The desire to be the fastest has always driven man to race against each other. On foot, by chariot,on a horse, riding cycles or astride a motorcycle. So why not compete on a fifty-so reasoned Motor Cycling readers and the weekly's European correspondent John Thorpe.

Following WWII many European factories began building under 50cc cyclemotor units, publicising their machines with high profile stunts. The 48cc four-stroke pull rod engine Ducati Cucciolo (Little Pup) circulated the Monza racetrack at 39.3 mph for 48 hours during 1951, followed by endurance testing at the Thruxton circuit in 1953. Vincenzo Piatti, Allois Garbardi and Marco Coco rode from Milan to London on 49.9cc Mini-Motors to promote the Piatti designed cyclemotor in 1948. The German Victoria factory even went on a record breaking spree with their fully faired 38cc clip on. And on the continent the tiddlers were raced.

Ten riders lined up for the 50cc event at the 1955 Whitsun Bank Holiday Monday event at the 3.134 mile Dorset track of Blandford. The first official British fifty race. JG Bound riding an ohv NSU sleeved down to 49cc set the pace with a race speed of 43.15 mph and a first ever fifty lap record of 43.88 mph. Bill Tinkler and NJ Dicks both riding 48cc Britax framed Ducati Cucciolo cyclemotors filled second and third spots.

Readers immediately lobbied the motorcycle press supporting fifty racing. The Motor Cycling, again a supporter of 50cc racing published letters and the odd photograph. Fifties were here to stay.
Where it all began.
Blandford Leads the way as an NSU Bounds home.
By Richard Rosenthal.
M A Raby travelledfrom Coventry with his Mini-Motor powered Fitz Ray Special to compete at Blandford. Although outclassed Raby had a trouble freeride on the converted bicycle clip on.
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Bill Peden-50cc NSU-1956
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