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Niall Mackenzie Blog number 3

Wed, 15 Sep 2010

This picture of me chasing Foggy on the Daytona banking in 1991 brought back some bitter sweet memories recently. I did half a season as his team mate on the Silkolene RC30s before scurrying off to Japan to ride a factory Yamaha Superbike. I’ve never been a quitter but I felt the team that year was gear stretched running two riders so it was a case of last in first out. Daytona is one special race track and I was back there in 1991 after qualifying on the front row the year before then waking up in the medical centre after a massive first corner pile up. It was probably my fault as the race starts from the pit lane (the start finish banking is too steep) so turn one was a completely different corner to the one I did all my practice on.

I believe Daytona is the only banked track that works well as I’ve ridden at Homestead (also in Florida), Calder in Australia plus our very own Rockingham and none deliver the same experience. It could be that the infield section just syncs well with the ultra steep banking or maybe it’s the memories of Sheene, Roberts and Spencer flat out on there back in the day that makes it magical. Whatever the reason I’m glad I’ve ticked this box.

By Niall Mackenzie .

See also: You want a nice little car, you do., The horrendous reality of restoring a 'classic', Yamaha 350LC ProAm, Mallory Park 1981.