Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Yamaha 650

When the Yamaha 650 arrived it was a pretty big deal. A Dead Ringer Bonneville clone without all the accepted foibles of the Trumpet. The Yamaha was different though in many other ways. The Yammi had a different personality ,the engine was tighter and had a power delivery that definitely wasn't Triumph like. I have had both and always preferred the Triumph for sheer riding pleasure. The Yamaha is to a Sewing Machine as the Triumph is to a Tommy Gun.

I am glad they recognized Shell Thuet's contributions. He was the genius behind Yamaha's racing effort.
I took this photo of Shell at Willow's 1/2 Mile way back in the early 90's. He had great riders riding then.
Everyone who was any good, would have loved to ride his Yamahas. I remember a particular, one armed racer that
absolutely flew on a Shell Racing Half Miler.
I read in a Blog recently that Brando's Character, in you know what movie, was based on Shell from when he was Leader of the Pack in some small Sickle Club way back when. I think thats BS. Brando was kind of, West Hollywood Biker. Thuet was always a, one step ahead, non fool suffering, knuckle sandwich, nice guy.
Here he is in '53 with one of his all conquering Indians which he was as famous for, as his Yamahas.