Kaley Johnson has been named 2015 AMA Ice Racer of the Year, and Emmett Sund the AMA Youth Ice Racer of the Year, at the AMA Ice Race Grand Championships on Lake Koshkonong at Oaklawn Academy in Edgerton, Wisconsin.Only 17 years old, Johnson has been riding on ice since she was nine years old. “I got into ice racing because my dad is part of the Muskegon Motorcycle Club,” Johnson explains. “He was always into the racing thing, and my brother started racing on ice, so that’s how I got into it.”
Riding against males, Johnson took three National Championships this year — 250cc DTX, 250cc Modified, and 251cc-500cc DTX.Earning the Ice Racer of the Year award is something that runs in the Johnson family. “Winning AMA Ice Racer of the Year is something that I’ve been hoping for since my brother, Kyle, got it in 2011 and 2012,” the Twin Lakes, Michigan racer said. “He’s always wanted me to get it and bring it back to our family.” Conditions were difficult in Edgerton, giving Johnson a bit of a challenge. It was 13 below zero on the first day of racing, a just 9 above the following day. “This past weekend I got a bunch of frostbite on my face with it being so cold,” she said. “I get frostbite really easily. It’s hard to keep going when you’re freezing. I have a neck warmer I tuck into my helmet, but that doesn’t always help.” In addition to ice racing, Johnson also does some dirt track racing. Still, she prefers the frozen water. “It’s faster than what dirt is,” Johnson said. “It’s a lot more hooked up than most people think. With studs in the tires, it’s way faster than anybody would imagine it to be. Plus, racing on the ice is good practice for the dirt. My brother and I go out on the weekends and put in a bunch of laps on the lakes around us.” Youth Ice Racer of the Year Sund might be considered something of a natural. The 10-year-old from Edgerton won National Championships in the 65cc Modified and 85cc Modified classes. The extraordinary thing is, it was Sund’s first ever weekend of ice racing. Like Johnson, Sund is a dirt track racer, though it’s his specialty (he started at 7 years old). “Winning AMA Ice Racer of the Year makes me really happy,” Sund said.AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame rider and Enduro legend Jeff Fredette also competed at the AMA Ice Racer Grand Championships. He won the 250cc Modified Ice GP and Super Senior 50+ Ice GP.Photography by Mike Barton
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.