Batavieren Treffen

Motor Club ASOM, Zevenaar, Holland April/May 1980

This rally I only saw advertised the once so I only attended the one year. Held on a farm just outside of the small Dutch town of Zevenaar not more than a mile off the E36 motorway. Quite well attended with at least 200 riders. The normal type of thing, big beer tent and group. I met up with Piet from den Haag, the lad who had left me for dead on the way back from the Elephant Rally at Saltzburg 3 months ago, and asked how his bike could leave me behind? It turned out that he had a 90/S powering his outfit and it had the Dellorto carburators and before you knew it we were swapping bikes. This was the first time that either of us had driven a bike with the side car on the other side. On the grass it wasn't too bad but then Piet was heading for the gate and the open road so I followed.

Strange is an under statement. As you pull away on an outfit the chair holds you back so you compensate for it by steering ever so slightly to the right. It becomes automatic so you don't even think about it. Likewise when you shut off the weight of the chair carries on so you again compensate for it by a slight steer to the left. But now all of this is turned on its head and as we made our way down the road I was all over the place and deceided that I was going back. Piet carried on.

I was stood on the campsite for a good ten minutes before Piet came back into sight - - - followed by a police car! I made my way over to the end of the track fearing the worst. Piet stopped and got off just as I got there. The policeman came over and in perfect English proceeded to give Piet a rollocking for not wearing a crash helmet, thinking that he was the owner of the bike. Piet had not said a word until the policeman finished then he just said "ok". If he had said anything else they would have known that he was Dutch and he more than likely would have been fined.

We went over to the beer tent for a couple to celebrate our close shave.

- Les Hobbs

Read the 1977 Megaphone report by Shirley Crane.