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How Would You Like To Retire At 90 From Fixing Motorcycles?

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A day is fast approaching that a Suncoast man has been avoiding for a long time. At the end of this month, 90-year-old motorcycle technician Kenny Clark will retire.

Most people retire at 65. For Kenny Clark, that was 25 years ago. And he has been working at one job all these years. When he started at Hap's Cycle Sales, Harry Truman was president, and gas cost 17 cents a gallon.

For 64 years, Clark has roared into Hap's Cycle Sales every day to work on motorcycles. "I still like what I'm doing, I enjoy working here with all the guys here….they’re great people to work with."

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Hines and Krawiec Each Qualify and Win One Round in Debut of New Engine

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The Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle®/Vance & Hines drag racing team successfully debuted its new Harley-Davidson® V-Rod® motorcycles at the 44th annual Amalie Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Auto-Plus Raceway. Aboard V-Rod motorcycles painted to celebrate the Harley-Davidson 110th Anniversary, riders Ed Krawiec and Andrew Hines qualified for Pro Stock Motorcycle eliminations, and each rider won in the first round on Sunday.

The Gatornationals was the first Pro Stock Motorcycle event of the 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, and the first to run under new rules that forced the defending champion Screamin’ Eagle/Vance & Hines team to design and build a new two-valve pushrod engine and alter its Screamin’ Eagle V-Rod motorcycles, a project that was completed just days before the season-opening event at Gainesville.

“We were not here to qualify number one, we were just here to race,” said Screamin’ Eagle®/Vance & Hines crew chief Matt Hines. “When we left the shop I really didn’t know if these bikes would make it down the track without melting down. We ran the new motors on the dyno and we were down on power compared to last year, and the question was would we have enough power to compete. But we ran in the sixes right away in testing at Valdosta, and both riders qualified at Gainesville and got a round under their belts. All things considered, it could not have gone more smoothly. We are not that far behind.”

Hines qualified fifth with a best Elapsed Time (ET) of 6.836 seconds. Krawiec, the defending Pro Stock Motorcycle champion, qualified his Harley-Davidson V-Rod in 10th position at 6.882 seconds. Viper Motorcycle Company Buell rider Matt Smith topped the quickest Pro Stock Motorcycle field in history with an ET of 6.804 seconds.

On Sunday, Hines defeated Adam Arana on the Buell in round one, and lost to Suzuki rider Steve Johnson in round two. Krawiec advanced in the first round after Vroom/MBT/LAT Racing Oil Buell rider Mike Berry left the starting line early. In round two Krawiec lost to Lucas Oil Buell rider Hector Arana Jr. Arana Jr. defeated Johnson in the final round to win the event.

“Our only goal for this weekend was to qualify and not break anything,” said Krawiec. “We achieved both those goals and got some good data, and for both our V-Rod motorcycles to qualify in the top 10 of a record-fast field is outstanding. These motorcycles show a lot of promise.”

The NHRA awarded its Gainesville “Best Engineered” honor to the Screamin’ Eagle V-Rod raced by Hines.

“It’s a tribute to all of the time and dedication [invested] during the off-season by the team,” said Hines. “I think the new engine responded better than we expected. I had the low 60-foot time in four of my six runs, which has never happened before, so I think that shows we’ve got a handle on the clutching. I think we’ll go home and dedicate these next four weeks to finding more horsepower. I see no reason why we can’t get back to the performance we had in 2012. My goal is to have these two bikes up front in qualifying by Englishtown, if not sooner.”

After one round of Pro Stock Motorcycle competition, Arana Jr. leads the class with 125 points, followed by Johnson with 96, Arana Sr. with 85, and Sovereign-Star Racing Buell rider Scott Pollacheck with 73 points. Hines is in fifth place with 55 points, followed by Viper Motorcycle Company Buell rider John Hall with 54 points and Krawiec in seventh place with 52 points.

The Pro Stock Motorcycles will next race at the 4th annual Dollar General NHRA Four-Wide Nationals fueled by Full Throttle, April 19-21 at zMAX Raceway in Concord, N.C.

Industry Pulse: Precision Billet Expands Customer Base with Western Power Sports, Inc.

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Precision Billet Products , a leading provider of innovative, high-quality motorcycle billet accessories, is excited to announce their newest partnership with Western Power Sports, Inc. Created to increase visibility of Precision Billet, this partnership will expand the line of custom accessories that WPS has to offer, providing dealers with more options.

Based in Boise, Idaho, Western Power Sports (WPS) distributes over 85,000 road and street motorcycle, ATV, snowmobile, and watercraft parts and accessories to thousands of dealers nationwide. Precision Billet knows that partnering with WPS, and its regional warehouse network, is a smart decision. It will be a great opportunity for distributing Precision Billet custom Harley and cruiser accessories to a much wider audience.

WPS is sure that its dealers and customers will enjoy the unique styles and amazing craftsmanship that Precision Billet has to offer. Precision Billet has carefully chosen specific designs for WPS distribution that highlight their exceptional style. Precision Billet is starting by offering the 3D design of the Darkside series, the untamed curves of the Aces Wild products, and the mother-of-pearl inlays of the Grand Prix designs to WPS and will expand as the relationship grows. Precision Billet products will be available through WPS as of March 2013.

"It's great that our products have a new outlet. Now more enthusiasts can enjoy custom design elements for their ride," stated David Shano, Owner of Precision Billet. "We couldn't be happier with this partnership and we know WPS has the ability to reach our customers and deliver." WPS is confident that Precision Billet will fit perfectly with their goal of gaining more market share and offering more custom pieces for motorcycle dealers to enjoy. Together they look forward to serving their customers with the best possible products and hope to expand their partnership in the future.


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I started on this puppy at 8:00 this morning and I'm just wrapping it up at 5:00. There goes Sunday. And you won't believe what's happening next. The interesting aspect about Bikernet, is that you will always find out within a few days. In the meantime join the Cantina, check out the post and find out more about the motorcycle world than you can find anywhere on the planet, or at least on this block.


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Corbin Appreciation Day Schedule

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Corbin announced that they will have all types of entertainment ranging from live music to custom bike shows to filling your stomach on all kinds of food at Corbin's 4th Annual Rider Appreciation Day on Friday and Saturday, July 5&6th,2012. Last year, Corbin had thousands of riders show up to help celebrate our country's birthday and take part in the festivities and expects a much bigger crowd this year since the city has approved the Hollister Rally and the event covers 2 days for the first time. The "Idea Guy" over at Corbin that's in charge of all of the wizards, Mike Corbin, was instrumental in getting the Hollister Rally started again.

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Mikey Rush Takes Late Lead in AMA Pro Flat Track Presented by J&P Cycles Season Opener

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History has shown that the kickoff to the AMA Pro Flat Track Championship presented by J&P Cycles in Daytona Beach, FL is always full of surprises. This year was no exception. During last night’s season opener, Mikey Rush of California won the second national of his career. His first win came at the old Municipal Stadium short track in Daytona in 2007.

 Last year, during the 2012 season opener, two first time winners, Johnny Lewis #10 and Matt Weidman #20, both won their very first AMA Grand National Flat Track events.

 Defending 2012 AMA Pro Grand National Champion Jared Mees jumped out with the holeshot at the start of the final only to surrender the lead to Brad Baker on lap two. Then the red flags came out with a single file restart. Baker continued out front, but Rush was working his way up from a back row start. On lap 18 he made a great pass for the lead and held it to the finish with Baker and Mees finishing second and third, respectively. 

 In the AMA Pro J&P Cycles Pro Singles Class, Kyle Johnson took home the victory in his very first professional race. Johnson started the race with the holeshot only to have a complete restart because of a crash by last year’s series champion Stephen Vanderkuur. Johnson again nailed the holeshot with Michael Poe right behind him. Poe passed for the lead on lap three but surrendered it back to Johnson on lap 11. After that, Johnson rode like a series veteran and came home with the win. Jason Isennock worked his way into second with Poe coming home third.

Next up? Night two tonight of the AMA Pro Flat Track double header at Daytona Beach, Florida. Stay tuned!



Valerie Thompson Prepares for First 2013 Racing Event at the Texas Mile

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Valerie Thompson, owner/driver of Valerie Thompson Racing (VTR), is hoping to set new land speed records during her first appearance at the Texas Mile race March 22-24 at Chase Field Industrial Complex in Beeville Texas. Thompson hopes to become a member of “200 MPH Club of Texas,” with her Martech Services Company sponsored BMW S1000 RR Superbike.

 Popularity of the Texas Mile has grown rapidly since its inaugural event in October 2003, with participants from the US, Canada and Mexico testing themselves on one of the fastest and most challenging 1-mile tracks in the world. This bi-annual Motorsports Festival is welcomes racers in several categories, including motorcycles, high-performance street machines, race cars and land speed racers.

 “I can’t wait to kick off our 2013 racing season at the legendary Texas Mile,” said Thompson. “We have been busy preparing our Superbike with new BMW Motorrad HP4 Race Parts, MS Production supplied carbon fiber race parts and new paint job by Orlando Autobody of Mesa Arizona.  Even out tow vehicle has been improved with new Vision Wheels from our newest sponsor,” added Thompson.

Breakout Detachable Leather Saddlebags From H-D

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Breakout Detachable Leather Saddlebags (P/N 90200816, $829.95) offer 2,100 cubic inches of handy capacity and detach with the pull of an internal handle, leaving behind two inconspicuous docking points. A rigid plastic tub, wrapped in genuine leather, offers long-term durability. Leather straps with magnetic tips hide quick-disconnect closures for packing convenience. Installation requires the separate purchase of an appropriate Docking Hardware Kit.