If you were at the MotoGP race recently at Circuit of The Americas, you most likely made your way over to The Handbuilt Motorcycle Show in Austin. If you didn’t, well, you missed out. That weekend was chalk full of racing, from MotoAmerica and MotoGP to the GNC Flat Track event, all of which converged on COTA.
The joy of checking out shows like The Handbuilt Motorcycle Show is that it allows the best from the custom world to come together and display what they’ve been tinkering with over the past year. Builders like Max Hazzan, Shinya Kimura, Roland Sands and the shows originator, Revival Cycles.But with all of those heavy hitting racing leagues sharing Austin for one weekend, you can be sure that guys like Wayne Rainey, Kevin Schwartz, Jason Lee and Keanu Reeves will be in attendance. Sprinkle in the American Motordrome Wall of Death with a bit of libations, for those of you who partake, by the skilled hands of Paul D’Orleans of the Vintagent, along with some motorcycle inspired art and you have yourself a fine show.It seemed a fitting place for Roland Sands to crack out the RSD Super Hooligan on a short track built in the middle of downtown Austin. With the help of Indian Motorcycle, Revival cycles and Roland Sands Designs, they did something a little bit different, a little extravagant and something that turned plenty of heads.
Things like that take time, planning and coordination and I assure you, they spent weeks putting this project together but just like racing; preparation exceeds the time it takes to actually win the race. So in just around 48 hours, Brian Bell and his crew of IV League Flat Track took a simple gravel parking lot and transformed it into a classic dirt track. Complete with barriers and several tons of dirt, it was a true to form dirt track – in the middle of downtown Austin. Indians, Harleys, Hondas, Ducatis and everything else under the sun made their way out onto the impromptu track.Roland Sands of RSD went out on the #10 bike, pitting himself against GNC Flat Track legend Joe Kopp in the initial track turns. Both riders were aboard Indian Scout 60s, so it’s safe to say that it came down to skill with machines evenly matched. And by no means are these machines lean, sitting at about 500lbs, throwing them around a flat track takes a lot of energy.There were a few standouts of the lot that showed up to the RSD/Revival/Indian track. A BMW R nineT certainly made its presence known among V-Twins with its opposed cylinders. What got our attention was the Ducati Scrambler done up by Jamie Robison.Now, it wasn’t because he had done a whole lot to the bike, to the contrary – aside from a questionable job on the gas tank it seemed like something that you’d find on any Ducati showroom floor. Needless to say, it was impressive to the see the little scrambler hold its own throughout the night.For those of you who have been following racing for years longer than I’ve been alive, the name David Aldana isn’t a mystery to you, but Aldana wasn’t alone when it came to racing royalty. He had the help of Dimitri Coste, Flat Track photographer and racer. Coste borrowed one of the Indian Scout Super 60s and put in a few laps of his own.We have to give it up for Roland Sands. Up against legends and pros, he certainly didn’t make a poor showing. Jamie Robinson took the checkered flag aboard his Ducati Scrambler. Mr. Sands trailed in second place with Cameron Brewer in third. As a fun little bonus, these guys were actually qualifying for Saturday’s half mile AMA Pro Nationals race at COTA. The Indian Motorcycle sponsors Super Hooligan Tour by Roland Sands Design put on such a great race in Daytona that they were invited back to do it all over again.When the dust settled, Steve Bonsey from Salinas, California walked away with a good chunk of change. 3500 in total for the young man. Indian ponied up 2,500 and another 1,000 came from K&N in the “Dash for Cash.” Bonsey, riding the #80 XR750 did pretty well, we must say.Until next year, friends!