Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Came across a great interview with Hall of Famer Gary Scott on the Motorbike Archives site. The website has posted all kinds of articles and ads from long gone motorcycle magazines of the '60s and '70s. Bike reviews, race reports, product advertisements have all been preserved and are available for reading and download.

Gary Scott is most remembered for his tenure on the Harley Factory team which brought him the 1975 AMA GNC title. But like many from that time Scott started his career on a Triumph. In 1972 he put together one of the greatest debut seasons ever, recording two wins, finishing runner-up to Mark Brelsford in the GNC standings, and claiming Rookie of the Year honors. After moving to the Triumph Factory team in 1973, he avoided the sophomore slump and once again claimed the #2 spot, this time behind the great Kenny Roberts. Gary spent 1974 and '75 on board a Factory XR750 before returning to privateer status in 1976 - and returning to Triumphs on TT courses. In 1983 at the Peoria TT, Gary Scott along with Brad Hurst, put classic Triumphs in a GNC Main for the final time. It would be 24 years before another machine carrying the name would accomplish that feat.

In the article Scott revisits his now famous rookie season, his preference of half-miles over the down and dirty short tracks, and his ultimate goal: the AMA Championship.

Also discussed is his move, after his rookie year, from a privateer on a Triumph to factory rider:

"Gary signed a full contract with Triumph in early November. He, Romero and Mann will be that firm's only team riders. And the two-time National winner is now even more confident at his dirt track chances.

'Ever since Harley-Davidson got their alloy machines sorted out, they were the rage of the circuit. I was just about to sign with Harley, but Triumph came along so I went with them. I know that Triumph has been putting in a great deal of work on their own bikes to make them more competitive and I've been told that the new machines are putting out about five more horsepower. I don't think it's a flash reading, either.'"

Check out the rest of the article at The Motorbike Archives

[While the Motorbike Archives site and the articles posted on it are priceless, they do make it painfully clear just how far GNC Flat Track has fallen. To see how much coverage mainstream motorcycle magazines devoted to racing is all at once amazing and depressing. The Gary Scott interview mentions famed college football announcer Keith Jackson (thats him in the photo at the top) calling the action at the Ascot Half-mile for ABC's Wild World of Sports. GNC racing was as big as NASCAR, if not bigger, at that time. It's now run by it. This past needs to be remembered as a goal for the future. It happened before and with the right marketing and planning it can happen again.]

1 comment:

  1. Brett,

    I was just speaking of how neat it would be to get a sort of "Then and Now" Gary Scott interview done and posted to your website...I know several people that would like to know how the former champ is doing these days.

    Mike Veach
    Triumph 79