Dave Bickers pictured in 1966
|Born||17 January 1938|
Coddenham, Suffolk, England
|Died||6 July 2014 (aged 76)|
Coddenham, Suffolk, England
|Teams||Dot, Greeves, Matchless, Husqvarna, ČZ|
|Championships||European 250cc - 1960, 1961|
David Geoffrey Bickers (17 January 1938 – 6 July 2014) was an English Grand Prix motocross racer from Coddenham, Suffolk. He won two European motocross championships, and was a member of British motocross teams that won two Motocross des Nations events as well as two Trophée des Nations events. Bickers was awarded the Motorcycle News 'Man of the Year' award in 1960.
In the early 1960s, Bickers was one of the top motorcycle racers in the sport of scrambles, which eventually became more widely known by the European term 'motocross'. He began competing in motorcycle scrambles at the age of 15 just before the official age which he was eligible to ride, which was sixteen, and he was so successful that he was rewarded with a sponsorship from the Dot motorcycle company.
His riding talent got him noticed by Greeves factory rider, Brian Stonebridge, who then recommended that Bickers be hired by Greeves in 1958. He won two consecutive 250cc European motocross championships in 1960 and 1961 for the Greeves factory racing team. The European championship was considered to be the world championship at the time, as the sport of motocross had yet to develop outside of Europe.
From 1966 Bickers rode CZ models and was the UK importer for the 250 cc and 360 cc scramblers together with a trials bike, followed by CZ roadsters and Jawa models in 1973, selling both marques initially from his premises at Woodbridge Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, followed by a move to Farthing Road Industrial Estate, Ipswich.
As one of the first European riders to race in the United States, Bickers helped to introduce Americans to the sport of motocross. He also competed in the Trans-AMA motocross series in 1971 and 1972.
Film industry career
After retiring from competition, Bickers started a company manufacturing stunt equipment used in the film industry. He also appeared as a stunt double for Roger Moore in Octopussy and Escape to Athena among other film work.
Bickers died after a stroke on 6 July 2014.
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- Motorcycle Mechanics, June 1964, p.9 Full Chat by Bruce Cox. "All over Europe there are development engineers furiously overboring and overstroking existing 250 c.c. engines to bring them into the 500 c.c. category. Husqvarna, CZ and Greeves all plan to race two-strokes of about 360 c.c. and Dave Bickers has had a few rides on a 'Pacemaker' Cotton special fitted with a large-capacity two-stroke built by Jack Heath of Coventry. Obviously, all these manufacturers feel that light weight counts for as much as sheer power in moto-cross". Accessed and added 28 June 2016
- Motor Cycle, 16 February 1967. pp.206-208 Czechspot – Peter Fraser rides Dave Bickers' CZ Machinery Accessed 2015-01-21
- Motorcycle Mechanics, November 1973, p.60. Dave Bickers (Imports) Jawa-CZ from Czechoslovakia Sole U.K. Concessionaires Accessed and added 2015-01-31
- "The History of Motocross: Part Three: Edison Dye and his Flying Circus". motorcyclemuseum.org. Archived from the original on 7 May 2012. Retrieved 9 August 2012.
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- "Motocross star and Bond stuntman Dave Bickers dies aged 76". bbc.com. Retrieved 7 July 2014.