Abhi Races a Honda CB160, Part 1 – Introduction

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Back in 2015, I got my first taste of AHRMA racing at (what was then called) Miller Motorsports Park. I thought it was amazing to see older bikes being put through their paces, but I thought one of the coolest things was seeing the Le Mans start of the Honda CB160 class. Looks like I’m going to have my own shot at it in October…

The Le Mans Start at Miller in 2015.

My interest in vintage racing and the CB160 class got piqued again last month when I went to Laguna Seca to check out AHRMA (did you see my Picture Intermission) and take part in the Aprilia Racers Day track day. I loved seeing the Le Mans start and the variety of modifications done of these little racers.

By sheer coincidence, a friend of my business partner brought us a CB160 to put up on our auction site…

…and now Iconic owns it so I can go racing with it. The first order of business was for our technician Yonni to replace the battery.

As you probably know, I own the little brother of this bike, a Honda S90 – I bought it to teach Vy how to ride:

Seeing the S90 and CB160 next to each other is very cool, and I’ll definitely have to get a photo of that. Problem is the CB160 is so nice that it makes the S90 look a little rough. In fact, this CB160 is so nice that part of me feels like it’s not a good idea to start modifying it for racing purposes. If a rattier CB160 shows up soon, I’ll snag that and sell this one, but I have no idea how likely that is.

So we checked the oil, adjusted the front brake, and generally made sure it won’t kill me. Next step: a ~60 mile shakedown run out to the Rock Store and back to see what other work needs to be done!

In addition to worrying about if this bike is too nice to modify, I’m also struggling with how far to take it. The orange racer pictured above is cool but I don’t think I want to get that deep into this one. But…I sure as heck can’t race it as-is! Cosmetically, I’m currently leaning towards just throwing a cover over the headlight with a little flyscreen and trying to keep it as period as possible – but I’m open to suggestions!

On to Part 2 – time for the shakedown run!