DAKAR 1985 | Honda, magnesium for the engine!

The Hondas that took part in the Paris-Dakar are derived from the new XL 600 L Electric Starter, of which deliveries in Italy are starting in this period. In the racing version, however, it has been preserved, for weight matters, kick starter. The frame is the standard one with the rear part decomposable instead of fixed.

And’ the solution of the bolted rear has been chosen to allow a faster intervention on the suspension, the classic Pro-Link. The step is longer (1550 millimeters against 1410) to ensure greater stability at high speeds on desert tracks. The lengthening of the wheelbase was achieved by working on the front end and with the adoption of a longer swingarm.




The forks are aesthetically the same as those of standard, but have been modified both as calibration, with the adoption of springs suitable for the greatest weight, than as braking, with a different system of pumps inside. The monoshock is also modified in the calibration and braking system. The braking system is standard, with a disc at the front 240 millimeters and a double piston floating caliper.

Wheels are traditional (in the standard motorcycle, on the other hand, new concept wheels are mounted in which the radius has the fixing system on the hub instead of on the rim). Depending on the terrain, inner tubes or mousses were used. The engine has a special magnesium alloy crankcase, to save weight, while the cylinder is made of cast iron like that-the normal.




They have been prepared two versions, one of 591 displacement, the other of 630 (the standard engine is a 589). In the race was used the 591, for which Honda declares a power to the wheel of about 44 horses in 6600 RPM. In both versions we intervened both on the bore and on the stroke (97 x 80 and 100,3 X 80 against the 100 x 75 of the standard engine), and for-so the crankshaft was made specially. The camshaft is special, and offers the advantage of better use at low revs.

The compression ratio has been increased to 9 : 1 (from 8,6 : 1). The carburetors and the clutch are the standard ones, while a slightly shorter fifth ratio has been adopted in the gearbox. The air filter, composed of two normal sponge filters, is placed in the back of the tank. Under the seat, instead of the original filter, there is the additional tank of gasoline. The capacity is 32 litres for the main tank and 11 for the one under the saddle.




The fairing encloses the headlight and the oil cooler, an additional headlight is mounted next to it. The instrumentation, including the trip-master, is electronic.
La Honda, derived from the new XL 600 L Electric Starter, exploits fairly sophisticated technical solutions, like the magnesium alloy cast crankcase.

In the photos: the air filter at the back of the tank; the handlebar with the cassette for the "road-book" and the digital instrumentation; you can also see the additional headlight mounted on the side of the fairing.

Article taken from Motociclismo April 1985


Dakar 1985 | story of a Dakarian find

Text by Nicholas Bertaccini
Despite having been on so many posters hanging in the room or garage, the paris-dakar pilots have always been normal people, neighbors, classmates, childhood friends. They all have behind them stories similar to those of all of us, only at some point they pursued with great conviction a dream. A beautiful poem says that "taking yourself seriously is the only weapon of those who can't build talent from skills".

Our "heroes" have been able to recognize their talents and turn them into talent, that's why they don't need to take it too seriously and people remain in hand, Genuine.
Over the years we have told stories that have affected them, some of which reported directly by them. This one that follows is a nice story, that we happened to facilitate, Somehow.

It all starts with the #8217;meeting with Beppe Gauri at the beginning 2019, step that led to the realization of Dakar Lens. Beppe was one of the first to confront the potential return of image of certain companies. He who had started almost begging for sponsorships and ended up building a career. Like many, especially at ’beginning, what was advancing from one edition became part of the budget of the next. Then equipment was sold, motion and what’ to fund the next #8217;enterprise, at least the #8217;start.




When we spoke to Beppe he confided to us that he had slowly recovered much of the material concerning him, going up between buyers and collectors.
But the passion for Paris-Dakar has also put us in touch with fans and lovers of the race. One of these, maybe the most iconic one, it's definitely Pietro Manganoni, african race lover and guzzista up to the marrow.

One day he sends us pictures of a race suit he found in a market., a suit that the seller says belonged to one who "did the Dakar".
He sends us the photos and it's clear that it's a Gualini suit, that of 1985 riding a Yamaha Ténéré.
Let's turn the pictures to Beppe who confirms that those pants and that jacket are just his.


Whatsapp Image 2021-07-02 at 18.37.45 (5)

At that point Peter contacts the seller again and opts the complete. You see it in pictures, white and red with the patches of all the sponsors that the good Beppe had collected, Acerbis to Brembo.
The next step is to connect Pietro and Beppe for a rendezvous in Bergamo, hometown of both. For the occasion#8217 peter will also involve Claudio Towers, bringing together a part of that Bergamo battalion that gave the #8217 assault on the Dakar in the 1980s.

departure 1985

DAKAR 1985 | The Chronicle of the Race

We missed him very little. After six editions of the Paris-Dakar in which the Italians, As a matter of fact, they had never shone, this year the African marathon was going to turn into a triumph for our colors. The triumph was not there, complicit in a good deal of bad luck, who put out the assistance of the Yamaha-Belgarda (assistance that Franco Picco would need extreme), and also accomplice a discussed decision of the organizers, who heavily penalised the Belgarda's colour bearer in the crucial phase of the race.

There was no triumph but there was a global Italian statement of all importance. Peak at the end was third, after leading the leaderboard for about half the race (not bad for one at the first experience in the Dakar). Behind Peak andrea's placed Marinoni. At the final goal, Zanichelli, Gagliotti - Wikipedia, Balestrieri and Gauri.


The Italian success was completed by Cagiva, that after winning several specials with Auriol and Picard took eighth and twelfth place. Success is gone, for the second time in a row, to BMW's Belgian Gaston Rahier, behind which jean claude olivier ended up, a French who in life is the importer of Yamaha in his country and who is famous for the elegance that distinguishes him when he is not riding the bike and that has shown that he is perfectly comfortable in a handful of professionals of two wheels.

But here's how the race went day after day. I start all French, unstoppable rise of Franco Picco and Gaston comebackdeparture 1985-1 Rahier: this is the synthesis from the prologue French on arrival in Dakar, in detail here's the diary. 30 December Theatre at the prologue of the seventh Paris-Dakar the piloting school of Cergy-Pontoise, about thirty kilo-meters west of Paris. About fifty thousand spectators present, despite the polar cold, to admire the participants and their evolutions on an artificial path that immediately put a strain on the skills of the individual.

The best in the prologue was the French Lara with Honda, followed by fellow baron, also on Honda, and Bacou, about Yamaha. The best of The Italian Findanno, eighth, followed by De Petri and Gian Paolo Marinoni, thirteenth and fifteenth. January The actual competition begins with the transfer leg from Paris to Sète, in the south of France. The route winds on 1.076 kilometers from the rue national number 20.

Environmental conditions, characterized by a very rigid temperature, do not favor motorcyclists some of whom even risk freezing. One of the favorites, The Belgian Rahier, is hit by a spectator's car; the accident fortunately does not compromise the rahier race that can continue.

2 January 11 transfer by ship from Sète to Algiers, which was supposed to be the last chance for competitors to rest before facing Africa, for many it turns into a real nightmare.

Sea conditions cause a general malaise and many, during the night spent by ferry, they can't turn a blind eye.

3 January Africa's first stop, transfer from Algiers to Ourgla to 628 kilometers, departs only in the late afternoon due to the delay of the ferries due to adverse weather conditions (the latest competitors even land at the 18) . Among other things, the participants, crossing the Atlas Mountains, they have to deal with weather conditions that are not really 'African' because they encounter fog, cold and ice on the roads.

4 January With the Stage Ourgla-El Golea, and the first special test of 239 kilometers, the competition gets into the heart of the unfolding. French Lalay, winner of the Paris 'prologue', immediately finds himself in trouble. At the end of the day, however, in the first three places there are also three transalpine pilots: Baron, Bacou and Neveu, Bacou on Yamaha the other two on Honda. Good quarter Crossbowmen with Honda, while Marinoni and Auriol, both with Cagiva-Ligier, occupy the fifth and sixth squares respectively.

5 January Fourth stage from El Golea to In Salah and second special test. Franco Picco, with the Yamaha of the Belgarda team, takes third place that allows him to occupy the fourth position in the general classification. In the top three still the French Baron, Bacou and Neveu.

6 January The route of the fifth stage winds from In Salah to In Amguel through 600 kilometers of desert track. New Acute by Franco Picco: taking another third place, the Belgarda rider jumps to second place in the general classification. Bacou passes the leadership after the previous leader, Baron, stumbled across an accident.

7 January The sixth stage takes the competitors to Tamanrasset and does not involve major changes to the ranking. In addition to Picco, always second, the Italians Findanno are well placed, Crossbowmen and Andrea Marinoni, set-thyme respectively, eighth and none.

8 January The Paris-Dakar is painted with Italian colors, at least as far as the means are concerned. In the seventh stage, Tamanrasset to Ilferouane, the victory goes to Picard's Cagiva-Ligier. Bacou is still in charge of the general classification, while Lalay overtakes Peak and takes second place.

9 January Stage eight takes competitors to Agadez, on the edge of the Ténéré Desert. The stage victory is of the American Stearns with yamaha, preceding Auriol with the Cagiva-Ligier. General classification leader Bacou finishes fourth and Peak Seventh.

10 January The air of the Ténéré is good for Rahier; the Belgian, that up until now had been a little’ in shadow, wins the stage from Agadez to Dirkou and takes fourth place in the general classification. No change in top three positions still held by Bacou, Lalay and Peak.

11 January For the first time in the history of Paris-Dakar an Italian takes the lead in the general classification; it's Franco Picco leading the race ahead of Belgian Rahier, winner of today's stage. The success of the Italian patrol, in the stage that brings the caravan back from Dirkou td Agadez passing through Ilferouane, it's Ziobale: five drivers in the top ten. Bacou and La-lay found themselves in trouble. in the desert with the compass.

13 January After a day's rest in Agadez the race resumes with a megatappa of 1244 kilometers to travel in two days. The first special between Agadez and Tchin Tabaraden sees a new partial victory by Stearns ahead of Auriol. Peak and Rahier, coming fifth and fourth respectively, have retained the top two positions in the general classification.

14 January To Gao, in Mali, the supertappa started by Agadez ends. Rahier wins second special by reducing his detachment from Peak, still firmly in command of the general classification, while Findanno is third. 15 January Twelfth stage from Gao to Tombouctou and Peak still in command of the race. His primacy, however, is increasingly undermined by Rahier, that gnaws another 9'45” bringing-yes to only 13'39”.

16 January Peak re-establishes distances by taking a third stage place, while Rahier is only fifth. Victory, in the hamlet that takes competitors from Tombouctou to Nema, is the prerogative of the color carrier of the Cagiva Auriol, while a bad fall knocks findanno out of the race.

17 January Nothing done in the fourteenth stage. A very violent sandstorm forces the organizers to suspend the race and make the competitors reach the tichit finish line in a group. The suspension is propitious for Franco Picco who, a few minutes before, had blamed a mechanical failure that could have made him lose the primacy.

18 January The stage of the 18 january is divided into two semi-tassels to recover the special suppressed the previous day. The first special goes to Picard's Cagiva while Peak, Fifth, consolidates its position as a leader. It goes a little’ less well the second special where rahier approaches worryingly at peak; however the big trouble happens right on arrival in kiffa, where the Yamaha-Belgarda rider is penalized for stamping late and Rahier takes the lead.

19 January A new suspension is decided to allow still-missing competitors to reach the caravan. The 20 two specials will be played again to recover the suppressed one.

20 January In the first special, Stearns wins while Rahier and Picco win, who retain the top two places in the rankings, arrive delayed after having the wrong way both. The second special is baron's prerogative in front of Rahier, while Peak, only tenth, also surpassed in the rankings by French Olivier.

21 January The special is won by Baron and Rahier retains command over Olivier. Peak, now for many days without assistance, tries everything but in the end he has to settle for third place in the general classification ahead of Andrea Marinoni.

22 January There are still two specials on sand before arriving in Dakar, but by now the games are done. Rahier wins his second Paris-Dakar ahead of Olivier; Peak comes third while Marinoni, Fourth, completes the Italian success.

The motorcycle classification
1 RAHIER Gaston (Belgium-BMW) in 88h45’01”;
2 Olivier Jean Claude (Fran-cia-Yamaha) at 57'40”;
3 Franco Peak (Italy-Yamaha) at 1h08’02”;
4 Marinoni Andrea (Italy-Yamaha) at 3h05'37”;
5 Neveu (France-Honda) at 3h25'48”;
6 Stearns (USA-Yamaha) at 3h25'49”;
7 Auriol (France-Cagiva) at 5h09'40”;
8 Charliat (France-Honda) at 5h12'28”;
9 Verhaeghe Municipality (Barigo) at 7h43'51”;
10 Courteous (Yamaha) at 9h55'35”; follow other.

Taken from Motorcycling 1985

1985-1 rahier

Dakar 1985 | Rahier and Picco tell each other

The Long Beards, the faces dug, the reddish powder stuck on him, the recessed eyes, hands with huge calluses, dirty bikes, unpainted, Welded, patched up. Paris-Dakar veterans look like this on saly-portudal beach, 80 kilometers from the finish, the night before the big arrival on the ocean wetdry of the Senegalese capital.


The great adventure is almost over. The real heroes are the bikers, arrived in about thirty of the 180 who were — among the survivors also six Italians: Peak Three, Marinoni fourth, Zanichelli 13°, Crossbowmen then disqualified for being towed in the last stage together with Gagliotti - Wikipedia and Gauri. As soon as they arrive they look like scary ghosts, they look like corpses riding motorcycles. Those who have slept for 22 nights on average three to four hours each time and drove for twelve hours, Thirteen, fourteen or even more, in the middle of the desert or on the dangerous clay tracks.

Winning the Paris-Dakar, says rahier, it's nicer than conquering a world cross. Peak: 'The French didn't want an Italian winner'.

They're tired on the edge of collapse. Just one night, though, spent by the sea, just a five- or six-hour sleeper, just the almost certainty that we've made it to review, the morning after, of human beings again, people who gladly and without arrogance, at least among motorcyclists, your own adventure. Gaston Rahier he's a blond Belgian, small little with coffees neither long nor short, and nice: looks like the comic book asterix. And’ him who won, riding the bmw mammoth. He made it for the second year in a row, bingeing the first place just when he seemed inevitably defeated by our Franco Picco. "Winning a Paris-Dakar, " said Rahier, two-time motocross world champion — it's nicer than winning in the cross.

1985-2 rahier

To get to this beach you must have spat blood. Here more than the bike is the man who wins, in the cross instead motion and assistance are too important. This test is nice because here all bikers have the same problem, that is, they are alone, in the desert or in a forest, so there is solidarity among all, you help each other, you try to be together. With Peak, that I've known since the cross, we're really friends, we've come a long way together.. We find that Rahier's official BMW has changed a lot compared to the previous edition. "Bmw has done a lot of work on the bike," Rahier replies.. The engine today has more torque, the best seal frame, suspensions work more effectively and the whole thing is lighter". Ten meters from the winner lying on the sand together with other Italians here is the defeated, i.e. Franco Picco.


And’ with teammate Marinoni, with the two honda-italia drivers Balestrieri and Zanichelli, with private Gualini. I'm waiting to face the last effort, but the refreshing wind and ocean view has already transformed them compared to the previous evening. We ask Picco where he lost the race. "I would say — replies our interlocutor — that I lost it in Kiffa, the day I got lost together with Rahier. And’ happened because Auriol had lost a platform and had stopped to replace it. If I had followed Auriol, i wouldn't have missed it because he, the 'desert fox', never gets it wrong, while Rahier has less sense of orientation. But there more than the first I lost the second place because losing we allowed others to come under..

But when he believed he had won? "In Tichit, — Picco replies — when they have re-made the ranking three times. The first time They had given me 44 minutes ahead of Rahier, the second my advantage had been reduced to 23 minutes and the third they had placed me in second place less than seven minutes. I was sure I had arrived in time to check, Instead, then, they said it wasn't so. I felt for a moment de-stolen of victory. I thought it wasn't nice to treat myself like that.. Anyway, even third okay, Via! I think the French were bore bore that an Italian was the winner., One, then, arrived for the first vol-ta. Already arriving in Dakar, Believe, it's a big satisfaction. And’ so beautiful that when there are concomitances between cross-country races and African races I will choose Africa".


So these French people made it a little bit’ Dirty? "It clearly bothered them," picco says, "that it was an Italian who won.. When in the Ténéré I started in the lead they said “who starts in front here you lose” and instead they came-to just 11 minutes from Rahier. I held on and then everyone was amazed and even pre-occupied. From then on they kept a special eye on us and we had to give up assistance because our vehicles were out of the race and only those who are still in the running can assist. One hand, though, the damage to all even the vehicles out of the race, though, to us has been banned more than others. Good thing they helped us a little’ the French of Sonauto-Yamaha ».

What was the most difficult stretch? "There was the myth of the Ténéré desert," says Picco, "but mauritania's desert is worse: Here, the sand is very fine, like water, submerges everything. And even the hard tracks of the final stages were terrible. The third final stage involved crossing a forest following the, so it was written on the “road-book property”, the footprints and tracks of animals, too bad only that of the tracks there in the middle there will have been twenty thousand and all tight for a motorcycle, let's imagine for cars and trucks".


In such a race, what are the problems of navigation and orientation? "I had participated in the Pharaohs Rally," says Picco, "and I had made a mistake and learned, so I had decided to follow the “road-book property”, instinct and, if you could, Auriol, that's all.". The illusion of making it for Picco is over after being in charge of the race for a long time, for the pilo-ti of the Honda-Italia team, Instead, much earlier. Crossbowmen and Zanichelli blamed technical woes and bad luck, while demonstrating, as pilots, to be at the level of the best. Zanichelli came to an end with his left foot destroyed. Balestrieri was disqualified for being towed a few kilometers before Dakar when he was forced to end up at sea to avoid indigenous children too warm and the organization noticed and was inflexible as it was for Gagliotti and Gualini.

Taken from Motorcycling March 1985


Dakar 1985 | Used Morini motorcycle makes good rally

Typically when it comes to twin-cylinders for African rallies until recently you could only refer to BMW, and after the Rally d'Algeria in November also at the Ligier-Cagiva with Ducati engine. But there's another one of twin-cylinder, italianissima moreover since it is the Morini, which also maintains the compatriots suspensions Marzocchi where they generally focus on the Swedes Ohlins.

Three years earlier the trainer Valentini of Prato he worked hard with a well-prepared team, but he was mocked by a distribution strap that left all the pilots on foot. In 1985 they tried again Cecccherelli - Wikipedia — but unfortunately for him the race lasted only one week (Fracture) — and Gagliotti - Wikipedia that went all the way to the mythical beach, of Dakar with a bike more than used: "Morini went well, helped us a little bit’ luck, and we did it. The assistance was what it was (Valentini and Deganello in the Fiat Campagnola already prepared for 1'83) and he did too much. Motorcycles are just the same as two years ago: chassis and advance as standard, of course tank increased by 38 liters, different shock absorbers. They are certainly outdated compared to the others but overall they have been able to get here. In addition to being 17th until the last stage I am always second in the class up to 500».

Deganello: "This year morini's commitment has not been, the participation was in private form of the Valentini dealer mostly for Gagliotti's determination to make the race. Despite the release of camel's new model with single shock absorber and a certainly better bike we did not have time to prepare it and we preferred the same bike as two years ago. Marzocchi has revised our suspensions (they're not even new so, n.d.r.) and morini the engines. Valentini made available everything that was already there: motorcycle and Campagnola, Spare parts, equipment and himself..


Dakar 1985 | Beppe Gauri. Withdrawn it will be her!

by Nicolò Bertaccini

And now that's enough, this pebble is right to take it out of your shoes, Indeed, from the boots. Because there are a thousand documents around, all officers and on these appear only judgments: out of maximum time, retired, Disqualified, seventy-second with twenty-two finished at the finish line (!?). Instead, on Pink Lake and Dakar, in 1985 Beppe Gualini got there. That's it.. Certain, in his own way. But if you break an engine, you get towed, you fall into the sea, you pull spare parts i miss you were jeeg robot, then it's right that you're recognized what you've done.

Said, Year 1985, our Good Samaritan Gualini is riding a Yamaha Tenere set up with a kit Byrd. It has reached the penultimate stage, the Pink Lake and the finish line are one step away. It's not long, it's about managing what's left of the bike, an eye on out-of-time and it's done. The unexpected happens, Indeed, yet another unexpected. The bike stops. Beppe does a thousand checks, thousand checks but the bike no longer has any, the engine is gone, Cooked. It's not long, you can already smell saltwater but it's not enough. Beppe does not demur. He tries. From there on incredibly passes the byrd service truck (Belgarda Yamaha Racing Division) that "they didn't even stop, they knocked me down an engine and they left".

The truck was caught following the official drivers Belgarda, New but stops to figure out what Beppe needed. You need an engine, at one stage from arrival there is the possibility to unload one on the fly and let it try to mount it and make it work. A non-new engine, indeed a little’ undone. But with great merit: it would turn on and it worked. For Beppe starts a race against time, disassemble and reassemble in order to reach the limit. Then, after about twenty days of competition, with the bike that now stands together only by miracle and a physical fatigue that can hardly be imagined, ours starts to replace the engine of his Ténéré. Complex stuff in a workshop.




But Beppe has method, Knowledge, patience and inhuman strength. Replaces the engine and restarts. Certain, the bike starts again lightened by some useless infrastructure, as you can see in some photos. On the other hand, it's not like he could finish the commas., the important thing was to get to the bivouac with the bike on, then he could patch up further in view of the last day of the race. And we're on the fateful last day, the last stop, the one where in each driver's head echoes a single phrase "don't do shit". Yet, as we've seen happen for so many, the last km is always the most insidious.

Beppe runs with his Yamaha that now seems to have come out of the movie Mad Max. Runs along the wetdry, where the sand is more compact and easier to cross. Obviously an unexpected happens, otherwise it wouldn't be the Dakar. He's proceeding with two other pilots, are close enough. Suddenly an abnormal wave or in any case pushed a little’ further on the shoreline and here are the three who find themselves on the ground. Beppe takes a nice dip. He gets up biasing something in bergamo and tries to restart the bike by dumping anger and frustration on the starter pedal. Nothing. Try again and nothing. Try again with more and more anger until he breaks the kicksarter.

It's over., the bike no longer starts. Even if it's done by now, could load his bike on his shoulders and get to the finish line. Fate, however, did not end with Beppe and put another participant on the track. They tie the bike and yamaha gets carried away for a few meters. A hundred will be needed before a mumble and an outbreak announce the restart. The maneuver is not one of those prohibited, get help to start the bike is granted. It's done, the bike starts again and Beppe can take it to the finish line, holding your breath. Twenty-third recites the document in his hands. And in the end, among a thousand sites, thousand reportage, thousand official documents the only one that contains the truth, for us, is that of Gualini. He in the 1985 in Dakar we got there, within the time limit.


Dakar 1985 | La Cagiva gives itself Hubert Auriol

If anyone can judge BMW and Ligier-Cagiva, it's definitely Hubert Auriol., the thirty-French winner with the BMW of two Paris-Dakar, this year at Cagiva to develop the 750 Elefant. Of course Auriol admits the superiority of his current bike.

Auriol 1985

"I can't get that unbalanced – says – because I tried the Ligier-Cagiva only in the Rally of Algeria whose route is very different from that of the Paris-Dakar; the initial impression is that the power between the two bikes is more or less equivalent; the rear suspension of the Cagiva is much more efficient, as for weight I believe that the Ligier-Cagiva is about fifteen kilograms lower than the BMW, so...'

For the former BMW driver and 'king' of African races, the Cagiva is better

Malignants say you left bmw because of rivalry with Rahier, the former Belgian cross-countryman who was hired to back you up two years ago and in the last edition blew you the victory…

"And a simplistic explanation this: i changed teams for several reasons. After so many years spent with BMW I was looking for new stimuli, and collaborating with an enthusiastic team like that of Cagiva to realize a winning bike from nothing is a huge stimulus".


"No, he wasn't the cause.".

Auriol 1985 Copy

The Ligier-Cagiva team is actually Italian or French?

'Marinoni, Member of the Commission.. one of the pilots, it's Italian; two mechanics in tow are Italian, everybody else is French. We split up our homework: La Cagiva built the bike, modified it following our directions after the first tests; I, who have more experience of African racing than them, organized the team..

At the Rally of Algeria the Ligier-Cagiva suffered a current failure: the breakage of the gearbox bearings and the burning of the clutch discs. For the Dakar the problem will be solved with new bearings and with the adoption of an integral oil cooling circuit that lubricates gearbox and clutch.

Taken from Rhombus

cagiva-3 property

Dakar 1985 | La Cagiva Elefant, 1st 750 according to Giampaolo Marinoni

The Desert? For a bergamot accustomed to mountains like me it is still wonderful; I like to run there, I like African slopes. i like raids because they're a school of life, a way of feeling free". Yet Giampaolo Marinoni. 26 years, born in the province of Bergamo, a past as a professional runner in European regularity races, a militancy that still lasts in the fiamme oro sports group, those to which many cross-countrymen belong, still door on the face, days away, the signs of "his" desert.

Giampaolo Marinoni doesn't believe in BMW's superiority

Left hanging for the rupture of the clutch of the Ligier-Cagiva in the penultimate stage of the Rally algeria, Marinoni first walked a dozen kilometers alone in the sand, then he found a ride on the Yamaha 600 of ’American Stearns, finished out of maximum time, and finally he fell ruinously out of his face with the #8217;American because these, perhaps for breaking the rear suspension or for putting the wheels in two different grooves, had lost control of the bike in full straight.


Grudge against the Marinoni desert does not bring any: "I would be ready to start again today for another race", says. You won't have to wait long because the Paris-Dakar, the race in which he will take part on the Ligier-Cagiva alongside Auriol and Picard to counter the pace at BMW, Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki, will start in exactly a month: on January first. Marinoni and Auriol took the African race very seriously: The Ligier-Cagiva (but who knows why the name Ducati, which is the brand that supplied the engine and whose racing department has materially worked behind the bike is never mentioned…) the moment he debuts at Paris-Dakar he will have only two test races behind him: the Spanish Baja and the rally of Algeria novembrino; in this last race the Italian bike has highlighted enormous skills even if the fragility of some components, clutch in particular, they forced her to retire.

cagiva-4 property

The Ligier-Cagiva is fitted with the twin-cylinder L-shaped engine 4 times of 750 cc of Ducati: is the same engine used in endurance racing, even if the power is considerably lower. Bmw's engine is also twin-cylinder, but with boxer cylinders (in 180 degrees between them); the fact that the 980 bmw favourite derives from a much calmer road engine than ducati means that the Italian engine, comfortable in circuit racing, is less suitable for desert competitions?

Marinoni is not of this opinion, far from it. "I think the characteristics of the Ducati engine are very good for African races. Also because on the track Ducati uses engines that develop about 95/96 horses. In the desert you need much less power. This engine will have from the 65 To 75 horses: has been depowered to earn couple, shooting down. This engine from Africa, which is a 750, runs at lower speeds of the Ducati 650 road but it has a lot more progression: in 5000 laps already develops 52 of 70 horses of maximum power.' The rivalry between Ligier-Cagiva and BMW fuelled by the controversial statements of the representatives of the two teams. The German brand has swaggeringly stated that their twin-cylinders, '85 edition, winners a couple of months ago of the Faraoni Rally, develop today a hundred horses. At least thirty more than what Cagiva admits. Which, if it were true, would mean chance of getting higher top speeds.


Marinoni, on the other hand, judges these statements as pure pretactic. "I don't believe it; i like to say things like they're: I could declare you too 90 power horses without having them, BMW declares 100 horses c Rahier, their pilot, says that his empty bike, without gasoline, Weighs 140 Chili, what for me unheard of because everyone knows how to do the math: a motorcycle like the BMW, by series, can't weigh less than 155 Chili. Also admitting that the Germans worked around it to lighten it, they can't have earned, many kilos because too many are the components to add to a motorcycle for it to be able to face a Paris-Dakar. Components that have a mass. Then an engine 1000 how theirs needs certain masses to work. Only the BMW engine weighs 60 Chili; have ranges equal to our, the wheels are the same, the BMW cardan transmission I think weighs more of our chain; then where did they earn those 20-30 kilos compared to our Cagiva that come to 160-170 kg? Only with plastic tanks?».

One of the most curious changes made to the Ducati engine 750 of Ligier-Cagiva, compared to the road thruster, is the flip of the rear cylinder head. "The purpose of – marinoni explains – is to have both carburetors between the cylinders. The advantage is immediate: the carburetor behind the cilindro would receive too much hot air: this accommodation instead allows us to have the two carburetors close, at the capacity of the large air filter that has a direct suction from the frame through two ovalized holes". A serious problem in motorcycles for African races is the autonomy: must be able to cover at least 450-500 km without supplies. In addition, in the desert the average consumption increases dramatically because the sandy bottom, worsening adherence. often forces the engine and wheel to work empty; the gigantic tanks that inspired 'African' fashion are therefore explained.

The Cagiva, whose twin-cylinder engine is even less parked than others, bypassed the #8217;obstacle with two tanks. "The upper one contains 49 liters – marinoni says – plus we have one under the saddle from 14 liters; first we consume all the gasoline of the main tank so that you lower the center of gravity of the bike; lastly we use the secondary tank. We have a vacuum pump. that feeds carburetors. Of course with about sixty kilos of fuel in full tanks l’trim changes, you have to adjust accordingly before you leave.".

Taken from ROMBO
by Alberto Sabbatini


DAKAR 1985 | the Test of the BMW winner of the Dakar

Source Motosprint

by Marco Maria Masetti

The legendary BMW, winner of four editions of the Paris Dakar (’81.’83, ’84 and 85), it's definitely for fans of this type of competition the most you can aspire to, and it is for us too, in love with motorcycles and great spaces ever since the #8217;idea of running in the Sahara was of a few bizarre enthusiasts, but already capable of beating-king the heart almost as much (if not more) a fold at 50 degrees or a new lap record. Around the G/S Paris-Dakar (or rather at Project Paris-Dakar, its official definition) a myriad of legends have flourished that speak of unheard-of powers and lack of driveability. Often, In short, l#8217.imagination has transcended and made in this "university of the off-road" an unattainable myth on which 11 profane anything or almost had to know.

1985bmwr980gs property(1)

Now, Instead, thanks to the courtesy of the BMW in the people of the ’engineer Pachernegg, New, team's sporting director Dietmar Beinhauer and all’enterprise of our German collaborator Oscar Wieland, we can offer an unprecedented test of the bike that arrived first on dakar beach on 22 January. Our task has not been exhausted with the test; In fact, we have observed millimeter by millimeter "the most famous boxer in the world" in search of any secrets and special materials that people talk about to explain the reasons for its success.

The surprise was undoubtedly great: few tricks and even less secrets, G/S 1000 Number 101 you can safely take it as an example to confirm that in African races the motorcycle component is’important, but not decisive and that the victory of Gaston Rahier it's fruit, as well as the good work of those who made the bike, of the great attention placed in the smaller an-that details, in the great organization of the team captained by Beinhauer and in the incredible strength of his first guide who managed to bring to the end of the race perhaps the toughest in the world a bike definitely heavy and committed-va like the G/S 1000 through almost 14.000 kilometers.

Speaking of such a famous and winning bike, you think almost automatically of a hyper sophisticated medium, complex solutions. But none of this: G/S Paris-Dakar; how the rallying school wants, a pretty conventional bike that takes advantage (in a truly brilliant cocktail) parts from the series. The engine is, basically a hybrid that takes advantage of parts of the GS 80 and R 100 RS property. The cylinders are 1000 as well as the head and carburetors. The pistons are specially made by Mahle with a shorter cape than the standard ones and with three bands, while the cylinders are standard but shorter and narrower (13,5 Mm).

Lubrication will provide about 3 litres of oil contained in the cup and cooled through a radiator placed under the steering. The filter 1985BMWR980GS5-vi’air is automotive derivation (BMW 2002 You) and takes advantage of the same ducts on the G/S 80. The unloading takes place, very freely, through two megaphones that receive gases from two plywood pipes of the diameter of 38 mm. Electronic ignition (Bosch) with automatic ’-advance adjustment. In addition to the kick-starter there is a small motor d’start-up that uses a rechargeable dry cell battery, but, Usually, GS is started with the #8217 help of a means of #8217 (cold-engined species) or with the kick-starter after hoisting the bike on’high center stand.

The transmission-change group takes advantage of the classic five-speed and the single-disc dry clutch, but upgraded compared to the standard bike. The most important changes relate to the pipelines for the #8217;oil that have been revised to compensate for the different tilt to which the engine is forced, compared to the G/S 80 where it comes from. Very classic is also the cycling part, typically BMW, with a frame in C-#8217;steel pipe at Cr-Mo 25 with a continuous double cradle configuration with extensive reinforcements in the area (evidently solicited) steering cannotto.

The front closely follows the structure of the GS 80 with the differences in the back of the frame that is bolted as on cross bikes to facilitate the work of the mechanics and to make it easier to repair after any falls, The rear suspension also has significant differences from the, since we find a conventional swinging fork exploiting in the right side (where the ’transmission tree is housed) the lining mounted on the G/S 80, duly stretched to 510 mm. On the left side c’is a conventional oval section arm with sheet metal reinforcement handkerchiefs.

1985BMWR980GS2-viOn this particular swinging fork find place two gas units of White Power cross-derived that offer a hike (remarkable for a bike with tree drive) well 280 mm. The choice of this type of suspension is mainly dictated by the great simplicity and the possibility (not always remote in these kind of races) to have to re-enter with a single shock after the failure of the ’other unit. L’front is all made in Italy with a Marchcchi tele-hydraulic fork cross-extraction with stems 41 mm. diameter and offering 300 mm. running.

The L’braking system is mixed with a Brembo disc 260 mm mounted in the front and equipped with double floating ply of charge and a BMW drum to be 200 mm rear operated by flexible cable. The circles are aluminum Akront without edging, cross-style. Moving on to superstructures and instrumentation we find an authentic "rationality manual" resulting from the great experience accumulated by the house in these years. The main tank has a capacity of 50 liters and consists of two shells of Kevlar (Smart choice made to avoid losing all fuel in the event of a tank rupture resulting from a fall) filled with a special synthetic foam with anti-shell functions that occupies only 1’1% of the tank capacity.

Under the seat, covered in suede, a second tank is located, always in kevlar, with the ability to 10 liters. Except for the tank, 1985bmwparisdakar2 propertymade in Germany by a ’specialized company, all carriage parts are due to the work of the ’Acerbis who provided fenders and peep on exclusive design. Note that the small transparent windshield of the K 100 which is mounted to provide riders with aerodynamic cover in road or fastest track transfers. The foot controls are pretty much the same as the G/S 80, like I'm also the footpaths.

The biggest differences we find at the handlebars, a Rentahl anodized gold on which are mounted the levers and gas control of the Magura (Duo model) and a series of accessories designed specifically for the #8217;use rallyistic such as the BMW Motometer multifunction odometer and the two cans with knum where the notes of the road book flow. At the center c’is a compass of nautical derivation. The main box is on the left, on the right is a ’similar structure, smaller where Rahier reads the main notes he drafted himself. In addition to this, on’left end of the handlebars are the keys for cassette player (Walkman Sony) gaston needs to listen to Sabine's morning briefing notes in a hurry and possibly a little’ music.

1985BMWR980GS4-vi Complete the dashboard control panel, l’’oil temperature indicator and pressure light in lubrication circuit. L’lighting is entrusted to a single lighthouse with a diameter of 135 mm derived from the standard one and protected by a metal grate. The tools are contained in a bag on the tank equipped with compartments (is part of the BMW accessories series), while on the back rack c’is a leather bag that contains everything you need for a Paris-Dakar; on Rahier's bike we found a pack of Elf oil, tire levers, BMW vials of air, 2 Bosch platinum candles, 2 ’air chambers, front brake pipes, Cables, tip-top in addition to the canonical canvas tape and the’inevitable iron thread. C’it is also a medicine box with anti-cooking cream, Aspirin, vitamin C com-presses. Antibiotics, saline supplements, patches of various sizes, external disinfectant, in addition to useful tablets to pob the water’water and an anti-diarrhea drug

How are you – It's the hours 9 of a very cold Morning in March, when a number of people came out of the basement of the BMW Motorrad GMBH in Munich 520 driven by a mechanic (will assist me during the test) towing the number on a trolley 101, True Queen of ’Africa, still bearing the marks of the victorious ride. The location chosen for the test is a terrain, equipped with artificial obstacles, in the immediate vicinity of Munich where, Usually, Train the tankers of the ’German army. The cold is really pungent as evidenced by the numerous pools of #8217;water covered with a layer of ice.

The Little Mechanic (he claims to be seven centimeters shorter than Gaston Rahier) fills me with gasoline the tank in Kevlar from 10 litres placed under the saddle, sparing me the 50 litres that are normally placed in the main tank, that would raise the already high center of gravity of the bike by a lot, making it definitely difficult to drive through the gravel ups and downs of the test track. From a standstill the G/S Paris-Dakar makes really impression with its fluorescent white-orange mole dominated by the large, low-bellied tank.

Speaking of size one can only assess the grit and courage of Gaston who runs (and wins) riding a motorcycle that goes just abundant to me that I'm taller than him about 20 cm (support on the ground both feet with outstretched legs) and weighing with the two tanks full and in race setup 228 kg. L’start-up, cold-engined, is done by connecting to the car's engine, moments and the #8217 icy air of the field resonant echoes of the din coming out of the ominous trombones of the G/S. Despite the 14.000 kilometres have left some marks on the bodywork and that rust due to the ’water of the ’Atlantic, the bike is in pretty much the same condition as it came to Dakar: only a normal check was done to electrical details, in addition to a change of ’oil and filter.

BMW Rahier 1985

Silence again, the boxer is silent: I want to try the ’standard start, the pedal one, to better understand what Rahier used to do every day. You start by putting the G/S on the center stand (really difficult feat that sees success only after a d’team done by two people), then you place your left foot on the bumper hose, while with the right he kicks himself on the lever winning the resistance of the two large pistons and at the same time to-take a wire the valves of the carbutors, rotating the Magura Duo in aluminum. A few rides and the engine starts, but it's certainly not an easy’enterprise and requires some mastery. Needless to say, the mind immediately runs to Gaston trying, on the sand, to start the G/S with a temperature of 35 degrees, after a fall.

The G/S engine 1000 Paris-Dakar, right, takes advantage of standard parts derived from G/S 80, like the motor carter, on which cylinders are mounted, heads and carburetors 1000 road and have traveled more than 500 miles of track! The position in the saddle is perfect, very rational, without having your legs in an unnatural position (that is, too open) despite the’tank footprint. I was afraid the foot controls would be adjusted for Rahier's boots, but that's not the case.: everything seems tailored to larger riders as they are, For example,, his companions Hau and Loiseax.

So it's great for me too, with only legs a little’ too flexed due to the reduced padding of the saddle of the number 101 compared to the other two G/Ss entrusted to the French and The German. It only takes less than 2000 quick start laps, and with good agility, once the soft clutch is released. In fact, as soon as it's moving the pounds disappear-no, as is normal on a bike with reasonably concentrated weights at the bottom, but there is still something to take with due caution, especially in the first moments.

I find this on a dirt road, quite similar to the slopes (Best) meeting in Africa. A quick glance, the road is clear, more than enough space, nothing better, then, to unleash all the horses of the Bavarian boxer. Second, third and fourth open gas; practice-mind flies clutching in your hands with force, but without apprehension, the handlebars and enjoying the speed, definitely higher than 130 per hour, with the certainty of great directionality and precision of the ’front. I'm almost going to give up the tension that had accompanied me in the first few meters of the test thinking about how easy it is to drive an off-road like this when, maybe left by the tanks of the German army, I see before me a series of hollows in very rapid succession.

There's no time to slow down, I hold on to the handlebars to contain the effects of that encounter. In an instant the rear is starting to jump and I find myself at more than a hundred an hour riding an enraged bull. When, almost miraculously, I can get over this moment unresotating I think again (and always with greater admiration) Gaston and his, daily miracles on the African slopes. I also look for the personal satisfaction of some surge, but on the heavy ground the rear wheel also sled for the truly elephanty shot of the engine. When the Michelin Desert decides to take it all the more, the front end rises so imperiously that I violently slam the helmet chin against the road-book and compass.

Taken from the KO I understand, At last, that a bike of such weight and power must be conducted in off-road gently taking advantage of the engine pull and its perfect delivery to all règimi without looking for solutions of strength. In doing so, you discover the great qualities of the G/S that you drive away from the limit reveals an ease of driving and a sweetness really unsuspected in such a "monster". Suspensions work very well, with great homogeneity especially, and you can go through absorbing many obstacles, maybe in the second or third with an exciting presence of horses even at the lowest règimi and keeping the high gears inserted.

Our tester during the fantastic test on the army track near Munich. The bike proved comfortable and easily governable as long as it did not overdo it and stay away from high speeds

Using the gas command consistently, even low-speed manoeuvres are easy, but you have to be careful not to lose the dynamism completely at the risk of finding yourself in a curve, maybe in counter-presidency with 200 kilos lying on the ground. He also jumped with the G/S, and safe, he was surprised by the naturalness with which his bulk dives into downhill jumps, always landing according to the wishes of the pilot who has nothing but to balance with little effort the medium almost a 125. I immediately think of the comparison with the then debutante Cagiva Elefant that I tried on Agadir beach at the conclusion of the Rally de l'Atlas.

After an hour of testing, the G/S literally "entered our blood" and even the reverential fear disappeared completely, So we appreciate the excellent skills of the clutch and the gearbox (with the exception of a tendency to vent between first and second) and the positive work of brakes and suspensions that must undoubtedly work hard because of the weight. In this regard all our congratulations go to Marzocchi and Brembo who have realized, the fork and the front brake respectively. At the end of the test, we try again with greater confidence, the cunettes and the steps that only an hour earlier had put me in trouble: everything better now, and the fun begins, the pure one that makes you forget about hunger and cold and those who wait for you with patience now for two hours with a temperature always stopped at zero degrees centigrade. I find another flat stretch and try to unleash all the power, but space, Germany, for this bike is little: it really takes the Sahara.


Protar BMW 1000 Dakar 1985

Celebrating the world's most famous race, we then thought to retrace the history of this race, looking at the times when arriving on the shores of Lake Dakar was already a feat and the podium was reserved for a select few. Searching among the proposals offered by the world of modeling, the choice fell on a bike that won four times this race, the BMW 1000. Led victorious in '81 and '83 by Hubert Auriol, he doubled his successes with Gaston Rahier in '84 and '85.

The model we examined is the reproduction of the Bmw 1000 with which Rahier ran in '85, made in Scale 1:9 protar. Numerous details that make up this model, printed in three colors (White, gray and chrome), with black and white skin cuts, a cut of adhesive rubber. numerous screws, springs and, as a last detail, a piece of metal mesh. We begin the assembly from the chrome-ray wheels that house tessted tires on which we pass fine frosted paper to remove the gloss of the print and create the wear effect in the rubber.


The engine, the classic boxer that for so many years has characterized the BMW models, comes well-detailed, with numerous chrome details such as the butterfly for the oil rod and the oil pump. The cylinders are well 22 Pieces (each fin is a detail that is screwed to the carter) And among them the spring, behaved to measure, supporting the drain. Now we move on to the assembly of carburetors, two Bing chrome with its gasoline filter. The petrol pipe made of transparent material is impressive..

The frame, a structure in round double cradle tubes, supports the engine with four screws and the accessories that complete it are the support for the coils, water bottles and the radiator for the oil placed in the back under the steering wheel. After custom-made two more springs, complete marbles are mounted and then tube protectors for cylinders are mounted. Suspensions do not present any particular difficulties, because this model was equipped with a cardano transmission. The rear shocks, with separate tank, need the coloring of the springs; For this purpose it is recommended to clean the spring with thinner to make it easier to hold the paint.

The front fender has a window through which air passes through for cooling the oil radiator, the metal mesh should be cut to size and inserted from the inside. The handlebars, attached to the top plate of the fork with four screws, has been changed by us. In fact, we have added a tool bag attached to the top sleeper and a manual road-book with command placed on the left knob. A further water bottle has been placed inside the dome that supports the headlight. The tank, made in four parts , complete with two chrome caps.

The saddle should be covered at the top with the rubber properly shaped, and the back with white skin. The rear fender, related tables and headlight, needs a hole near the frame fastening that is easily achievable by following the instructions. At this point, armed with scissors, you have to improvise, following the instructions, make with black leather provided the bag to be fixed on the tank with the transparent window to hold the race notes, and the bag to be fastened to the back luggage rack. The only shrewdness is to use a new blade to cut the straps with which to make the fastenings, because the size to be cut (1.5mm) must be perfect to ensure the belt passes into the buckle. A coat of polish to protect decals… from the sand and the BMW 1000 Paris-Dakar is ready.
Text, photo and model by Massimo Moretti.