Daytona70 – Honda CB 750 CR – History

27 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Daytona70 – Honda CB 750 CR – History
Honda CB 750

Honda CB 750 Racing Type. myth’s resurrection

Historic motorcycles.

There are motorcycles, and then there are historic motorcycles .

There are sought-after motorcycles, and then there are unique machines, long lost, but thought or imagined to survive somewhere. These machines become obsessions for collectors, museums, and seekers of fact.

There is, or at least, there was, the Honda with which Dick Mann won the Daytona 200 mile motorcycle race in 1970.

Honda CB 750

Tokyo, motorcycle show in October of 1968. a mythical motorcycle.

When Honda unveiled their CB 750 motorcycle at the Tokyo motorcycle show in October in 1968, an entire industry gasped; so too, did every motorcyclist.

With its four-cylinder engine, five-speed transmission, and disc brake, its level of sophistication was unprecedented. The CB 750’s engineering brilliance, immaculate fit and finish, breath-taking performance, and extraordinary value for money were about to position Honda as the world’s biggest motorcycle market. the United States.

Race. the Racing Type.

Some CB 750s were converted from road specification and raced with success in France in 1969, most remarkably winning the Bol d’Or 24 hour race at Montlhéry that year. The earliest racers were essentially prototypes which would lead Honda to craft the four factory racers destined for Daytona in March of the following year. After Daytona, it appears two of the bikes were shipped to France where they were utilized in endurance races in the early ’70s.

Daytona 1970

The victory, 200 Miles s Daytona race, march 1970.

There was no faster or better route to that goal than to put one of America’s most illustrious racers on the motorcycle and have him ride it for 200 miles at top speed to win America’s most prestigious motorcycle race.

Honda to the lead in the U.S. market.

Honda won immediate credibility.

Honda CB 750
Honda CB 750

The old edict, Win on Sunday, sell on Monday never proved more true. Now, against the backdrop of 100 years of motorcycle history and the production of 10 million CB 750s, it can be argued that Honda’s victory at Daytona in 1970 was the most important single race victory, ever, for any manufacturer.

Ironically, Honda had not thought of the CB750 as a potential Daytona winner. But Bob Hansen, well aware of what was involved in adapting the CB 750 to race readliness, warned Honda management in Japan. If you don’t build a CB 750 for Daytona, there will be other people who will. And they won’t win. Although, it was created almost begrudgingly, the Honda CB 750‘s Daytona victory propelled Honda to the lead in the U.S. market.

The victory also reverberated around the world and had similar effects on Honda’s position in the global market.

An expressly built motorcycle for 1970 Daytona race.

Mann’s Honda was anything but standard, of course. The bike had been specially engineered and hand-built in Honda’s Grand Prix race shop in Japan. When American Honda’s race team opened the crates at Daytona, they found the most exotic, and most expensive, motorcycle ever raced in the United States.

Hundreds of racing privateers bought CB750 street motorcycles and converted them into racers, often with CR 750 parts supplied by Honda’ subsidiary, the Racing Services Club.

But Honda built only four trues factory racers .

These machines were radically different from privateer converted street bikes. The Racing Type versions were expressly built for the 1970 Daytona race. Originally, they were to be ridden by four British riders affiliated with Honda’s European-based Grand Prix racing effort.

Later, one bike was assigned to Mann. The three British riders bikes all experienced mechanical failures, while Mann wont on to victory.

Honda CB 750
Honda CB 750
Honda CB 750
Honda CB 750
Honda CB 750
Honda CB 750

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