FTR Bio:, Rob Baime
Lives: Maine, US
Hero: Burt Munro
Daily Ride: Yellow Sprint RS
Winter Ride: Green Daytona, CE 955i
You’re never too old to feel like it’s your first ride. At 76 I’m probably one of your older riders and certainly one of your older sport riders. I ride my 2002 Daytona 955 in Florida in the winter and my 2000 yellow Sprint RS in Maine in the summer.
My hero is Burt Munro, the New Zealander who set an under-1,000cc world record at Bonneville in 1967 and inspired The World’s Fastest Indian movie. I’m a retired lawyer but started riding in college in the late 50s, crashing my bike into the woods on my very first right-hand turn, forcing me to learn about leaning and counter steering, and my self-taught skills gradually improved. My fascination with speed coincided with the onset of puberty, as my early heroes were folks like John Cobb and Mickey Thompson, who nudged 400mph at Daytona and the Bonneville Salt Flats.
I started with motocross and soon began running enduros better suited to my riding style. We formed an unofficial team, took part in events and ran in the major nationals – our favourites were the Curly Fern and Press On Regardless in the NJ Pine Barrens. I was mediocre at best. In the end I resumed riding on the street, buying a beautiful 1999 Triumph Adventurer and riding with my son on his Bonneville, my wife encouraging us under the naive assumption I’d be a moderating influence.
Life is good, even at 76Rob Baime
I then bought a second bike, a 2000 Triumph Sprint RS, but soon old instincts prevailed and my son and I each bought 2002 Triumph Daytona 955i’s. We had both loved our Triumph standards; the handling, the tradition and the distinction of not seeing ourselves coming and going on generic bikes. The performance and handling, first of the Sprint, and inevitably of the Daytonas, proved irresistible.
Which brings me to the present. I still ride more than 300 days a year and hope to ride a track day at Laconia next summer. Some day, I’d also like to bring the Daytona to Bonneville, but that’s a more ambitious project.
After all, Burt rode a record 168mph aged 68. Meanwhile, it’s country roads in Maine in the summer, with the growl of our Triples.
Life is good, even at 76.
Rob Baime – US