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Discussion Starter #1
well after reading the rossi bashing posts it has inspired to post this thread. Lets hear your best story of meeting the gods of 2 wheels. i have a couple good Scott Russell storys etc. Who was the most down to earth, who was a total asshole etc.
 

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If you have time read up on Joey Dunlop and/or King Kenny Roberts. True ambassadors of the sport. Joey for his humanitarian efforts and pure love for road racing, truely a gentleman and KKR for contesting the safety of European race venues, the old guard in race promotions and elevating prize purses. KKR started as a dirt tracker, the real breeding ground for GP stardom! True stars in this one's meager opinion.
 

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I've heard a lot of stories from a lot of pro riders and crew members etc, but most of it is hearsay re-told & embellished.

One of the funniest things I have personally witnessed though was during a dinner with some PU reps and a few riders like Chris Carr, Roger Hayden & Jake Zemke. As a gag somebody had loosened the lid on the parmesan cheese shaker and when Zemke went to shake a little parmesan on his soup the entire contents of the shaker came out and formed a little mountain right in the middle of the soup bowl. Without missing a single breath he picks up the lid, looks around the table at the various team mechanics and in a very stern voice says "Can I get this safety wired now!?!"
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I've heard a lot of stories from a lot of pro riders and crew members etc, but most of it is hearsay re-told & embellished.

One of the funniest things I have personally witnessed though was during a dinner with some PU reps and a few riders like Chris Carr, Roger Hayden & Jake Zemke. As a gag somebody had loosened the lid on the parmesan cheese shaker and when Zemke went to shake a little parmesan on his soup the entire contents of the shaker came out and formed a little mountain right in the middle of the soup bowl. Without missing a single breath he picks up the lid, looks around the table at the various team mechanics and in a very stern voice says "Can I get this safety wired now!?!"
thats pretty good!
 

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Joey Dunlop was awesome from what i've heard. There is a really good documentary on Joey and another excellent one on Steve Hislop.

I've never got to meet anyone in person but i have talked to Nick Ienatsch over emails....he was the original owner of my bike and he was really helpful to talk to. Hes teaching in Salt lake Utah now.
 

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I'd have liked to make it to the IOM when living in the UK until 13 years ago, but it was so difficult to book a ferry crossing anything less than 18 months in advance, so I never went in the end.... Joey was the president of our bike club (VFR) in UK at the time, he'd actually contacted us to ask for the position which of course we gave him willingly, although sadly we never got the chance to meet him before he died.

Speaking of great people of the biking world, one man who will always deserve to be remembered and is no longer with us is John Britten, a New Zealander who home built a V-Twin hub centre steered bike to go racing internationally with. The video of the story was no longer available.... one of the most inspiring stories of one man living his dream I've seen. It brought tears down my cheek watching it for the first time. This man was a genius engineer!

John designed the entire bike, cast his own engine components at home, frame, fairings, etc. The story shows the bike being built, carbon fibre fairing being moulded then tossed because it weighed a tiny bit too much, etc. He'd work night and day and expect everybody else to do the same. An increbible story.

In it's first race at Daytona in practice it cracked a cylinder liner so John & his team took it out and tried to find a machine shop first to make another, but finding it wasn't possible got use of a workshop to weld & re-fit it overnight with the help of some enthusiastic hairy Harley riders. It worked. For the race the next day it was in 1st position against Ducati works teams before the rectifier (One of the few parts not made by John & his team) failed and ended that first race for the Britten team. The bit where the Britten overtakes the Ducati with it's front wheel pawing the air is a moment of joy and seeing John's reaction - you could tell everything he'd worked for became worthwhile that very moment. The man had amazing passion which was his unstoppable force and of course it was contageous. He gained a lot of fans worldwide just in that first event.

I forget who was riding the Britten on the IOM in 1992? when there was a fatal accident, but the bike had seriously impressed a fair few people including Massimo Tamburini (I think, but not 100% sure I remember the video correctly) who bought one because he was so impressed with John's passion. I believe Joey Dunlop rode a Britten at some point too.
Things were going well before John got skin cancer and passed away in 1995.
Sadly the best always seem to die far too young and John was mourned by many New Zealanders.

I still have the VHS video in my collection of media at home, but my ever inqusitive little daughter has put so many things inside the VCR player she's killed it a long time ago. I keep meaning to open it up and try to fix it, but there's always other things to do :D

Definitely a video worth watching. It's called the Britten bike story.... It's a V-Twin too.

Good news: I just did a search - it's available on DVD at last! Just bought myself a copy.

Well worth watching with your group of biker buddies on a BBQ night... :p

http://www.biker-gifts.co.uk/video_britten.htm
 

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People probably don't realise it, but Harry Ruffell who made this film suffered a major stroke shortly after John Britten died and was incapacitated enough to no longer be able to work.

Anyways, proceeds of sale of the Britten DVD go to supporting him & his family, which probably isn't much money... So it may be worth buying this film as a keeper.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It was 1989 or 90 not sure but my brother took me to my first AMA road race at Heartland Park Topeka, KS. I was in awe of the factory transporters, the california superbike school had all of the new ninja 600's out in a line. The technology and just coolness of it all was apparent even to a child. The big name everyone was talking about was Doug Chandler. My brother took me to the Muzzys tent and i was in love with the look and charm of the Kawi green ZX7s. Off to the side not signing many autographs, was a young Scott Russell. I was star struck just looking at his troy lee helmet. While i was looking at it he called me over to him and brought me behind the tables and i got a up close look at the whole tent! Russell went on to win the race and i was a fan for life after that. Russell always had a nack to disappoint me when i expected alot out of him but it always seemed that when id given up on him he would pull the impossible off. He is a real person. Flawed like the rest of us and not a machine like some. He was a normal guy like me that made it to the big time and won the whole thing! He started late in life and made it through hard work. 20 years later the AMA came back to Heartland Park and i talked to him in pit lane. i asked him if he remembers that race weekend and he had that racers look in his eye and said, "oh yeah, that was a good one!" I surprised him that day when i whipped out his tail section from the ducati he rode at Daytona that year he had the big crash that almost killed him. He was in total shock. "how in the hell did you get that" he asked. I told him if he didnt want to autograph it i understood. He grabbed it and scribbled "still alive Scott Russell" accross it! After Greg White and others stopped oohing and awing at it i was walking away and scott yelled to me, "i better not see that on ebay!" Not a chance i thought to myself, not a chance...
 

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The big name everyone was talking about was Doug Chandler.
Doug is as cool as cool gets. Very laid back and personable. He is racing our BMW S1000RR in various events this season as part of our development project. Took a very close second place last weekend during the F1 WERA Race at Buttonwillow to James Randolph on a KTM RC8.

We would have loved a win, but we also support Randolph so not a bad showing to have two sponsored riders on the podium.

http://maps.wera.com/results/showeventresults.asp?x=1098&rg=71302103372&c=171302103379
 

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Doug is as cool as cool gets. Very laid back and personable. He is racing our BMW S1000RR in various events this season as part of our development project. Took a very close second place last weekend during the F1 WERA Race at Buttonwillow to James Randolph on a KTM RC8.

We would have loved a win, but we also support Randolph so not a bad showing to have two sponsored riders on the podium.

http://maps.wera.com/results/showeventresults.asp?x=1098&rg=71302103372&c=171302103379
awesome, i meant to ask you how you guys were fairng with the S1000rr on the track. im guessing pretty good?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Doug is as cool as cool gets. Very laid back and personable. He is racing our BMW S1000RR in various events this season as part of our development project. Took a very close second place last weekend during the F1 WERA Race at Buttonwillow to James Randolph on a KTM RC8.

We would have loved a win, but we also support Randolph so not a bad showing to have two sponsored riders on the podium.

http://maps.wera.com/results/showeventresults.asp?x=1098&rg=71302103372&c=171302103379
Chandler has to be one of the smoothest riders of all time
 

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i'm going to say Daijiro Kato as well......sad that he passed so young. was a very talented rider with a lot of potential. Reading his tribute book right now, its a really interesting interesting read. its got about 240 pics, and about 140 interviews from family, riders (Rossi, Biaggi, Sete), and a bunch of ohers. Its only 6 dollars shipped on ebay. good piece for any motorcycle enthusiast or racing nut.
 

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i'm going to say Daijiro Kato as well......sad that he passed so young. was a very talented rider with a lot of potential. Reading his tribute book right now, its a really interesting interesting read. its got about 240 pics, and about 140 interviews from family, riders (Rossi, Biaggi, Sete), and a bunch of ohers. Its only 6 dollars shipped on ebay. good piece for any motorcycle enthusiast or racing nut.
I shall get it. It really seems as if Japan is cursed to never be #1 in moto gp. Kato, Tomizawa, Nagai, Abe... granted Abe was past his prime but it still seems like a curse
 

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I'll give ya that. I can't beleive i almost forgot to mention Jarno Saarinen.....now HE was a legend.
 

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My thoughts are Migueal Duhamel, Scott Russell, Jake Zemke. Those three in my opion is the best off and on the track. Migueal is by far one of my favs, I did get to meet him one day a road atl back a few yrs before factory honda dissapered off the grid. Really humble down to earth nice guy. Had him sign a shoei helmet that he used to wear. You could tell when I asked him to go hollywood on the signature he got kinda nervous. Silver paint pen in one hand and a migueal replica $500+ helmet in the other. It turned out really nice after it was said and done. I really miss the ol days when AMA was somewhat really exciting to watch. U know when formula extreme was 600s on steroids!!:). Migueal had by far the fastest machine dialed in on every track raced upon with the extremes.

I have been to scott's place a few times in conyers, ga. I used to work with one is his cousins back in the day at a moto shop. Personal invite of course to ride some dirt moto with family and friends on his property. Again, one of the greats to hang out with.
 

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Nevr met any of those guys personally but they seem like great dudes. like that story about Miguel.
From what i hear Colin Edwards is the man in person....just a normal dude who loves to joke around and take life and live it to the fullest.

I miss those days of AMA as well. Its too bad. I hate to say it but i think its deteriorated due to guys coming from AMA into the big leagues and not having the great success that guys from BSB/WSBK and other series have had. Nicky did well for awhile, but even his championship he only took 2 1st place wins. I think Ben is the next one who could possibly pull it off. i'm pulling for him big time.
 

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Yup Ben finally got on a bike that could do it but you got 2 cats that are sick fast on pretty much the best bike out there. I hope there is a chance to meet some guys at Indy this year. And as far as AMA goes the best racing going on right now is the Supersport Class with 6 dudes fighting for first every race. Danny Eslick pull that sick overtake in turn one at Laguna was the craziest move I have seen.
 

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I met John Hopkins last year during the AMA weekend at Barber.

I walked up to the elevator at my hotel to go downstairs to leave for dinner. There was a woman already waiting also, and she looked familiar to me for some reason. The elevator showed up and she asked me if we could wait for her son, who was walking down the hall and I immediately figured out who it was. The woman was John Hopkins' mother and I recognized her from "Faster"!

So, I told her that I had no problem waiting for John Hopkins. He was smiling and happy when he got in the elevator because he'd finished on the podium that day. I was totally starstruck though and couldn't even think of what to say to him when we were in the elevator.
 
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