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TRACKS: 'Harleys on the half-mile' ride to Irwindale will raise money for MDA

21 September 2000

Posted By Terry Callahan
Motorsports Editor, The Auto Channel
Irwindale, Calif. - - "We expect to have as many as 500 motorcyclists to join in all the fun this year," said Traci Berman of Laidlaw's Harley-Davidson in Rosemead. "Last year was our first ever charity ride to a racetrack We were blown away when almost 250 riders registered for the inaugural event." The noon barbecue, exhilarating motorcycle ride, pre-race social activities at Irwindale Speedway, and an evening watching NASCAR stock cars slug it out on the track, are expected to raise some $20,000 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association Kids Camp fund.

"Last year all the riders really enjoyed visiting Irwindale Speedway and becoming a featured part of the show for all the fans." Berman was relating to the fact that the event name ("Harleys on the Half-Mile") is taken very seriously by the organizers. "Every rider who participates will be allowed to take a paced lap on the Irwindale oval and then they'll all park on the main straight right in front of the crowd for a 'family portrait'. It's really an awesome sight, all those beautiful shiny bikes glittering and gleaming under the bright stadium lights."

Though sponsored by Laidlaw's Harley-Davidson (the oldest authorized H-D dealer in the Los Angeles area), ALL motorcycles makes are welcome to participate in this eat, ride, make merry, and have a relaxed day and evening of celebrating two-wheelers and the people who ride them at a great NASCAR race.

"We'll start at Laidlaw's (8351 Garvey Avenue) with an 11:00 a.m. registration, a live band, and lunch at the shop, make 60-mile scenic motorcycle run in the early afternoon, and get out to the track by 3:00 p.m.," Berman explained. At the Speedway we'll have another live band, food and refreshments for all of our participants, the massed ride around the track, the Victor McLaglen Motorcycle Corps., and cap off the day with a great night of fun watching the stock car races."

On Saturday afternoon, the track's North parking lot becomes a free 500-bike motorcycle show for the night as machines of all makes, models, colors, and degrees of creative customization check in and form line after line of glorious rolling metal sculpture. One need not be a "biker" to fully admire the fine two (and sometimes three)-wheeled machinery that will be present and on display at Irwindale on September 30.

Included in the evening's activities will be a "Miss Harley Contest", a silent auction, classic car exhibit, kids' activity area, and raffles. And, one lucky person is going to win two tickets to anywhere that American Airlines flies in the continental United States. "Everyone, motorcyclist or not, is invited to join in the fun at the track," Traci added.

Text Provided By Doug Stokes

Editors Note: To view hundreds of hot racing photos and art, visit The Racing Photo Museum and the Visions of Speed Art Gallery.