Race Bike Collection
With the special exhibition devoted to motorbike racing a new subject has found its home in the Technik Museum Speyer. Both, Speyer and its neighboring city Hockenheim have a long-standing tradition in motor sport. Between 1979 and 1995 the German motorbike racing season started in April on the airfield just a few meters away from the Museum Speyer. Many German and foreign top riders competed on the 2 kilometers long airfield track which pushed them to their limits.
Initiated by Franz Rau, a group of motorbike racing enthusiasts has gathered a unique collection of race bikes under the title “RaceBikeCollection” with an emphasis on the more recent history of motorbike racing. During the 1970s Franz Rau was an active motorbike racer and still is professionally connected to the scene as managing director of Moto Motion International. Grand Prix bikes from the 1970s to 1990s two-stroke era are presented side by side with the four-stroke Superbikes which became popular afterwards. In these years it were mainly the production racers by Yamaha, Suzuki and Honda which dominated the race tracks in the traditional 250 cc, 350 cc and 500 cc classes. Many of the top riders started their careers with the affordable production racers. It was the time when motor sport was still possible without large sums of sponsoring money.
In the 1990s the powerful four-stroke racers known as Superbikes became more and more popular. According to the Superbike regulations the bikes had to be close-to-production with only certain modifications essential for racing being allowed. This resulted in a large variety of different manufacturers.
But this is not the only highlight of the exhibition. The visitors are informed about motorbike racing in general, about race tracks, race technology, the history of motor sport, famous bike racers etc. Technology fans will be particularly delighted by the exhibits. They can get in close contact with all the technical details and get an impression as to how the engineers designed the bikes. Motorsport technology always was at the edge of the technically feasible but often it were simple solutions which delivered good results.
The collection will be continuously extended and therefore will be interesting for a long time. In addition, temporary special exhibitions covering special subjects will provide even more excitement for the visitors.