his newly restored film from the Woods archive contains rare footage of the 1972 Grand Prix season focussing on Yamaha’s 125cc, 250cc and 350cc efforts.
Produced for Yamaha, it shows highlights from the Isle of Man, Dutch TT at Assen and the mighty Spa-Fracorchamps circuit, home of the Belgian Grand Prix.
The early ‘Seventies saw Yamaha’s light, powerful and (mostly) reliable two-stroke racers emerge as a force to be reckoned with in Grand Prix racing, rapidly displacing the British singles which had formed the backbone of the scene since the end of the Second World War.
The atmosphere of the paddock and the excitement on the track as the old order of four-stroke factory racers gave way to a snarling pack of privateers mounted on the high-revving Japanese two-stroke machines are perfectly captured here.
Finnish legend Jarno Saarinen and Brits Rod Gould, Chas Mortimer, Tony Rutter, Derek Chatterton, Mick Grant, John Williams, Charlie Williams all feature riding the little screamers whilst Phil Read and Giacomo Agostini do brave battle for the honour of the MV Agusta team.
This film is an evocative trip for anyone who fondly remembers the glory days of the Continental Circus, or those who weren’t lucky enough to experience it the first time round.
Bonus feature: Yamaha factory film – follow the construction of a motorcycle from raw materials to the test track in this fascinating and quirky promotional film.