Last weekend was Corsa Motoclassica 2009 – and it was really awesome. I rode my bike up and Jaxon drove his car – it was a caravan of awesome.

I’ve included the write-up after the jump – which also includes more pictures. Check it out.

We started out from Los Angeles around 8 a.m., and I checked the weather for Lancaster and Rosamond, and both said “20 to 30 mph winds, with gusts up to 40 mph.” This is far from the still, warm weather I encountered last year. We hit San Francisquito Canyon about an hour or so later, and the wind wasn’t too bad and my bike was really running great. I had about 60 miles on the new tires… but it was either them finally breaking in, me feeling more confident, or a combination of both that made the canyon ride really awesome. The road is standard two-lane blacktop, and once I got past a few cars in front of me I really opened it up. The Avon Road Riders feel great on all turns – they really make the bike feel different. I was taking some turns at 70 and didn’t even realize it until I looked down at my speedo. Oops.

We stopped a few places in the canyon and enjoyed the Los Angeles National Forest. It didn’t look too dry, despite being in the third year of a major drought. Jaxon brought along his camera and took a lot of pictures of me on my bike, which is cool because I have ZERO.

The wind really started to pick up once we dropped down into the desert. I picked a slightly different route from last year and the road that lead into the desert was twisty and flat – perfect for really opening up the bike. What a blast!

There are a lot of long, straight roads leading into Willow Springs Raceway. The bike was wide open for about 5-10 minutes at certain points. I found when I came to a stop, my bike had trouble maintaining an idle. I’m not sure if the old carbs were having trouble keeping up, but I could start the bike right back up. I noticed after the entire trip that my idle had seemed to adjust itself lower. I think that when the carb slides are open and all the vibration from the high speeds sort of slowly turned my idles screws out. Easy fix… barely a quarter turn with a screwdriver and its set back to 1200 solid.

We pulled into Willow Springs around 11:30 – a solid 30 minutes before the races started. Right off the bat there were a ton of beautiful bikes visible from the road. However, when I pulled in to the motorcycle parking area, there were a lot less bikes than last year. And once again, it looks like I was only one of a handful of vintage bikes that rode in.

This is the first bike we spotted, just sitting in the parking lot. Excitement followed!

We poked around the bike show and looked at some truly stunning show bikes – including a couple very nice Hondas from Lossa Engineering (pictured below). Nice to see a show-quality bike with plates on it.

The swap meet didn’t have as much stuff as last year, but there was a good assortment of stuff ranging from bare frames and “bikes in a box” to complete motorcycles ready to ride. I didn’t pick up anything at the swap, but I will relay this long story turned short. I missed out on a rolling frame CB160 for $20. By about 5 seconds – and if the seller had any sort of scrupels he would have given it to me. Here is a picture of me checking it out before the seller got back.

Still kind of pissed about it.

The races were great! The first was the CB160 class, followed by 200’s, 350’s and a few open classes. The later races with the 750’s were a lot of fun, as well as the sidecar class which is always a thrilling and sort of bizarre sight.

After a few hours of watching the races, drinking a few beers, and drooling over bikes we decided to head back. By this time the wind had really picked up and had significantly dropped the temperature. Luckily I had Jaxon’s car to stow my winter motorcycle jacket, which really cut down on the windchill. I had a thick sweatshirt underneath the jacket, but after struggling against the wind through the desert and the first hald of the road heading back into the canyons, I pulled over and grabbed my second sweatshirt to layer on underneath, and I was good. We stopped on a small decline, and I wasn’t thinking and my bike rolled off the kick stand and fell over into me. This is the first time I’ve dropped my bike. There wasn’t any damage as my leg was there to stop it and I grabbed it pretty quickly, but I felt foolish.

We took the I-5 to the 405 and got caught in some Saturday traffic on the way back. But we got back in reasonable time and I clocked about 165 miles on the bike that day. It was good to get out of Los Angeles, even for a day, and it was also awesome to spend some time with my good buddy Jaxon.

Until next year!

There are a lot more pictures of motorcycles in my Corsa Motoclassica 2009 Flickr set.

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