1978 Suzuki RM125

I had to tear our photo albums apart to get these shots!  This is the 1978 Suzuki RM125B that I raced in 1979 and 80 when I was in high school in Lexington, KY.  As with nearly all my bikes, I bought this one used, think I paid $600 or $800 for it....can't quite remember!   This bike was high maintenance, for sure!  The 2nd time I rode it, the piston ring snapped and lost compression and I had to push it a mile home.  My basic schedule was to replace the rings every other race/practice, and the piston every other rings. 

What a wreck!!!  Dig the cool slotted side panels, though- those were supposed to let more air past the ultra-trick-near-works-bike laid-down shocks.  Whew!!!  This bike is HOT!!!

I raced the bike probably 1/2 dozen times in the Lexington area.  I'm trying to remember the name of the tracks- these places come to mind: Clay City, Livingston, and Georgetown.  I think Clay City was were we rode in the Daniel Boone Nat'l Forest.  Georgetown was a close-by track, and Livingston was a farther-away track where I did my first race and later broke a rib.

I towed the bike around on a 3-rail Holsclaw trailer behind my 4-cylinder, 3-speed Chevy Monza (a car which made me swear off Chevy's for the next 25 years....). This was taken in front of our duplex on Mammoth Dr., Lexington, KY.  The house on the end of the street, just above the white Jeep is where I heard my first real live bluegrass guitar player.


This is a race at Georgetown.  Note that every bike on the line is an RM125....back then, there were no ABC classes- it was 125, 250, and 500's and that's it.  Beginners raced against experts.  I got the holeshot in this photo, then got arm-pump in the next turn and couldn't open my right hand to get the brake (Hmmm....that sounds familar....Berthoud Hare Scramble, 2005).  I overshot the berm, pried my hand off the grip, and got moving again.  Finished 3rd, I think.  I don't remember.  Maybe I won!  Yeah, that's it!  I WON!!!!  No...actually, I'm positive I didn't win.  3rd, it was.  Those two guys on the far right were 1st and 2nd- they had the new RM's with the plastic tanks.  I was already old-school.

Here's what the RM125 looked like.  It was pretty much state of the art back then.

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