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Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming:
"WOW, what a ride !!!"

Equipo Madre Trato Rides Again!


P.J. Read-circa 1962

McCook... There has been an amazing turn around in the Hollingsworth/Read scandal in recent times. Due to the publicity our situation has garnered in your cyber tabloid, my old chum Hollingsworth and I have once again joined forces.

Let me explain... In recent times I have been spending some time in Los Angeles overseeing the press work for the Olsen Twins fashion label. A part of those duties is to attend various Hollywood parties to schmooze with the rich and powerful of Tinsel town.

I was at yet another dull ‘A’ list soiree with the twins at Angelina Jolies house and was chatting with old chums George Hamilton and Bobby Goldsboro when I heard a distinctive British accent shouting Royal Navy expletives across the lawn. At first I ignored the ruckus but the voice sounded eerily familiar. As I ventured towards the source of the kerfuffle a sight greeted me that bought both embarrassment and fond familiarity to the fore. There before me was Nigel Hollingsworth in full argument with the Samoan security staff while an obviously distressed Brad Pitt tried to throw air punches at him. It appears that Hollingsworth has propositioned Pitt with an offer to appear in one of his "adult films" with Richard Simmons. Pitt, of course countered with a punch that had barely skimmed Hollingsworth’s chin but had carried through and clocked Ricky Simmons right on the nose, knocking him out. This had incensed Hollingsworth and the two were wrestling on the turf when the Samoans arrived, splitting the pair. Hollingsworth and Simmons were immediately evicted. I turned to Hamilton and Goldsboro and we all smiled in recognition that nothing had changed.

We all agreed however, that it was nice to see our old friend again, despite the circumstances.

I awoke the next day and decided that it was time to visit our old friend. I had read that he had a bottle of 1896 Para Port ready to share when we next met so I borrowed George Clooney’s Dodge Viper and drove up to Hollingsworth’s Beverly Hills address. While it is well known that Beverly Hills is a 'nice neigbourhood' the sight that greeted me as I drove up Hollingsworth’s drive shook me. What had once been the set house for the Beverly Hillbilly’s television show was now something quite different. The formerly manicured front lawn had become a full Grand Prix motocross course complete with concrete launch pad and twenty four gate start system. I was later to discover that he had constructed a replica of our beloved Farleigh Castle course, the home of British Motocross.

Tentatively I rang the doorbell, and before long a very old British butler answered the door. I instantly recognised him as dear old "Stumpy" Leonard, our old manager at Team Ariel all those years ago. After a less than warm greeting, "Stumpy" led me into the sumptuous entry hall and asked me to wait while he fetched "the guvnor". Before long a dripping wet, Speedo clad Hollingsworth entered with an equally damp Mark Spitz. "I knew you'd come eventually Read" Hollinsworth beamed as he introduced the Olympic legend as his swimming coach. "I'm picking up the program, fitness wise, Read. I'm seriously getting into this Vintage Motocross caper". Dismissing Spitz with a "same time next week", Hollingsworth opened a huge oak door and told me to wait for him in there while he slipped into something comfortable. I entered the huge mahogany lined room and settled on the green leather setee. The walls of the room, which I presumed was the library were lined with bookshelves that on first viewing appeared to be a typical British old masters library. On further examination however, I discovered that the shelves were lined with every conceivable motorcycle service manual and motorcycle magazines from every continent, all leather bound. It was the southern wall that left me speechless however. Hanging over the twelve-foot marble fireplace, was a Triumph Metisse, THE VERY Triumph Metisse I had won the Romanian GP on back in '66. I was gobsmacked.

As I sat there staring at the long forgotten Metisse with tears rushing down my face, Hollingsworth entered the room dressed in Dolce and Gabana flip flops, blue satin gym shorts and a white muscle shirt with a Carabela logo on front. In his hand he had the promised bottle of Para Port and two Waterford crystal glasses.

The wonderful old Australian Port was consumed with passion and speed as we relived the days on the GP scene with the Rickman boys and those pesky Belgian kiddies. "Stumpy" bought in a bottle of 1904 Chateau Yalumba Port as the Para died and we carried on into the night with tales of our adventures on the road. We were up to a '21 Tyrells Tawny port when Hollingsworth stopped and walked towards the door. "There is someone you need to meet Read" a now quite drunk Hollingsworth uttered as he picked up an intercom and muttered incoherently into the mouthpiece. He then went to the previously unnoticed cocktail bar and retrieved an ice bucket, a bottle of 1939 Verve Cliquot Champagne and three Czechoslovakian Champagne flutes. At the same time the huge Oak door flew open and in walked a beautiful woman dressed in a white cheong san. It was Grace. Despite the years and the obvious work various Singaporean and Beverly Hills surgeons had done on her face, she was still beautiful. My mind rushed back to the evening in Monaco where I first saw her naked in the jacuzzi with Hollingsworth.

Over the next five hours we laughed, cried, drank and both made love with Grace. It was if the years past were mere minutes. At some stage during the night Grace had exited our little party and it was time for sleep. I was of course too drunk to drive back to my Laguna Beach summerhouse so Read escorted me up the rambling staircase to the south wing guest rooms. As we walked along the lengthy hallway leading to my room I noticed brass plaques on the many doors we passed. Carabela, one said, Ducati the next couple said. After passing rooms marked Bultaco, AJS, Rickman, and Hodaka I came to my guest room. "I have another surprise, Read" a now very emotional Hollingsworth cried. He opened the door and there stood two fully restored Carabelas, a 125 and a 250. "They are yours my friend, I restored them, hoping this day would come". "We'll talk about it in the morning" Hollingsworth uttered as he left the room, adding, "The other surprise is also waiting for you" as he closed the door behind him.

As my eyes adjusted to the dark I saw what "the other surprise" was. Cynthia Lennon lay naked on the four-poster bed. "It's been a while PJ" she oozed as we blended into one 'animal of love' until dawn.

I awoke at 10am to the unmistakable sound of a two-stroke Motocrosser in full flight. Cynthia was not to be seen so I got out of bed and walked to the balcony, which overlooked the front lawn motocross track. There below me was a rider doing some amazing freestyle moves on a vintage Carabela. The rider’s style instantly identified him as Nigel Hollingsworth. My heart beat like a jackhammer as I watched the old veteran hit the jumps like that young Chad Reed. Then I noticed Chad himself, pit board in hand standing trackside.

After a quick shower, I ran down stairs to the track to witness this special moment myself. Hollingsworth had just pulled into the fountainside pits and Chad was lecturing on some technique finesse. "Ah Reed, my old chum, let me introduce you to my motocross coach" offering Chad towards me. Hollingsworth didn't know that I had recognised Chads talent back in Australia and had personally taught him the art of motocross a few years earlier. "PJ and I are old mates", Chad uttered as he hugged me in a loving but manly way. Adding, "He taught me everything I know". Hollingsworth guided me towards a small shed with another brass plaque on the door saying Change Room. Upon opening the door Hollingsworth pointed to the new black leathers, new Axo helmet and boots and a white jersey with the legend 'Equipo Madre Trato' emblazoned on the front. "Read, my friend, we are reforming the old team and hitting the road. Equipo Madre Trato is back in business". Life was about to get very interesting...

***


More from Nigel Hollingsworth and PJ Read


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