BOAL: 1972 Triumph Daytona

09 Triumph s

1972 Daytona 500


I’ve never sat astride a Norton Commando, or a BSA Lightning, but I’m sure either one of those would have felt like a Bonneville. British vertical twins pretty much felt alike, which is to say, orgasmic.

So when I found a 1972 Triumph Daytona 500 for sale in the paper, I snapped it up for $750.


08 72 Daytona s

Low miles, high bars


It was sweet. The original owner had installed a set of high-rise handlebars, but I quickly replaced those with a set of Magura flatties. Probably as bad as the high rises, but at least I didn’t look like a dork, or so I thought.


07 72 Daytona s

A rare photo of a Daytona with all its parts


In town the Daytona was sweet. The straight-through exhausts were well behaved until you punched it and then, all hell broke loose. Torque up the butt and one of the best sounds evah! No, the Daytona wasn’t the icon that the Bonneville was, but if you weren’t careful and dropped a gear changing lanes it was liable to pull a wheelie. Proud to say I did that on the Southwest Freeway on my way to Amtrak one morning in DC. It would run 14.5 quarters. Not particularly quick today in the bike world, but it looked better than any of the rice burners today.

Loved that bike.