Saturday, May 27, 2017

1er RPIMa Who Dares Win

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I always been impressed by the 1st RPIMa, maybe because my uncle was a member of the Special Air Service (SAS) during 2nd WW and jumped during the Operation Samwest in Brittany or maybe because they are only at 8km from my house. Anyway here they are a Legend.










In spite of its name, the 1er RPIMa (RPIMa standing for Naval Infantry Paratrooper Regiment) does belong to the French army. The 1er RPIMa is the inheritor of the traditions of the two Free French Special Air Service (SAS) Regiments that served with distinction alongside their British brothers-in-arms in the SAS Brigade during World War Two. The Free French SAS were among the very first to join Sir David Stirling's newly created unit in Kabrit, North Africa in 1941 and they took part in the epics of the SAS in Africa, Crete, France, Belgium, Holland and Germany, earning many French and foreign awards in the process (including many British Distinguished Service Orders, Military Crosses and Military Medals).

Today, this SAS heritage still shows in the regimental motto" Qui Ose Gagne" (Who Dares Wins) and in the award of the RAPAS Wings, a badge reminiscent of the wartime SAS "Operational Wings" which can only be awarded to 1er RPIMa members after they have successfully met a set of stringent requirements including operational deployments. After WW2, the 1er RPIMa took part in the war in Indochina between 1945 and 1954, performing several of the more than 160 combat jumps carried out by the French paratroopers during that conflict. After the war, the regiment underwent a structural change and became a training depot for the whole of the colonial airborne force. As such, it did not take part in the conflict in Algeria. It remained in the training role until 1974 when the 1er RPIMa was again transformed, this time into a Special Forces unit, a role it has kept until today.

The regimental colours of the 1er RPIMa are decorated with the US Bronze Star Medal, the Dutch Bronze Leeuw and the Belgian Croix de Guerre as well as many French orders including the Légion d'Honneur and the Croix de la Libération.

The 1er RPIMa today Part of the French army's Special Forces Brigade (BFST), the 1er RPIMa is a modern, highly skilled and experienced Special Forces unit organized along company lines. The main strength of the regiment lies in its three RAPAS companies (RAPAS standing for Airborne Research and Special Action) each specializing in a specific field such as HAHO/HALO, Counter-Terrorism, amphibious, jungle, mountain or motorized patrols operations and in its RAPAS Signal company dedicated to the C3 support of Special Operations. The 1er RPIMa also fields a Training and Operations company which is in charge of providing the selection, initial and continuation training of the unit's manpower and a Logistics company which supports the regiment in its daily and operational undertakings.

 The 1er RPIMa is one of Europe's most experienced Special Forces unit, having been constantly engaged in operational deployments from the date of its re-rolling over thirty years ago. It benefits from an exceptional location in Bayonne, South West of France. This positioning makes all sort of training (amphibious, mountain.) possible. It is also ideal as it is very close to the Centre d'Entrainement Adaptation (CTA), Europe's largest and most modern Close Quarter Battle (CQB) facility and to the dedicated assets of the French army's Special Forces Aviation Detachment (DAOS) and airborne school (ETAP), two establishments that are essential to its training and operations. The list of its recent operations shows a world-wide commitment since it ranges from Afghanistan to Africa and the Balkans.

The acknowledged expertise of the Regiment is such that in recent years, many prominent European countries have trusted it with the evacuation of their nationals in war-torn countries. The trust of those countries has never been misplaced and the 1er RPIMa has put out of harm's way hundreds of EU and other nationals in the recent past. Similarly, since the beginning of its involvement in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, first in 2001 and then again from 2003 on, the Regiment has won high praises. The commitment of its members has been rewarded several times by the American forces in the form of Bronze Star, Army Commendation and Army Achievement Medals. The high level of experience reached by the 1er RPIMa also makes it a highly sought-after partner in the development of Special Forces units abroad and the Regiment constantly receives requests for assistance in that field from sister units around the world. Always the first to deploy, the 1er RPIMa is at the tip of the spear of France's defence; constantly on the lookout for new solutions and opportunities, it remains faithful to the motto of its SAS ancestors, "Who Dares Wins".

Friday, May 26, 2017

A Welcome Interruption by Northern Restory

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Interruptions like the Norton are a growing trend in Erik Christensen's world. Of course, He invites these opportunities for interruptions by keeping the Norton, a few motorcycles, a juke box, vintage gas pump, and other items on display in his office. They make pivoting from insurance to motorcycles and vintage pieces a seamless conversation with clients.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The World ’ s Fastest a Documentary in the Making

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Featuring

Two German Girls Alexandra Lier and Laia Gonzalez shoot The World‘s Fastest documentary. 

When the Bonneville Speed Week takes place this August, on a huge salt lake in Utah, these two will be there: Alexandra Lier, director and photographer, and Laia Gonzalez, film producer. The two women from Hamburg want to shoot the world‘s fastest documentary – and are seeking support for their ambitious project on Kickstarter.

Anyone who loves car racing bows to the magic which famously takes place at the Bonneville high-speed race. Every year, in the middle of nowhere, on a vast dried-out salt lake under the blazing Utah sun, speed fanatics, tinkerers and purists unite for a race of superlatives. Nowhere else on earth have so many land speed records been set. And nowhere else can you watch so many living legends as they make history. Legends like Al Teague, Duane McKinney, Jack Costella and Dennis Varni.

Alexandra Lier and Laia Gonzalez will accompany these legends with „The World‘s Fastest“ on their way to what will potentially be their last race. McKinney and his colleagues are all over 70 years old – however, this is not an obstacle. On the salt, age doesn’t count, just experience and passion. And that is exactly what Lier and Gonzalez portray in their film, up close and personal.

The World‘s Fastest is not just about speed. It is a film about time: record time, about a life time, about time remaining. So it’s not surprising that it’s precisely this topic which plays a decisive role in the production of the documentary film itself. Lier and Gonzalez have decided to bypass conventional and often protracted production processes – and instead to finance their film faster, via the crowd funding platform Kickstarter. „It is a race against time for us, in all respects. The salt layer gets thinner every year, so this story has to be produced this year, otherwise it may be too late“, says director Alexandra Lier.

To help the team achieve their financing goal in record speed supporters can, for instance, purchase a tuning workshop with Jack Costella, or become a named sponsor of McKinney’s custom Corvette. All this in addition to classic merchandise, such as T-shirts and posters.
If everything goes well and the Kickstarter goal of 58,000 Euros is reached, the small crew will shoot between June and August of this year. First back in the garages of the protagonists and later in Utah, out into no-mansland, in the middle of the salt lake, which crunches under the shoes like snow. For the legends of the Bonneville Speed Week, this might be the last race. But for these two filmmakers and their documentary it will only be the beginning of an exciting journey.

Contact :  www.theworldsfastestfilm.com  Press@theworldsfastestfilm.com

Friday, May 19, 2017

The VVF Residence Anglet France

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This residence built in 1970 by Jean- Raphael Hebrard, André Grésy and Jean Percillier has become one of the emblematic buildings of the seaside resort of Anglet. The architects collaborated in the construction of this imposing hotel complex. Overlooking the beach of the Chambre d'Amour, the building is conceived in the image of an immense liner: portholes, bridges, and other elements that remind ones of naval constructions. Powerful, opposing the elements, this residence is brave, standing with the sea and the waves. The architects of this (maritime) building have been able to look across the Atlantic towards my favorite architect who loves nature for its structures, spaces and traffic solutions: Mr Frank Lloyd Wright.
I’ve been lucky to know Jean Hebrard (who passed away in 2006) probably the best architect in the Basque Country for his hability in modern architecture. I dont even talk about his family home hidden in the woods which is probably the most beautiful house I ever saw in the area.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

P400 class Patrol Vessel

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The Perfect Yacht to me. P400 patrol ships are small vessels of the French Navy. They were designed to accomplish police operations in the French Exclusive Economic Zone. They were built by the Constructions Mécaniques de Normandie, which specialise in small military craft. Two similar ships are in service in Gabon. The P400 were originally designed in two versions: one armed with Exocet MM38 missiles, and another public service version with a smaller 16-man complement; eventually neither of these versions was commissioned as the Navy chose an intermediate version. Most of these craft are pre-positioned in overseas territories (DOM/TOM) where they carry out sea monitoring missions and secure the EEZ. They also execute missions in the context of French agreements with other nations, typically supporting foreign armies or carrying out humanitarian missions.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Bill Stevens' 1959 BSA Super Rocket

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A few days ago, I asked Bill Stevens from Charlotte N.C to send me pictures of his amazing 1959 BSA Super Rocket. He had it built as the closest replica he could to Dick Klamfoth's BSA A7 Shooting Star, the only swing-arm, vertical twin factory racer in the 1954 Daytona 200 where BSA came in the first 5 places. Dick was 2nd. This 59 has clip-ons, rear sets, a Bob Newby racing clutch with belt-drive primary, Amal Premier carburettor, Smith chronometrics clocks, TT100 tires, and a replica BSA factory racing seat made by RK Leighton in UK.... The assembly was done by Frank Deihl at Classic Cycle Works in Georgetown SC Dick on his factory BSA racer

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Over The Rainbow

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Delivered in 1930 by the Welsh yard Dickie & Sons on behalf of W. G. Hetherington of Glasgow, M/Y Over The Rainbow has had a long and fascinating history. Built in teak over oak frames, she was originally christened as Janetha IV and spent her early years cruising around the Scottish coast. Constructed to ensure maximum levels of comfort & luxury, Hetherington voyaged onboard with family and friends in Scottish waters until 1939 and the outbreak of World War II. The Royal Navy subsequently commandeered Janetha IV and put her to use as a coastal patroller by the name of HMS Corax. A point worth noting is that during the war period, the yacht’s dining room was used as the principal officer’s mess and the main leisure past time was to partake in a game of darts. To this day, the original Honduras mahogany panels still show the scars of where the darts missed the desired target, one of many factors that have helped retain M/Y Over The Rainbow’s history and character. More HERE