Chris s scrapbook

Transport writer and historian Chris Woodcock has been all over the world and amassed a superb archive of photographs of lorries from days past. Chris has kindly agreed to allow us to publish these gems in a series of articles —enjoy!
1. A technological advance. The revolutionary Ergomatic cab from the Leyland group in the late 60s. Designed by Giovanni Michelloti, who also gave us the Scammell Routeman and such icons as the Triumph Herald, the Ergomatic cab immediately became the benchmark others aspired to. Fitted to AEC and Albion models and, as in this Beaver tractor unit, the Leyland range. The Ergomatic cab was built around the driver-everything close to hand, comfortable, quiet and easy to drive. Large windows and mirrors gave visibility unknown before and vehicles fitted with this cab quickly became a common sight on the roads of Britain. Read more »




To deliver the best new marine footwear on the market, you start by enlisting the expertise of the best sailors in the game. Thathow the designers at Sperry Top – Sider launched the development of GripX3: by assembling a team of world-class Olympic sailors.

Sailors and athletes told Sperry Top – Siderlead designer that grip, protection, and comfort were the primary concerns for selecting sailing footwear. They stressed a critical need to ”the boat to maximize the efficiency of every maneuver. Designers worked with athletes sailing different types of boats including Lasers, Finns, Stars, 470s, and 49ers. Each athlete valued grip, but Laser and Finn sailors also valued support and hiking comfort. Those riding the rails of 470s and 49ers wanted flexibility, lightweight construction, feel, and protection. After a year of exhaustive development in design and materials, and critical input from Team Sperry Top – Sider members, Sperry launched GripX3, which has three distinct components: Adaptive Wave Siping™, a tested tread design to get water from under the foot to reduce slippage on wet surfaces, Hydro Grip Rubber™, which is Sperrystickiest proprietary rubber compound yet, and Sperry Top – Deck 360™, an integrated rubber upper that allows for 360 – degree traction. These three key features, along with quick-drying, breathable upper materials and superior drainage make the new sailing collection Sperrylightest and best performing shoes ever. Read more »

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Rose Bowl

Five unique events not to miss in your college sailing career

The collegiate sailing calendar is a bounty of opportunities for fancy-free 18 – to 22 – year – olds to hit the road and enjoy the best years of their lives sailing and socializing. Sure, everyone wants to go to the flashy championship regattas, but the college sailing experience isnall about qualifying to compete for the big titles. In fact, its as much, if not more, about other distinctive annual events, especially those with offbeat appeal. These events embody the fun in college sailing, and the berths are highly sought after. It doesn t hurt that some of them are in great locations. Read more »

Critical Techniques


Sailing doublehanded boats in collegiate regattas focuses primarily on boathandling basics, which are key to developing top boatspeed. However, there are still areas, even downwind, where small changes in trimming technique can produce major jumps in speed. Here, with the College of Charleston sailing team, wego over some of the finer points of trimming the jib and windward heel when sailing downwind. Read more »




When it comes to the rough and the wretched, you need a reliable vehicle. The blokes at Polaris have breathed new life into the 2012 Sportsman XP 850, with a new twin – EFI SOHC engine and tech that makes a molehill of the toughest mountain. The result is a more powerful and more stable ATV that can pull along more than 680 kg and carry 160 kg on the front and rear racks, not counting your fat butt. It retains the power of automatic 4×4 or AWD —so that you get the right traction —but thatsupplemented with a revamped Engine Braking System (EBS) and new Active Descent Control. The anti – kickback steering, made possible by the dual A – Arm front suspension, reduces the strain of the ride, so that youchugging along in the buggy in control at all times. Plus, the 83.25 – in long and 47.6 – in wide body has been uplifted with ergonomic tweaks, such as larger – surface floorboards and body – fitting contours. The console has more efficient indicators, including the Diagnostic, Gear and AWD indicators. Time to get lost, we think.



In the 1970David Bowers travelled the Sahara in (or on!) a selection of decrepit vehicles. Herejust a few of his stories.

Come to the sunny Sahara for your holidays,”was the humorous comment that one of the guests had scrawled on an ink blotter at the reception desk of the Hotel Tin Hinan in Tammanrasset, which is a tiny isolated settlement located deep in the worldlargest desert. A smiley sun radiating beams of light accompanied the script, which neatly summed up the starkly oppressive, 120 – degree plus temperatures which I had encountered when hopping from oasis to oasis over the desert for the last 700 miles towards Tammanrasset, of which the last 400 – mile stretch from Ain Salah had been the worst by far. Hell on wheels! Read more »