Ixion rides a Norton

What I rode in 1920

As a motorcycle journalist few can come close to Ixion, doyen of The Motor Cycle. His riding career spanned an era: from primitives with hot-tube ignition at the turn of the century, through to the 1950s and sophisticated machines like the LE Velocette of which he wrote so enthusiastically. Luckily for us, his writings live on not only in back issues of The Motor Cycle, but also in his books. If you can, seek out copies of " Reminiscences of Motor Cycling" and "Motor Cycle Cavalcade" - there is nothing like reading motorcycle history written by someone who was actually there.

During 1920, Ixion was lucky enough to take a spin on a "T.T. Norton", identical - save for the non-valanced front guard - with the machine taking shape in my shed. He recorded his thoughts in The Motor Cycle:

This machine is, of course, a veritable dreadnought. There is hardly anything on wheels which it cannot catch and leave. Its acceleration is terrific, and its chain drive as smooth as a silken belt...

Sadly my account stops here, as I don't have the full issue of the magazine, just a single yellowed page pasted into a scrapbook. Not even the date on it. And just when it was getting exciting...

If anyone can help with the rest of the article, please let me know. In the meantime, I will relax with the warm glow which comes with having a veritable dreadnought resting in the shed.

Copyrightę Leon Mitchell 1999

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