Ian Ratcliffe
Page updated 12-Mar-2019

I was a massive fan of Mick. I have lots of fond memories of my times with him, some I will share with you.

I don't know how I came to meet Mick, but it was in the late 60s and we became very good friends. I remember his Manx Norton gave problems at Brands Hatch and he did not have a bike for the unlimited race. I only had a 500cc ride so I lent my bike to him for the race!! I think he finished 5th!! In return he lent me his 350 Aermacchi to take to Oulton Park and I finished 3rd.

I can remember Mick asking me if I was going to Cadwell Park, I said I was and he asked if I would take his Kuhn Seeleys and my 500 to the meeting in Kuhn's new twin wheeled Transit whilst he went with the girlfriend by car. Wow, I felt like a king, brand new van, B&B in Lincoln, can it get any better?

I remember going with my wife to a party he held at his parents' house in Ware. He was as mad as a hatter!!!! I also remember how thrilled he was to get the flat above the showroom and work on his race bikes.

In late '69 Mick was instrumental in me being able to by his "old" 500 Seeley for £900 from Vincent Davey when they went on to the "no down tube" lightweight frame. Wow, what a difference. The bike was set up beautifully and in the days of push starts, it started just by looking at it. I went from mid field to front runner in a flash. I never did much more than check the Tyre pressure, I certainly did not try to customize the bike for my riding style. I rode it as was. I took the bike on the continent in 1970 for the season. My first race in the South of France I finished 2nd, then to my first GP at the long circuit at Le Mans in the pouring rain I got championship points finishing 9th.

I sold the bike at the end of the season and rode Yamaha's on the continent, finally riding importer assisted Suzuki's.

When my first son was born I chose his second name as Andrew, though I have never told him why.