Suzuki's GSX-R750 prompts a frank and revealing exchange of emails
From Cyril's memoirs dated 27 December 2005
Date: 12 October 2005
I read with interest your account in Bikes and Bikemen of the invention and naming of Suzuki's SRAD induction system. Now, you and I both know that the naming process was long and hard and took place at a seminar in Berkshire in April of 1995. As I recall, it wasn't you who came up with the acronym which was to grace the following year's GSX-R750T. No, in fact I coined Suzuki Ram Air Direct after several of your suggestions were rejected, including, if I'm not mistaken, High Air Intake Rate Yield, or HAIRY. I’m surprised you seem to have forgotten this, but am prepared to put it down to the heavy medication a man of your age and condition must be forced to endure. I look forward to seeing a letter in Bikes and Bikemen correcting the error.
Yours, Charles Deacon
Date: 13 October 2005
Many thanks for your message, but I feel I have to defend my ground on this one. I know for a fact that SRAD was coined by myself to great acclaim and relief from all involved after discussions had reached deadlock on day 18. You may not recall the decisive moment too well as I believe you were out of the room at the time on (yet another) toilet break. How is that nasty waterworks trouble, by the way? Incidentally, your embarrassing bladder-based 'accident' earlier that day could have happened to anyone suffering from chronic incontinence, although to have had the same mishap eight times in two weeks does seem a little unfortunate.
The fact that the problem was prompted by urethral chaffing during the 1992 Le Mans 24-Hour does make it seem a little more heroic, although as you were a mechanic, not a rider, I'm a little puzzled as to when this chaffing actually took place. It may well have been caused by going balls-out on something long and French, but I doubt it was the Mulsanne Straight. We'll say no more.
HAIRY, I'm afraid, doesn't ring a bell and I suspect your mind is playing tricks on you. It's only to be expected when a man suffers premature baldness, but you really must put that to one side, as I presume you do your rather fine toupee each night before bed.
Oh, and may I say that my only medication involves liberal doses of my lovely young wife Francesca and the finest Umbrian olive oil, usually taken separately, though not always!
Best wishes, Cyril
PS: how's the rash?
Date: 16 October 2005
Dear oh dear, you really are a bitter little man, aren't you? Do I need to send you a copy of the photo of me shaking hands with Masahiro Nishikawa as he congratulates me for my work on the GSX-R project? It would be a simple thing to take a quick snap of it in situ on my bedside table. No doubt you won't recall the photo being taken during Nishikawa's surprise visit to the seminar, as you were otherwise engaged in a maintenance store cupboard with a waiter you'd been chatting up at lunch. Or was that just another 'misunderstanding'? I'm sure 'the lovely Francesca' (or is that Francesco?) would be interested to hear all about it. Just write the letter, Cyril.
Date: 27 October 2005
Please forgive my tardy reply, but I've had many more important things to do, such as fettling my small but lovely collection of motorcycles and tending to a troublesome boil on the dog's bottom.
It's a pity you had to bring up the incident in the cupboard with the waiter – and in such a threatening manner. Perhaps it's time to tell you that the photo you have cherished all these years is not, in fact, the GSX-R750T’s engine designer Masahiro Nishikawa, but rather Kevin Hom who worked at the Shell Minimart, Twyford. If you knew one iota about the team behind the GSX-R you'd know that Nishikawa has never sported an afro perm, is unlikely to be seen in a blue nylon snorkel jacket – least of all with the hood up – and didn’t, the last time I met him, have a lazy eye. We were all in on the joke, Charles.
As I recall, and you obviously do not, you then drank yourself unconscious in a self-congratulatory frenzy before being carried up to bed by the rather burly night porter. As a memento, I have in front of me as I type a rather interesting collection of snapshots. My word, it's not so much the length of those GSX-R750 conrods as the external diameter of the big-end. Ouch! Thank goodness for polished internals. And how are the old Chalfonts, these days?
If I were you Charles, I'd forget all about this whole SRAD business, before you make a complete TAWT of yourself.
Yours, still wincing at the thought
Cyril 'Polaroid' Green