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Clips (6)

  1. Part one of five from this full length documentary.

  2. Part two of five from this full length documentary.

  3. Part three of five from this full length documentary.

  4. Part four of five from this full length documentary.

  5. Part five of five from this full length documentary.

  6. Credits from this full length documentary.


During the late 1980s, Kiwi inventor John Britten developed and built a revolutionary racing motorcycle. He pursued his dream all the way to Daytona International Speedway, where, in 1992, as an unlikely underdog, he proceeded to beat the biggest and richest manufacturers in the world. Britten: Backyard Visionary documents the maverick motorcycle designer that Guggenheim curator Ultan Guilfoyle described as "the New Zealander who stood the world of racing-motorcycle design on its head."


A perspective by Costa Botes 21.09.2008

Guggenheim curator Ultan Guilfoyle, describes inventor John Britten, as "the New Zealander who stood the world of racing-motorcycle design on its head". In a poll compiled by the world's leading motorcycle writers to rank the Motorcyclist of the ...

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Credits (9)

 Allan Baddock
 Harry Ruffell
 Ian Taylor

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Comments (19)



My son had to do a assignment on a great New Zealander and choose John Britten. This doco helped him connect with the heart of John's passion and creativity. Thank you for making John's inspiring story accessible to future generations.

 William Lithgow

William Lithgow

What a legend....! God only knows what he could`ve achieved if he hadn`t died so young ! Reminds me of the sort of British garden shed inventers like Barnes Wallace etc...! Found this via a link in MCN after Adam Child fullfilled a lifelong dream to ride one and he was totally blown away ! Only wish he could have lived on and done all the other things planned to do with motorcycles especially ! What a guy ! Hope he`s appreciated in NZ ! Peace Ye`All from Scotland !!

 Dion paul warren

Dion paul warren

The word legend rings loud in my mind when i remember watching john brittens story for the first time with my younger brother nearly 20yrs ago, his story has been fixed in my mind ever since. A humble genius who never did anything for the fame, only to prove a to himself he could.



Had tears in my eyes, when he was doing wheelies alongside the Ducati...seeing John so happy gave me goosebumps all over. Incredible, what this man has achieved! My all-time hero!! Greetings from germany to NZ.

 Barry Johnston

Barry Johnston

I purchased the video some years ago, and haven't been able to play it since I no longer have a video player... If it was on DVD I would purchase it.... An incredible story of innovation and talent.... I grew up in Rhodesia where we had similar innovative people brought on by the fact Rhodesia had sanctions from the rest of the world. We had to innovate our way through life...

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Included in:

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 All-Time Top 20 Greatest Hits


We've always had to either make something or fix the thing we've got, we've always been 12,000 miles away from any spare part. So the ability of Kiwis to manufacture and build things and keep things going and repair things has been a New Zealand tradition… 
The project constantly rides the narrow line between the revolutionary and the disasterous. 
It seems there's no stopping the bike, in a touch of absolute arrogance Andrew [Stroud] does a wheelstand alongside the leading Ducati.