by Gus Breiland
3rd Annual Bikerday at the Minnesota State Capitol
Minnesota riders are invited to attend the 3rd Annual “Bikerday at the Capitol” from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm on Wednesday, March 8, 2006. This event is co-sponsored by ABATE of Minnesota, St. Croix Valley Riders, Minnesota Motorcycle Club Coalition, Motorcycle PAC of Minnesota, and Minnesota Motorcycle Riders Association. Attendees will receive an information packet and copies of relevant House and Senate bills. For more information contact Mack Backlund at MandMback@aol.com.
Come out and show your lawmakers your “special interest” group matters.
SF Radio Jock Sticks Riding Boot In Mouth
San Francisco, CA area motorcyclists have turned an anti-motorcycle rant into positive press for riders.
Recently, morning disc jockeys on a Bay Area radio station, Live 105, complained about lane-sharing motorcyclists and joked about drivers opening car doors in front of riders, causing them to crash. Lane-sharing is not illegal in California and helps reduce traffic congestion.
Outraged motorcyclists, concerned that the comments could incite car drivers to injure riders, flooded the station with complaints. The Bay Area Riders Forum (BARF), an online message board, played a central role in allowing riders to coordinate their actions. As a result of the complaints, the on-air personalities apologized and at least one of them has promised to take the Motorcycle Safety Foundation Rider Course to learn more about motorcycling. The station also agreed to air public service announcements about motorcycle safety.
Max Biaggi faces 2006 without a ride.
Max Biaggi will not ride in this year’s World Superbike Championship after he was left off the final entry list. The Italian, without a ride in MotoGP after being axed by Honda, had talks with Superbike team Alstare Suzuki.
The outfit had provisionally entered a fourth bike for 2006, but only Troy Corser, Yukio Kagayama and Fabien Foret will line up this season. Biaggi blamed the breakdown in negotiations on the lack of equal equipment to offer.
“There aren’t the necessary technical guarantees that would allow me to fight on equal terms in a very competitive championship,” he told his website. Biaggi could now test again for Formula One Team Midland following his run at Silverstone last month.
The 34-year-old endured a dismal 2005 in MotoGP with Honda, finishing fifth overall with only two second-place finishes.
IMZ-URAL Group Continues Increase in Reliability
IMZ-URAL Group signed a three-year contract with Austrian Engineering Firm “HC-Concept”. The firm will work on increasing reliability of the existing powerplant, preparing the motorcycle for Euro-3 Compliance certification and developing a production version of the next generation engine and transmission. First results of HC-Concept involvement are expected to be implemented on motorcycles as early as the 2007 model year.
The firm’s founder and owner, Claus Holweg, has 12 years of experience working for companies such as BMW, Rotax, Aprilia and KTM. Specifically, while at KTM, Claus was responsible for creating and developing transmissions and gearboxes for motorcycles that participated in, and won, Paris-Dakar races.
MMM’s plan for three-wheeled world domination begins to bear fruit.
Harley Davidson Announces New Motorcycle Shipping Service
Harley-Davidson Motor Company announces a new motorcycle shipping service designed specifically with riders in mind. Harley-Davidson Shipping expands riding opportunities for motorcyclists who want to ride in locations throughout North America, but face the challenges of insufficient vacation time or inclement weather constraints.
“Harley-Davidson Shipping is a way for us to reach out to our customers with another high-quality service that enhances their riding experiences,” said Lara Lee, Vice President Enthusiast Services. “Through Harley-Davidson Shipping, we provide customers more opportunities to experience riding in new locations, while simplifying the transactions and offering flexible options.”
Owners of all brands can take advantage of the flexibility to ship motorcycles to various locations at a competitive price and with unparalleled customer service. Harley-Davidson Shipping offers convenient locations for shipping, including door-to-door pick-up and delivery from a business or personal residence. The new service goes beyond other shipping services by offering honored real-time quotes and multi-bike group discounts for all customers.
Harley-Davidson Shipping is open for any enthusiast to use, while offering additional discounts on shipments to all full Harley Owners Group (H.O.G.) and Buell Riders Adventure Group (BRAG) members. The service is available throughout the United States and Canada, including Hawaii and Alaska, beginning January, 2006.
For more information about Harley-Davidson Shipping rates, locations, transit schedules and other services available contact 1-888-575-BIKE. Shipping quotes and vehicle tracking can be done online at www.harley-davidson.com/shipping.
While we all wish we could ride there, this may be the next best thing. Don’t rent a car, ship your bike and ride! Remember, riding gear and your helmet can be considered carry-on items.
Flying Trikes! Will Sidecars Be Next?
A North Texas man has patented a flying motorcycle. The transportation breakthrough is called the Super Sky Cycle. The top half of the vehicle looks something like a helicopter. The bottom half is a three-wheeled motorcycle. The resulting vehicle is able to leap stacked traffic in a single bound.
Larry Neal calls this a “fly-drive vehicle.”
“It is easy to fly. I can fly it hands off. It’s autostable,” he said. An unpowered rotor on top creates enough lift for the Super Sky Cycle to fly. A propeller on the back pushes it through the air. It takes off quickly, and can fly as fast as 70 mph in complete safety, Neal said.
“I can shut the engine off at 500 feet and come down in total control slower than a parachute,” he added. But that’s only half the story.
Back on the ground, the rotor folds up, and the vehicle becomes a motorcycle, with a range of about 300 miles. Neal has patented all of this and said the Super Sky Cycle will go on sale in a couple of months for $25,000 (assembly required).
Neal’s company, Butterfly LLC, has other models in the prototype stage. All are designed to fit through a seven-foot garage door. He said it won’t be long before that “beep” you hear on the highway could be coming from above as well as behind. See more at www.thebutterflyllc.com/press.
In a public plea to all who are thinking about how great this would be, we here at Minnesota Motorcycle Monthly have a few demands before your buy. Do not use your cell phone while flying. Please wave at all fellow motorcyclists, not just the other Butterfly riders. Don’t even think about making a bumper sticker that reads “Start Seeing Butterflys” and please, look up before taking off.
Boys Scouts and Bikes
Does your teenager need a hobby other than popping pimples and ogling the opposite sex? The Boy Scouts of America may have the answer. The Boy Scout Exploring program allows boys and girls between the ages of fourteen and twenty-one to explore careers and hobbies in individual fields of interest. A local parent is contemplating organizing the first Scouting Explorer Post to concentrate on street motorcycles. Activities will be decided by the youth group, along with their advisor, but might include repair and maintenance, career opportunities, volunteering at charity rides, learning about safety, and of course, rides. For information, contact http://learningforlife.com/exploring/index.html. More adults are needed to get this group started! Interested volunteers please contact Ian Ellis at firstname.lastname@example.org Meetings will be held in the Apple Valley/Lakeville area.
Donnie Smith Calendar
Women and choppers; the two are blended together in a new calendar produced by Jim Anderst of the Narrows Saloon and presents 14 different Donnie Smith Customs. Donnie chose mostly locally owned bikes; ones you might see on Twin Cities’ streets.
The photography, by Rory O’Neill, is extraordinary. Printed on oversize seventeen inch wide heavy stock, the photos look great. Like to see a sneak preview first? You can see the photos by visiting the photographers web site: www.rorythomas.com
An excellent value at $15.00 post paid; send check to: Narrows North, 9375 Deerwood Lane, Maple Grove, Minnesota 55364
MMM really liked the Pete Townsend look-a-like on the back cover. Who are you? Who, who, who, who, I really want to know.