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Greg Johnson

Discussion in 'Racing, Motorsports, and Track Days' started by BlueRex, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. Does anyone know of Greg Johnson who raced in the european superbikes.

    This guy is my mechanic in South Melbourne Melbourne.

    He mentioned he used to race the superbikes back in the day. I am thinking it may be in the 70's.
  2. Greg Johnson ought to be an Australian motorcycle racing legend, but his acerbic personality rubbed a lot of people up the wrong way in his racing career. I met him last year on a visit to Melbourne, and we talked about lots of stuff; he was eye-witness to Warren Willing's near-fatal accident in Ireland; he finished third behind Blakey and Ago at Laverton in 1976, and contributed more in terms of mechanical knowledge and fettling bikes for people than could probably reasonably be documented. The old black bike parked in the corner of his shop is the legendary Syndicate Kawasaki; ask him about it next time you're there.

    A nice pic of Greg at Bathurst
    Greg Johnson at Bathurst.

    A pretty ordinary pic of Greg at Oran Park
    Greg Johnson.
  3. And latterly he has been doing a damn fine job riding "Guyro's" ECCO Engineering BMW special in Post-Classic racing. Super rider.
  4. So he still rides, he has a few finger missing on one hand.
    as for the acid personality i understand the first few times i met him i thought he was a grumpy old bastard but once i got to know him he has so much knowledge about bikes and is a great mechanic.
  5. missing fingers never worried him, or AJ, they just rode harder and called it improving the power-to-weight ratio :LOL:

    {if you go and Google 'Greg Johnson' and restrict your search to Australia only, THIS THREAD is hit #10 :rofl:}
  6. So he road for Kawasaki? There is not much information on him.
  7. He rode lots of bikes. The two pictured are pure racing bikes, of course, Yamaha TZ 700/750s, but he also rode the Syndicate Kawasaki superbike, the Ecco BMW and pretty much anything that he could get his hands on.

    You need to realise that although racing in Australia today is all superbikes, in those days there were races for every one of the capacity classes for racing bikes, 125cc, 250cc, 350cc and Unlimited, and many rider rode two or three capacity divisions at the same race meeting. If you were going to race, you rode a racing bike; the superbike class was non-existent; if you raced a superbike, you raced against proper race bikes in the Unlimited class.

    This man ....

    Crosby, Jeff Sayle, Stud Cola 77.

    was the first to beat the race bikes on a Superbike, thus inadvertently start the diminishing of pure racing bike races in this country......
  8. Yeah, as far as I know, Greg never rode the Syndicate bike, although I believe that it is now in his possession. Andrew "AJ" Johnson, present Superbike campaigner, Shannon's dad, rode the Syndicate bike (he was widely regarded as being the only man brave (or stupid) enough to ride it!!!) It really was a weapon, something like 160rwp in 1979.
  9. Although, in those days, they weren't known as Superbikes, IIRC that came in in the early 80's. Before then they were known as "Unlimited Improved Production."
  10. So Greg and Andrew Johnson, were they related or just coincidence?
  11. coincidence, both hard, hard men, no-quarter racers

    whenever you're at the shop, ask him to tell you all about the old days, if you've got some time to spare...
  12. I always have time when i drop by. He likes a chat.
  13. This is the best picture i can find of the bike.

    Attached Files:

  14. this picture shows the late SA rider Ken Blake.

    Attached Files:

  15. Next time you're there you can confirm this, but despite a flood of interstate riders competing in the Castrol Six Hour Race, I can't find Greg Johnson's name in the lists for any of the runnings of that event....

    (I'm pretty sure that Blakey was a Victorian...)
  16. 1976
    October 17

    Race Report

    The year that seemed Sure to end the Kawasaki domination ot the Six-Hour.

    When the dust had settled at the end of practice, the three fastest qualifiers were non-Kawasakis. The Ducatis of John Warrian/Greg Johnson and Ross Pink/Dan Oakhill took pole and next to pole, that-man-Eastmure was third fastest on a BMW R9OS. BMWs and Ducatis were abundant with four Bee-Ems and seven Dukes amongst the entries.

  17. No it does not. That is, without a doubt, Andrew Johnson, for any number of reasons, the most telling being his deformed left hand. AJ was seriously injured in an industrial accident when an hydraulic hose exploded and nearly severed his left hand. Doctors saved the hand but it was more of a stump than a hand. Didn't stop him being a hard charger, though.

    Also the #7 was AJ's signature number whereas Ken's was always #6 if possible (see www.halltech.com.au/kennyb)

    And, while Ken did ride for most of his career out of Victoria, he was a South Australian by birth, from Strathalbyn. His early success riding the Jesser Triumph, led him to explore further afield.
  18. Thanks for the correction the website obviously had their info wrong.
  19. No probs, mate. I have a shockingly good memory of that era of racing, stemming mainly from the fact that I was actively involved in on-course race commentary at that time and had to know all of that stuff!!!