest in endorsing motorcycles. He’s been linked to MV Agusta designs in the past, but now that financial accountability has come to that manufacturer, we haven’t heard much about those ties.
That could explain how he ended up at a recent track day at Jerez aboard a Yamaha R1, and not just any R1. This bike had been raced by the Crescent team in this summer’s WSB campaign. Hot stuff, but no match for a Big Shot Professional Racing Car Driver, right? Especially one who’s been linked so prominently to motorcycles in the past?
Wrooooooooong. Hamilton binned the bike, although he avoided injury and was able to complete the lap, reports say. Big ups to him for getting back on after the crash, but we’d suggest maybe taking a two-wheel refresher course. If he’s embarrassed about going back to track school, maybe he could take some tips from another celebrity, maybe someone with more two-wheeled experience. Like Tom Cruise. Just don’t follow Tom’s advice on the whole helmet thing, Lewis …
[…] Friday Fudge Canada Moto Guide […]