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AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days: Experts Talk

Motorcycling Event

Despite what we remember from our teen years, sometimes a good lecture is just what we need — especially if it’s about motorcycles. And you’ll find plenty of cool lecture topics at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, July 9-11, during AMA (American Motorcyclist Association) Vintage Motorcycle Days.

Front and center at the lectern during AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days will be numerous historical figures and industry leaders hosting seminars ranging from riding to racing to restoring vintage motorcycles. School was never this good.

"The seminar program at AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is one of the most popular features at this event," said AMA Special Events Manager Tigra Tsujikawa. "Not only do we feature those who have helped write the history of motorcycling, but we include current experts from various fields and disciplines. Topics as diverse as international off-road competition, getting started in vintage racing and practical tips for creating custom bike parts will be coverage."

All seminars are roughly 90 minutes in duration and are in the Goodyear Tower on the fourth floor, or in the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Tent in the infield of the Mid-Ohio roadrace course.

Several seminars will focus on the 2010 Marque of the Year, Husqvarna. Located at the Hall of Fame Tent, these include "Husqvarna Motorcycles: The People Behind It All" by Gunnar Lindstrom on Friday, July 9, at 10:30 a.m., and "The Early Years of Husqvarna in America," featuring John Penton, Lindstrom, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days Grand Marshal Malcolm Smith and Tom White on Saturday, July 10, at 1 p.m.

Fans of off-road racing will get a real treat on Friday at 2:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 11, at 1 p.m. in the Hall of Fame Tent when the 1982 International Six Days Enduro U.S. Trophy Team will re-unite for a discussion about their all-Husqvarna effort that brought home a second-place trophy that year — the highest finish a U.S. team has ever achieved in this storied international competition. The discussion will feature Mark Hyde, Mike Melton, Terry Cunningham, Scot Harden and Wally Wilson.

Also featured will be Bridgestone Motorcycles, the 2010 Classic Club, in talks by Randy Gibbon and Larry Young on Friday at 11:30 a.m., Saturday at 9 a.m., and Sunday at 11:30 a.m. Speaking at the Goodyear Tower, Gibbon and Young will discuss both the high-quality and little-known history of this rare brand.

Perennial AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days speaker Craig Vetter returns this year to discuss motorcycle streamlining and fuel economy. Vetter will present his ideas and lead an open discussion at the Hall of Fame Tent on Friday at 1 p.m. and Saturday at 10:30 a.m.

Running in conjunction with the AMA Racing Vintage Grand Championships, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is known by many for its National Championship vintage competition in motocross, trials, hare scrambles, roadracing and dirt track. For those interested in getting started in the sport — certainly one of the least intimidating and most affordable ways to get on the track — vintage racer, promoter and sponsor Don Miller will offer advice in "How to Get Started in Vintage Racing" on Saturday at 3 p.m. in the Goodyear Tower.

Two other major highlights of AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days are the bike shows and North America’s largest swap meet. Both, of course, inspire attendees to take on motorcycle projects of their own. If you want to do it right, you won’t want to miss Bob Vail’s "Building Vintage Motorcycle Specials: Techniques and Tips." Vail will discuss working with Fiberglas, welding and aluminum castings to make custom parts on Friday at 10 a.m., Saturday at 12 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. in the Goodyear Tower.

Triumph fans can get their fill of technical information on Friday at 2:30 p.m. and Saturday at 10:30 a.m. when Triumph experts John Healy and Don Hutchinson will discuss the details of working with the classic British brand.

Eric Trow will address motorcycling safety in "Ride Like It’s 1969 Classic Lessons for Riding Safely Today" on Friday at 1 p.m., Saturday at 1:30 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m. in the Goodyear Tower.

In addition to these seminars, there will be ample opportunity for the public to interact with Grand Marshal Malcolm Smith and other AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers who will be in attendance.

Held at the world-class Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days features vintage and post-vintage competition in motocross, trials, harescrambles, roadracing and dirt track. In addition to demo rides of current production bikes, the event includes North America’s largest motorcycle swap meet, educational seminars, bike shows, the Federal Companies/Allied Used Bike Corral, motorcycling seminars, the new product Manufacturers’ Midway, and club corrals featuring marque and regional clubs.

Proceeds from AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days benefit the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. The goal of the Hall of Fame, located on the campus of the AMA in Pickerington, Ohio, is to honor the distinguished men and women whose competitive spirit, passion, vision and entrepreneurship have played a vital role in shaping the sport, lifestyle and business of motorcycling. For more information, call (614) 856-2222, or visit the Hall of Fame’s website at MotorcycleMuseum.org.

For tickets to AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, see MidOhio.com. For more information about the event, visit AMAVintageMotorcycleDays.com.

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling.

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