British Historic Racing Final Rounds 2018


Dave Henshaw is a Royal Enfield restoration expert and racer. The Henshaws purchase Royal Enfield Parts from Burton Bike Bits for their customer restorations and their racing Enfields. Below is a record of the final rounds of the British Historic Racing competition.


Royal Enfield British Historic RacingIan Henshaw ‘Henchy’ has been having a quiet time in 2018 with only one machine to ride instead of the usual three, in the pre 1962 class he is the championship leader on the 350cc shortstroke ‘Big Head ‘ so going to Anglesey Circuit he was really up for it as he was two tenths off the lap record last year. The first race he completed on the Saturday he was one tenth off the record which was set by Tim Jackson on a very fast AJS 7R at 1.25.71 in 2009, on the Sunday he told myself and big brother Paul ‘Bullet Whisperer’ he was out to break the record. The race was a three class race with pre 1973 350cc Ducatis and Honda K4s at the front followed by the pre 1962 machines though on his lap times Ian was 5th on the grid. ”Henchy’ got away in fourth place and was definitely going for it; on lap three he broke the record putting in a time of 1.25.59, on lap four he came round posting 1.25.24 and on lap six passing all the Ducati and Honda riders bar the leading Ducati he put in a 1.25.61 and finished second overall and wining the pre1962 class by nearly 40seconds and taking almost half a second off the lap record which has stood for nearly ten years.


British Historic Racing Ian HenshawOn a weekend when most of the rain we have been lacking fell at Pembrey Circuit! Llanwrda motorcycle racer Ian Henshaw was battling to keep his British Historic Racing Pre 1962 class championship lead. In the three class 350cc race made up of Pre 1983 Japanese machines, pre 1973 Ducati’s, pre 1962 350s along with pre1973 125cc single cylinder two strokes, all the races were held in appalling wet conditions with the exception of the last race on the second day Sunday when in the late afternoon the sun came out and dried the track.
In the first race starting from 5th on the grid Ian came round leading the whole group; this lasted for four laps of the eight lap race until he slowed and dropped to 3rd place but winning his pre 62 class it turned out he had to slow down due to his helmet visor misting up. The next race was ‘Henchys’ most outstanding; he was in the lead from the off giving a display of wet weather riding that has earned him the title of ‘The Welsh Rain Master’ crossing the line and taking the chequered flag over a second ahead of Ducati champion Ritch Hawkins and lapping five riders in the eight lap race.
Having a minor control problem in the third race after taking the overall lead once more he had to give Ritch Hawkins the honours this time, in the final race. Ironically after following Hawkins back wheel Ian had a couple of major moments when an oil leek blew oil on his rear tyre, this race turned into a damage limitation race, Ian coming home in 3rd place behind the Manx Norton of Jack Hebb. But three wins out of four races and a 2nd place gave him 58 points out of a total available of 60. This now gives him a championship lead of 47points over his nearest rival going into the final round at Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire on the 29th/30th of September.


Ian Henshaw ‘Henchy’ on the flying Performance Classics Royal Enfield ‘Clipper’ won the British Historic Racing 2018 Pre 1963 350cc championship with three races still to go in the final round at Cadwell Park Lincolnshire on the 29th. ‘Henchy’ only managed three 2nd places but one was enough as he raced against the Molnar prepared Manx Norton of Mathew Hebb. The Clipper after an Engine rebuild due to the big end seizure after breaking the 2009 lap record at the Anglesey circuit two rounds before, was being restricted to 8000rpm instead of the usual 9500rpm. But 2nd places were good enough against a £30,000 replica Molnar Manx as after an horrendous nine hour drive from Wales the decision was taken to go home early which took just under six hours!

The 250cc ‘Cotrell Crusader’ had a test outing on the basis the engine was not to be reved over 8000rpm rather than the usual 9000 rpm even so it was in a constant battle for a podium with Geoff Mills on his 250cc Ducati loosing out by a wheel to take fourth. The 500c Fury after a rebuild and a long wait to have pistons maufactured went out only to come in with electrical gremlins causing a misfire which was sorted by brother Paul, however Ian went out again and after starting from the back of the grid passed about sixteen riders before coming in once with a ‘horrible’ noise coming from the engine. The decision was made to take it home with a suspected big end failure! But on inspection today it was found to be a broken tooth on the timing pinion. So all three bikes will be ready for the start of the 2019 season.
Dave Henshaw
Performance Classics, Photos by Lee Hollick