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 Pernod - 250 GP
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Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 250
Model : GP
Production : 1981 - 1983
Category : (R) Racing


250cc - 1981

A European cocktail

Having become a major sponsor of motorcycle racing, the Pernod aperitif company decided at the beginning of 1981 to finance a 100 percent "made in France" racing bike.

Multi-National Construction

It was an ambitious project. Pernod wanted their 250cc racer to be operational during the 1981 season with the aim of competing for the championship the following year. They appointed engineer Jean Bidalot – designer of the brilliant Motobécane 125 – as chief designer. His creation was similar to his Motobécane: a water-cooled two stroke twin with rotary intake valves. But though it had been designed in France, the Pernod relied heavily on subcontractors from other European countries: German Krober ignition, Spanish Beymag rims, Italian Marzocchi suspension and Zanzani brakes.

A Single Victory

This 65 hp racer looked highly competitive, but its first outings during 1981 were shortened by repeated seizures. By 1982, the Pernod was running reliably. Thierry Espie demonstrated how far the French team had come when he finished third in the final Grand Prix of the season on Germany's ultra-fast Hockenheim circuit. But it wasn't until the following season that the Pernod scored its first victory. Jacques Bolle rode it to first place in the British Grand Prix after a heroic struggle with his fellow countrymen, Thierry Espie and Christian Sarron, but sadly this proved to be a one-time happening.


Engine: 247cc (54x54mm) water-cooled parallel-twin

Power Rating: 65 hp @ 11,800 rpm

Valves: two-stroke, rotary intake valves

Fuel System: three 35nun carburetors

Transmission: 6-speed, chain final drive

Suspension: telescopic forks (front); swing arm with single damper (rear)

Brakes: twin 10.25 inch discs (front); disc (rear)

Wheels: 18 or 16 inch wire (front & rear)

Weight: 236 lb dry

Maximum Speed: 143-152 mph according to circuit

After a disappointing start to its career, the 250 Pernod won its first – but only – Grand Prix in 1983.

Le fichier Moto Passion réalisé par François-Marie Dumas réunit près de deux mille photos accompagnées d'un historique très complet des machines présentées.
Il sera progressivement mis à jour ici et toute information complémentaire est la bienvenue sur info@moto-collection.org.

Cette documentation unique, qui constitue sans doute l'encyclopédie la plus exhaustive jamais écrite sur l'histoire de la moto, a été réalisée avec l'assistance de nombreux spécialistes dont principalement Didier Ganneau, Christophe Gaime, Mick Woollett, Jean Goyard, Bernard Salvat, Christian Rey, Yves Campion, Helmut Krackowizer, Michael Dregni, Michel Montange, etc. que je remercie ici.

Disponible sur demande :
- Les fiches originales sur papier
- Les photos et archives signées de mon nom en haute définition ou les documents originaux.
Me contacter sur info@moto-collection.org pour les conditions et droits d'utilisation.