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MarkOastler
If it's been raced, he knows about it and recalls the best motor racing stories.
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DrJohnWright
Classic Cars reviewed by historian, publisher and leading motoring journalist.
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Classic Garage

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    Holden V2 Monaro: how a secret affair blossomed into marriage
    Holden V2 Monaro: how a secret affair blossomed into marriage
    Her name was Monica. She was dark blue. When the matching dust cover was whisked off with plenty of flourish, maybe 200 watching men fell immediately in love with her. Officially, Monica was called the 'Commodore coupe', but so many of the media at work that day at the 1998 Sydney International Motor Show, reckoned this machine should be named 'Monaro'.
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    Hillman Imp: the daring little car that ruined Rootes
    Hillman Imp: the daring little car that ruined Rootes
    As a car-crazed boy the Rootes Group used to strike me as a weird name for an automotive corporation, perhaps the more so because its cars seemed mostly humdrum. For me, the word 'Hillman' conjured up images of dumpy fawn or grey sedans offering a similar level of excitement to my father’s (grey) Austin A30. But something radical happened in 1963 (by which time Dad had traded the A30 on a marvellous cherry red Morris 850, which was always ‘the Mini’). That something radical was the Hillman Imp.
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    Ford XB Falcon: Extra Benefits over the excellent XA
    Ford XB Falcon: Extra Benefits over the excellent XA
    Ford Australia was building a strong marketing advantage over its rivals in the early 1970s. The XB successor, proclaimed as ‘The Great Australian Road Car’ was released a mere 20 months after the XA.
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    Peugeot 203 and 403: the first 'world cars' for the postwar era?
    Peugeot 203 and 403: the first 'world cars' for the postwar era?
    ‘The harder I work, the luckier I get.’ This laconic aphorism might have been coined to sum up the efforts of the Peugeot car company in the first generation after World War Two as expressed in its 203, 403, 404 and 504 models. Here we consider the first two of these: the 203 which was launched in Europe in 1948 and assembled in Australia from 1953, and the 403, introduced both in Europe and locally in 1955.
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Racing Garage

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    V2 Monaro: The Rise and Fall of Holden’s 7.0 litre V8 Super Coupe
    V2 Monaro: The Rise and Fall of Holden’s 7.0 litre V8 Super Coupe
    Holden’s bittersweet experiment with a 7.0 litre (427cid) V8 racing version of its V2 Monaro early in the new millennium – the Monaro 427C - was as successful as it was controversial. It dominated both of the Bathurst 24 Hour races, yet in doing so attracted criticism from rivals and fans.
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    Hillman Imp: Meet Australia’s wildest V8 Imp!
    Hillman Imp: Meet Australia’s wildest V8 Imp!
    Australia’s sports sedan class has produced lots of outrageous racing sedans and arguably the wildest of them all was Harry Lefoe’s infamous Hillman Imp. With a hot small-block Ford V8 stuffed in the back, it was a bullet in a straight line with more than enough grunt to lift its front wheels clear off the deck. And it was sometimes even driven on the road with trade plates!
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    XB Falcon GT: How The Spirit of Phase IV Lived On
    XB Falcon GT: How The Spirit of Phase IV Lived On
    The untimely death of Ford’s XA Falcon GT-HO Phase IV before its Bathurst debut in 1972 was a shattering blow for Ford fans. However, little did they know that the spirit of Ford’s stillborn supercar would be kept alive on the race track, as many of its high performance engine parts ended up in the XB GT which raced on with great success from 1974 to 1977.
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    Peugeot 203 & 403: Redex Trial, Ampol Trial and ‘Great Race’ Legends
    Peugeot 203 & 403: Redex Trial, Ampol Trial and ‘Great Race’ Legends
    The Peugeot 203 and 403 firmly established the French firm as one of the world’s finest post-war car manufacturers in the 1950s and ‘60s. Their mechanical endurance and enviable ability to travel quickly over rough roads and vast distances with great comfort built a legion of loyal customers, particularly in Australia where success in the Redex Trial and Armstrong 500 proved they were ideally suited to our harsh conditions.
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Go Auto News

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Shannons

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Promotions

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Old Bikes

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    MV Augusta 750S - Appointment with Royalty
    MV Augusta 750S - Appointment with Royalty
    As far back as the early 1950s, little MV road racers were seen in Australia, albeit in very limited numbers. The SOHC 125 singles and the later DOHC models were very competitive for a short period, that is, until the Honda twins arrived. The odd privately-imported road bike could occasionally be seen as well, usually 125 and 150 cc OHV singles.
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    Brough Superior 11-50: Honourably discharged
    Brough Superior 11-50: Honourably discharged
    Between them, the three 11-50 Brough Superiors featured here clocked up many thousands of miles in their duties with the Victorian Police Force. Up to 100 such machines (only 308 were produced) went into service throughout the state, along with a smaller number of SS80s, making Victoria one of the largest markets for the Nottingham (UK) manufacturer.
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    Rhodes Norton Manx: The Manx that wouldn't go away
    Rhodes Norton Manx: The Manx that wouldn't go away
    In Victorian motoring circles, Garpfth Rhodes (yes, that is the correct, Welsh spelling for his Christian name, but everyone calls him Garth, so from here on we’ll do the same) is a legend – a highly respected engineer, former competitor, and hands-on man in various organisational capacities. His tiny workshop in Melbourne is crammed with machine tools and machinery – engines of all sorts, components, gadgets and numerous motorcycles.
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    The Professor and the Flying Bedstead
    The Professor and the Flying Bedstead
    They called him The Professor, and his acolytes were numerous in the fertile area for sidecar racers, Maitland, near Newcastle.
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MotoGP

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    Brno, Czech Republic: MotoGP Post-Race Report
    Brno, Czech Republic: MotoGP Post-Race Report
    Cal Crutchlow and I repeat the LCR Honda MotoGP rider has won the 2016 Brno Grand Prix event after the rain blitzed the track from the morning warm up sessions right up until the end of the Moto2 race.
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    Brno, Czech Republic: MotoGP Pre-Race Report
    Brno, Czech Republic: MotoGP Pre-Race Report
    The Czech Republic race weekend has started! The fans are ready to rock and roll and the riders have been familiarising themselves when the country before their mental focus shifts to bikes only.
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    Spielberg, Austria: MotoGP Post-Race Report
    Spielberg, Austria: MotoGP Post-Race Report
    Ducati have ended their drought of victory since 2010 with Andrea Iannone taking top step! The last Ducati rider to win for the Italian manufacturer was Australian rider and World Champion Casey Stoner.
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    Spielberg, Austria: MotoGP Pre-Race Report
    Spielberg, Austria: MotoGP Pre-Race Report
    Marc Marquez is roaring to go and get underway in Austria for the Grand Prix. He is well rested and has his mindset in check to chase down the world title for 2016.
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Australian Motorcyclist Magazine

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    Quick Shift - Get the Best of Both (or Even More) Worlds
    Quick Shift - Get the Best of Both (or Even More) Worlds
    Going to sleep on a motorcycle is definitely not recommended, but there are some roads that are simply so soporific that it’s hard to avoid doing exactly that. I once organised a vote to find Australia’s most boring road; the Silver City Highway between Wentworth and Broken Hill took the honours, followed by the Eyre Highway across the top of the Eyre Peninsula, but a couple of northern Victorian roads made it into the Top Ten.
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    Sydney to Moree - Riding the Ride
    Sydney to Moree - Riding the Ride
    This ride is so boring it’s the first one to be spread over two months. It takes in a great cross section of the very best outback spas. This first episode deals with the great options on getting from the Sydney Basin up to Moree, the capital of artesian country, so fill up the tank, pack the budgie smugglers and hit the road. This is not a ride for a bike that’s been designed to go fast around a smooth track at high speeds for just under an hour. You’re going to need a comfortable ride with a big tank.
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    Bright and Mt Beauty-ful - from the river to the mountain
    Bright and Mt Beauty-ful - from the river to the mountain
    To be perfectly honest with you, we consider the Great Alpine Road a great deal greater than the Great Ocean Road. They’re both great, mind you… and that is the last time we’ll use the word “great” to describe anything in this story, due to a recently expressed feeling by one of our contributors that “great” isn’t such a great word, err… sorry. This month’s map offers you four routes between Rutherglen and Omeo, all of different lengths and somewhat different character.
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    Murrurundi Magic - Goin’ up the country
    Murrurundi Magic - Goin’ up the country
    For me, one of the real hidden pleasures of riding hybrid/adventure touring bikes is not simply the riding of deserted gravel roads. It’s the discovery of the pristine 20km, 30km sometimes 50km stretches of sealed back roads that lead only to them. Because these black strips lead only to gravel, they are empty of caravans, void of B-Doubles and bereft of slow Sunday drivers no matter what day of the week. And there is no better example of this mix of wonderful back road bitumen and mild unsealed sections than Murrurundi in the Upper Hunter of NSW.
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Road Rider Magazine

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    MV Agusta Dragster - Two of a Kind
    MV Agusta Dragster - Two of a Kind
    MV gives their Brutale naked bike a styling treatment for the strip, and then some to create two very different Dragsters
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    Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 - Naughty and Nice
    Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 - Naughty and Nice
    Brimming with performance and aided by top-notch electronics, the Tuono is a leashed beast ready to be set free...
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     Harley-Davidson Softail S-Series: Grooving with Fat Boy Slim
    Harley-Davidson Softail S-Series: Grooving with Fat Boy Slim
    Harley has upped the ante with bigger, gruntier 110ci engines
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    Victory Magnum: Flash Harry
    Victory Magnum: Flash Harry
    Look. At. Me. Yes, me! I’m on a Victory Magnum and I’m loving it. Me, the bloke who is actually a bit shy and retiring, who’d sooner have a slightly ratty and nondescript matte black bike than this Flash Harry with its loud paint, loud stereo and loud styling. Oh, and loud pipes too, thanks to the accessory ones fitted to the test bike. I’m not sure they were within the letter of the law but they announced my arrival as surely as the Magnum attracts attention.
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