FROM better-than-new to what-the-hell-were-they-thinking?, Perth bike buffs rolled out their most spectacular made-in-Japan machinery today for the ninth Japanese Bike show.
A steady flow of traffic rolled through the Burswood Outdoor Theatre venue, with most patrons spending as much time ogling one another’s daily-ride bikes in the carpark as they did drooling over the concourse-to-crazy customs behind the gates.
This year’s event paid tribute to Kawasaki’s venerable Z1 900, the bike that dethroned the Honda 750 Four in 1972 as the world’s greatest superbike and has gone on to become arguably the most collectable Japanese bike of all time.
And weren’t there some superb examples sun baking by the Swan River today? No-one dares chop, cafe or otherwise customise Z1s any more (well, no one we know anyway), so today’s line-up all looked gloriously stock, beautifully polished and maintained to a standard that approached obsession.
Greg Haylin’s jaffa-coloured 1973 Z1 took top mark from the judges, while Peter Watts’ candy super blue 1975 Z1B got the nod from the crowd to win the People’s Choice award.
But there was a lot more to the show than Z1s. One row back was a trophy-winning Z1300 alongside a very nice Z1R (both from the shed of Causeway Kawasaki’s Norm Larkin), as well as a six-cylinder Honda CBX, an early GoldWing, a beautifully restored 1972 CB250 and an unmolested CB450 Bomber.
We gave the Nikon a workout to collect the shots below, and spoke with some of the owners.