by Gus Breiland

R-Max USA by Roadmax Supports St. Francis H.S. Chopper Build
R-Max USA by Roadmax is assisting St. Francis High School in competing in the 2007 Donnie Smith Chopper Class Challenge by donating time, expertise, a transmission, chrome starter, 3in open primary belt and a number of R-Max USA by Roadmax work shirts.

The Donnie Smith Chopper Class Challenge culminates at the 2007 Donnie Smith Invitational Bike Show on March 25 and 26th in the Saint Paul’s RiverCentre. The budding Chopper builders from St. Francis High School design and build a v-twin chopper motorcycle from the ground up.

Brent Stavig, St. Francis High School Metals Instructor, spearheads the program and has been overwhelmed by the response by the St. Francis community and the motorcycle industry. “It all started when we began welding up 50cc mini choppers,” explained Stavig. “Greg Stewart of the local Fat Boys Bar and Grill asked us if we wanted to build a real chopper and then donated money and assisted us in finding firms to partner with the kids. The result of this was an enormous amount of cooperation from the industry. Many companies donated parts, supplies, equipment, tools, knowledge and time to the project.”

Last year’s chopper was called the Iron Saint and won the People’s Choice award at the 2006 Donnie Smith Invitational Bike Show. The 2007 Chopper is already in the works and will depart from the old school look of the Iron Saint with a more contemporary look of a high-tech chopper.

MMM’s aging street reporter Gus Breiland took a look at this year’s bike and began to talk about how “back in his day…” and “if I would have made this I would have…” to which he was quickly ignored. It is very cool to see not only a shop class still in existence, but also to see kids creating quality work. We look forward to seeing this year’s contribution.

Buell Celebrates Production Of 100,000 Motorcycles
Buell Motorcycle Company celebrated production of its 100,000th motorcycle in November of 2006 with a 2007 Ulysses XB12X model, at its factory in East Troy, WI.

Buell Motorcycle Company, founded by Erik Buell in 1983, is the only American manufacturer of sport bikes. Starting with Erik’s dream of building his own racing motorcycles, Buell has evolved into a leading manufacturer of performance street motorcycles, with a majority of its sales in international markets.

“We take great pride in knowing we’ve provided 100,000 bikes worth of fun and unique experiences for our owners and loyal enthusiasts,” said Erik Buell, Chairman and Chief Technical Officer. “Reaching the 100,000-motorcycle milestone as the only American sport bike manufacturer is a real tribute to the riders and employees who have passionately supported Buell motorcycles over the years.”

Buell plans to celebrate the 100,000-motorcycle milestone with its employees and other guests at its facilities in East Troy, WI. A special ceremony will mark the production of the 100,000th Buell motorcycle as it rolls off the assembly line.

What can MMM say but, “Go, Buell, Go!”

BMW HP2 Enduro Scores Best North American Finish To Date—BMW Bajas
A pair of BMW HP2 Enduro motorcycles finished 3rd in their respective classes. The No. 12x BMW HP2 Enduro of BMW Motorrad Team Baja Bound scored a third-place finish in the top-ranked Class 22 (Open Class) in this past weekend’s 38th SCORE Tecate Baja 1000. The second factory-supported HP2 Enduro of BMW Motorrad Team Mexico, finished third in Class 30 for riders over 30 years old. The final results were the best finish in the race by any European manufacturer.

The podium finish in class 22 for BMW Team Baja Bound was the best North American finish for the factory-supported HP2 team led by veteran off-road specialist Jimmy Lewis, of Costa Mesa, Calif. Joined by riders Dave Donatoni, of Thousand Oaks, CA, Jonah Street, of Ellensburg, WA, and Beau Hayden, of Sunland, CA the West Coast quartet covered the rigorous 709-mile course running through the rugged Baja peninsula in 20:57.43 hours, finishing 14th overall among the 41 motorcycles entered in the race.

Drawing the last class starting position, Lewis began the first leg of the race just after 6:35 a.m. on Friday morning. Riding out from Ensenada, Lewis was soon passing competitors through the very technical first miles. Just past Ojos Negros, some 30 miles in, Lewis handed off to Donatoni. The oldest member of the team at 43, Donatoni rode another 30 miles before Hayden took over for the next 150 miles. Street completed 180 miles more before a rested Lewis took over for the next 130 miles, two headlights now attached to his HP2 Enduro as the beautiful Baja day produced a brilliant sunset. Donatoni blazed through the next 150 miles of darkness as the course headed back toward Ensenada. Lewis rode the final 30 miles of the race to the traditional finish line inside the baseball stadium, finishing the journey he began some 20 hours before.

The trio of Sergio Vega, Manuel Luna and Arnoldo Ramirez, all of Ensenada, Mexico rode the No. 315x bike to 11th overall in a time of 20:42.09 hours.

The HP2 Enduro, BMW Motorrad’s first motorcycle from its new High Performance sub-unit, was designed and built by BMW Motorrad’s most enthusiastic engineers. The HP2 combines BMW’s 105-horsepower 1200 cc. flat-twin engine with a frame developed from years of Paris-Dakar competition. With a unique frame, fork and rear air suspension, the HP2 offers unsurpassed power and control.

This year’s Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 desert race will be televised on a delayed basis as a one-hour NBC Sports special for the second consecutive year on December 10 on the NBC Network. A different one-hour special will premier on the Outdoor Life Network on Sunday, December 18 and another special will air in January on the Discovery HD Network.

MMM is excited to see any of the major motorcycle manufacturers compete in non-company specific races. Go watch Dust to Glory. Go watch the OLN coverage of this year’s event. Winter is upon us and we all know a good motorcycle race in the desert is just what we need.

Loud Pipes Shake Signs
Carefree and Cave Creek, Arizona will have new signs appearing soon encouraging motorcyclists to curb motorcycle noise. Major motorcycle manufacturers such as Harley-Davidson, Honda and Yamaha will provide the signs and distribute brochures. It is all part of an effort to educate riders about the benefits of being friendly neighbors as they motor through the quiet streets of Carefree on their way to the entertainment establishments in adjoining Cave Creek.

The program was developed in response to concerns of Carefree residents about excessive motorcycle sound, and is part of the ongoing efforts of the town’s Noise Enforcement Advisory Committee to examine and respond to the issue of excessive motorcycle sound. One of the committee’s recommendations was to work with motorcycle manufacturers and associations and see if they would be willing to police their own industry.

The current Carefree noise ordinance allows for a maximum noise level of 85 decibels measured at a distance of 25 feet. Maricopa County sheriff’s deputies already patrol Carefree with microphone booms on the tops of their cars to measure sound. The fine for a first infraction of the Carefree noise ordinance can run as much as $175.

Loud pipes don’t save lives and will cost you a couple of extra bucks if you decide to “share” your bike’s noise with the fine people of Carefree, Arizona.

California Gated Community Continues To Ban Resident Riding
Canyon Lake, CA supporters of overturning a ban on motorcycle riding within this gated city lost their bid to change the longstanding rule in a special election. Members of the Canyon Lake Property Owners Association voted resoundingly against an amendment to the rules that would have allowed residents to ride motorcycles to and from their homes. Passage of the amendment would have required approval votes from two-thirds of eligible property owners. If passed, the amendment would have allowed only Canyon Lake residents to ride motorcycles to and from their homes with a speed limit of 15mph.

Members of the recently formed Canyon Lake Motorcycle Club collected enough signatures last summer to put the matter to a second vote. In 1995, a majority of residents voted to strengthen the restrictions against motorcycle riding despite the extended efforts of the AMA and others to overturn these restrictions.

Gotta love this story. You pay a lot of money to live in an exclusive community so that you can live your life free of outside annoyances and you become an outside annoyance to your neighbor. Motorcyclists still have a long way to go in being recognized as a functional part of our commuting society and not just another noise maker or unruly crotch rocket terrorizing the neighborhood. Motorcyclists, behave. Keep your front wheel on the ground. Keep your stock exhaust on. Commute to be seen.

Oklahoma—Making Tolls A Little More Motorcycle Friendly
An Oklahoma state lawmaker is proposing giving a break to motorcycle riders on the state’s turnpikes. State Representative Paul Wesselhoft says it’s not fair for motorcyclists to pay the same price as a car on the toll roads because motorcycles cause less wear and tear on the roadway. And he says the bikes cause less pollution and are more fuel-efficient.

His proposal calls for motorcycles to be charged half the toll currently charged to two-axle vehicles such as cars and SUVs. Rep. Wesselhoft says he doubts the state would lose any revenue by reducing the toll because he believes more bikers would drive the turnpikes if the toll were lower.

MMM would have preferred to read that Oklahoma is reducing the toll to $0 to encourage more bikers to ride. But half is a good start.

AMA Board Selects Rob Dingman As New AMA President
The American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) has announced that its Board of Directors has selected Robert M. Dingman to be the Association’s next President.

Dingman succeeds Robert Rasor, who is retiring as AMA President and will serve as AMA Director of International Affairs. Dingman previously served the AMA for nearly five years as its Washington (D.C.) Representative, and is returning to the Association from the position of Assistant Commissioner for Transportation Safety for New York State’s Department of Motor Vehicles, where he headed the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee.

“I’m honored to have been chosen by the Board of Directors to lead the AMA at this time of change and growth,” said Dingman. “I believe in the Association’s mission of ‘rights, riding, racing,’ and for me there’s no greater privilege than to serve the AMA’s 280,000 members.”

Dingman’s first day as AMA President will be November 27, 2006. Based at the Association’s headquarters in Pickerington, Ohio, he’ll report to AMA Chief Executive Officer, Patricia DiPietro on an interim basis during a transition period.

M.M.M.

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