Interviews with Indiana motorcycle racing pioneers during the Indiana Motorcycle Expo at the Indiana State Fairgrounds on Feb. 18, 2017
U.S. rider Taylor Robert finishes as top individual
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The U.S. World Trophy Team dominated the 2016 International Six Days Enduro, the longest-running team world championship in motorcycling, winning the ISDE World Trophy for the first time. Held in Navarra, Spain, on Oct. 11-16, it was the 91st running of the ISDE since the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme event was founded in 1913.
“This enormous accomplishment is historic and without question one of American motorcycling’s greatest competitive triumphs,” said AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman. “On behalf of all AMA members, I congratulate the U.S. World Trophy Team, its support crew, sponsors and everyone who contributed to this exceptional performance.”
The U.S. World Trophy Team defeated runner-up Great Britain by 3 minutes, 38.66 seconds, a lead accumulated over six days of racing. The U.S. team was led by Taylor Robert, who was the top individual rider at the event. Robert’s teammates were Kailub Russell, Thad DuVall and Layne Michael.
“We finally got it done,” said U.S. ISDE Team Manager Antti Kallonen. “Not only did we win the world championship, but we also won the individual overall. All of our World Trophy Team guys did exactly as we had hoped. Taylor was phenomenal winning the overall. It’s just as special as last year when Ryan Sipes won the overall, except this year we also won the championship.”
Robert and Russell raced KTM 350EXC-Fs in the E2 class. DuVall raced in the E3 class, and Michael competed in the E1 class. Both rode Husqvarnas.
The U.S. Junior Trophy Team of Trevor Bollinger and brothers Grant and Steward Baylor also made the podium, finishing second after working their way up from a fourth-place finish on the first day to just 45.23 seconds behind the winning Swedish team.
The U.S. Women’s World Cup Team of Tarah Gieger, Nicole Bradford and Rachel Gutish finished fourth. They were 32 minutes behind the winning Australian team, which claimed its fourth consecutive ISDE title.
The United States had two teams make the podium in the club team division, which was won by an Italian team. The Trail Jesters, made up of Josh Toth, Ben Kelley and Jason Klammer, finished second, and the Eric Cleveland Memorial Team, made up of Jimmy Jarrett, Broc Hepler and Alex Dorsey, finished third in the team standings.
Toth, who competed in C1, was the top individual rider among the 381 entrants in that division, winning by more than 2 mintues. Kelley won the C2 class, and Hepler finished third in the C3 class.
This year’s ISDE was the first year for the FIM Enduro Vintage Trophy. American Fred Hoess, competing on a 1986 WR250 Husqvarna, won the overall.
“I rode here in Spain in 1985 on basically the same bike as I rode this year, and I’d have to say on Day 5, when we were riding in the mountains and I’d look up at the scenery and smell the two-stroke oil and the burning clutch plates, I’d swear just for a second I was back in Spain and it was 1985 again,” said Hoess, who had competed in 25 ISDEs prior to this year’s special vintage competition.
The U.S. team received support from: Arai Helmets, Elizabeth Scott Community, Hall’s Cycles, Motion Pro, Rabaconda, Seat Concepts, Spectro Performance Oils, ThermoProbe.net, Trail Jesters and ZipTyRacing.com.
Visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com > Racing > International Competition > ISDE for more information.
AMA announces competition category inductees for Class of 2016
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Revolutionary frame builder Jeff Cole, AMA road racing legend Miguel Duhamel and desert racer Jack Johnson will be inducted into the American Motorcyclist Association Hall of Fame at a ceremony to be held in Orlando, Fla., this October.
“Jack Johnson, Jeff Cole and of course the amazing Miguel Duhamel represent the passion, focus and talent that drives motorcyclists to the competitive arena,” said Ken Ford, a member of the AMA board of directors and chairman of the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation board. “Competition breeds success, not just for the individual and his or her team, but all motorcyclists as we benefit from technological advances discovered through racing.”
The 2016 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held during the American International Motorcycle Expo, which runs Oct. 13-16 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.
Jeff Cole was not just a brilliant fabricator, but he could translate rider feedback, whether highly technical or casual commentary, into geometric expression. In many ways, his revolutionary frame designs changed the racing landscape by accomplishing what was previously thought impossible.
C&J racing frames recorded countless AMA Grand National victories and championships since 1970, including 20 AMA Grand National Championships in a 22-year span. His designs also proved to be successful in road racing, motocross, international enduro and desert racing.
Miguel Duhamel was the AMA road racing paddock’s most dominant rider in the 1990s and early 2000s. The charismatic Canadian, who was as fast as he was popular with fans, lit up the record books throughout an era that saw some of the fiercest competition ever in the AMA road racing ranks.
At the height of his career, Duhamel was the winningest AMA Superbike racer in history with 32 class wins. He captured the Superbike crown in 1995, won the Daytona 200 five times, took five AMA Supersport titles and two AMA Formula Xtreme titles on his way to amassing 86 career AMA wins. His 40-plus AMA Supersport victories are a record-more than three times the number of the next person on the list. He is the only AMA road racer to compete for five different factories.
Jack Johnson won his first Nevada State Championship title in desert racing at age 10, but his formal career launched a decade later. Johnson was first overall in the 1973 Mint 250, 1975 Mint 400, 1976 Mint 400, 1978 Cherry Creek Hare and Hound and in the 1979 Baja 500, where he was also first in the solo “Iron Man” class.
Johnson also won first overall at the Baja 1000 with Larry Roeseler in 1978, 1979 and 1980, and in 1982 with Al Baker. He consistently won his class in the Baja 1000 from 2001 through 2007. He also was a two-time International Six Days Enduro medalist, winning gold in 1981.
Cole, Duhamel and Johnson, all from competition categories, join motorcycling enthusiast and pioneer Gloria Struck and dirt-track racer Ronnie Jones in the Class of 2016. Struck and Jones belong to the well-qualified category, which recognizes candidates whose accomplishments transcend the traditional competition and non-competition categories. The non-competition members of the Class of 2016 will be announced shortly.
The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame induction ceremony is open to the public and, for the third consecutive year, takes place in conjunction with AIMExpo. AIMExpo brings together consumers, dealers, manufacturers, and the world press in one location for global product launches, demo rides, motorcycling seminars, and much more.
Tickets to the 2016 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be available soon at www.americanmotorcyclist.com.
For updates on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, keep an eye on www.americanmotorcyclist.com/hof, as well as the AMA’s social media channels, including Facebook (www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist and www.facebook.com/AMAHallofFame) and Twitter and Instagram (@AMA_Riding).
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — On Saturday, Oct. 17, the American Motorcyclist Association Hall of Fame welcomed the members of the Class of 2015 at the 2015 Yamaha AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, presented by Harley-Davidson.
The ceremony, hosted by actor, motorcyclist and AMA board member Perry King, inducted dirt tracker Alex Jorgensen, road racing champion John Kocinski, longtime Yamaha Motor Corp. U.S.A. race team manager Keith McCarty, entrepreneur and industry patron John Parham, off-road racing champion Rodney Smith and former Harley-Davidson CEO Richard Teerlink.
Also honored was 1999 Hall of Fame inductee and three-time world road racing champion Wayne Rainey as the 2015 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Legend, presented by MAG. AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Legends are existing Hall of Famers who are being recognized for their ongoing contributions to motorcycling.
“A strong future can only be built on a secure historical footing, and the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame is motorcycling’s custodian of that history,” said AMA Board of Directors Chair Maggie McNally, speaking at the ceremony. “It is the showcase of those who have built the foundation of American motorcycling. Tonight, it’s my honor to welcome six more of these amazing individuals into the Hall of Fame.”
Following the Hall of Fame VIP Reception, presented by Suzuki, attendees were treated to a video chronicling each inductee’s motorcycling accomplishments. Then each new Hall of Fame member was presented with a Hall of Fame ring, sponsored by Zero Motorcycles.
“With the greatest resolve, each of these icons has placed an indelible mark on motorcycling’s past, present and future,” said King, as he closed out the evening’s ceremony. “From their motorcycles that set and broke world records, to inventions and innovations that revolutionized an industry, to the stories of hard-fought victories, from the racetrack all the way to the halls of government, each member of the Hall of Fame is an enduring testament to the steadfast and unwavering ability to dream big — and never look back.”
The evening concluded with a roll call for all attending Hall of Fame members to join the class of 2015 on the stage. The tribute drew a standing ovation from the room.
The 2015 Yamaha AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, presented by Harley-Davidson, was held in conjunction with AIMExpo. The AIMExpo is a diverse powersports event that welcomes members of the industry, motorcycle media and consumers.
Sponsors of the event included title sponsor Yamaha, presenting sponsor Harley-Davidson, reception sponsor Suzuki Motor of America, ring sponsor Zero Motorcycles, and Hall of Fame Legend sponsor Motorsport Aftermarket Group. Platinum level sponsors included American Honda, BMW of North America, GE Capital and Kawasaki Motors Corp. U.S.A. Manufacturer Elite sponsors were GEICO Motorcycle, Husqvarna Motorcycles and KTM North America. Motion Pro was an Aftermarket Gold sponsor, and Motul and Rea & Associates were Aftermarket Silver sponsors. Service sponsors included AVIS/Budget, Chet Burks Productions and Federal Motorcycle Transport.
John Kocinski, who began racing as a teenager, won the AMA 250 Grand Prix Championship in 1987, 1988 and 1989 and took the 1989 600 Supersport win at Daytona International Speedway. In 1990, in his first full season with Team Roberts, he won the 250cc World Championship in Europe, claiming eight pole positions and notching seven wins on tracks he had never seen before. In 1997, he won the World Superbike championship, scoring 10 wins on a Honda RC45, the bike’s crowning world title.
Kocinski went on to record 18 AMA 250 GP wins. During his career, he raced on teams that included AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame members David Aldana, Erv Kanemoto, Eddie Lawson and Wayne Rainey, including Team Roberts assembled by Kenny Roberts. He officially retired from racing in 2002. Kocinski was inducted into the Hall of Fame in the Road Racing category.
In his induction speech, Kocinski talked about his long career and how it all began with a spark of inspiration, witnessing legendary tuner Bud Aksland work on a Yamaha TZ250 at Daytona in 1982.
“I really can’t thank Bud enough for everything he did for me,” Kocinski said. “I would like to thank the AMA for being a world-class federation and giving me a place to hone my skills. I want to thank my family for their sacrifices.”
Richard Teerlink was part of the executive team responsible for Harley-Davidson’s financial turnaround in the late 1980s. As president and CEO, Teerlink helped establish the company’s new mission, values, objectives and strategies. His approach included working closely with employees at all levels of the organization, as well as with union leaders. In addition, he believed a participative approach with dealers, suppliers and riders would lead to the development of mutually beneficial relationships.
Teerlink joined Harley-Davidson in 1981 as chief financial officer. That year, the company posted an operating loss of $15.5 million on revenue of $210 million. When Teerlink retired as chairman and CEO in 1999, Harley posted operating profits of $416 million on revenue of $2.45 billion and held nearly 50 percent of the U.S. market for 650cc and larger motorcycles.
“Joining Harley-Davidson as chief financial officer was a life changing experience,” Teerlink said. “As CFO and later as CEO, I was able to meet customers face to face, and share the experience and the camaraderie of the open road. And through the Harley Owners Group, my wife and I have had the opportunity to build relationships with riders, customers and friends from all over the world. To be admitted to the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame is an honor beyond belief.”
Rodney Smith started riding motorcycles in the hills of Northern California with his family in the ’70s. From there, he blossomed into a local motocross standout and then an international contender. Smith accepted an offer to race in Brazil in 1985 and won five Brazilian national championships. He then moved to the world level and finished third in the 1988 Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme 250cc World Motocross Championships before returning to America in 1990.
Back in the United States, Smith turned his focus to off-road racing, where he became one of the most dominant riders of the late 1990s and early 2000s. Smith won 13 AMA-sanctioned national championship series, including five Grand National Cross Country titles, three AMA National Hare Scrambles titles and five AMA National Reliability Enduro Championships. He also excelled in the International Six Days Enduro, winning multiple gold medals, competing on the premier U.S. Trophy Team and twice earning top-American honors.
“From Day 1 when I was a kid, we were just an average family riding dirt bikes,” Smith said. “I never thought in those days, that it would come to this. What a great honor. I never thought I would be up here being inducted into the Hall of Fame.”
John Parham opened his first shop with a partner in 1975 in his hometown of Anamosa, Iowa. Four years later, he branched out with his wife Jill, starting J. Parham Enterprises. This company came to be known as J&P Cycles. By the 1990s, J&P Cycles had grown into one of the largest motorcycle accessory mail order companies in the world.
Parham stayed on board to run J&P Cycles after selling it to Motorsports Action Group in 2001. At that time, he also focused additional energy and resources on preserving motorcycling history. In 2001, Parham relocated the National Motorcycle Museum to Anamosa, where it has continued to thrive and grow into one of the world’s foremost motorcycle museums.
“J&P Cycles was successful because of all of our wonderful employees,” Parham said. “Everyone’s goal was to provide the best customer service that we could, no matter whether it was to the retail customer, your fellow employees, or the companies we did business with. I wish to thank all of our employees past and present.”
Keith McCarty’s first job as a motorcycle mechanic was for U.S. Suzuki in 1973 for rider Mike Runyard. In 1975-76, he wrenched for AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Tony DiStefano, winning two 250cc AMA National Motocross Championships. When the motocross schedule didn’t conflict, he worked with the Hall of Fame duo of Erv Kanemoto and Gary Nixon in road racing.
In January 1977, McCarty began his long career with Yamaha as the mechanic for AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Legend Bob “Hurricane” Hannah. McCarty has remained in Yamaha’s racing division ever since, working as mechanic, supervisor, department manager and, most recently, division manager for all of Yamaha’s U.S. racing activities.
McCarty, who lives in Orange, Calif., is known not only for his technical knowledge, but also for inspirational prowess and organizational acumen that transcends racing disciplines, making him not only an asset for Yamaha but also a valued member of the motorcycling community.
“I want to congratulate the other inductees tonight,” McCarty said. “I want to thank my Yamaha family. The thing about being in a family is being certain that someone has your back no matter what, though wins and losses. I’m so proud to be a member of the AMA and to receive this honor tonight.”
Alex “Jorgy” Jorgensen exemplifies the talent, skill and diverse abilities that are trademarks of the greatest AMA Grand National competitors in history. Of the handful of riders who have wins in all four dirt-track disciplines — short track, TT, half mile and mile — Jorgensen is the only rider who achieved the feat in his first four Grand National wins, while competing on four different motorcycles — Can-Am, BSA, Norton and Harley-Davidson.
Jorgensen’s career boasts a number of special wins. He is the last rider to win an AMA Grand National on a Norton or BSA, both wins coming at Ascot. He earned Can-Am its first AMA Grand National win.
He also logged the first AMA Grand National victory on Rotax’s four-stroke single at the Ascot TT. From 1982 to 2004, the Rotax engine would dominate the highest levels of short-track and TT competition. Along with Gary Scott, Jorgensen holds the record of most AMA Grand National wins at Ascot with six.
“I’m very honored to be here tonight,” Jorgensen said. “I want to thank all of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers who voted for me. I’m so lucky that I raced motorcycles. It allowed me to meet so many people I wouldn’t have. I want to thank the AMA for giving me this chance. It’s something I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”
AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Legend Wayne Rainey
Wayne Rainey was the top World Championship 500cc Grand Prix rider of the early 1990s, winning three consecutive World Championships riding for Yamaha in 1990, 1991 and 1992. In addition to his accomplishments on the world level, Rainey was also a star of AMA Superbike racing during the 1980s, winning that title in 1983 with Kawasaki and again for Honda in 1987.
Following a career-ending injury while leading the Italian Grand Prix in September 1993, Rainey, who also was in the points lead for a fourth straight title at the time, returned to the sport the next year as a team owner and manager. Rainey retired from that role following the 1998 season.
Today, Rainey is the president of MotoAmerica, the AMA and FIM North America championship road racing series. Rainey was the motive force behind the creation of the new series, serving as both its inspiration and most prominent advocate, insisting the series was necessary to prepare today’s American road racers for success on the world stage.
Rainey treated the attendees on a heartfelt ride through his life, recounting his career from the time he started racing to his U.S. championships to his world championships, his injury, his return as a team owner, and finally his commitment to MotoAmerica.
“I want to thank the AMA for originally inducting me in ’99,” Rainey said. “It’s pretty cool that everybody here tonight is connected through motorcycles. Anything is possible. To my son, Rex, when you go through the challenges of your life, I hope you see how I dealt with tough times and let that guide you.”
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Inverness, FL., June 4, 2014 – In 2000, Ohio resident Ed Youngblood wrote a book about John Penton, an American international motorcycle sportsman whose vision and determination helped revolutionize the off-road sector of the worldwide motorcycle industry. His ideas changed off-road motorcycles from expensive vehicles with limited availability to lighter, better, affordable, and sporty vehicles available in any dealership.
After 40 years in the motorcycle industry, Youngblood retired to Inverness in 2012. His book, “John Penton and the Off-Road Motorcycle Revolution,” is still in print and has inspired a documentary movie entitled “The John Penton Story,” being released this month. Todd Huffman, head of Pipeline Digital Media, located in Orange County, California, explains, “I read the book soon after it was published, and I vowed that one day John Penton would be the subject of a documentary film.”
Huffman launched his project in 2006, collecting archival film and still images and traveling from California to Europe to create hundreds of hours of original testimonial footage from associates of John Penton. The movie is narrated by actor and singer Lyle Lovett, whose early youthful motorcycling experiences centered upon his own Penton motorcycle.
Youngblood was flown to Ohio last summer to be interviewed for the project. He says, “I am thrilled that I’ve had any involvement in inspiring Todd Huffman. He is a man in the model of John Penton; dynamic and determined and willing to nurture a dream for years in order to make it come true. I’m very excited about attending the premier of ‘The John Penton Story’ next week.”
The new documentary will premier in Cleveland, Ohio on June 9 and in Los Angeles on June 17. Cleveland was chosen for the first premier because it is near the Penton home in Amherst, Ohio. John Penton, now 89, will be guest of honor at the premier.
Youngblood has authored seven books about motorcycle history. Today he serves as a volunteer at the Florida Artists Galley and writes a monthly column for The Pioneer about Floral City.
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The American Motorcyclist Association has announced the U.S. World Trophy Team for the 89th International Six Days Enduro, the world’s premier off-road world championship event. Leading the U.S. riders in San Juan, Argentina, Nov. 3-8, will be Mike Brown, Thad Duvall, Charlie Mullins, Zach Osborne, Taylor Robert and Kailub Russell.
Antti Kallonen, who guides KTM’s off-road racing teams in North American competition, will manage the U.S. ISDE team.
“Our Trophy team is a strong, experienced team that will work well together toward our goal of winning the World Trophy,” Kallonen said. “Despite our loss of Team Captain Kurt Caselli, our team is motivated and ready to step up and win for Kurt. Kurt, along with his dad, was the most influential person to push the AMA-led effort and the U.S. team to the next level. This year’s race being in South America means there is no home advantage for the European teams, and I’m expecting us to take advantage of this and provide a strong result.”
In 2013, the U.S. World Trophy Team finished second, equaling its finish from 1982. The U.S. squad has never won the prestigious event.
“It is a longstanding American dream to win Six Days,” said AMA Off-Road Manager Chuck Weir. “Last year, our riders showed us what they can do on the world stage. For 2014, we’re ready to take our game to the next level. Our goal is no less than a team world championship at the ISDE this November.”
Brown, from Bluff City, Tenn., will serve as team captain.
“I’m honored to once again represent the United States at the ISDE, and I’m humbled to serve as team captain this year,” said Brown, who races Husqvarna motorcycles. “I hope to make Kurt proud in Argentina and help lead the U.S. riders to a world championship.”
Robert, from Scottsdale, Ariz., was the top-finishing American in 2013 and the KTM rider is expected to play a significant role in the U.S. effort this year.
“I’m excited to return to Six Days to compete against rest of the world,” Robert said. “We have a great team put together and the conditions in Argentina are expected to be similar to what we see on the West Coast. I’m looking forward to great results.”
Mullins, from Hickory, N.C., also will race a KTM at Six Days. Osborne, from Abingdon, Va., and Duvall, from Williamstown, W.Va., will race Honda motorcycles.
Brown, Robert, Mullins, Osborne and Duvall were members of the U.S. World Trophy Team in 2013. New to the U.S. World Trophy Team is Russell, from Kingston, Ohio. Russell, a KTM rider, made his Six Days debut in 2013 when he was a member of the U.S. Junior Trophy Team.
The World Trophy Team is one of three premier teams that represent the United States at the ISDE. The others are the Junior Trophy Team, which fields four riders younger than 23 years old, and the Women’s Trophy Team, which fields three female riders. In addition, several club team members represent the United States at the event.
The AMA will announce the full contingent of U.S. riders following qualifier rounds this weekend in Idaho City, Idaho, and June 14-15 in Wellston, Ohio.
For more information about the U.S. ISDE effort, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com/racing/internationalcompetition/isde.
About the American Motorcyclist Association
Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world’s largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders’ interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com.