What’s Happening in Our World | MC M.C.

Wild in the Streets
This past April 15-17, Motorcyclist magazine teamed up with Yellow Devil Gear Exchange, Roland Sands Designs and the Garage Company to promote a motorcycle exhibit at the Long Beach Grand Prix. Held in the lobby of the event's official Hilton hotel, the display remembered when Formula 1 bikes ran as a support class to the F1 cars in 1977. Fifteen bikes took to the 2-mile street circuit that year, all but one of those Yamaha TZ750s; the exception being the Suzuki RG500 of reigning World Champion Barry Sheene (7). Other legends taking part in the 75-mile affair were winner Skip Aksland, plus Gene Romero and Gary Nixon (9).

From OWB to ORD
Aaron Frank laughs as a local explains the "liquorsickle" concept to Ducati MotoGP ace Nicky Hayden at Dainese's D-Store Chicago grand opening, April 10. Hayden arrived straight from testing at Jerez, Spain, where he rode Ducati's 1000cc GP12 prototype for the first time. The 2006 World Champion participated in a Q&A; moderated by Aaron, then autographed everything from helmets to a homemade "Pedrosa sucks!" T-shirt. Earlier that day, 1993 500cc World Champion Kevin Schwantz entertained the audience with a story of his first successful crash-test of Dainese gear after ejecting at 170 mph in Turn 1 of Australia's Eastern Creek Raceway.

Sir Al Sighting
During a recent visit to normally sunny Southern California, Motorcyclist's European Correspondent Alan Cathcart held a book signing for his latest tome, American Dream Bikes. Unfortunately, Sir Al and his wife Stella brought the English weather with them, which dampened the proceedings and kept fair-weather riders away. But those dedicated souls who did attend were regaled by tales from the one man who truly has ridden everything. That's a helmet-shaped cake in the foreground, by the way.

Having a Ball
Ari Henning strikes a pose during the photo shoot for this issue's Streetbike Surgery, wherein he magically transformed a Kawasaki Ninja 250R for a mere $1500. Readers love these affordable projects, and while they are a lot of work, we're determined to do more. What bikes would you like to see featured?

Harley-Davidson held a press intro in Hollywood recently and had the nerve not to invite us—but only because it was for the overseas press. Apparently The Motor Company's PR department felt these "furriners" needed a firsthand look at American rock-and-roll style to help explain the new Blackline. We did get invited to the final night's concert, however, featuring an intimate performance by Rev Theory at the Gibson Guitars Custom Shop in Beverly Hills. Cat's ears are still ringing…

Who's Paying Attention?
The funny man popped by our offices recently to meet with the Motor Trend folks, and couldn't resist telling us about his new custom Ducati Streetfighter, soon to appear on Motorcyclist contributor Mike Seate's TV show, Café Racer. If you haven't seen Alonzo's Showtime special "Who's Paying Attention?" make sure to set your DVR to record it. His bit about AARP's premature solicitation attempts will have everyone over age 45 peeing in their Depends!

Got Wood?
Ari sure does! When the American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association (AHRMA) came to SoCal's Willow Springs Raceway on April 23-24, vintage bikes came out of the woodwork. Ari dusted off his dad's 1968 Honda CB350, dusted the competition and came home with a stack of plaques with which to panel the den.

Head out for a little TGIF photo-reconnaissance mission aboard Triumph's new Tiger 800 XC and what does Tim Carrithers see? A big sign behind a bigger iron gate blocking access to Santa Clara Divide. Fire damage and budget cuts are part of life in California these days. With any luck at all, time will heal both wounds and the gate will soon swing open. Let's hope so: We've got work to do, you know?

Coming Next Month!
Class of 2011
It's that time of year again! Check out the August issue of Motorcyclist for our "Class of 2011" superbike comparison. This time around, Kawasaki's all-new Ninja ZX-10R will challenge our defending champion, the Aprilia RSV4, our 2010 Motorcycle of the Year, the BMW S1000RR, and the rest. "Gentlemen, start your engines..."

Now that’s what a hotel lobby should look like! The Long Beach Hilton got a facelift for the Indycar GP.