Gene Romero - Icon - Up To Speed

If you've seen the film On Any Sunday, you remember the line. "I don't want to hurt anybody, but I just gotta get out there...get third or come and visit me in the hospital, man, I dig carnations." Gene Romero did better than that, leading all 50 laps of the 1970 Sacramento Mile National and earning the AMA number-one plate for his C.R. Axtell-tuned Triumph 750. "Everybody at Sacramento but me knew I'd won the championship," Romero remembered, "until Susie Mann congratulated me the next day."

A week later at the Ascot Park Half-Mile, the title was his. Romero could have eased up, but this Dan Mahony photo from qualifying says otherwise. "That's the same bike that won Sacramento," Romero recalled. "We freshened up the motor, put on the little tracker gas tank with hardened Pirellis, changed the gearing and won it." The guy they called "Burrito" took his third national win that night in a year immortalized by the greatest motorcycle movie of all time.

This photo and countless others are available as posters from Vintage Arte (