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Paul Dobbs RIP 05/10/70 10/06/2010

We are very saddened to announce the death of Paul Dobbs whilst competing in the Isle of Man TT Supersport race on 10th June 2010


The passing of Paul Dobbs has left a big hole in the lives of those who were fortunate to know him.

He was one of those rare people whose love of life was so infectious, that it lifted the mood of all around.

I was introduced to Paul by long time friend Tony Harris the maker of BT-H magnetos.  I had asked if Tony knew anyone who would like to race my Scott whilst I recovered from some crash injuries.

Tony told me of a young New Zealander with previous racing experience “down under” who was so keen to race that he had recently competed in a seven hour endurance race for mopeds with his partner Bridget.  I was impressed with his will to race and a Mallory VMCC meeting was arranged.

I had just accepted the handling faults of my particular Scott but Paul having experienced its bad manners, was determined to improve things and advocated moving the rider weight forward.

This improved handling and Paul had some inspiring rides on the bike with about 35bhp available.

Paul’s spirited style was well captured by Nigel Clark of Mortons with that fully airborne shot going over Cadwell “mountain”.  The publicity attracted other better funded classic and modern race teams and led to Paul being supplied with top class race bikes for the Isle of Man TT races and North West 200 events, plus other mainland races.  Paul still tried to find time for at least one race meeting where he could ride the Scott. 

I have expended much time, money and effort racing my Scott and decided that I should be fair and give Marina a holiday this year without bikes.

Marina wanted to see a bit more of Europe, so we made plans.  I had just finished the rebuild of a Scott engine for Gulio Caimi of Milan.  Gulio had asked for some guidance over several aspects of his Scott, so I decided we could call in briefly during our travels. I should also give credit to Eddie Shermer who rebuilt the transmission to top spec, Sean Hawker who found a new magdyno body and rebuilt it as new and Martyn Bratby who reconditioned the carb in great style.

On 9th June we were travelling in France when I received a text message from Paul Dobbs to say that the TT races were going well but he would not like to return to New Zealand without racing the Scott if at all possible.  I replied that he could take my rides at Lydden.  Paul responded to say that he would change his tickets for his return flights and ride at Lydden.

The next day, June 10th, I had a text message to break the news that Paul had crashed in the Supersport race and died instantly.

Paul had an unusually sunny and positive outlook on life and was well liked and respected by all who knew him.  He was almost a member of our family, so the loss was profoundly felt.

Paul had the natural ability to sort out handling problems on motorcycles and had been employed by Triumph to do just that for a period.

I do not possess this ability to such a degree and with his help on chassis setup and Alan Middleton on exhaust development, we were able to make significant progress. I owe Paul a lot.

Paul had expressed a wish, that when his time came, he would like to be buried on the Isle of Man.  The funeral hearse was to carry his body on one final brisk lap of the mountain circuit, with as many friends as could attend to follow the hearse on bikes if possible.

As I was unable to attend, then to represent the Scott part of his racing life, My son Richard attended and followed the hearse round the mountain course.  He said that he thought that a new lap record for hearses up to four litres capacity had been set and he was sure that Paul's spirit would enjoy the joke.

A thoroughly good man and a dear friend who enriched the lives of everybody he met.  Rest in peace Paul. © 2003

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