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An Ode to Cafe and Retro Motrocycles

Hollywood Stars, Kelly Brook add glamour to Bikes

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By Diesel Power · July 21, 2010 · 0 Comments ·

Kelly Brook, the glamour babe from UK is 'glamourizing' HD doing a-la Marissa Miller, that is posing with the Harley. Although Ms. Miller is a spokeperson for HD, that doesn't mean the 30 years old Ms. Brook cannot match up to her in a hot sizzling desert photoshoot in the Mojave desert for MAXIM magazine.

Souce of photos - Magazine Gallery Blog

Recent Hollywood movies have been also 'glamourizing' the motorcycle quite a bit. The Tom Cruise - Cameron Diaz starrer Action Comedy, Knight and Day had our hereos running on their tips on a Ducati while the to-be-released on July 23rd Action film, Salt, starring Angelina Jolie has her doing a few stunts on a Triumph. She also rode motorcycles in the Lara Croft: Tomb Raider movies. Despite what critics are saying, Knight and Day was actually entertaining.
Source of photos: IMDB
Tagged with: Time Out, celebrities, videos

In The News - Broad Track Racer ENFIELD 500 EFI

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By Diesel Power · June 29, 2010 · 0 Comments ·
Bollywood actor, John Abraham, also famous for his passion for SBKs has increased his brood by adding a new entry which is albeit different to the taste he is known for. Although John's passion (at least as projected by the media) is more towards SBKs (he owns a Busa and a R1), this time he got himself a early 1900 broad track racer, or at least something close. The bike you see here is actually a customized Royal Enfield 5oo EFI, designed by a relatively new custom firm from Jaipur, Rajasthan, known as Rajputana Customs. The bike had the work fabrication of Mr. Vijay Singh
Mr Vijay mentions that the chassis, gas tank, rims and brakes had been hand-made. I beleive he meant part of the chassis since the front retains the doyble barrel frame but although the front forks are completely hand made in retro fashion. Looking at the finer details, you notice Vijay has also removed the standard disc brakes to give the bike a more authentic feel. He himself states that he wanted to keep it subtle, simple and yet make it stand out. And stand out it does as the bike has already make headlines in many newspapers. The total cost of the bike is somewhere between Rs 3-4 lakh ($6500 - $8500 USD) including the bike's cost which actually in India is quite cheap ($3100) compared to the overseas market. So the modifications which look very simple would cost more and that is because to make the bike look that good and simple and still keep it standing out, well... that is a lot of talent. The whole bike took 50 days to make and finish. By profession, Vijay Singh is a 24-year-old communication graduate from Canada. Relatively new to custom designing world, he already has been requested with several orders. Inside the garage, he is just helped by Abdul Rehman. The website, Rajputana Customs is coming soon.
Photo credits Hindustan Times and Mid day.

No CSI here, just better visuals

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By Diesel Power · June 23, 2010 · 0 Comments ·
If you are one of those fans who watch CSI Miami or watched CSI Miami just for a certain hot chick, Ms. Wendy Simms, I am sure you are very disappointed that she is no longer in Season 11. For those out of focus, Wendy Simms, a DNA Technicaian, is a character played by the beautiful Liz Vassey in the teleserial CSI Miami. She was in the serial for season 6 to 10. She was ranked 74 in Stuff magazine's 2002 "102 Sexiest Women In The World". For fans of Ms. Vassey, enjoy the pictorials and for fans of motorcycles, well, just enjoy the pictorials!
Original Source: MAXIM. Photos sourced from Moto Caradisiac.
Tagged with: Time Out, celebrities

Fastest Man on Earth with the Curtiss V8

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By Diesel Power · June 18, 2010 · 0 Comments ·
The name ‘Curtiss’ somewhat vaguely interprets in my mind as something to do with aeroplanes and something of having a tussle or an association with the Wright Brothers for some issues I can’t recall what I might have read years ago. Well, hence forth from now on, at certain age of my life, even if I forget the name of the Wright brothers, I will not forget the name of ‘Curtiss’. Of course I never knew that he was also given the name of “The Fastest Man on Earth”.
So, Glenn Hammond Curtiss was a pioneer in aeronautics and we will get to a brief history about that, but before venturing into aeronautics, Glenn H. Curtiss began his career by working with motorcycles. In fact, it was due to his innovative ways in creating motorcycles, light and powerful due to which his expertise was sought in the field of aeronautics. But the reason this man is featured here is because in the field of aeronautics, he had built a light and powerful V8 engine and later he converted the engine to a motorcycle engine. And we know which age we are talking about if we are taking about the Wright Brothers, right!. Yes, that was the 1900s. Think about it, a V8 in early 19th century. Exactly, Mr. Glenn H. Curtiss built a Boss Hoss in 1906.
The engine was there, so basically Curtiss and his team needed a chassis to holster the massive powerplant. They ultimately built a product that weighed 275 pounds and, was almost 8 feet long. Curtiss took the motorcycle to the Florida Speed Carnival in 1907 and recorded a speed of 136.3 mph (218 kmph, yes, in 1907) which gave him the title of ‘The Fastest Man on Earth’. And mark this, the record stood for any, repeat any land speed record and not just for 2 wheelers. The black and white pictures with the man are from that speed run and that was also the man’s attire. A gentleman wearing a leather cap and a trimmed moustache could do that, well I could have never imagined or believed had I not read about that. It was January 24, 1907 to be precise at the Ormond Beach (now called Daytona Beach) in Florida when the record was set and it was after 11 years another land speed vehicle broke the record and 23 years till another 2 wheeler broke the record.
Before getting on the bike, a little history to know the man. Glenn Hammond Curtiss was born in Hammondsport, New York in 1878 and even in his teens he was quite the boy with his restless spirit and his ability to work with any mechanical item. His genetics for speed was evident from the fact that he was a champion bicycle racer. By the time he was 24, he already had his own motorcycle company by the name of ‘Hercules’. There was a gentleman by the name of Thomas Scott Baldwin who was a famed balloonist and he asked young Curtiss to make a V-Twin engine to fly a very light plane. The engine was ofcourse a success and shortly in 1904, using the same engine, California Arrow became the first successful American dirigible. And thus, Curtiss came into the field of aeronautics and was introduced to a club by the name of Aerial Experiment Association, a club whose another member goes by the name of Alexander Graham Bell.
As I started reading Curtiss biography, I was curious to know why the name of the Wright brothers crossed my mind whenever the name Curtiss went through my mind. And so it was, there was a link. The Wright Brothers had by the time already had a successful stint in ‘controlled’ flight, but was done in secrecy and although people were assuming, there was no media coverage. They wanted to refine the vehicle as far as possible. The Aerial Experiment Association (A.E.A) had their first public stint of flying before the Wright Brothers. On March 12, 1908, Casey Baldwin of A.E.A flew for 20 seconds covering a distance of 318 feet before it crashed a wing and later in May, Curtiss covered or rather flew a distance of 1017 feet in ‘controlled’ flight. What the A.E.A did to the plane that Casey Baldwin flew was add horizontal rudders to the wingtips Later Curtiss made several ‘first’ records including flying a world distance record of 24.7 miles. In fact he was the first man to fly the first officially-recognized, pre-announced and publicly-observed flight in America and also earn the unofficial title of America's foremost aviation pioneer. In 1910, Curtiss flew from Albany to New York that gave him world wide recognization and was also the first to make use of the aeroplane as more than a luxury time pass activity when he introduced it as a possible war machine and a practical passenger carrier. But planes and motorcycles were ot his only passion, in fact as mentioned, anything mechanical and with speed inspired him and he pioneered in the design of seaplanes and flying boats too. Later in his life, he became a land developer and developed Miami so much that he was awarded a honorary doctoral degree for his contributions to the development of the Miami area. He died at the young age of 52 due to complications resulting from an appendix surgery. It would take an entire post just to cover the list of accolades he gathered during his life. Please check the links below to know about the great man’s varied inventions and contributions.
Source of 2nd photo - National Air and Space Musuem
Yes, Curtiss became famous for his contribution to aeronautics, but it was motorcycles that bought him into the spotlight. In 1901, he began motorizing bicycles with his own single cylinder internal combustion engines. In 1903 he became the first official American motorcycle champion. By 1905, he set the world speed records for one, two and three mile events. That handlebar twist grip we call it as throttle and which we really really like to twist and God knows what a certain Rossi would have done without it, well, we need to give credit to young Mr. Curtiss for advancements like this. Curtiss also developed a triple cylinder engine designated the W-3 which was basically a V-twin but with a third cylinder which Curtiss designed again to proclaim himself as the producer of the fastest production motorcycle in the world. Before he made his mark on the fateful day in 1907, young Curtiss have been designing single, V-Twins and in-line fours. For the monstrous V8, the configuration was made at 3.25 x 3.25 inch bore x stroke that displaced 269 cubic inches equivalent to 4000cc. His earlier V-twins had 50 degree angkes but as you can see the V8 has a 90 degree design utilizing cast iron F-type heads. The engine was supposed to have power output figures of 36 – 40 hp @ 1800 rpm (Imagine the torque figures!). Inside the monster, doing duty was a solid billet steel crank and a dry sump handled the internal lubrication. The inlet valves were activated by atmospheric pressure while pushrods actuated the exhaust valves. The engine was fed by twin carbs which were designed by Curtiss himself. Look at the handlebars and you will notice that the throttle cables were hidden inside the handlebars. Custom designing started by Curtiss then, eh? Very interestingly, the electrical system was energized by dry cell batteries. Considering the size of the engine, it was superb engineering to finish the bike within the 275 pounds mark. The bike with that massive engine settled for a 64-inch wheelbase. The bike was shaft driven as a conventional chain-and-belt transmission would not have been able to handle the power of the Curtiss V8, there was no clutch and so just one tall gear. So you just keep twisting the throttle! At the beach, the four mile course was broken into 3 parts, the first 2 miles were building up the speed, the next mile was recording the timings and the last mile for slowing down. Of course, what did you expect, there were no brakes, so one mile just to slow down and stop.


I wonder what it sounded like! And yes, it took two well built guys with Curtiss sitting on the bike to start off the machine. The seat was mounted behind the engine so as not to burn the rider and so extra long handlebars were used so the while steering, the hands wouldn’t be near the hot engine. Thinking about the stance with these dimensions, you can vouch that it must have been an arduous task riding the monster. And think about what the body went through since in the name of suspension, all it had were springs located beneath the seat just like a regular bicycle. Anyway, during the run, he also established a record of covering 1 mile in 26 2/5 seconds. Actually it was recorded by several persons on the beach that the bike covered the marked mile within that specified time and it was calculated that to cover that distance at the said time, the bike must have run at a speed of 136.3 mph. And after all this, the record was considered ‘unofficial’. Yes! It still is an unofficial record. Why? Actually, the bike cracked the timings as mentioned and it was recorded but ‘officials’ didn’t record it. It was a test run recorded by many non-officials. So there was no doubts that the bike had actually clocked 136.3 mph but as I said, ‘officials’ didn’t record it. So why didn’t Curtiss drive it for the second time? Well, he couldn’t, the bike started falling apart as it was slowing down to 90 mph. And he was not the man who would again build the same thing. That was not just exciting enough. But the following month in February, a journal by the name of Scientific American did mention the whole incident and also mentioned why the record was considered ‘unofficial’.
And so where is the original real deal, the big poppa? Well, as it is, with lots of parts missing, it is the main attraction at the Smithsonian Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center located adjacent to the Dulles International Airport in Chantilly, VA. A replica of the original ‘bolt for bolt’ was built by Mercury Aircraft Company and is on display at the Curtiss Museum. The Curtiss Museum is located at Hammondsport, New York and incidentally, the H in Mr. G. H. Curtiss standing for Hammond is a short form of Hammondsport. The museum features all the contributions that Mr. Glenn Hammond Curtiss made to our wonderful world, from bicycles to motorcycles to aircrafts and all. For a boy raised in near poverty and after having lost his parents at a young age and also dropping out of school at 8th standard to getting a doctoral degree and a museum created to honour the name, this is surely a Hollywood blockbuster movie storyline.
Source of info and photos Glenn Curtiss Museum, Wikipedia, Motorcycle dot com, Smithsonian Center.
Tagged with: classics, celebrities

Visual Gratification - MM romances the HD with a burnout

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By Diesel Power · May 12, 2010 · 0 Comments ·




Source: h-d.com
Below: Longer version of the above video with backstage shooting

Mailbag, Guest Writer, Etcetra

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By Diesel Power · December 28, 2009 · 0 Comments ·
There have been a few mails that I would like to 'show-off' which you may deduct it as an act of 'self gratification'.

One such mail came from Jay Leno, yes you read it right, Jay Leno. I had made a post on the wonderful collection of classic and modern motorcycles that Mr. Leno has and apparently I had given out some incorrect facts which his longtime associate Ms. Helga further corresponded detailing

"Jay Leno asked to let you know that he has owned most of his motorcycles for a very long time, in fact a lot of them for decades. Your article might create the impression that Jay is purchasing these bikes recently and adding a lot more frequently than what is reality.
Thank you for your consideration".

I haven't rectified the same and yes, I need to correct that pronto. For obvious reasons, it would not be proper to post his mail ID or phone number.
Then there was another surprise mail and this was none other than Mr. Clay Rathburn, owner of Atom Bomb Custom Motorcycles and in the subject line was 'Thank You' and I knew it must have been for the post I made on Atom Bomb Motorcycles.
Mr. Rathburn wrote


I just came across your blog and the very kind words you had to say about my motorcycles, so I thought I would drop you a quick word to say thank you. I'm glad that you dig what we're doing, it's very rewarding to know that people are enjoying Atom Bomb's Motorcycles.
Just so you know, I actually work by myself most of the time, Chris Mizak only does the paint work (and lends moral support!). He has a regular job and does Atom Bomb paint at nights and weekends. That's why you will only see two or three bikes a year from us!
Thanks again, and very kind regards,
Clay Rathburn
Atom Bomb Custom Motorcycles
5039 Bradshaw Rd. Salem VA 24153
http://www.atombombcustom.com/
540.580.2231

Of course I replied to the mail, what do you think?
And then there was a mail from a gentleman Mr. Tommy Norton from Belfast who had owned 3 DUCATI Indianas and currently owns a Indiana and also has 2 frames which he is thinking or rather already set his mind on to customize into a bobber and a trike. One of the images he sent has Dave Hailwood sitting on it and as I read the mail, although I read Dave, my mind was reading Mike so when I saw the photo, I knew that it was Dave and not Mike Hailwood. Not too sure who Dave Hailwood is and I am really sorry for my ignorance, I have mailed him Mr. Norton back today wanting to know about Mr. Dave H. In the mail he wrote,



Hello Diesel,
I was looking through the web trying to get the right colours to paint my Indiana, when I came across a photo of 2 of the black Indiana bikes on your web-page. I did have 3 Indiana. As you can see in 1 of the photos I have sent, Dave Hailwood is sitting on 1 of those Indiana after it had been repainted red. I told Dave Hailwood to tell Mr. Ducati there should never have been any black Indiana. Yes there were only 2318 built in total, (over the 3 year run) 800 of 350cc, 1014 of 650cc, + 504 of 750cc. I still have 1bike and 2 frames left so I am changing my Indiana into a red bobber type for the road and building an Indiana trike later when I get the funds. I like the old Indian bikes used on the “Wall of Death” stunt riding, so red + cream seem to be a good colour option for me. Enjoyed your site. I hope to get out on the Indy tomorrow for a spin if it doesn’t snow.
Take care, Tommy

One more mail which I am proud to mention is from BIKE EXIF.
Hi,
Hope all's well in the Visual Gratification world. Loved the Roland Sands piece, I'm a big fan of his stuff.
I wanted to ask you a question: I'm going to be on holiday soon, and I'll only have intermittent internet access and spare time during that period.
Rather than put Bike EXIF on hold, I wondered if you would be interested in writing - say - 5 posts on sporting/retro/racebikes before Christmas? Given that we both have a very similar taste in bikes and your writing style is close to mine.
Cheers,
Chris

Of course, I was more than happy to oblige. Chris has done a great job in posting information on rare bikes each and everyday for the last year and a half or more and BIKE EXIF has also become a favorite among many bikers for its daily mail.
I have sent 5 posts to Chris and two of them have appeared in BIKE EXIF, one on SUNBEAM S7 and one on Lil'Dog. It was interesting to post a small write up on rare and customized bikes, but what I found rather difficult in 5 days itself is finding such rare bikes everyday which should be interesting enough to maintain the high standard set by Chris and he has been doing it for quite some time now. Hats off to you.
P.S - The mentioned posts have appeared on the 24th and 27th of December and the next posts will be appearing on 30th December, 2nd and 5th January.
Tagged with: Mailbag, Others, celebrities

Queen of Speed - Leslie Porterfield

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By Diesel Power · November 22, 2009 · 0 Comments ·
Tell me one red blooded male with hormones who doesn’t like bike and babes or babes on bikes. The girls are everywhere, from race tracks to being umbrella babes, from being calendar girls to Auto Expos to being brand ambassadors for big companies, they are everywhere and we love it. They certainly bring on the oomph factor. I mean, can you guess suited clean shaven boys or men standing by Rossi with an umbrella or smiling to you sitting on a prototype in EICMA! Not that we don’t associate these beautiful ladies with respect, but somehow they are more associated with being eye candy and bringing a smile to your face. The only place where they are less seen is atop these machines while running. But we still love them whether they ride or not. Just then there comes a distinguished lady with killer looks who can ride a motorcycle better than most men. And not only does she ride better, she has world records (records, not record) against her name, she owns a used motorcycle shop and she races on the Salts. This is where eye candy or smiles turns into admiration and respect and this is what Leslie Porterfield commands.
For starters, she is the 2008 AMA Racing Female Rider of the Year, she holds three land-speed records and is a member of the Bonneville 200 mph club. She is also the owner of High Five Cycles, a successful, used motorcycle dealership in downtown Dallas. And she has been riding since she was 16 and now she is only 32 years of age. How about that for a resume? So what does the beautiful lady prefer among 2 wheelers? Ms. Leslie rides a modified Suzuki Hayabusa, which she recently rode at the BUB Motorcycle Speed Trials clocking at 234.197mph, that’s 374.715kmph. No, I am not kidding; check the BUB website and the official timings. So what does that make her? Ms Porterfield is now officially the fastest female motorcyclist in the US. Of course she is also the first woman to enter the Bonneville 200mph Club on a conventional motorcycle (conventional motorcycle means motorcycles which can be road driven, not those streamliners you see at these trials).
A look at her a ccomplishments and records-
Accomplishments
* Top Time on a sit on Motorcycle Award from the 2009 BUB Speed Trials at 240mph.
* First Woman on a conventional motorcycle in the Bonneville 200mph Club.
* 2008 AMA Female Rider of the Year.
* Women's Spirit Award 2008 BUB Speed Trials
Records set
* SCTA 1350cc M-BF 209.046
* AMA and FIM 2000cc MPS-BF 232.522mph
* AMA and FIM 1000cc P-P 192.930
* AMA 1350cc APS-BF 234mph
With that kind of a resume, Leslie doesn’t have a problem finding sponsors and if you look at her website, you will notice both sides of the pages flooded with sponsor which include some world renowned brands like Arai, Airtech, Falicon, WPS, Fieldsheer, Heads Up Performance, Apex Speed Technology, Worldwide Bearings, PMR Components, PMP Sprockets, and Spider Grips.
Her Busa is a 2002 model, modified by Scott Horner of Head's Up Performance and Rhys Griffiths of Apex Speed Technologies. The bike is turbocharged with Airtech bodywork and a ECU from Apex. She also has a Honda CBR1000RR (the one pictured in red) which she ran in 2008 in the production class which has only a few modifications since it runs in the ‘production’ class, so there are limitations. The bike was re-geared and a Bazzaz tuner was added and guess what! She clocked 192mph on the bike, which is also a world record. The charming girl also gets her hands dirty with the tools and oil and she is quite a capable mechanic and for that she thanks Scott of Head’s Up Performance. Rhys of Apex Speed Tech gives her lessons on the electrical and electronics front. She also helps the staff in her Dallas used motorcycle store, High Five Cycles, and says, “It's not uncommon to find me in my service department doing oil changes, cleaning carburettors, swapping chains and sprockets, or dismantling something we're sending to the painter. I've done a lot of car repairs, too - everything from changing starters to rebuilding an automatic transmission, to swapping rear ends." The girl knows the machines in and out.
It didn’t start all very well for Leslie. In 2007, she had a crash speeding at over 100mph which resulted in seven broken ribs, a punctured lung and a concussion. Prior to the 200+ mph run on the Busa, she had touched 196mph which had her convinced that she could do a 200. But 2007, the year of her debut didn’t go well. But for how long can you keep talent done. So, after 1 year, she did what no woman had done before. Media pressure of course built up being the first lady in the Bonneville 200 MPH Club and again she showed that she is no flash in the pan with 2 other records of which one was with the Honda. The other record, well she bettered her 209mph on the Busa with a timing of 232 mph run on the turbo Busa. Along with the 2008 AMA Female Rider of the Year, she also won the Women’s Spirit Award at the BUB awards banquet.
So how many bikes do the lady own. Nine in all. Beside those two, she has a Ducati 998 which she uses for transportation when she is at home. She had a few runs in drag strips and she loves motocross, but says she is terrible at it. She does own a CRF 450 motard on which she likes to have fun in the city. She did receive tickets (not the good ones, the ones you get when you over speed), but that has been in the past. And of course she loves MotoGP and admires all the riders. But her talent is not only limited to 2 wheels. She holds an SCCA car road racing license and have pre-ridden the Baja 1000 and looks forward to participating in the race. – would love to participate in the race sometime soon.
Faster and Faster had an Email interview with her and she came up as a really regular girl with no airs whatsoever. Here is the direct link to the interview post.
From the interview… She has a BMW Z4 M coupe which she is very fond of besides sinking her teeth at Pepperoni Pizza. The Audrey Hepburn fan, contrary to what her image could stand for (read tom boyish) is actually very girlie and loves romantic movies. But of course being who she is, she had to love ‘On Any Sunday’, ‘World’s Fastest Indian’ and the likes. In the interview, about her famous run in 2008, she mentions “I had to put those thoughts out of my head this year. After my first pass down the salt, I was back into the groove and ready to break some records. In all competitive sports, there are risks, and I try to minimize mine as best I can. I made a pass at 231mph to qualify for the record, and on my return run I was at around 240mph when I threw a rod through the cases. I was lucky and thankful that nothing locked up. I still managed to average 234mph on that run, which put my new world record at 232mph. It also earned me the title of the fastest woman in the world on a motorcycle. I was thrilled, even though I had a gaping hole in my motor!”
The 2008 speed runs were initially dampened by constant rain which made the run’s traction to a minimum and records were doubtful due to this. But conditions got better as the week came to a close. Worth mentioning is that on the meet's final day, when Leslie made the record, it was soon broken with just minutes to spare before the Speed Trials ended. Nonetheless, Leslie’s record run netted her the BUB Enterprises-sponsored Top Time Award for "sit-on" motorcycles (as opposed to fully enclosed "sit-in" streamliners), the first time this prestigious prize was won by a woman.
This elegant beautiful lady can pass up as a model any time. With deep and due respect to all ladies, she could easily have been a umbrella or pit girl or whatever she wanted in the glamour department, but she didn’t want to be one-of-the-ladies, she is a star, the main attraction and what a way to get noticed!
You can visit the Leslie Porterfield website which I guess she manages on her own and you can also have a look at the High Five Cycles store. For her records, visit the BUB website. Photo credits as per mentioned in the photos.
Tagged with: Others, celebrities

Queen of Speed - Leslie Porterfield

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By Diesel Power · November 22, 2009 · 0 Comments ·
Tell me one red blooded male with hormones who doesn’t like bike and babes or babes on bikes. The girls are everywhere, from race tracks to being umbrella babes, from being calendar girls to Auto Expos to being brand ambassadors for big companies, they are everywhere and we love it. They certainly bring on the oomph factor. I mean, can you guess suited clean shaven boys or men standing by Rossi with an umbrella or smiling to you sitting on a prototype in EICMA! Not that we don’t associate these beautiful ladies with respect, but somehow they are more associated with being eye candy and bringing a smile to your face. The only place where they are less seen is atop these machines while running. But we still love them whether they ride or not. Just then there comes a distinguished lady with killer looks who can ride a motorcycle better than most men. And not only does she ride better, she has world records (records, not record) against her name, she owns a used motorcycle shop and she races on the Salts. This is where eye candy or smiles turns into admiration and respect and this is what Leslie Porterfield commands.
For starters, she is the 2008 AMA Racing Female Rider of the Year, she holds three land-speed records and is a member of the Bonneville 200 mph club. She is also the owner of High Five Cycles, a successful, used motorcycle dealership in downtown Dallas. And she has been riding since she was 16 and now she is only 32 years of age. How about that for a resume? So what does the beautiful lady prefer among 2 wheelers? Ms. Leslie rides a modified Suzuki Hayabusa, which she recently rode at the BUB Motorcycle Speed Trials clocking at 234.197mph, that’s 374.715kmph. No, I am not kidding; check the BUB website and the official timings. So what does that make her? Ms Porterfield is now officially the fastest female motorcyclist in the US. Of course she is also the first woman to enter the Bonneville 200mph Club on a conventional motorcycle (conventional motorcycle means motorcycles which can be road driven, not those streamliners you see at these trials).
A look at her a ccomplishments and records-
Accomplishments
* Top Time on a sit on Motorcycle Award from the 2009 BUB Speed Trials at 240mph.
* First Woman on a conventional motorcycle in the Bonneville 200mph Club.
* 2008 AMA Female Rider of the Year.
* Women's Spirit Award 2008 BUB Speed Trials
Records set
* SCTA 1350cc M-BF 209.046
* AMA and FIM 2000cc MPS-BF 232.522mph
* AMA and FIM 1000cc P-P 192.930
* AMA 1350cc APS-BF 234mph
With that kind of a resume, Leslie doesn’t have a problem finding sponsors and if you look at her website, you will notice both sides of the pages flooded with sponsor which include some world renowned brands like Arai, Airtech, Falicon, WPS, Fieldsheer, Heads Up Performance, Apex Speed Technology, Worldwide Bearings, PMR Components, PMP Sprockets, and Spider Grips.
Her Busa is a 2002 model, modified by Scott Horner of Head's Up Performance and Rhys Griffiths of Apex Speed Technologies. The bike is turbocharged with Airtech bodywork and a ECU from Apex. She also has a Honda CBR1000RR (the one pictured in red) which she ran in 2008 in the production class which has only a few modifications since it runs in the ‘production’ class, so there are limitations. The bike was re-geared and a Bazzaz tuner was added and guess what! She clocked 192mph on the bike, which is also a world record. The charming girl also gets her hands dirty with the tools and oil and she is quite a capable mechanic and for that she thanks Scott of Head’s Up Performance. Rhys of Apex Speed Tech gives her lessons on the electrical and electronics front. She also helps the staff in her Dallas used motorcycle store, High Five Cycles, and says, “It's not uncommon to find me in my service department doing oil changes, cleaning carburettors, swapping chains and sprockets, or dismantling something we're sending to the painter. I've done a lot of car repairs, too - everything from changing starters to rebuilding an automatic transmission, to swapping rear ends." The girl knows the machines in and out.
It didn’t start all very well for Leslie. In 2007, she had a crash speeding at over 100mph which resulted in seven broken ribs, a punctured lung and a concussion. Prior to the 200+ mph run on the Busa, she had touched 196mph which had her convinced that she could do a 200. But 2007, the year of her debut didn’t go well. But for how long can you keep talent done. So, after 1 year, she did what no woman had done before. Media pressure of course built up being the first lady in the Bonneville 200 MPH Club and again she showed that she is no flash in the pan with 2 other records of which one was with the Honda. The other record, well she bettered her 209mph on the Busa with a timing of 232 mph run on the turbo Busa. Along with the 2008 AMA Female Rider of the Year, she also won the Women’s Spirit Award at the BUB awards banquet.
So how many bikes do the lady own. Nine in all. Beside those two, she has a Ducati 998 which she uses for transportation when she is at home. She had a few runs in drag strips and she loves motocross, but says she is terrible at it. She does own a CRF 450 motard on which she likes to have fun in the city. She did receive tickets (not the good ones, the ones you get when you over speed), but that has been in the past. And of course she loves MotoGP and admires all the riders. But her talent is not only limited to 2 wheels. She holds an SCCA car road racing license and have pre-ridden the Baja 1000 and looks forward to participating in the race. – would love to participate in the race sometime soon.
Faster and Faster had an Email interview with her and she came up as a really regular girl with no airs whatsoever. Here is the direct link to the interview post.
From the interview… She has a BMW Z4 M coupe which she is very fond of besides sinking her teeth at Pepperoni Pizza. The Audrey Hepburn fan, contrary to what her image could stand for (read tom boyish) is actually very girlie and loves romantic movies. But of course being who she is, she had to love ‘On Any Sunday’, ‘World’s Fastest Indian’ and the likes. In the interview, about her famous run in 2008, she mentions “I had to put those thoughts out of my head this year. After my first pass down the salt, I was back into the groove and ready to break some records. In all competitive sports, there are risks, and I try to minimize mine as best I can. I made a pass at 231mph to qualify for the record, and on my return run I was at around 240mph when I threw a rod through the cases. I was lucky and thankful that nothing locked up. I still managed to average 234mph on that run, which put my new world record at 232mph. It also earned me the title of the fastest woman in the world on a motorcycle. I was thrilled, even though I had a gaping hole in my motor!”
The 2008 speed runs were initially dampened by constant rain which made the run’s traction to a minimum and records were doubtful due to this. But conditions got better as the week came to a close. Worth mentioning is that on the meet's final day, when Leslie made the record, it was soon broken with just minutes to spare before the Speed Trials ended. Nonetheless, Leslie’s record run netted her the BUB Enterprises-sponsored Top Time Award for "sit-on" motorcycles (as opposed to fully enclosed "sit-in" streamliners), the first time this prestigious prize was won by a woman.
This elegant beautiful lady can pass up as a model any time. With deep and due respect to all ladies, she could easily have been a umbrella or pit girl or whatever she wanted in the glamour department, but she didn’t want to be one-of-the-ladies, she is a star, the main attraction and what a way to get noticed!
You can visit the Leslie Porterfield website which I guess she manages on her own and you can also have a look at the High Five Cycles store. For her records, visit the BUB website. Photo credits as per mentioned in the photos.
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Time Out - The Amazing Fast Freddie.

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By Diesel Power · September 8, 2009 · 0 Comments ·



The number 19... the man Freddie Spencer... no matter how much you read or watch this great man, it is never enough. Just let me not write anymore and watch the videos. You will LOVE it!

Tagged with: Time Out, celebrities, videos

Time Out - The Amazing Fast Freddie.

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By Diesel Power · September 8, 2009 · 0 Comments ·



The number 19... the man Freddie Spencer... no matter how much you read or watch this great man, it is never enough. Just let me not write anymore and watch the videos. You will LOVE it!

Tagged with: Time Out, celebrities, videos

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