AMA Motorcycle Hall of FameOff-road racing icon Malcolm Smith and famed national champion dirt-tracker Mert Lawwill (pictured above on set of On Any Sunday with Steve McQueen) will be honored as Motorcycle Hall of Fame Legends at the annual AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at the Red Rock Casino, Resort and Spa in Las Vegas, Nev., on Nov. 16-17.
Jeff Heininger (Chairman of the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation) says: “Just say the names ‘Malcolm’ and ‘Mert’ and the motorcycling community knows exactly who you are talking about.“These two legends starred together in the influential 1972 motorcycling movie ‘On Any Sunday,’ and we’re very excited that they will star together again on our induction ceremony stage.”Smith, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998, was a pioneer in off-road motorcycling. He’s famous for his accomplishments in the Baja 1000 and for his gold-medal winning rides in International Six Day Enduro competitions.He gained fame beyond the motorcycling community when he appeared in “On Any Sunday.” The scenes of Smith and Lawwill play-riding with popular actor Steve McQueen showed people across the country just how fun motorcycling could be. The movie helped launch an explosion in the popularity of off-road motorcycling in America.Smith went on to become a successful businessman with his Malcolm Smith Motorsports motorcycle dealership in Riverside, Calif. He also built up Malcolm Smith Racing products, now known as MSR, which is owned by Tucker Rocky, where Smith works as a consultant.Known for his support of community projects, Smith also created a tax-free foundation that has raised more than $750,000 to support an orphanage and help educate children at El Oasis in Baja, Mexico, malcolmsmithmotorsportsfoundation.org.Malcolm Smith says: “I’m humbled to receive this recognition because there are so many great riders and racers in the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame,” Smith said. “This is a great honor. I’m looking forward to seeing old friends, and meeting new ones, at the induction ceremony in November.”Lawwill, inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998, was one of the top professionals on the AMA national circuit during the 1960s and 1970s. He was the 1969 AMA Grand National champion and “On Any Sunday” chronicled his bid to defend his title during the 1970 racing season. By the time Lawwill hung up his racing leathers in 1977, he had amassed an incredible 161 career AMA Grand National finishes during his 15-year racing career.Lawwill went on to become one of the top motorcycle racing frame designers and builders. He then used his expertise to create custom racing mountain bikes that won numerous national and world titles, as well as prosthetic devices to enable amputees to ride motorcycles and bicycles.Mert Lawwill says: “This is totally unexpected. I’m very grateful that my peers in the motorcycling community think enough of me to honor me in this way. I’m really looking forward to this event. ”Smith and Lawwill will be honored as Legends at the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony for the Class of 2012.Past recipients of the Legends honor are roadracing icon Kenny Roberts and motocross legends Roger DeCoster and Bob Hannah.About the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation Founded in 1990 by the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation, the goal of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Museum is to tell the stories and preserve the history of motorcycling. Located on the campus of the American Motorcyclist Association in Pickerington, Ohio, the Museum’s three major exhibition halls feature the machines and memorabilia of those who have contributed notably to the sport. The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Museum recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to motorcycling, including those known for their contributions to road riding, off-road riding and all categories of racing, as well as those who have excelled in business, history, design and engineering. More information can be found at MotorcycleMuseum.org.
Our first segment introduces you to the new Arch 1s. This latest, slightly more sporting American V-twin, adds to the original KRGT1 coming from the boutique manufacturer based in Hawthorne, Southern California. Senior Editor Nic de Sena rode through Malibu with Gard Hollinger, who co-founded Arch Motorcycle with his friend, Keanu Reeves. The 1s is a unique ride for sure, and Nic explains what makes the bike really stand out.
For the entertaining story behind Arch Motorcycle from Gard Hollinger himself, you must listen to his podcast episode on Motos & Friends HERE
The guest segment of Motos and Friends is brought to you by the faster and most technologically advanced, 2023 Suzuki Hayabusa—visit your local dealer or suzukicycles.com to learn more.
In our second segment, Associate Editor Teejay Adams chats with multiple Emmy award-winning writer, Producer, Director, and actor, Thom Beers. the former Chairman & CEO of Fremantle Media North America, responsible for American Idol and America’s Got Talent.
Thom’s fertile imagination led to most of the really big reality TV shows such as ‘Deadliest Catch’ (now in its 17th season!), and many others. Of course for us in the motorcycle world, you’ll be interested to hear the genesis and story of how he started the first real fabrication reality show ‘Monster Garage’, that showcased Jesse James, and then how that led to ‘Biker Build Off’ and the ‘Zombie Choppers’ movie.
You’d imagine that most of Thom’s time is spent sitting behind a desk and on his phone. Not so. His intense stories of capturing much of the content for these shows make for some hair-raising listening.