The Writing Riders: Some background information about Carla, Julie & Blez
Carla McKenzie – Riding a 2017 Zero DSR electric motorcycle
From false teeth failure to high-powered catering consultancy and an all-consuming passion for bikes.
Born in Marlborough, Wiltshire, Carla left school at sixteen to make false teeth but, in her own words, “got the sack because I didn’t have a flair for the job”. However, she had a rapid rise in catering, progressing quickly from waitressing and bar work to become the senior manager of a Hilton hotel at the age of twenty-one. By that time she’d already progressed from her first bike, a Yamaha RD200, to a Honda CB500 Twin when she passed her test. Click here for MORE.
Julie Diplock – Riding a 1926 Triumph Q
From despatching on Japanese bikes, to advanced riding on old Brits and organising classic bike events.
With no motorcyclists in her family, Julie Diplock first got the motorcycle bug from a ride on the pillion of a Triumph as a small girl. This short ride made a life-long impression, as at 15 she decided to progress from bicycles to motorcycles, and to wait until she was 17 to get a ‘proper bike’ rather than getting a 50cc moped a year earlier. At 16 she enrolled in her local RAC/ACU training scheme, which was conducted in the disused pits of the former Crystal Palace Park race circuit in South London. At 17 she bought her first motorcycle, an elderly Suzuki B100P or ‘Bloop’. She passed her motorcycle test on a Honda 250 in 1979 and went despatch riding in London for a year, progressing through a succession of Japanese machines. Her daughter, born in 1982, was transported home from the hospital in a plunger BSA 650cc A10 Golden Flash sidecar and Julie acquired her first British bike in 1985: a 1960 650cc BSA Road Rocket. Since then, she has become more interested in older machinery with a preference for pre-war bikes. Clickhere for MORE.
Paul Blezard – Editor. Will be riding a 2018 Zero DSR
From an MSc in Planning to FFs on Top Gear and electric adventures worldwide.
Paul Blezard bought his first trail bike shortly after completing an MSc. in Environmental Planning and Design, part of which included writing a 50,000 word dissertation on Planning & Motorcycle Land Use which he published himself and sold to more than a hundred organisations. He joined the Trail Riders’ Fellowship in 1982 and took part in and wrote about the inaugural coast-to-coast trail ride the same year. Blezard has now been writing about bikes and scooters of all kinds for more than thirty years in both motorcycle and mainstream media. In 1988 he wrote and presented a ten-minute feature on feet first motorcycles for the BBC’s Top Gear TV programme and has written and presented several motorcycle videos, including one on trail riding. He first rode an electric motorcycle in 1998 and, ironically, wrote about it in Petrolhead magazine.