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ROAD RACING . DRAG RACING . STUNT RIDING

CUSTOM BIKES . MOTO TECH

MAY 2014 VOL 4 ISSUE 8

SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM TM

THE

DRAG RACING ISSUE

BBS’ JOHNNY CASH | DRAG RACING THEN AND NOW |MIROCK’S JASON MILLER | ON THE COME UP: DRAG RACING EDITION | SHUT THE CITY DOWN RIDE 2014 SEASON OPENER


License to thrill

New Hypermotard SP

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Can Marquez continue his legendary run? Or will one of the many talented veterans stage a comeback on American soil? Find out when MotoGP™ returns to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the 2014 Red Bull Indianapolis GP.™ Tickets are going fast, so get yours today. RED BULL INDIANAPOLIS GP– AUGUST 8–10, 2014

AUGUST 8-10

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THE FEATURES THE SHOW: BBS’ JOHNNY CASH

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DRAG RACING THEN AND NOW

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ON THE COME UP: DRAG RACING EDITION

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DYSTANY SPURLOCK: YOUNGEST IN CHARGE

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MIROCK’S JASON MILLER

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STCD RIDE: 2014 SEASON OPENER

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THE USUALS

MAY 2014 - VOLUME 4, ISSUE 8

http://issuu.com/action/page?page=12 12 THE PRESS ROOM http://issuu.com/action/page?page=16 16 THE INBOX http://issuu.com/action/page?page=18 18 DEALERSHIP SPOTLIGHT - MOTOPRIMO http://issuu.com/action/page?page=22 22 THE SHOW - BASIC BIKE SHOP’S JOHNNY CASH http://issuu.com/action/page?page=32 32 THE GRID NEWS http://issuu.com/action/page?page=40 40 THE INSIDE TRACK - By Allan Lane http://issuu.com/action/page?page=48 48 THE YOUNGEST IN CHARGE - By Dystany Spurlock 52http://issuu.com/action/page?page=52 LINES OF A LEGEND - By Rickey Gadson http://issuu.com/action/page?page=76 76 VIOLET STARS & HAPPY STUNTING - By Leah Petersen http://issuu.com/action/page?page=86 86 FEATURED CLUB - THE B.R.A.T.S. MC http://issuu.com/action/page?page=90 90 KNOW YOUR ROLE - By Kim “Lady Kim” Roper http://issuu.com/action/page?page=96 96 THE LION’S DEN - By Lion James 100http://issuu.com/action/page?page=100 FEATURED RIDERS 106http://issuu.com/action/page?page=106 ASK THE PRO WRENCH - By Thomas Campion http://issuu.com/action/page?page=108 108 IMPROVE YOUR SKILLS - By Eric Wood http://issuu.com/action/page?page=122 122 FOCUSED - By Kiana Gadson http://issuu.com/action/page?page=138 138 THIS LIFE - By Tyson Beckford http://issuu.com/action/page?page=140 140 THE NEW ISH http://issuu.com/action/page?page=146 146 STAFF STUFF

INTERACTIVE CLICK ON NUMBERS TO JUMP TO A PAGE

FEATURED RIDER: JOSE

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FEATURE STORY

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MIROCK’S

JASON M I L L E R PAGE 56

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EDITOR’S LETTER I

’ll say it every time... Quick is quick but fast is fast. Drag racing in its purest form is the great separator of the quick and the fast. Drag racing is the great equalizer.

Welcome to the Drag Racing issue of SportBikes Inc Magazine. Our Drag Racing Editor, Rickey Gadson touches on how things have changed in “Drag Racing, Then and Now.” Dystany Spurlock’s “Youngest in Charge” monthly column takes a personal tone as she speaks on who she is as a Drag Racer. We sit down with MIRock’s Jason Miller and give you a chance to get to know the main man behind the hottest East Coast Drag Racing Series. This issue has an extended “On the Come Up” section dedicated to Drag Racers that you should definitely take note of. I want to give a special shout to a long time friend and supporter, Mark Johnson. Without giving away his age... I’ll just say that his son graduated high school a year after I did. Last year, Mark went to Rickey Gadson’s Drag Racing School. Mark has been riding bikes for a majority of his life but this year, Mark has decided to participate in his first season of competitive drag racing. Mark, you are an inspiration to true riders and racers everywhere. We salute you. Now go get that glory!

Best, Allan allan@sportbikesincmag.com

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THE TEAM Publisher/Editor in Chief: Allan Lane allan@sportbikesincmag.com

EDITORIAL

Lifestyle Director: Tyson Beckford tyson@sportbikesincmag.com Fashion Editor: Kiana Gadson kiana@sportbikesincmag.com Drag Racing Editor: Rickey Gadson rickey@sportbikesincmag.com

Staff Writers: Dystany Spurlock dystany@sportbikesincmag.com Michael Lawless lawless@sportbikesincmag.com Lion James lion@sportbikesincmag.com Meekail Shaheed meekail@sportbikesincmag.com Copy Editor: Angela Lane angela@sportbikesincmag.com

ART & DESIGN

Creative Supervisor: Leon Brittain leon@sportbikesincmag.com

Road Racing Editor: Corey Alexander corey@sportbikesincmag.com

Graphic Designer: Baz baz@sportbikesincmag.com

Moto Tech Editor: Thomas Campion tommy@sportbikesincmag.com

Cover: Rider: Richard Gadson Photographer: Asphalt and Opportunity Design: Leon Brittain

Riding Editor: Eric Wood eric@sportbikesincmag.com Rev Limiter Editor: Leah Petersen leah@sportbikesincmag.com Bike Life Editor Lady Kim ladykim@sportbikesincmag.com International Correspondent Billy Morrison billy@sportbikesincmag.com

Contributing Photographers: Asphalt and Opportunity Katie Overton Tony Brown Kathy Lomaskin Derek Snead Darron Biles Lawrence Bloomfield

SportBikes Inc Magazine - May 2014 Volume 4, Issue 8 To receive SportBikes Inc Magazine’s 2014 Media Kit and Advertising Rates, please email: info@sportbikesincmag.com.

In no way can any part of this magazine be reproduced in print, digital, broadcast or any other manner without the expressed written permission of the publisher.

SportBikes Inc Magazine (ISSN 2158-009X) is published monthly by Hard Knocks Motorcycle Entertainment.

SportBikes Inc Magazine is not responsible for any advertising claims made by its advertisers or partners.

Any and all items submitted to SportBikes Inc Magazine will become the sole property of SportBikes Inc Magazine and are subject to, but not limited to edits, comments and titles.

Sportbikes Inc Magazine, staff and partners are not responsible for injuries, loss or damage to their being, vehicle or property, including death that may result from contest submissions.

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THE PRESS ROOM CLUTCH CONTROL 2014 THE ILLY IN PHILLY

After a 5 year break, the number one motorcycle lifestyle event is returning to Philadelphia. CLUTCH CONTROL is back! Hard Knocks Motorcycle Entertainment and SportBikes Inc Magazine are producing what is best defined as a celebration of custom and performance motorcycles and the motorcyclists and enthusiasts that indulge in the lifestyle. Clutch Control’s theme for 2014 is “The Illy in Philly”, a salute to the vivacious motorcycle community in Philadelphia and the surrounding regions. The one day event will consist of custom bike competitions, custom helmet competitions, stunt competitions, stunt performances by Jason Britton’s Team No Limit, meet and greet with celebrity couple Ice T and Coco, with more celebrity guests to be announced. On display will be the most exotic custom bikes and cars in the region as well as high end performance race machines. The day will be complimented by live music performances, live DJ sessions, industry leading vendors and manufacturers, food and fun for the entire family. Clutch Control “The Illy in Philly” is a free to 12 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM

attend event. Repeated, this is a FREE TO ATTEND EVENT. No tickets will be sold and the event is open to any and all. “I thought it was important for the entire community to participate and experience this event. The best way to welcome everyone… is to welcome everyone. My mission is to surpass previous years’ attendance levels and to really have the vendors and event sponsors overwhelmed with business, networking and face time with event attendees. We are definitely taking it to another level since the last Clutch Control. Tons of top secret stuff going on with happy surprises for everyone at the event. It’s gonna be a blast! I’m really excited!” – Allan Lane, CEO of Hard Knocks Motorcycle Entertainment, Publisher of SportBikes Inc Magazine. Clutch Control “The Illy in Philly” is happening on Saturday, September 20, 2014 on Christopher Columbus Boulevard at Snyder Avenue, Philadelphia PA, 9am to 5pm. For general information on this event or how to participate as a vendor, event sponsor or

competitor please email info@clutchcontrolusa.com.


MCS AND MOTOGP TEAM UP FOR A LINE OF SIGNATURE APPAREL MotoGP and The Marlboro Country Store have joined forces to offer a comprehensive line of riding and casual apparel. The Italian based MCS has a distinctive look and vibe to their items and the limited edition MotoGP inspired collection includes jackets, shirts, footwear and accessories. Click on the image to view the collection.

C & S CUSTOM’S 500 REAR TIRE CAN AM SPYDER If you are an owner of a Can Am Spyder and looking for a way to have your ride stand out from the rest, look no further. C & S Custom has built the world’s first Spyder with a 500 rear tire kit. This kit is also available with a 360 rear tire version. Included is your choice of tire and wheel size, your choice of wheels, three low profile tires as

well as front and rear sprockets and of course the swingarm. If you really want to make a statement, think about adding some optional components such as nitrous bottle brackets, air suspension or a Voodoo exhaust system. For more information or to order your own kit, visit C & S Custom by clicking on the pic.

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THE PRESS ROOM LIGHTNING MOTORCYCLES UNVEILS THE LS-218 What Lightning is calling the world’s fastest production electric motorcycle, the LS-218 was introduced to the world at the Quail Motorsport Gathering in Carmel, CA. You can reserve your very own LS-218 which comes with a $38,888.00 starting price. Each bike is built to order and to the buyer’s specifications. The LS-218 is powered by a IPM liquid cooled 150k watt plus 10,500rpm electric motor, producing an equivalent of 200hp and 168 pounds of torque. The bike has 3 battery pack options that results in the following ranges: 100 to 120 miles per charge, 120 to 150 miles per charge and 160-180 per charge. Click on the pic for more information.

DUCATI UNLEASHES A MIDDLEWEIGHT MONSTER Hitting dealerships in July, the Ducati Monster 821 packs a water cooled Testastretta engine producing 112 horses and 65.9 pounds of torque. Weighing in at 395.7 pounds, the Monster 821 is stylishly refined. Other features include an adjustable seat, 8 level traction control and a 3 level ABS system.

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DUCATI ISSUES A RECALL FOR THE 2012/13 PANIGALE 1199/S Ducati has issued a recall for the 2012 and 2013 Panigale 1199 and Panigale S models. The left side handle bar switches and controls may not get power from the connection to the dashboard and may result in faulty operation of the horn, turn signals, high beam and instrument panel. The total number of units affected is just over 2000. The dealer network has been instructed to install an additional wiring harness at no cost to the owner.

VICTORY ISSUES RECALL ON CERTAIN 2014 MODELS DUE TO INSUFFICIENT CRANK Victory motorcycles has issued a recalls for certain models from their 2014 lineup that include: Cross Country, Cross Country Eight Ball, Hammer Eight Ball, High Ball, Jackpot, Judge, Ness Cross Country, Vegas Eight Ball, Vision and the Boardwalk. The machining on the crank case could result in insufficient clearance between the crank case and the crank shaft. This would lead to engine seizure and a potential crash. The dealer network has been instructed to inspect and correct the clearance at no cost to the customer. Additionally, the recall affects the 2015 Victory Gunner that was manufactured between January 22, 2014 and April 25, 2014. SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 15


THE INBOX BROUGHT TO YOU BY KRIEGA

Email SportBikes Inc Magazine at INBOX@SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM. Every month, we are giving away a R25 Back Pack from Kriega and an SBI T Shirt to the LETTER OF THE MONTH!

LETTER OF THE MONTH Dear SBI, I am a new sportbike rider. I took the Motorcycle Safety Foundation course and everything but I still get a little shaky when riding. More so on Interstate 95 in Philly. Is there any advice you have for myself and others like me? My friends that ride laugh at me because I stay in the speed limits. I have only had my bike for two and half weeks. Thank you in advance. - Keim Philadelphia, PA Keim, First, thank you for your letter. I want you to read to the next statement very slowly, allow it to sink in, memorize it, make it your mantra... Ride your own ride.

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You’ve taken a great step in being a lifelong motorcyclist by taking advantage of Pennsylvania’s free safety course. That shows that you have a desire to learn and to be the best rider that you can be. I urge you to indulge that desire and continue your education. The great news is that you are a new rider and you have not had much time to pick up that many bad habits. I suggest that you get yourself into a track school like the Yamaha Champion Riding School, straight away. Learning how to properly ride your bike on the track with professional instructors like Scott Russell and Larry Pegram will give you the knowledge, ability and confidence that make you a great rider on the track and the street. That’s right. Track knowledge and experience does make you a better street rider. Now, regarding your friends that laugh at you because you stay within the speed limits. It is your life, your bike and your ride.


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DEALERSHIP SPOTLIGHT: MOTOPRIMO

Words: Allan Lane Images: Courtesy of Motoprimo

CONTACT:

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Dealership name: Motoprimo Location: 6640 Kenrick Avenue Lakeville, MN 55044 Showroom Hours: M - W 10am to 7pm, Thurs 10am - 8pm, Fri 10am - 6pm Sat 10am - 4pm Service Hours: M - T 10am to 8pm, Fri 9am - 6pm, Sat 9am - 4pm Year established: 2002 Brands sold: Ducati, Triumph, Victory, Honda, Yamaha, Polaris, Kymco

S

ince 2002, Motoprimo has worked diligently to become the premier destination dealership in Minnesota. With a massive showroom totaling 18,000 square feet, Motoprimo sells a variety of new motorcycles from top manufacturers. They also house the largest inventory of pre owned vehicles in their region. Equally impressive is their dedicated parts and accessories department that spans several hundred square feet. Carrying the top brands in apparel, components and accessories, Motoprimo prides themselves on always having in stock what a

customer may be shopping for regardless of what type of riding they are engaged in. Motoprimo’s service department is not to be ignored. With twelve service bays and certified, factory trained technicians on hand, Motoprimo offers complete repair and maintenance services that include their “fast lane tire and oil change.” The dealership plays host to a number of open houses and demos throughout the year and to actively engage and serve their regional motorcycle community.

Want to see your shop or dealership featured here? Drop us an email!

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THE SHOW

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BASIC BIKE SHOP’S

Johnny Cash

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THE SHOW: JOHNNY CASH

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When the goal is to create a likeness of a notable person, be it a celebrity or historical one, there is no such thing as getting lucky. There’s only talent. Now take that likeness and dig deeper. Reach for something and make a mark. The goal is to embody the soul and spirit of your target image. If you will, the mission is to cast a long shadow. This 2002 Suzuki GSXR 1000, built by Basic Bike Shop in Griffin, Georgia does justice to the likeness of an iconic music legend. Dressed in all black as if it were riding to a funeral, the aptly titled “Johnny Cash” evokes a simple yet effective nod of the head in tribute to the man in black. The team at BBS have been building competitive drag racing bikes for a while and have an understanding of how important it is to not only go fast but to look good while you’re doing it. Imagine lining up at the tree and seeing Johnny Cash staging next to you, casting a long shadow? Johnny Cash is powered by a race tuned Cooper Performance engine and is equipped with a Brock’s Performance Sidewinder exhaust. Rolling on light weight Marchesini performance wheels, the bike utilizes a swing arm by Hardcore Swingarms, a Penske drag racing shock and reworked front forks by Jeff

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THE SHOW: JOHNNY CASH

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THE SHOW: JOHNNY CASH

Walker. Keeping things snug and low in the rear, you’ll find a DME Racing suspension linkage. BBS enlisted the help of Bodyshots’ Sean Burnley for the custom airbrushing that really captures the expression of the bike’s namesake. With three portraits of Johnny Cash at various stages in his life and career, Burnley is successful in his execution. Let’s be honest, always want to get it right but when you’re talking visualizing an icon, failure is not an option. Completing the artwork is the guitar and emblazoned signature of the man himself, on the rear hugger. A simple yet powerful tribute bike to a legend that has said it all and truly walked the line... including shooting a man in Reno just to watch him die.

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THE GRID: NEWS WSBK: BEIN SPORTS WILL CONTINUE TO BROADCAST WSBK IN NORTH AMERICA Race fans in North America will continue to enjoy WSBK broadcasts thanks to the beIN Sports network. The international sports network has announced that they will continue to broadcast the race series in 2015.

AMA PRO RACING: THE NEW SUPERBIKE QUALIFYING PROCESS There is now a new qualifying method for AMA Pro Racing Superbike races. All competitors will participate in Qualifying 1 and 2 sessions. The fastest 12 riders from the first two sessions will automatically advance to a third and final qualifying session. Those twelve riders will then compete for the first twelve spots on the grid for the race, based on their lap times from the final session. This is an added level of excitement for the fans and riders themselves and is similar to the qualifying methods in MotoGP and WSBK.

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Launched in 2012, the network has currently over 22 million subscribers thus making it the fastest growing sports network on the market today.


MOTOGP: BRIDGESTONE TIRES PARTS WAYS WITH MOTOGP AT THE END OF THE 2015 SEASON Dorna and FIM has announced that they will end their partnership with current tire supplier Bridgestone at the end of the 2015 season. Bridgestone has been the official tire supplier to MotoGP for the last seven years. Dorna has chosen Michelin to be the replacement supplier.

AMA PRO RACING: SOZO SWEEPSTAKES IS GIVING AMA RACE FANS A CHANCE TO WIN A NEW GSXR 600 AMA Pro Racing and SOZO have created the Ignite Your Life Sweepstakes to give fans an opportunity to win a custom Suzuki GSXR 600. You can enter the sweepstakes by registering at the SOZO Motorsports booth at select races this

season, online at http://www.sozomotorsports.com/sweepstakes or by texting SOZOBIKES to 88769. The sweepstakes will run until December 31, 2014.

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THE GRID: NEWS MOTOGP: MAX BIAGGI TESTING FOR APRILIA IN MUGELLO The former WSBK Champion, Max Biaggi is currently testing the Aprilia ART MotoGP bike. Biaggi spent a day on the Mugello Circuit testing the developing Aprilia ART machine. Aprilia has expressed that their aim is to be back on the premier class grid in 2016.

MOTOGP: NEW RULING ON 340MM CARBON BRAKE ROTORS A new ruling has passed, ruling that 340mm carbon brake rotors are acceptable at all GP circuits. Previously, 320mm rotors were mandatory at all circuits except for Motegi where 340mm rotors were required. Now, teams have the options of 320mm and 340mm rotors, except at Motogi where 340mm remains mandatory.

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MOTOGP: HONDA RACING CORPORATION REUPS WITH MARC MARQUEZ THROUGH 2016 Marc Marquez arrived in the premier class in 2013 and captured the championship, breaking several Gran Prix records along the way. Now in his sophomore year, he seems to be in line to repeat, having won the first four races of the 2014 season, all from the pole position and while nursing a leg injury. Taking note of the young champion’s forward progression of the sport, the Honda Racing Corporation re-signed Marc Marquez until the end of 2016.

“I am very happy to announce my renewal with HRC. I had always dreamt about being part of the Repsol Honda Team, and thanks to Honda the dream came true a year and a half ago. Everything happened very quickly last season, and I would have never imagined that I could achieve what we did. Becoming World Champion during my first season was another dream which became reality. It is a great honor to be a part of the Honda family and I’m glad to remain with this special group of people for another two seasons.” – Marc Marquez.

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THE GRID

Images: Courtesy of Josh Herrin

THE NUMBERS EVERY MONTH, WE ASK PROS AND AMATEURS WHY THEY CHOSE THE NUMBERS THAT IDENTIFY THEM ON THE GRID...

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JOSH HERRIN

#2

“M

y number was what I had to run in 2012. If it were up to me, I would run 44 but I’ve never had the chance. I won my first championship with number 2 so I’ll keep it until I can get 44 again.” SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 37


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THE GRID

THE INSIDE TRACK WORDS: ALLAN LANE IMAGE: MEEKAIL SHAHEED

Wake Up... Ride... Keep Riding *As Corey recovers from an off track incident and prepares for the second round of AMA Pro Racing at Road America, I gave him this month off. Don’t worry, he’ll be back at it next month.*

F

rom paddock to paddock, series to series, the focus of today’s professional road racer is unparalleled. It’s unchallenged. Consider the nature of the sport in its purest element: A human being (while the jury is still out on that as I am prone to believe that some are from a galaxy far, far away) pilots a two wheeled machine amidst a field of other would be humans for a predetermined number of laps on the hunt for a checkered flag and the first place finish. From start to finish, they endure hell. The launch, the dog fight that begins in turn one, the banging of plastics and the rubbing of armored leathers, the hunt, the chase, the swapping of positions, the moments, the offs... Hell hath no fury such as this. Now, let’s put it in perspective. In the upper levels of road racing, the race itself comes at the end of a long and arduous number of preceding days that include travel, press and media responsibilities, sponsor commitments, fan engagements, testing, trial and error and of course qualifying.

The mind of a pro rider must be boggling in terms of the compartmentalization of priorities, and duties. With several friends in the paddock in AMA, WSBK and MotoGP, I’ve made a note of observation to witness the subtle and not so subtle changes these riders display as one thought evolves to the next. It can often be a blunt explosion of thought, an emphatic gesture or surprising grin that appears from nowhere as if they are appreciating a joke that they’ve heard inside their heads. You can counter the grin with the quick draw scowl that will cascade down a rider’s face in a matter of seconds. What I have learned is that these displays of thought are just that, displays of thoughts. Compare it to attempting to solve Rubik’s Cube mentally. As you work to solve the puzzle, you must maintain a focus on all that surrounds you. You must master your domain and all that it means to you. Wake up. Ride. Keep riding. And when all else fails... Ride some more.

In its simplicity, the means of, “wake up, ride, When all is said and done, exhaustion is a keep riding” is quite complex. Riding is the welcomed sentiment as perhaps a moment or eye of the storm around which the circus of two of rest will follow. But that’s not always professional racing ferociously swirls. A racer’s the case. Race day is more often than not job is to race. When you visit their offices, the followed by testing. If not testing, then training. paddock, and if you have the opportunity to If not training then the return to the sponsor do so... Thank them. It will go further than you commitments. If it’s not that, then it’s something could ever imagine. else. 40 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


g... Wake Up... Ride... Keep Ridi

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THE BEST MOTORCYCLE SCHOOL IS BACK. World-class professional-level motorcycle rider training now at New Jersey Motorsports Park.

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THE GRID: ON THE COME UP

Images: Katie Overton/Tony Brown/Kathy Lomaskin

DAVID LOIKITS

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NAME: David Loikits HOMETOWN: Northampton, PA AGE: 46 ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: I’m currently competing in the ASRA/ CCS roadracing series. I turned Pro in 2004 and competed in select AMA Superstock series from 2004 to 2008. GOALS: To keep on keepin’ on! To stay in shape and race competitively until who knows when because I love motorcycles, racing motorcycles and motorcycle people! ACCOMPLISHMENTS:

I started racing motocross at age 15 and made it to AMA Pro. I raced motocross for about 25 years. I tried roadracing and immediately ‘took to it.” I raced AMA Pro for 5 years. I’m now racing ASRA/CCS as a Pro Expert! A big thanks to “Beth” for being such an awesome “pit tootsie”!

DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: Big wheelies, smokey burnouts and ice cream! Have fun and enjoy yourself because you never know when the lights are gonna go out. CONTACT:

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THE STRAIGHT LINE

THE YOUNGEST IN CHARGE WORDS: DYSTANY SPURLOCK IMAGES: DARRON BILES

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W

hat is Drag Racing? What does it take to be a Drag Racer and not just a rider? Well, drag racing is not what a lot of people think it is. A lot of people think drag racing is just easy, when in actuality drag racing takes a lot of concentration, hard work and patience. People that have never drag raced just think that you line your bike up and pin the throttle as soon as the light turns green on the tree. Little do most people know the time that it actual takes to not just drag race, but to actually become good at drag racing. I always thought of it as going to college and working hard to get a degree. In college you spend so much time getting the fundamentals, taking some special classes and then finally getting the degree. In drag racing, you have to work really hard and understand the basics before you move on to specializing in different bikes and being able to just ride anything good. Any drag racer will tell you, consistency is key. From each burnout, to each launch at the tree, everything must be almost the same as the first. Any difference in either one can be a determining factor between winning or losing. It could be from holding the clutch too long or missing your shift point by one thousand RPM’s. You want to perform exactly the same at every race. Ever heard the saying “Practice the way you play?” A lot of times during practice test and tuning sessions, I am never racing against anyone. Even if I am racing against an actual person, I always put in my mind that I am racing some of the great veterans of this sport such as Rickey Gadson, to make sure that I am practicing at my very best. When I first started racing, Uncle Rickey and cousin Rich Gadson always told me, “No matter what,

always go out there and race your race.” You can only focus but so much on your opponent. The game of drag racing is 85% mental and 15% physical. Once you have the confidence in yourself that you have what it takes, you can always be a top contender on the track. But it doesn’t just stop there, the bike is operated by a person, so you as a drag racer, must know how to perform on the two wheels below you. Even if the sport does not come natural to you, there is always room for growth. I’m still learning myself! There are a lot of things you must learn in drag racing such as when to adjust your tire pressure, how bikes react to certain temperatures, humidity, track conditions, types of fuel, shocks, tire types and where to line up on the track, etc. Trust me none of this comes overnight, but patience and time will allow you to be more in tune with these elements along with others to make you a top drag racer. You will realize you have learned so much just from being consistent and having the desire to improve. Drag racing becomes a way of life for a racer. It becomes everything you do on a normal basis. The food you eat, the air you breathe. I will tell anyone, racing is my passion. When something is your passion you have a natural drive and hunger. Become better than what you were the day before but also to become one of the best there is and someone to be recognized in drag racing. Remember to never give up on your passions and dreams. You can do whatever you put your mind to. People tell me all the time that I am not only a great racer but a role model. This is just the beginning. There is more to come.

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THE STRAIGHT LINE: LINES OF A LEGEND

DRAG RACING THEN AND NOW WORDS AND IMAGES: RICKEY GADSON

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ow many times in life have you heard the expression, “these are the good old days of tomorrow”? As yesterday has come and gone I can attest to that being the truest statement I’ve ever heard! As much as I still enjoy racing, nothing can compare to the fun I had in the 80’s and 90’s. The gambling game isn’t as “free flowing with cash” as it once was back then either. In those times it was nothing to spend $30,000 to build a bike and then street race for $20,000. Believe it or not there was never really any fighting over getting paid either even with people walking around with suitcases full of cash bragging about who has more disposable dollars. Right out of high school I was drafted by Alex Baynard, who was sponsored by Norristown Honda, a dealership in Pennsylvania to help develop and ride the Honda V65 Magna. One night I was at Atco Raceway riding other people’s bikes and was asked if I wanted to make a pass on the basically stock motored Norristown Honda V65 Magna in which I immediately said yes jumping on it and running a 10.97 on my first pass down the race track and then lowered it to 10.93. It was very impressive back in a time when Suzuki’s GS1100,1100E, and the Katana ruled the strip at 11.00’s and teens. Even the street racing game has changed a lot. We used to travel all over the East Coast looking for unsuspecting prey. I always felt like I had a big advantage over other street racers because I was at the track every chance I got, honing my 60 foot and was one of the only ones who thought the track made you a better street racer. Some owners never knew how fast their bike ran in terms of ET or if their engine builder gave them what they paid for because they never took it to the track to see.

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During Daytona Bike week 1986 at the Cabbage Patch is where making a name for myself got started. At that time the famous Pro Stock Veteran Mike Bruso owned the street racing scene in Daytona and was undefeated for many years which gained the confidence of all the heavy betters that would show up at the Patch every year. Bruso was normally known for riding a fast sleeper KZ1000 but had since built a 1982 Suzuki GS1100E that had proven itself a money maker until the unknown kid from Philly showed up at the Cabbage Patch with his older but race savvy brother Skip on a new to me, AA/SS record holding stock wheelbase 1984 GS 1150 ES that my mother, Vicky Gadson had purchased for me. This bike was the very first nine second stock wheelbase motorcycle in the world at that time which was something no one had ever seen before and frankly didn’t believe was possible but when my race negotiator and brother Skip agreed for me to race against the 6 inch over GS of Bruso, the pot quickly grew reaching thousands of dollars because Bruso had his confident followers who believed he was unbeatable and I had mine that had followed me from back North where I had started making a name for myself already. That day I beat The Mike Bruso in his own back yard and things quickly started to change for me. People where on the phone spreading the word around the country before I got off the bike. People were soon asking, “Who is this kid from Philly?” Daytona was the only place I had ever been to where the police would block off a section of 11th Street every year putting up a portable Christmas tree on the starting line and allowing spectators to stand on the sides of the road to watch the racing. It was unbelievable. Myrtle Beach black bike week was another prime place where people would come from all over the East coast to set up races


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and since I was on a roll, guess where I was next? We would all meet up at North Myrtle Beach Dragstrip on Saturday during bike week. The race track is where we would set up all the street races and a massive crowd of followers would follow us to a street where the starting line was in South Carolina and the finish line would end in North Carolina so we would literally be racing across the border in an effort to make it harder for the police to catch us because if someone yelled “cops” we would literally shift the crowd to the other state. Smart, right? By the time I turned Pro, the underground racing started trailing off and we would chase races all night until the sun started to rise and followers never saw a race. Now, since the 2000’s, organizations like AMA Prostar and MIROCK started trying to discourage the illegal street scene by giving the street racers a place to race where there is a crowd, ambulance and no cars parked inside the

quarter mile. The other thing that has changed is the rider or jockey weights. 145 pounds used to be considered a “Fly Weight”. But in the 21st century 150 pounds would be considered to be on the heavy side especially as a grudge racer. This was the best thing to happen to street racing. Even though I have a lot of great memories from those days, for every two great memories, I’ve seen a tragedy to match. Now we have no excuse not to be in a controlled environment with all the things that haven’t changed. Like the arguing, late nights, excitement, and the disappointment when there’s no race. These days, the greatest street racers realize that grudge racing is popular but class racing is what gains a rider notoriety and respect among the pros, so you now see the same guys that race Pro classes gambling for buckets of money during grudge after qualifying at a national race.

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MIROCK’S

JASON M I L L E R

WORDS: ALLAN LANE IMAGES: COURTESY OF JASON MILLER/MEEKAIL SHAHEED SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 57


THE STRAIGHT LINE: MIROCK’S JASON MILLER

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hen it was launched, the MIROCK Superbike Series arrived on the drag racing stage with the soul purpose of providing a world class competition arena for drag racers and establishing a great relationship between racers, teams, tracks and promoters. In less than 15 years, MIROCK has truly rocketed to the forefront as the premier drag racing series in the country. In 2000, Jason Miller, Event Director at the Maryland International Dragway, teamed up with Steve Earwood owner of the Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina. They combined their individual efforts between the two tracks and they immediately saw a dramatic increase in the number of racers showing up for events. This was the beginning of MIROCK. Now, MIROCK is the largest all motorcycle drag racing series in the nation. The series is composed of a total of nine pro and amateur classes that compete for a pretty hefty purse. The series has evolved from just a popular and entertaining chain of race events to what can now be best described as a tour of lifestyle drag racing events that in 2014, will visit four different drag strips for a total of eight events. At the helm of MIROCK, stands Jason Miller. A racer himself, Miller is a passionate promoter of not only the series but of the sport of drag racing itself. It was clear from the beginning that MIROCK was not going to be like any other series. It had to be different and make its own lane in the drag racing industry. “MIROCK is different than every other motorcycle series in that the tracks own the series. Because we have no middle man we can offer racers the lowest entry fees, and we don't have to charge racers memberships or additional gate fees on top of their tech cards,” Miller explained. “MIROCK consistently has the largest bike counts of any motorcycle drag racing series in the country and incredible sportsman racer counts. We have even seen racer counts that have exceeded 800 racers before.”

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Numbers do not lie. Large racer counts are a testament to the quality events that are being provided by the series as well as proof that the track owned events have some gravity to them. When event promoters are involved, events can run smooth and be successful. However, overhead is overhead and that revenue must come from somewhere. Nine out of ten times, that cost falls on the racers. MIROCK proves that the “direct to consumer” business model not only works, but is flourishing. The premise is simple: If you let them race, then they shall race... Eliminate the bullshit. When AMA Dragbike series ceased, the drag industry was dealt a severe blow. There were many racers that found themselves without a means to compete. Competitors in the MIROCK series were ultimately unaffected and the series became more desirable to to those racers from other parts of the U.S. “If history has taught us anything, it's when there is a void someone will rise to fill it, and that is exactly what happened. NHDRO (No Hatin Drag Racin Organization) now has a series in the Midwest, and the Manufacturer's Cup now has a series in South for motorcycle drag racers.” Miller’s thoughts on the span and reach of the national drag racing scene as it translates to the global drag racing community are shared by many. As the world gets bigger, it also gets smaller. It is far easier to connect with another drag racer in another part of the world now than ever before. Miller is excited about this reality, “It is so awesome to see drag racing on the global scale it is now. A racer here in the states can compare data and times with a racer in the U.K., South Africa, the Caribbean, etc. I believe it is only going to get bigger too! Drag racing is one of the few motorsports that has a consistent form of measurement in which to apply apples to apples from abroad.” While there are no current plans for an international MIROCK series, the Miller admits that anything is possible. “Nobody ever thought we would see a 6 second, 215mph Orient Express Pro Street bike!”


That brought us to the realm of what is possible versus what is not possible yet. At the base level, while any talented rider may be capable of putting down some rubber in the straight line, transitioning a talented rider into a competitive athlete takes support from the manufacturers within the industry itself. The racer and sponsor relationship is a highly regarded one and much sought after. On a slightly larger scale, manufacturer and sponsor support can make or break an event series. In fact, their mutual support is vital to health and growth of the sport. Miller feels that the relationship is symbiotic, “It is important for anyone related to the sport to be out here and show their support. We preach long and hard to our racers to support those that support your sport when you make your purchases.” Miller continued, “The 800 plus racers in the MIROCK Superbike Series has a large economic impact in the motorcycle world and they know who is here supporting the sport that they love.”

As with anything, there are ups and downs. While it is not a love or hate relationship Miller has with the overall sport of drag racing, there are a number of items that he would address. However, his overall vibe is positive. “Every sport and business certainly has its share of hardships and drag racing is no different. We work long and hard hours each year to try and perfect every situation that arises. The biggest thing that my father and I are working on is programs to get the fans engaged into the action. We have some really neat ideas and are excited to work with some of the newer technology that is available to us now.” Miller’s love for the sport is deeply rooted in the fans that support drag racing and the racers that compete. “To be honest with you and not to sound corny, my favorite part about it is the people. Seeing all of those smiling racers and fans every weekend is what drives me to do what I do. SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 59


THE STRAIGHT LINE: MIROCK’S JASON MILLER

“M

IROCK is different than every other motorcycle series in that the tracks own the series. Because we have no middle man we can offer racers the lowest entry fees, and we don't have to charge racers memberships or additional gate fees on top of their tech cards.” - Jason Miller

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THE STRAIGHT LINE: MIROCK’S JASON MILLER Shaking hands in the winner's circle each night, seeing kids grow up at the racetrack, meeting racers families, watching race fans enjoy a race in awe, crowning champions, and seeing these wild machines that our racers have created is my joy. It just doesn't get any better than this.” It is undeniable that the contributions that Jason Miller has offered to the world of drag racing cements him as a pillar in the racing community. His work ethic and dedication speaks volumes and should be noted by other event organizers regardless of the race discipline. In fact, event organizer or not, everyone from racer to spectator, should take note because Miller’s love and passion

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are evidence of getting out what you put in. As Miller continues to reinvest his sweat equity, among other things, the future of the MIROCK Superbike Series is broad and the road that it is taking its journey on is expansive. What began as a two track, seven event series has grown into an eight race series in three different states. The addition of ATCO last year to the series has sparked interest from other tracks across the country, requesting their own MIROCK race event. Miller admits, “We are growing, but know that our roots are here on the East Coast and we will always do whatever it takes to keep our racers happy.”


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THE STRAIGHT LINE: ON THE COME UP

Images: Courtesy of Eddie Brice Lloyd Reed

EDDIE REED

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NAME: Eddie Reed HOMETOWN: Compton, CA AGE: 30 ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: Nitro Fish. G.T. Motorsports GOALS: To become one of dominate riders in my class and to eventually begin to race Top Fuel Cars. ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Converted from a street racer to Pro Stock Motorcycle Rider for the NHRA. DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: My passion comes from my childhood struggles. Through it all I was able to remain focused and follow my dreams. CONTACT:

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THE STRAIGHT LINE: ON THE COME UP

Images: Courtesy of Wilkin Brice Lloyd A Hornedo

WILKIN A. HORNEDO

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NAME: Wilkin A. Hornedo HOMETOWN: Manati, PR ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: Drag Mania Music Fest Series GOALS: Win Krazy 8 and Bracket categories from the Drag Mania Music Fest. I want to be a better race driver each time and every time I race and make my team proud. ACCOMPLISHMENTS: It has been a huge accomplishment for me just the fact of being able to race and participate in one of the best race teams that are out there. And that is HART Racing Team. Having the opportunity given by its owner and great friend of mine, Don Omar, to share this experience with me, and to allow me to go and participate in every event with him has been not just an accomplishment for my career but also a pleasure. I’m grateful I have been able to join his team when touring at the Dragmania Music festival around the US and the Caribbean. DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: That moment when you are on the START line and you know everything depends on those 8 seconds you have to get to the FINISH line so all the effort and sacrifice from the HART team is worth it. I feel right there, that  the only way I can pay them back is with that achievement. CONTACT:

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THE STRAIGHT LINE: ON THE COME UP

Images: Courtesy of Joey Brice Gladstone Lloyd

JOEY GLADSTONE

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NAME: Joey Gladstone HOMETOWN: Townsend, DE AGE: 22 ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: DME Racing, Vance and Hines Racing, MIRock Superbike Series, Manufacturers Cup. GOALS: Financial freedom and a happy life. ACCOMPLISHMENTS: World’s quickest and fastest man on a Pro Street Motorcycle. Manufacturers Cup Pro Street Champion. MIRock Superbike Series Pro Street Champion. DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: My passion is just trying to be the best man that I can possibly be to my friends, family, girlfriend, employer, sponsors, teammates, etc... For they are the reasons why my life is more than I could ever ask for CONTACT:

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THE STRAIGHT LINE: ON THE COME UP

Images: Courtesy of Dennis Brice Lloyd M. Fisher

DENNIS M. FISHER

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NAME: Dennis M. Fisher HOMETOWN: Springboro, OH AGE: 61 ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: Manufacturers’ Cup, AMRA, NHRA. GOALS: Win VMOD Championship in AMRA in 2014. Win a Wally in NHRA Harley Davidson Pro Gas. Top 10 in Pro Fuel in AMRA. Be the first VROD in the 7’s. ACCOMPLISHMENTS: 2013 ManCup Super Comp Champion, only Harley out of 70 bikes. Top 10 ManCup Pro Fuel. 4th in AMRA VMOD. 2013 Winner Jim McClure Nitro Nationals in Rockingham, NC. DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: Being a competitive racer that despite my age and being on a Harley, that gets the attention of the masses on Kawi and Suzuki dragbikes! CONTACT:

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THE STRAIGHT LINE: ON THE COME UP

Images: Courtesy of Terence Brice Lloyd Angela

TERENCE ANGELA

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NAME: Terence Angela HOMETOWN: Aruba AGE: 36 ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: MIRock superbike series, Manufactures cup. GOALS: Make the perfect pass every time. ACCOMPLISHMENTS: MIRock 10K Battle Royale winner with a 6.95 Pass. Manufactures Cup Season Opener Winner. Two second place finishes. DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: Every penny I earn I put in the sport. CONTACT:

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THE REV LIMITER

VIOLET STARS AND HAPPY STUNTING WORDS AND IMAGES: LEAH PETERSEN

TWO WHEEL TOURING: LANZAROTE, SPAIN 76 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


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THE REV LIMITER: VIOLET STARS...

T

he road was straight and flat but the forceful wind pressed my entire bike over at an unnatural slant. My 45 degree angle to the road wasn't the only bizarre thing about this foreign landscape. I had landed in the Canary Islands, a Spanish archipelago off the coast of Morocco, a few days earlier for work. Lucky for me, work went well and I had a few free days to explore the island of Lanzarote. I did the typical: beach, hikes, food, etc. but saved the best for last, a motorcycle - the best way to experience a new place. I was surprised to find motorcycle rentals were not popular on the islands due to the high winds and treacherously steep and winding roads. I finally tracked down a motorcycle which bore the rusty, rashed and dented scars of many tourists' failed attempts to explore on two wheels. The proprietor handed me the keys with a look that seemed to pray I returned in one piece. With a stunter’s confidence...or perhaps stupidity, I strapped my helmet on and blasted out of town. The island is a mere 326 square miles and I planned to explore it entirely north to south. After leaving town I sped through an unpopulated flat plain before I reached the Montaùas del Fuego in Timanfaya National Park. I cruised back and forth up and over the first volcanic peak before I dropped into the valley. I had to strain my eyes to understand the landscape - a sea of lava, so monstrously cool-looking I felt like I was in a story book. The jagged ground appeared to flow as if the rocks were still alive with molten heat, despite the fact most of this lava was spewed in the early 1700's.There were no signs of life expect a line of lazy camels carrying plump European tourists into the bowels of a volcano. I continued through the sea of lava, my bike hot on the side of my leg and the African sun glinting off the sea. After exiting the park I randomly chose roads in a few roundabouts and ended up at the island's "agriculture museum." I was sad to see only a few guests in the incredibly detailed and thoughtful museum; a stark contrast to the mobs of people drinking beverages poolside in my resortish hotel. The museum beautifully narrated the 78 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


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THE REV LIMITER: VIOLET STARS...

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methods developed by the native people of these islands to overcome the incredible geological and climate challenges of Lanzarote. After the museum I grabbed lunch at an all organic and local hippy joint and hit the road again, heading towards the north most tip of the island. The building code on the island insists all structures must be painted white with green, black or brown shutters and trim, making for a very trance-inducing landscape. The red, orange and black soil is speckled with gleaming white villages framed by volcanoes on one side and the teal ocean on the other. While the scene was striking at first, five hours into my ride I was ready to see something different, so when I saw a sign for "TĂşnel de la AtlĂĄntida" or the Tunnel of Atlantis I throttled off the exit. After paying my fee I took a spiral stair case down into the beginning of what I learned was the world's longest known volcanic submarine lava tube. At the bottom of the stairs a quiet crystal clear lake stretched into the darkness of the cave. It's hard to explain the unbelievable calm brought on by sitting far underground next to a perfectly still pool of clear water. I could have sat there forever if I wasn't jolted at the sight of a white crab trying to crawl in my helmet. The sun was getting low and heavy on the western horizon and the north point of the island was in sight. I gassed it through a final lava sea and up through some vineyards until the road unexpectedly crested and dropped down towards a view so expansive it literally knocked the air out of me. Or rather, the view and my incapacitating fear of height both stole my air. The road was situated hundreds of feet above the ocean which was flecked with distant volcanoes and a shore line covered with a patchwork of white salt fields. The only metaphor which came to mind was that I had, quite literally, rode to the end of the world. With the gnarled lava seas at my back and the sheer cliffs and ocean in front of me I couldn't help but smile at all the crazy places my motorcycles have taken me. Good thing I'm at home when I am on a motorcycle. SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 81


THE REV LIMITER: ON THE COME UP

Images: Courtesy of Michael Tindall Jr.

MICHAEL TINDALL JR. AKA MAD MIKE

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NAME: Michael Tindall Jr. HOMETOWN: Mims, FL AGE: 30 ASSOCIATION/AFFILIATIONS/SERIES: Xtreme Fury Stunterz Inc., ABSFairings GOALS: To Make my first million with my teammate Jeremy “Cream Chesse” Block. Tour the country performing live shows in our new tour bus and hopefully perform outside of the U.S. as well as teach as many people as possible how to wheelie on the XFS WHEELIE MACHINE. ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Holding 8th to 10th place in Stunt Wars over many years against other professional stunt riders. Always top 3 in amateur comps. One of the few riders that are able to and have performed in the smallest indoor establishments. I have performed in over 300 stunt shows in the past 8 years. DEFINE YOUR PASSION IN ONE SENTENCE: Can’t we all just do wheelies and get along? CONTACT: HTTP://XTREMEFURYSTUNTERZ.WIX.COM/NEWSITE

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ADVERTISE WITH

FOR ADVERTISING INFORMATION AND RATES, EMAIL INFO@SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM

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THE LIFE: FEATURED CLUB

Images: Courtesy of B.R.A.T.S. MC

Rocker Interpretation: A play on the acronym of the club’s official name, Brothers Riding at Top Speed, the image of a young rider, a would be brat, on a tricycle rolling through the streets of New York shows that the B.R.A.T.S. are about enjoying this life they live as passionate riders. History/Origin of Club: Founded in 2003, the B.R.A.T.S. MC was composed as a nonprofit community development in Southeast Queens New York. Since day one, the club’s mission has been to serve their community via outreach efforts and charitable events thus providing a positive image of a motorcycle club to their local and community and region.

B.R.A.T.S. MC REGION: QUEENS, NY FOUNDED: 2003 MEMBERS: 18 ELECTED OFFICIALS:

PRESIDENT - Big Snow VICE PRESIDENT - Bull ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT - Amanee TREASURER - B Ball SERGEANT AT ARMS - Big Dogg BUSINESS MANAGER - Bryte ROAD CAPTAIN - Wildcard ASST ROAD CAPTAIN/CHAPLAIN - Rock

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Club milestones/memorable moments: When the club’s original president, Prez Dogg passed away in 2013, the club found strength in their numbers. The example set forth by Prez Dogg of mentoring, looking out for the less fortunate and being contributing members of society in general was not only continued. It was improved upon. Since 2004, the club has participated in clothes drives, toy runs and have joined forces with other clubs to support fund raising efforts for victims of tragedies.

Future of the club: Having just celebrated their 10 year anniversary with a major celebration that included notable entertainment acts such as Big Daddy Kane and Jeff Redd, the B.R.A.T.S. are proving to be in it for the long haul. Their mission is simple... To look out for one another and their community, building and maintaining a strong connection to their neighborhood and region and providing a image that cast a positive light on the biker lifestyle.

Want to see your club featured here? Drop us an email!

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THE LIFE: KNOW YOUR ROLE

SUPERSTITONS

WORDS AND IMAGES: LADY KIM

T

he closer it gets to Bike Week, the more I hear excuses from my riding buddies for not riding their motorcycles because of some silly motorcycle superstition. We are two months into riding season and I still have friends that won’t ride their bikes until Bike Week in Myrtle Beach, SC.  My club brother, Chipmunk, calls it the “Myrtle Curse” which mean no riding until Bike Week! He learned his lesson two times already.  Now he puts his bike up after the season, trailers it to the shop for work, picks it up on the trailer in the spring time and his first ride is the day he hits Myrtle Beach!  He says if you drop your bike before May, then the dealerships will not have parts or it will not be fixed until June! I know of two bikers that had accidents in May and they really believe it’s because of the Myrtle Curse.  This sport is dangerous enough without silly superstitions.  If you think negative then negative things will happen.  I see it as an excuse for their bad karma!    I am not a superstitious person but I do have some riding habits that I do before riding.  I make sure my cross is in my backpack along with my riding angel.  I always pray over my ride before mounting my bike for a safe journey.  I never ride faster than my angel.  I also believe it is good karma to help another biker on the side of road. They say you will have bad luck in the future if you pass by a biker in trouble.  You never know when you will need help!  Here are some more superstitions:              Riding Bells: This is a very old tradition.  I have seen more cruisers than sportbikes with riding bells but they are supposed to be good luck 90 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM

charms. You can’t buy them for yourself.  The bell catches “road gremlins” in them and the ringing drives them insane.  It is also said that the last rider in a group of riders that crashed should wear the bells. Helmet: In Europe, it is said that the riders never put their helmets on until the bike is running. Also, never wear your helmet in doors. No reason other than just bad luck. Green painted motorcycles: I know the Kawasaki riders won’t like this one. In World War 2, the Harley motorcycles were painted Army Olive Green and they were targets for snipers on the front line making them bad luck. Rear pegs down: To mourn the loss of a fallen biker, riders will ride with their foot pegs down.  This allows the fallen rider to have one last ride. Do not ride or get parts from a dead man’s motorcycle: It is bad luck.  If the biker sees you riding or using parts of their motorcycle then they will knock you off the bike or bad things happen while you are riding.    I asked some of my riding buddies what superstitions have you heard of or what habit do you do to prepare for a safe ride? “I always ride with my crosses. I have a gold chain with two small crosses. One is symbolic of my grandmother and the other my kids.  It reminds me of the love and protection that I have around me as I ride. I ride at my own comfort level.  I try not to ride at the pace of others. Avoiding tickets and careless mistakes is


For some riders, bike blessings are a required ritual at the beginning of their riding season.

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THE LIFE: KNOW YOUR ROLE Olive green Harleys, riding bells and pre ride prayers... Every rider has a Ritual and/or things that they consider a Superstitions.

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paramount.” - Ryan. “If at all possible, I go to a bike blessing before the season starts! I like to have my bike journeys blessed!” - Shelly. “I have to clean the windshield and lights before I start my ride.” - Chef. “I always wipe my rims down before each ride.  I do not ride with brake dust on my rims.” - Randy. “Before a long trip, I always get my bike blessed.  Then, I talk to my baby before we ride. I rub her tank, pull the throttle and pat the back seat so she is ready to ride! Back in the days when we did drag racing in the streets on Route 291 and 61st Street, I would spit on the street behind me and do the burnout in the spit. I lost a lot because the Yamaha FZR 600 was smaller than the other bikes and my technique wasn’t perfected.” - Drew. “Never sit with your colors on and your back to the bar because it will be your turn to buy everyone drinks at the motorcycle club house.” Dennis and Westside. “When I first started drag racing, I used the head nod drop to lower my shield before launching the bike at the light and I have to drag my foot in a drag race.” - Hot Rod.

“He was told to never wear a grim reaper or skull head on any paraphernalia because it is bad luck.” - Tony. “Do not put your helmet on the bar of a motorcycle club house or you will have to buy a round of drinks for everyone.” - Rickey. “Before I drag race, I take a deep breaths before I launch the bike.” - Beloved. “I pray for safe passage before I get on my bike.  I tell my son and daughter to look over me during the course of the day. If you are at a motorcycle club and you take the pool stick to the bar area then you have to buy everyone a drink.  If you park your bike in front way on a row of bikes that are backwards then you are saying that you will race pink slips.” - Mike. Fear nothing. Ride hard. Ride safe! I leave you with this biker’s prayer for the season: “May the sun rise in front of me, the rain fall behind me and the wind follow me. May the Angels guard my travels for they know what is ahead of me. Keep me safe through rolling hills and swirling turns. Let the eagle guide me to the mountain tops. Let the moons light guide me through the night. Lord, thank you for letting me be a biker.”

“I pray on my bike any time I get on it for a safe trip so that I can return to my kids safely!” - Hot Rod. SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 93


THE LIFE: THE LION’S DEN

ALWAYS HAVE AN OUT

WORDS AND IMAGES: LION JAMES

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N

o motorcyclist worth his or her leather or who has been in the saddle for any considerable amount of time is a stranger to the inherent dangers of this two wheeled sport and lifestyle that has us all throwing a leg over, getting from point A to point B faster and cooler than any other means of transportation and turning pages in this very motorcycle themed publication. These dangers are many, these dangers are ever present and these dangers can be severe. Among the dangers associated with riding a motorcycle is the threat of being struck by another motorist. I would wager that this is among the top 3 on most motorcyclists’ list of scary motorcycle moments. There are few fears that motivate the behaviors and practices of riders more than the concern, fear or past experience of being struck by another vehicle. With that in mind there are a few tricks up the sleeve of a motorcyclist that can be employed to mitigate this risk that we take each time we turn the key, pull the clutch and open a throttle. Whether these tricks offer a false sense of security, truly indemnify us from the dangers of operating a motorcycle or simply minimize the collateral damage resulting from an off is a matter of perspective, experience and frame of reference. Protective gear like helmets, jackets, gloves, reflective garments or even full leather race suits with knee sliders are not the tricks I’m talking about here. That’s all just gear and is only as good at what it’s meant to do as the materials it’s made of and the quality of the craftsmanship that made it. Better brakes, high quality tires, making the motorcycle more visible and louder and the latest technological advances in traction control, suspension upgrades, mode selectable ABS and dynamic traction control (DTC) are all fine for overall improved motorcycle performance but even all that represents simply upgrades to the machine. The proverbial ace in the hole I had in mind rests in the overall outlook of the operator. I’ve often said and long believed that the best investment a SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 95


THE LIFE: THE LION’S DEN motorcyclist can make is not one in gear or parts but in one’s own skill and technique. There’s no substitution for good ole’ saddle time and the defense against the most dreaded of motorcycle rides gone wrong is what I call “always having an out.” Always have an out. Good advice for most risky endeavors but especially important when doing battle on the roads amidst distracted steel cage motorists texting, eating, talking on phones, applying makeup, arguing with passengers and otherwise not paying attention when they should be watching the road. Always having an out means knowing exactly where you will go when where you are inevitably becomes where you no longer wish to be. Car length gaps in traffic get smaller and windows of opportunity close. Your single lane ride may not be respected by others with whom you share the road and you may find yourself in an uncomfortable setting to say the least. When this occurs you need to evade hazards and that means having an out. Where will you go when the car behind

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you gets a little too close for comfort? Where will you go when the motorist in front of you decides to get hard on the brakes without cause and you need to avoid rear end colliding with him or her? Where will you go when a vehicle or even another motorcyclist merges onto your road from an on ramp or from an intersection and either doesn’t recognize your occupation of the lane or doesn’t care? Notice that I did not say “if” but “when.” These are not hypothetical scenarios, these are the types of hazards we motorcyclists face on a daily basis and the best way to avoid a costly trip to the emergency room, a scary story to tell at the next bike night and a cool new scar (even though chicks dig scars) is to always have an out. Many serious motorcyclists know that riding a motorcycle on public roads (and the track also for that matter) successfully requires constant evaluation and reevaluation of all the inputs, stimuli, influences and outside factors that affect the ride and rider. I described in the December 2013 issue of Sportbikes, Inc.


Magazine (The Lion’s Den - Solo Mission) that While riding (on public roads especially) you must pay attention to all things and nothing at the same time. This cycle of evaluation and reevaluation coupled with paying attention to all things and nothing at the same time go hand in hand with always having an out. You must know where you will go (the out) but also be prepared to go there. After all, what good is having a plan for what to do when things go bad if you are neither equipped nor prepared to act on it? Riders accustomed to the track environment are very familiar with searching for and anticipating which lines to take and braking points at strategic places on the track. This is essentially the same principle but just as riding the track is a controlled environment devoid of certain risks and hazards present on public roads, so too are the anticipated outs required to properly navigate the track. Despite the need to always have an out being somewhat relaxed on the drag strip and race track, even a dedicated racer who no longer rides public roads knows the importance of always having an out.

To be clear, not having an out can result in an equally disastrous end on both the track and public roads. No different than riding distracted or not paying attention, not having an out leaves you with no safe option to explore when the wide open road starts to feel like a small box getting smaller. I’ve seen bikers on public roads following too closely to vehicles (including other motorcycles) to stop in time when traffic comes to a halt. Those same bikers did not leave themselves an out and ultimately left in an ambulance. I’ve witnessed racers on the track rely on the rider in front of him too much and let faith in another motorcyclist take the place of their own “out” which ended with an EMT escort off the track and their bike being poured off a trailer back at the paddock. In both these instances had the motorcyclists left themselves an out, those particular rides would not have been so noteworthy. When it comes to riding a motorcycle, boring is safe sometimes. It goes without saying (or at least it would have been I not about to say it) that the best way to avoid injury is to avoid a collision in the first place. Always having an out is in this motorcyclist’s humble opinion the best way to SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 97


THE LIFE: THE LION’S DEN

avoid said collision. In those rare instances when a collision is truly unavoidable and there just isn’t an out available, those situations where option and an out are taken from you without warning, you are at the mercy of your protective gear (Motorcycle Gods willing, you are wearing some) and your reflexes. I say it’s rare because I maintain that thru experience, attention to the ride and defensive riding one can control the tempo and outcome of the ride significantly more that it is popular to believe. Save for those, as I say rare, occurrences always having an out is an active search for and awareness of where and when to go. Always have an out. Add it to the ever growing list of practices to remember while riding or elevate it to the top of that list if already in your repertoire but be mindful that an out is as crucial to have at the ready as a clutch or brake lever. My personal need to always have an out is why I prefer not to ride in two by two formation on group rides. This of course flies in the face of conventional wisdom as a cub rider since those of us in Motorcycle Clubs are notorious formation riders. The same can be said for large groups of motorcyclists participating in charity rides, open group rides and poker runs. I’ve had my fair share of close calls and motorists invading my space, who hasn’t? The only motorcyclists for whom these are foreign concepts are new motorcyclists and if my words scare you... Good! Be ever vigilant and mindful that when it 98 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM

comes to public roads we share with motorists we who opt for two wheels instead of four will always be second class citizens. We will always be at a disadvantage and the burden of safety is not skewed in our favor. We motorcyclists may be faster and more nimble but that comes at the cost of being smaller, more exposed and ultimately more susceptible to injury. We cannot operate on “autopilot” and the road as well as traffic is less forgiving to a motorcycle and rider than it is to a motorist in a car, truck, van, SUV or bus. We motorcyclists are the ones who get pushed out of our lane, we must constantly dodge lit cigarette butts and trash tossed from open windows ahead, we must evade potholes and road debris like a downhill skier running slalom and we must approach on an exit ramps with the caution and precision of a surgeon to avoid meeting the broad side of a guard rail or the business end of a car. For these reasons and more we must always have an out. From the initial turn of the key to taking your helmet off at the end of the ride, always have an out because whether you are two streets or twenty states away from home on two, something can occur or change that turns the space around your motorcycle less than hospitable and you will need to no longer be there. You can plan a route but not your position, always have an out.


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FEATURED THE LIFE FEATURED LIFE:RIDER FEATURED RIDERS RIDERS

Danielle Gehringer AKA Star

LOCATION: Allentown, PA

OCCUPATION: Customer Service Representative. YEARS RIDING: 13 years riding. RIDING STYLE: Street.

BIKE/S OWNED: 2004 Yamaha R6 with a R1 engine. FAVORITE BIKE MODIFICATION/ACCESSORY: All of my riding accessories are my favorite MOST MEMORABLE RIDE: I went to King of Prussia for a Hooters Bike Night. I put my bike in the show and won had to ride home with a big trophy inside my vest. Well, we were booking it on the turnpike. I was doing like 120mph when my chain snapped, came up, smashed my helmet and left a huge indent in my vest and smacked up my bike. I think what saved me from being injured was my bike trophy from the bike show cause my helmet was split in two! It could of killed me if I didn’t even have one on. But I always ride with one on, since then. 100 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


Jose Castro LOCATION: Madison, NJ OCCUPATION: Inground Pool Technician. YEARS RIDING: 1 year. RIDING STYLE: Street. BIKE/S OWNED: 2004 SUZUKI GSXR 750 FAVORITE BIKE MODIFICATION/ACCESSORY: Crash cage. FAVORITE PIECE OF RIDING GEAR: Dainese Super Speed Jacket. MOST MEMORABLE RIDE: The 2014 Shut the City Down Ride in Philadelphia, PA.

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FEATURED THE LIFE FEATURED LIFE:RIDER FEATURED RIDERS RIDERS

Devonne Duerbaum LOCATION: Hollywood, FL OCCUPATION: Student and waitress. YEARS RIDING: 3 years. RIDING STYLE: Street and track. BIKE/S OWNED: 2009 Ducati Monster 696, 2009 Kawasaki Ninja 250. FAVORITE BIKE MODIFICATION/ACCESSORY: On the Ducati, it would be all the carbon accessories, of course! On the Ninja, for sure my ShiftTech exhaust. Makes it sound loud, mean and powerful. FAVORITE PIECE OF RIDING GEAR: My Roland Sands Bell Helmet. MOST MEMORABLE RIDE: I’d have to say my most memorable ride was to Indy’s GP last year considering it was my first GP, and had such a great experience there. I really enjoyed riding around with my father during that weekend. 102 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


Deez LOCATION: South Philadelphia, PA OCCUPATION: IT Student YEARS RIDING: 6 years. RIDING STYLE: Long distance and street. BIKE/S OWNED: 2010 Kawasaki ZX10R FAVORITE BIKE MODIFICATION/ACCESSORY: Green Steel braided brake lines. FAVORITE PIECE OF RIDING GEAR: Scala Rider and GoPro. MOST MEMORABLE RIDE: My very first ride to Las Vegas from Phoenix. Because I had lost my brother on two’s, Travis “Mac” Washington and Greg “Rev G” was in the hospital following a horrific traffic accident on the way up there. I was trying to get up there to them because I was in shock.

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MOTO TECH Words: Mark Rozemo Image: Courtesy of Motion Pro

ASK THE PRO WRENCH WORDS: THOMAS CAMPION

Q

: What are the most important tools to have in my bike tool kit? Andi if I’m organizing my garage what are the vital pieces of equipment to have?

A

: If I were making a kit to work on my bike, I would want my entire toolbox! Unfortunately my toolbox won’t fit under the seat of my R6. So I put together a small compact necessities kit. The kit would include a reversible screwdriver (one end is phillips, the other a flat head), combination wrenches (8mm, 10mm, 12mm and maybe a 14mm), allen wrenches (3,4,5 and 6mm) and a pair of pliers or wire cutters. I would also throw in there some zip ties and duct tape! Setting up your garage to do basic repairs and upgrades, I would say for sure start off with an air compressor but there are dozens of items that would be in my “perfect” garage. An air compressor even though I’ve already said that but put it at the top of the list. A bike lift makes life a whole lot easier. A drain pan, oil, cleaners and rags are a must. Front and rear motorcycle stands make life extremely easy. Even if it is a simple task of cleaning your rims, just throw it up on your stands and spin the wheel as you clean, singing “happy days!” I would say a tire machine and balancer but if this is just your personal garage, you’re not gonna have enough volume of tire changes to make it worth it. That will get the basic stuff in your garage. There are always be more options if you start getting more envolved mechanically. It all depends on your skills.

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Tool kits like the Union Garage Tool Roll are made to keep on your bike and stocked with the essentials to cover roadside repair and routine maintenance.


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IMPROVE YOUR SKILLS

3 STEPS TO SAFELY BRAKE LATER WORDS: ERIC WOOD IMAGES: MEEKAIL SHAHEED

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S

o there I was, approaching the apex as I began to realize that I was not going make it. I had missed a practice and was impatiently trying to drop my times in qualifying, so I decided to just “hold it on longer” and now I was paying the price. In a last ditch attempt to make the apex I ramped up my trail braking on the entrance until I felt the front tire really begin to squirm. My attempt to get to the inside curbing was met with greater than normal resistance (which I anticipated might happen) and I began to run wide. As I blew past my normal throttle application point, still on the brakes, I knew that the lap was ruined and needed a better plan. Unfortunately, this story is all too familiar to most riders. Think of the last time that you were really motivated to drop some time on the track. Perhaps there was a racer that you really needed to beat to improve a championship standing, or maybe there was “that guy” who had been flapping about his mad skills too loudly for too long at your local track day. For most riders, their first “go to” move is to simply stay on the gas longer and brake later. Sometimes this works, but more often than not we find ourselves in the same situation as I did in the story above. However, with some simple planning, the average rider can easily find some extra time in major braking zones without having to deal with the unwanted risk of running off the track.

In watching students for the past 20 years at the Penguin School, I have noted that riders tend to become quite attached to their brake markers. As they pick up mid corner speed over the course of a season, rather than adjust their brake markers deeper they tend to instead change the way that they brake. This ends up leaving valuable time on the table. A saying that we use at the school to remind students of this concept is “don’t adjust your braking method to suit the marker, adjust the marker to suit your method”. When reminded of this saying, most riders agree that they have this tendency to adjust their braking to a comfortable marker rather than the other way around. It makes sense that on any corner that has a traditional big braking zone that the manner in which the brakes are applied should be roughly the same. Fortunately, it is very easy to evaluate if you fall into this category of rider who has fallen in love with a particular marker and kept it longer than you should have. Step one is to find the corners at the track the have a braking zone that requires two or three downshifts on the way in and begin your evaluation there. Before we discuss the evaluation of braking, it is critical to note that our entire discussion to follow assumes that the rider has properly applied the brakes first. Braking is a two step process; apply

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IMPROVE YOUR SKILLS: BRAKE LATER the brake, then brake. The application time varies from corner to corner and it accomplishes two major goal. First, riders must allow the time needed to fully transfer weight the front tire and spread out the contact patch. Second, the brake needs to be applied progressively enough that the front suspension is allowed to compress to its full braking level without over shooting the mark by too much. This allows for both the stable chassis geometry and consistent weight distribution needed to safely brake at maximum. Most riders know when they are near the limit, particularly when the bike is close to straight up and down. With modern tire technology, the limit for braking in this situation is typically not front tire grip but it is instead the physical amount of brake effort needed to lift the rear tire off the ground. In braking zones that require a slight turn in on the way to the apex, the heaviness of the bars in your hands serves as a good indicator of the approach of the limit of traction. If you have freedom of motion in the bars or if your rear tire is firmly planted on the ground, chances are that it is safe to use more lever pressure. Most riders know that maximum lever pressure that can be used decreases as the bike slows down. We all know that it is easier to pick the back wheel off the ground at 30mph than it is as 130mph. However, just like physics dictates that a bike accelerates harder at low speeds, it also decelerates faster at low speeds. As such, it is important to maintain maximum lever pressure for as long as possible during the braking zone. When a rider is still close to perfectly upright, the opportunity to gain time is present without a high risk of falling down. Of course, you can always fall if you work hard enough at it... But that’s not what our aim is here. The completion of step one is simply to feel for available traction using the test above and to acknowledge that you have the opportunity to exert more lever pressure in your braking zone. Step two is to test your theory by continuing to use your present brake marker and applying the brake lever 110 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


harder as you enter the “meat� of the braking zone. It does not take a large percent increase in pressure to make a significant impact on the speed that you approach the apex. You should aim to apply the brakes as strongly as you comfortably can. Step two only takes a few laps to complete. The first thing to remember is to continue to apply the brakes properly. When most riders finish the application and attempt to apply the brakes harder (again, this is done while straight up and down) they find they can often nearly double their effort without upsetting the chassis. The result of this extra lever pressure is that riders will find themselves approaching the apex much slower than normal. A common bit of feedback is that riders feel like they could get off the bike and walk next to it at the apex. With the knowledge that using brake pressure produces low apex speeds, the final step is to incrementally move their brake marker forward until either the rear tire begins to lift or the freedom of motion in the bars goes away. The keys to making this step work are to keep the application of the lever consistent and to anticipate the need for a more definitive (and potentially slightly earlier) turn in as you approach the apex. This three step process is both simple and intuitive, which is why we have found it to be very effective in dropping lap times. The keys to success come from allowing riders to understand where and why there is more time available before they attempt simply to run the bike in deeper. Until next time, ride fast - ride safe!

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#STCD2014 THE SEASON OPENER

IMAGES: DEREK SNEAD SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 115


FRICTION ZONE: #STCD2014 SBI’s annual season opener ride, better known as the Shut the City Down Ride also known as the Great Cheesesteak Run occurred in April and with several hundred riders in tow, proved to once again be a great day of camaraderie for the biker community.

meet spot in the Hooters parking lot. Many of the riders paid close attention and took advantage of the brief onbike demonstration.

Several editors of SBI were in attendance and joined by riders from as far away as North Carolina to get in a great day of riding. Drag Taking advantage of the congregation of riders, Racing Editor and Fashion Editor Rickey and SBI invited out a few coaches from the Yamaha Kiana Gadson were finally able to participate, Champion Riding School to offer a free body making this their maiden STCD ride. Bike Life Editor Kim Roper, along with other members of positioning seminar in the parking lot of the

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her club Double Lyte Posse added to the overall positive vibe of the day. Other organizations from the Philadelphia Motorcycle Club community were out in force. The Outsidaz MC made the STCD ride part of their anniversary weekend that they were celebrating. Their support and presence was felt and much appreciated. The Immortal Riders MC took the opportunity to anoint me as an honorary member of their club, an honor that I greatly accepted.

Before we officially rolled out the parking lot, I held my mandatory riders meeting. During which I gave an overview of the route and the rules of the ride. More importantly, I made it clear what the purpose of the ride was: A clean and fun run into the city to get some cheese steaks... with several hundred friends. From King of Prussia we took the highway into the Manayunk section of Philadelphia and cruised down Main Street before posting up

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FRICTION ZONE: #STCD2014

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FRICTION ZONE: #STCD2014

at our second meet spot, the Manayunk Diner. There, many riders took the opportunity to take photos from atop the famed wall of Manayunk that overlooks a portions of the city of Philadelphia. After a short stop, we remounted and took a rather scenic route on Kelly Drive which runs along the Schuylkill River. From Kelly Drive, we were only moments away from Downtown Philadelphia. At a nice pace, we traveled down the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and circled about City Hall before charging up Broad Street, heading south. Within a matter of minutes we arrived at our destination, Pat’s and Geno’s Steaks. To date, this was the largest and the most successful STCD ride. With numbers ranging from 500 to 600 riders, this ride was once again a testament to what can happen when 120 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM

you properly organize a street ride and seek support from the local and regional authorities. It is important to note that while the STCD ride is not an escorted ride, it is sanctioned and supported by the City of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Police Department, the Upper Merion Police Department and the Pennsylvania State Troopers. When I addressed the crowd in the riders meeting, I offered the following words of advice, “If we all enjoy these rides and want to keep having these rides, let us behave like we want to continue to have these rides.” The largest attended STCD ride did indeed behave as if they wanted to continue with what has become Philly tradition. For that, I’m proud of you all.


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FRICTION ZONE

CELEBRATING WITH A JUKE JOINT

WORDS: KIANA GADSON IMAGES: LAWRENCE BLOOMFIELD/KIANA GADSON

I

f you are a K.G. friend or a fan there is at least one thing you know about me... And that is the fact that I love great fashion and I love a good themed party. I’m sure everyone has at least heard of, if you’re not glued to your chair for, HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. Two things take my mind into the time frame of that era: gangsters and flapper girls. This July, Double Lyte Posse Sportbike Club is throwing their three day weekend extravaganza! It will be the 20th year anniversary party complete with a casino and 1920’s flair. We are celebrating the DLP Empire! Guests may come dressed however they like but DLP encourages you to get into the evening festivities and show up all about the 1920’s. That means you getting your Al Capone

DOUBLE LYTE POSSE, SBC IN MYRTLE BEACH, SC FOR BIKE WEEK.

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gangsta with the hat and cigar and the flapper girl Josephine Baker on. Have fun with it. You know I will. Get your tickets and hotel reservation before they sell out if you haven’t already. Friday, July 25th is the meet n greet at the host hotel, the Clarion. Saturday, July 26th will be jam packed for guest complete with a charity ride and parade in the morning, a ride to the famous South Street for a Hooka and Stogie party in the afternoon and a Casino and Juke Joint Anniversary Party that night! Expect DLP’s famous macaroni and cheese AKA Crackoroni by Biggie and a bunch of other great food and music with entertainment that night. Sunday, July 27th events include a BBQ in the park at Philly’s own Plateau better known as “The Plat”.


Yup, the same place that Will Smith rapped about in his classic hit track “Summer, summer, summer time!” Sing it with me! The Plat is a legendary Philly summer time hangout on a Sunday. Established in1994, Double Lyte Posse’s current President bringing us into the 20th year is also one of its original founders, Randy B. commonly known as “Cowboy Randy.” DLP is one the oldest and largest Sportbike clubs in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas. Twenty years is a life time for a Sportbike club, considering the fact that the majority of sport bike riders weren’t thinking about rocking colors or being a club back then. That was something the old timers, as Vicky Gadson called them, on cruisers did. This is the reason DLP will be honoring some of the “Old School” clubs that have been doing their thing for a long time at the anniversary party as well.  As a veteran member for the last 14 years I am proud to be a part of this event and this club. I hope to see you there. This has been your girl K.G. and as always, I’m focused.

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FRICTION ZONE

DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS

WORDS AND IMAGES: BILLY MORRISON

S

o they haven’t kicked me out yet. Here I am, still writing down the random stream of two wheeled thoughts that rattle around my head and they seem to still be printing them! This month I find myself reflecting on a job I had way back in the day, before a guitar became the tool of my trade. A job that put my life at risk every day. That honed my skills as a rider in rain, snow, sleet and driving wind. And one that gave me an intimate knowledge of the back streets and alley ways of a major capital city. I am referring of course to the noble career of a motorcycle courier in Central London. Someone, somewhere, way back in the dim and distant past, decided that motorcycles would be the ideal method of delivering urgent letters and parcels in a huge, sprawling metropolis. Now this was a pretty good idea. Lane splitting is legal in London, and the constantly grid-locked traffic prevents standard mail delivery systems from being effective. Enter the Motorcycle Dispatch Rider. But what they didn’t take into account was the “asphalt pirate” mentality of the riders themselves. The only type of rider that was willing to risk life and limb, riding fourteen hours a day in wet weather through inner city traffic, day after day, to earn a living was the “three quarter liter sports bike riding, Simpson Bandit lid wearing, knee scraping hooligan”… i.e., me! And the concept was simple. I’d show up at an office and they’d have me fill out minimum paperwork, hand me a two way radio and simply start giving me addresses. The bikes were usually 750cc sports bikes, at least mine were, ZXR750, FZR750, GSXR750...

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FRICTION ZONE: DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS Seriously, what was I thinking with the Bon Jovi hair! I had them all with the fairings taken off, straight bars put on, throw over saddlebags to hold the letters and parcels, and stupidly loud and illegal exhaust systems installed. They called the look “Streetfighters” and I loved it. The perfect job for a guy that wanted to remain anonymous, ride hard, earn money and get wasted! Now please don’t get me wrong. I’m not advocating that anyone actually do this. The business these days is a very professionally run, slick operation, with rules, regulations and requirements. But back then it was a cowboy set up, often paying in cash, no questions asked and with little or no legislation or enforcement. And for a dubious reprobate like me it was fantastic.

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“29, 29... Pick up at 48 Charlotte Street for delivery to Victoria Street.” The radio crackled into life. And that would be my cue. Down the rest of the coffee, throw the lid on, fire the bike up, and head off into bumper to bumper traffic. Rain falling so hard it was bouncing off the sidewalks. Slipping and sliding the all black sports bike through the oily, dangerous London streets. Scaring pedestrians as I paid zero attention to the road signs and markings. One way streets became fantastic short cuts... going the wrong way! Nip up the inside of a long line of traffic, weaving in and out of the cars and busses. No wonder we got a bad reputation! But it was all about getting to the pick up quickly, grabbing the package and racing through the city to deliver it faster than


should be possible. We got paid by the delivery. The more deliveries you packed into one day, the more money you earned. Combine that pay structure with a two wheeled troublemaker attitude and you begin to see why the life expectancy of a London Motorcycle Courier was, at one time, just three years. I did the job for four years. Does this make me a skilled, meticulous rider? Not in the slightest! I was an absolute idiot, learnt more about bikes in those four years than most, including what crashing feels like... many times! Quite frankly it makes me a very lucky guy to have lived through it. But it did also make me a more careful, more aware rider in my later life. The shit I saw, and the stuff I did while working that job definitely affects the way I ride today. I am constantly looking into car mirrors, noticing the girl putting on her make up while driving. The business guy texting as he does 70MPH on the freeway. Even the jealous, resentful look that car drivers throw bike riders as they glide past them in traffic. All these things come from my years as a tearaway hooligan motorcycle courier. And I wouldn’t have it any other way! SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 129


FRICTION ZONE: RANDOM

Image: Meekail Shaheed

Once a bullet leaves the chamber... It can never be returned.

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AND ON THE SEVENTH DAY, HE KEPT RIDING. Introducing the new Pirelli Angel GT tire. Perfect for never-ending trips or just a short weekend ride, it’s engineered to give you confidence and enhanced durability, even on wet ground. More than sport touring: this is 100% Italian Gran Turismo. N°1 for Mileage according to an independent test of Motorrad TestCenter comparing Pirelli Angel GT with Michelin Pilot Road 3, Dunlop Sportmax Roadsmart II, Bridgestone Battlax BT 023, Continental RoadAttack 2 and Metzeler Roadtec Z8 Interact M/O on 132 and | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM 120/70ZR-17 180/55ZR-17 set. The test took place in Spain, Marbella in November and December 2012, using six Suzuki Bandit 1250 ABS.


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FRICTION ZONE

THE HIT

LIST

Do you ever wonder what MUSIC your fellow riders are listening to when they are not on the bike? We do... So we decided to ask them.

Brandi Neithamer! What’s on your hit list?

“Automatic” by Miranda Lambert. “Without You” by David Guetta and “Get Up” by Bingo Players. My playlist is all over the place. I like everything. I spend a lot of time working and I need music to motivate me, so I can’t listen to the same genre for hours. Most days I leave my Spotify account on discover so I am always listening to something new. Brandi Neithamer Owner of Dragbike.com

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FRICTION ZONE: SPORTBIKES INK!!!

Want to show off your SPORTBIKES INK? Please click on the icon to send clear, high quality, hi res photos.

RIDER// Adrian Alves BIKE// 2004 Yamaha R1 TATTOO ARTIST// Jerry Issel

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RIDER// Jay BIKE// 2007 Suzuki GSXR 750 TATTOO ARTIST// Aaron Denison and David Long

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THIS LIFE

THE STREETS ARE HOT!

WORDS AND IMAGE: TYSON BECKFORD The streets are hot right now! The weather has finally broke and has given way to warm riding temperatures. Caught up in the summer like temps, I even found myself cruising my city of Manhattan without a jacket on, even though it was in my backpack, just really living this bike life. I get a lot of comments on Instagram when I post my bike pics. And I always get some young kid who rides a dirt bike in the street and does nothing but wheelies saying to me “You not about that bike life.” Really? How so? My response is aways, “I ride a street bike on the street and I ride my dirt bike on the dirt track!” I have raced on world class tracks around the World. I attend MotoGP, World Superbike and AMA Supercross and many more and these young kids who only ride in their hoods are telling me that I am not about this bike life?! What I am saying to these young kids who are riding dirt bikes in the street, doing their wheelies and tricks, there is more to “Bike Life” than the little blocks on which you ride and endanger the lives of innocent women, children and men because you think it’s cool. Guess what... The truth is, you really ain’t bout this bike life, ya bish!

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THE NEW ISH SIDI • MAG 1 BOOTS Perhaps Sidi’s most advanced and lightest boot yet, the Mag 1 is a serious piece of kit of the serious rider. Weighing only 4.4 pounds, they feature a Micrometric Techno 3 magnetic closure system for maximum security in fit. The Mag 1 is double stitched in all high stress areas and offers an adjustable calf area for riders with up to 15 inch calf diameter. The sole has a dual compound and all of the bolt on bits such as the toe slider, shin, heel and closures are fully replaceable. Sizes: 41 - 47 (Euro) Colors: White/Black, Black Price:$495.00 Contact: http://motonation.com

ORIENT EXPRESS RACING • NEXTUP GENERATION 3 ENGINE KILL MODULE Designed for high performance applications and competition use, the Orient Express NextUp is a fully tunable engine kill controller for full throttle clutchless upshifting. The NextUp can be connected to your ignition or fuel injection system for precise control and fast, clean, smooth upshifts. This sophisticated device can be used with either an air shifter for drag racing, or with an electronic shift sensor for street, drag or road racing. The NextUp Generation 3 Engine Kill module now features plug and play connectors for quick, easy and trouble free installation! Bike specific harnesses sold separately for fuel injection system connections. SHINKO TIRES • HOOK UP DRAG RACING REAR TIRE

Available in 180, 190 and 200 the Hook Up is a light weight, DOT approved tire that features a soft compound and tread pattern and profile specifically designed for drag racing. Sizes: 180/55, 190/50, 200/50 Price: $202.95 - $232.95 Contact: http://shinkotireusa.com 140 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM

Price: $199.45 Contact: http://orientexpress.com


BROCK’S PERFORMANCE • DRAGSHOCK EZ FOR THE BMW S1000RR Made in the USA, the Dragshock EZ for the BMW S1000RR is made with aircraft grade aluminum, is 1.25 inches shorter than the stock rear shock and features an adjustable ride height. The EZ works great with the stock or extended swingarms when used with the optional Brock’s Performance lowering link. The EZ helps control wheelies, wheelspin and chassis pogo. It has increased rebound dampening adjustability with a remote reservoir with both low and high speed compression adjustments. Price: $1225.00 Contact: http://brocksperformance.com

DEFY ALL ODDS APPAREL • JR 43 HARD WORK TEE SHIRT

James “The Rocket” Rispoli’s first signature tee is brought to market thanks to the team over at Defy All Odds Apparel. In a perfect example of life art imitating life... The graphics are lifted right from the Rocket’s own tattoo in a snow camo pattern. 100% cotton and preshrunk for a great fit. Sizes: S - XXL Price: $113.62 Contact: http://orientexpress.com

ICON MOTOSPORTS • AIRMADA SENSORY HELMET

Making a hi viz helmet the ICON way, the Airmada Sensory glows in the dark. Rather, the helmet features 20 glowing neon eyes to keep an eye on those that should be watching out for you while your riding. This is one helmet that you’ll never lose in the dark. The helmet ships with the standard fog free ICON Optics shield as well as a dark smoke screen that are easily swappable via the ICON Rapid Release Shield Change System. Sizes: XS - XXXL Price: $270.00 Contact: http://rideicon.com SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM | 141


THE NEW ISH ALPINESTARS • BIONIC RACE SHIELD Consider the Bionic Race Shield an upgrade from the Alpinestars Bionic Back Protector. While incorporating the back protector, the race shield raises the level of protection in the kidney and rib areas. It also is equipped to house the optional Alpinestars Tech Chest Guard. The Race Shield is CE level 2 approved, making it a great choice of protection on the track or streets. Sizes: S - XL Price: $179.95 Contact: http://alpinestars.com

PMR COMPONENTS • KILLSWITCH A needed and a required safety feature, the PMR Killswitch will stop the engine if the rider loses control of their bike. A lanyard connects the rider to the killswitch and if the two are separated, power to the engine is cut. The switch is designed to fit most 7/8 handlebars and CNC machined from 6061 T6 Aircraft Grade Aluminum. Price: $64.95 - $85.95 Contact: http://drivenracing.com SPEED AND STRENGTH • MOTOLISA BOOTS

The MotoLisa Boots have reinforced areas to offer optimum protection in the toe, ankle and shins. The anti slip rubber outsole and leather upper construction gives them durable composition that provides comfort and function. SBI’s Dystany Spurlock makes them her boots of choice when she’s competing on the drag strip or just hitting the street for a rip. Sizes: 6 - 10 (Womens) Price: $139.95 Contact: http://ssgear.com

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HEROIC RACING APPAREL • SPR PRO V2 BLACK GLOVES The Heroic Racing brand is one of the best kept secrets in the AMA paddock. That is quickly changing as the brand continues to expand to the global market. There are good reasons for that and one of those reasons are SPR Pro V2 gloves. Easily one of the most protective, comfortable and stylish gloves on the market today, the V2’s are well constructed with full kangaroo hyde. They offer a high level of protection with steel knuckle protectors, GP pinkie protection and high density shock foam in all crash areas. Sizes: XS - XXXXL Price: $250.00 Contact: http://heroicracing.com

JOE ROCKET • RESISTOR JACKET Joe Rocket’s latest jacket, the Resistor continues the brand’s long line of quality protective riding apparel. Specifically designed to keep you cool when things get hot, the resistor features a mesh hybrid outer shell that is a combination of their Hitena, Rocktex and Freeair technologies. The resistor houses CE approved armor in the shoulders and elbows and comes with a removable spine armor. The six point Surefit custom adjustment system makes getting that secure fit a snap. It also ships with a removable inner vest lining for the ride gets a little chilly. Sizes: S - XXXL Colors: Black, Red, Blue, Yellow, Orange Price: $199.99 - $214.99 Contact: http://joerocket.com

SATO RACING • ENGINE SLIDER FOR THE ZX14R

These engine sliders for the Kawasaki ZX14R come complete with mounting brackets and all necessary hardware for a non modification installation. The mounts are made from billet aluminum while the Delrin slider themselves are made to absorb energy while protecting the engine and the fairing. Price: $185.00 Contact: http://orientexpress.com

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THE NEW ISH: FEATURED ITEM

BROCK’S PERFORMANCE • SIDEWINDER EXHAUST SYSTEM FOR THE ZX10R The 4 - 2 - 1 Sidewinder full exhaust system for the Kawasaki ZX10R is ready for battle with its 20 inch megaphone muffler that features a 2.25 inch outlet removable baffle. Its lightweight stainless construction is designed to boost performance, horsepower and torque. Fairing modification is required but the when installed, the Sidewinder gives your ZX10R a look that demands attention and is backed by performance gains to prove the point. Colors: Polished, Black Price: $1,165.00 - $1,395.00 Contact: http://brocksperformance.com 144 | SPORTBIKESINCMAG.COM


Cool all the way through. GT-R Air textile jacket

The GT-R air breathes well, comes with built-in safety features and is smartly styled to boot. The outer shell features large 3D air mesh-panels for ventilation, and stretch areas on the elbows to allow for a comfortable forward seating position. For hot summer days a Challenger cooling vest can be zipped in. Thanks to CE armor at the elbows and shoulders riders are protected against impact, and an easily upgraded back protector further enhances safety.

View the new Spring-Summer 2014 collection and locate your nearest dealer on www.revit.eu

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STAFF STUFF SPEED AND STRENGTH • WICKED GARDEN SS1300 Dystany Spurlock Speed and Strength made this helmet in numerous colors to fit the desired color for any rider. They have also made two other shields ,black and silver that can be purchased in addition to the standard clear shield. This helmet meets or exceeds DOT and ECE 22-05 Standards. It also has an Advanced Thermo-Poly Alloy Shell, a Cool Core removable washable and moisture wicking liner, Sight system optically correct, Anti-Scratch, Anti-Fog and UV Resistant Face shield and Speed Strap Quick release chin strap. This helmet is fully equip with all the bells and whistles that a rider could ever want. I absolutely love racing in this helmet it not only gives me the stylish look that I love but it also gives me the safety and comfort that I need. The Speed and Strength Wicked Garden Helemt is also reasonably priced at $169.95. You will definitely be a winner riding down the street with this beautiful helmet. http://ssgear.com Rating: 6 (out of 6)

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THE BACK SHOT!

Image: Asphalt and Opportunity Location: Valdosta, GA

SportBikes Inc Magazine May 2014  

SportBikes Inc Magazine May 2014

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