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Norton JPS 750 Daytona
Norton withdrew from racing in 1954. The company
protested that the cost of racing was constantly rising because four-cylinder
motorcycles were used, especially by the Italians, that had nothing in common
with normal production motorcycles.
The pride of British motorcycles was their
chassis. Following the success of the famous Featherbed chassis of Norton's
two-shaft Grand Prix,
The redesigned Commando that Norton entered at Daytona Beach in 1972 came in fourth overall, thanks chiefly to the skill of Phil Read. The following year the Norton was again redesigned. It was now called the John Player Special (JPS), because of financing from the Player cigarette company. It was raced at Daytona Beach and at Imola, Italy.
The engine was still the usual two-cylinder one
derived from the production models, while the chassis was constructed with a
steel-plate body. The fairing, according to the builders, provided an increase
in speed equal to 15 more h.p. in the engine.
By the end of 1973 the Norton JPS's poor performance was being blamed on the chassis. The single-piece body was abandoned in favor of a complicated structure of tubular elements. During the 1974 season the performance of the JPS improved and it often came in among the leading positions. It was ridden by Williams and by Dave Croxford that season. Between 1975 and 1976 the most important modification was made—the engine was changed. But this last attempt to make the motorcycle competitive, if not a winner, was disappointing, and Norton withdrew from racing for a second time.
Motorcycle: Norton JPS 750 Daytona Manufacturer:
Norton Motors Ltd., Birmingham