The Shrike was first created in 1984 in the USA by Dave Norton. As Dave sent me a rather detailed history of how the Shrike came to be I have decided to use his text on this page. My thanks go to Dave Norton for allowing me to use it.
I’m Dave Norton, Senior Product Engineer for Flowserve Corporation, in Temecula CA. I designed and built the Norton Shrike in 1984 in San Diego CA. This document is provided to give those interested in the Shrike a more complete picture of what it is and how it came to be. It is the result of a chance combination of knowledge, need, and opportunity.
My background includes over 35 years experience in mechanical design, including flight control actuators on the Lockheed C-5A aircraft, chassis and suspension design on Indy and Baja 100 (it was a 1000 mile race, but alas only a 100 mile motor…) race cars, motorcycles, taxis, and steam-powered vehicles. I have raced Lotus open-wheeled formula cars, go-karts, sports cars, and motocross and dessert racing motorcycles All of this with notably little success but a lifetime of enjoyment. I survived 20 years of street motorcycling, which speaks volumes of both skill and luck.
The idea for the Shrike followed a tragic accident in 1978 involving a sad mixture of motorcycle and dune buggy, resulting in the loss of my riding buddy’s legs, and nearly his life. Over the next few years, ideas percolated and evolved, combining my sports car chassis and suspension knowledge with my motorcycle experiences.