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Memorable MC - 1981 BMW Paris-Dakar Winner Photo Gallery

Frank dusts off an oldie but goodie with this month's Memorable Motorcycle, his original report on the BMW beast which won the 1981 Paris-Dakar race. Check out the full story in Memorable Motorcycle: 1981 Paris-Dakar BMW.

Slideshow
bmw-paris--dakar_Melling.jpg
At 38 inches tall with rock-solid suspension, throwing a leg over the big Beemer wasn't easy.
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Melling was frustrated with the works bike until he started to ride it hard, the way BMW intended it to be ridden.
bmw-paris--dakar---bernard-.jpg
Bernard Neimer, Hubert Auriol and Jean Claude Fenouil with the three BMW Dakar to Paris bikes, the only three of its kind.
bmw-paris--dakar---Frank-Me.jpg
Frank does his best Auriol impersonation.
bmw-paris--dakar---front-en.jpg
Auriol was a punishing rider so BMW had to set the suspension as stiff as possible to accomodate his style.
bmw-paris--dakar---hubert-a.jpg
Auriol's nickname 'The African' was derived from his upbringing in Ethiopia.
bmw-paris--dakar---tank-and.jpg
The giant 9-gallon tank kept Auriol riding while other racers were searching for gas.
bmw-paris--dakar---winning-.jpg
BMW was aware early in the game that winning races sells bikes. It built the works bikes to boost the launch of its R80GS.