There could have been no better tribute to the legend, Barry Steven Frank Sheene, a British World Champion Grand Prix motorcycle racer whose 1976 XR14 RG500 motorcycle is being rebuilt, by Suzuki Motorcycles themselves. This is the same motorcycle that put made Sheene win his first title in 1976 and the people responsible for rebuilding this icon are Nigel Everett and Martyn Ogborne. Martyn was Barry Sheene's race engineer in the 1970s and Nigel was a GP mechanic at the same time.
The motorcycle was brought to the UK from the Sheene family to commemorate the 40th anniversary of this particular championship. Before sending it back, the company decided on rebuilding the XR14 RG500 through Suzuki's Vintage Parts scheme and the first video of the restoration process has been released. The second part of the video will be available online on 7th June, 2017. The XR14 RG500 is a factory racing version of the production RG500 model was flown from Australia for the restoration process.
Watch the video:
Born in London in 1950, Barry Sheene's first GP race was in the 125 cc class in the 1970 Spanish round. His first victory came in the following year and his last win came in the 1981 Swedish GP in the 500 cc class. He won the World Championship in 1976 and 1977 in the 500 cc category. He passed away in 2003 after suffering from cancer. Barry Sheene was Britain's last champion in 1977 until recently when Danny Kent became the next Britain champion in 2015.
Suzuki's Vintage Part programme consists of genuine parts for vintage road bikes that include the 1989-90 RGV250, GT750, earlier versions of the GSX-750 and the GT250EX X7. A fitting tribute to the legend then!