Minichamps MIN122750006 1975 Suzuki XR14 GP Motorcycle - Barry Sheene (#6), Assen (1:12 Scale)
"[He was] an inspiration to millions."
- Carl Fogarty, four-time World Superbike champion, discussing the death of Barry Sheene in March 2003
The Suzuki type XR14/RG500 debuted in the 1974 French Grand Prix at Clermont Ferrand. At that time it was not yet fully fleshed out, so development work continued during the following winter break. The most striking feature of the XR14 is the so-called "square four"-engine, basically consisting of two in-line twins coupled together, which was employed for the first time on this bike. With its 498cc capacity, 6-gear transmission and a full weight of 160kg, the XR14 had a power output of 101hp @ 11,200rpm and reached a maximum speed of 284kph.
When Barry Sheene won the race in 1975 at Assen, he did so on the Suzuki XR14, which was the first 500cc GP victory for Barry Sheene as well as for Suzuki. At the legendary Centennial Classic TT at Assen in 1998, more than 40 world champions from three different decades joined together for a "Festival of Speed" - among them Barry Sheene. To commemorate his first victory at the same circuit two decades earlier, Sheene rode a few laps on a restored Suzuki XR14.
Pictured here is a 1:12 scale diecast replica of Barry Sheene's 1975 Suzuki XR14 motorcycle that was driven at the Assen GP. Comes in a handsome presentation case. Two pieces left in stock!
Length: 7 inches
Height: 3-1/2 inches
Release Date: September 2009
Historical Account: "Space Rider" - Barry Sheene MBE (September 11th, 1950 - March 10th, 2003) was a British former World Champion Grand Prix motorcycle road racer.
Sheene was born in London, England the second child of parents Frank (resident engineer at the Royal College of Surgeons) and Iris. He grew up in Queen's Square, Holborn, London.
He became the British 125cc champion aged just 20, and finished second in the World Championships for that class a year later. A spectacular crash at the Daytona 200 in 1975 threatened to end his career, breaking his left thigh, right arm, collarbone and two ribs, yet he recovered and was racing again seven weeks afterwards.
In 1976 he won five 500cc Grands Prix, bringing him the World Championship. He repeated as champion in 1977 with six victories.
After the 1979 season, he left the Suzuki works team, believing that he was receiving inferior equipment to his team-mates. He shifted to a privateer Yamaha machine, but soon started receiving works equipment. In 1981, Kenny Roberts was the reigning World 500cc Champion for the third time, and Barry Sheene, now on a competitive Yamaha, was determined to regain the championship. Ironically, Sheene and Roberts battled all season and let Suzuki riders Marco Lucchinelli of Italy and American Randy Mamola beat them for the top two spots. Roberts finished third and Sheene fourth for the 1981 championship. A 1982 crash largely ended Sheene as a title threat, and he retired in 1984.