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The Hayride


As I’ve been having a year of changes and new stuff.  I thought I’d try something new in the way of shows so the hotrod hayride seemed just the ticket, and I’d never been to Bisley so apart from the usual M25 game a dead easy route down.  Still not sure why a T junction nearby is on the map as Donkey Town but I guess someone will tell me. Came off the M3 tailing a Mark3 Zephyr guessed I must be on the right road it wasn’t till Kate called to say they were there and I didn’t roar away from the lights I realised there was a huge Cadillac behind me ooh big hooter too.

Driving into Bisley grounds was just stunning, everywhere you look there’s excellent early American motors and old bikes and half the people looking like extras from a James Dean movie.  Found our crew setting up the tents on what the rest of the year must be a lawn, got my tent up and a quick visit from security asking if I could park my modern tow motor off to the side so only old stuff is around the tents …no problem with that.

Then start the bikes and off for a ride round the show. Oh yes! its big enough to do that and its the expected thing to do, none of the “ sorry you can’t ride about Health and Safety y’know “  it’s excellent  we rode to find friends, to the bar, to the wall of death, hey even to the loo’s and all amid stripped thirties rods and classic pickup’s. 

The bar is something else, with its veranda it’s an excellent place to park the bikes and relax watching the other stuff rumble by.  We even found a few Indians we hadn’t seen before and made some new friends

There is a curfew on cruising around at about 8 at night and that’s fine.
By then there’s bands on stage and people to watch oh yeah and a few beers to drink; we did all of the above.

Saturday saw us wandering around ogling cars and bikes, checking out fashion styles and meeting folks from all over Europe it seems.  The Indians fitted in real well here but Ian went for the more direct game of fashioning a BSA megaphone from beer cans just to attract attention to his back up bike.  Maybe not the most attractive unit, but highly amusing in its results.

We passed on the option of the ride out to a dirt track to race, this was for bikes too (see You-Tube for this) and had an easy afternoon on the site.
We booked tickets for the last run on the Wall of Death of the day.  Dave’s got a good system working there, sell tickets for performances and not do so many shows that they seem to be begging you to go in then hanging around till they get a full tent.  It works so well that the tent was full for every show, brilliant idea.

I was expecting to find loads of old ford Prefects and badly customised British cars but I was so wrong, there was so much variety of American motors I had to come home and look some of them up on the net.

Saturday night was more bands and beer “excellent “ and for those who like early nights the bars are far enough from the campsite it seems really quiet back at the tents.
All in all an excellent show, rally, call it what you will.  I’ll be back next year.

Odd Observations:

  1. Bare metal is the new black
  2. Rust is the new matt black
  3. Exhaust wrap is the new chrome
  4.  Punk rock bought itself a fifties rod and became psychobilly.
  5. Girls must have 50s pinup makeup and really neat tattoos.
  6. There’s one Vauxhall Chevette left and it’s in standard trim.
  7. And nothing looks cooler than toting your bobber around in an old Dodge pickup.

So if you’re at a loose end next year why not give it a go

Keith Bird     Keith Bird  
Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010
Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010
Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010 Hayride 2010

Hotrod Hay Ride Aug ’10  Fashion Review

As a club I think we are rather a scruffy lot! This point was hammered home shortly after arriving at the Hayride in Bisley this year.

As an Indian Rider I was aware of the cultural background that our bikes belong to, the flat tracker with his college jumper and the back to front cloth cap in a 1930’s/40’s style. But to be honest I hadn’t given the car side of this culture much thought. (Two wheels too many!).
But the logical extension of this train of thought expands our motorcycling interest to the whole American post war youth culture.
It would appear that we are part of the ‘Rockabilly’ scene, to which there are many avid enthusiasts.  The cars on the site were mind blowing! And their owners equally so. I suppose if one is not going to have to wear a crash helmet it gives you far more opportunity to do more with your hair! I have never been on a rally where the coture and coiffure was so high profile and it wasn’t just the girls!
Hair was worn in a D.A. for the blokes with a blonde bombshell type perm for the girls being prevalent. Bright red lipstick, of course, de rigour.  Clothing was neither worn out, oil or egg stained or crumpled in any way. Turn-ups on jeans were worn large or extra large, and one wonders if the size of the fold was relevant to the status of the wearer? Dave Seymour’s, of Wall of Death ‘Demon Drome’ fame, seems to be sporting exceptionally large ones! (Nice to see him doing so well).

Bisley did have a few trade stands, whereas normally one would expect to see replacement parts on sale, here you were able to buy reproduction clothing, Hawaiian shirts and pinched waist dresses in wild colour schemes. I wonder why the cherry logo is so popular for this era? Could it have something to do with changes of cloth manufacture or the chemical production of synthetic dyes. (Sorry, the tech teacher kicking in there).  Post war Britan was certainly never this colourful I’m sure.

There was a trade stand for those college jumpers I mentioned earlier, I know there is some club interest so you might want to contact them if you are prepared to fork out for a top quality product.
By way of evening entertainment the Rockabilly theme continued, Indian Riders don’t seem to dance, but these guys and galls were expert at throwing each other around the dance floor. Truly impressive moves. If you like that kind of music it was relentless all weekend, personally I couldn’t wait to get home to play some heavy metal. To each his own.
There was also added entertainment of a Burlesque show on both Friday and Saturday night for those who like the “Tease without the Sleaze”, as well as a freak show and art exhibition on the trade site.
The Hot Rod Hay ride now in it’s 6th year was truly a rally with a difference, the emphasis was on the vehicles primarily, with a ‘go there to see and be seen’ attitude for those with a Rockabilly bent. The rally gets bigger every year, with the motorcycles playing an increasingly larger role, this is after all a car rally. I have never seen so many Indians in one place out side our own club events.
So put a mark in next year’s calendar, turn up your cleanest Levi jeans and iron your best check shirt! It’s not to be missed.

Kata Hatton     

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