The American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) reports that AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, the country’s biggest celebration of motorcycling’s history, will provide one of this summer’s best opportunities to get a first-hand look at historically significant motorcycles from the sport’s past, present and future. By all accounts, this AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is poised to be one of the best ever, with thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts descending on the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, this July 24-26.
In addition to activities that will celebrate the people and organizations important to motorcycling’s heritage, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days offers a number of activities that celebrate the machinery enthusiasts have come to love. These attractions include new motorcycle test rides, bike shows, the Vendor Midway, the AMA 85th Anniversary parade, the Federal/Allied Used Bike Corral, the AMA TTXGP Introduction and North America’s largest motorcycle swap meet.
One of the highlights at every AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is the swap meet. This year, vendor participation is shaping up to be particularly strong.
"We have already filled more swap meet spaces for 2009 than we had at last year’s AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, and we expect even more vendors to sign up on location," said AMA Special Events Manager Tigra Tsujikawa. "This will be one of the biggest AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days swap meets in history, and certainly one of the best opportunities to find that elusive part or project that you’ve been searching for — maybe even since last year’s event."
Test rides of new bike models are always popular, and there will be a lot of choices for those who want to take some for test rides at AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days. The current lineup of manufacturers that will be on hand with their demo fleets is BMW, Can-Am, Ducati, Kawasaki, Triumph, KTM, Kymco and Yamaha.
"Classic motorcycles are cool, but we don’t want to take anything away from the incredible machines available in dealer showrooms today," Tsujikawa said. "At AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, attendees will have numerous opportunities to sample some of the latest two- and three-wheeled vehicles you can buy."
A new attraction this year that is expected to draw a lot of interest is the Federal/Allied AMA Used Bike Corral, which will include primarily individual-owned, for-sale, running motorcycles.
"The Federal/Allied AMA Used Bike Corral, which is available at no-charge for attendees to display their machines, is our way to help organize the numerous used bikes that are ridden to — and often sold — at this event," Tsujikawa said. "In addition to the motorcycles you’ll still find for sale in the swap meet, we hope the Federal/Allied AMA Used Bike Corral will bring more buyers and sellers together.
"The rules are simple. All motorcycles parked in the Federal/Allied AMA Used Bike Corral must be running, and contact and pricing information must be visible," she said.
With this AMA Vintage Motorcycles Days commemorating the AMA’s 85th anniversary, it also provides the perfect opportunity to highlight the massive scope of motorcycling’s heritage with the AMA 85th Anniversary Parade. The parade will feature a procession of bikes from the AMA’s nine decades, beginning with a 1924 Harley-Davidson JDCA and ending with a modern machine fresh off the assembly line. The motorcycles will navigate the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course before coming to rest along the front straight where they will create a stunning display of motorcycling’s historical diversity.
"To fully understand where two-wheeled technology is today, you need to understand where it began and how it evolved," Tsujikawa said. "There will be no better place to showcase this evolution than this living, breathing parade through time."
The AMA TTXGP Introduction, another unprecedented feature of this year’s AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, will provide a tantalizing look into the future. The AMA TTXGP Introduction will feature new-breed zero-emission racebikes circulating at speed on the sinuous 2.4-mile Mid-Ohio track. The electric bikes will perform spirited exhibition laps during breaks in the vintage road-race program that will run as part of the AMA Racing Vintage Grand Championships. The Introduction marks the first international gathering of high-tech electric road-race bikes in the U.S. in the 21st century.
"As the AMA celebrates its first 85 years, it seemed appropriate to glimpse into what the next 85 years of motorcycling may bring," Tsujikawa said. "The AMA TTXGP Introduction will display the cutting-edge technology that will drive one aspect of motorcycle development for years to come."
Other popular attractions include the Vendor Midway, which is located on the Mid-Ohio infield and features new products; bike shows featuring original and pristinely restored classic bikes; and the popular Ride ‘Em Don’t Hide ‘Em guided ride and bike show from the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course to J.B.’s Drive-In in Lexington, Ohio, and back.