1998 AMA Vintage Days Competitive Events
Guzzi Wins at Mid-Ohio!
click to enlarge
|No not the race, the BIKE SHOW! (writes Bill
I and five of my friends rode to Mid-Ohio AMA Vintage Bike Days from Kansas City, about 750 miles on the back roads. We hit some rain on the way, so I washed the T3 Friday night and was up early Saturday hitting the high spots to the jokes of my friends. The bike looked pretty good with the bright sun light and white chat gravel. There was only one other in my class of European Special, so my chances of placing were locked in I thought. As they called my class, the other entry, a nicely customized Ambassador won first, with no second place called. I thought, well that's the way it goes. Then it was time for BEST IN SHOW EUROPEAN, Bill Dole. That's DOLL. Some people have a hard time believing someone would have the last name Doll so they say Dole to be polite. Anyway none of my friends were laughing then. It was a great honor for me and the Moto Guzzi marquee to take that award on a 22 year old ride with 122 thousand miles among all the other fine Italian and German motorcycles.
Trials Competition (click on image for enlargement)
Standing in the woods for a couple hours on Saturday morning, watching guys (and one girl) ride straight up a 60 ft. creek bank, around a tree, back down, over a log, back up around a tree, through rocks... some without touching a foot down, gave me a good taste of Trials riding. It was great fun, especially when the 50 something guys camped next to us came through. (I always like to have someone to cheer for)
Standing right next to the course, getting sprayed with mud in the morning and dust by afternoon, observing the Motocross racing was thrilling. The course was set up in the in-field area. Dick Mann was out there with the water truck trying to keep the dust down - I think he designed the course. There were lots of trees on the course - made me nervous. Several riders came close to smacking one near us. But it sure looked like they were having fun. Hey, maybe a few more trips to the Uwharrie Forest and I'll be ready for Trials or Motocross competition....
And then there was Road Racing...
I was amazed by the vintage Indian and Harley riders on hand shift bikes. Imagine going into a curve as fast as you can and having to coordinate taking your hand off the bar to shift, braking and still get around that guy on the inside. And then to see some of the vintage suspension systems start bouncing when leaned over into a curve was nightmare material. Yikes!
|Our friend from Pennsylvania, Robert (Snuffy) Smith was on the race track for the first time in several years. He was riding a Norton Manx that belonged to someone else - he was very careful with it.|
|Steve von Borstle riding Sport Cycles' (Chris De Minco) V-7 Sport based 750 Moto Guzzi took first place in the Formula Vintage Race on Sunday. He also placed 5th in the Formula 750 and gave a most exciting show fighting for 4th in the Sound of Thunder race on Sunday only to end with 7th. It was really exciting to be out there cheering him on. He did not get to compete in all the events he wanted because he was not registered initially and had to wait for other bikes to drop out. Steve's lap times were better than the guy who won the event that he really wanted to race but couldn't because he wasn't pre-registered for it. Too bad.|
Other riders on M-Gs included Tim Gundlach, Jeff Gundlach (?related?), Charles Lundy, Will Harding, and Steven Dumek. The results are posted on the AHRMA site.