2020 AMA Hillclimb Grand Championship Takes Place In Wisconsin

Bay City’s Valley Springs Motorcycle Club to host amateur national championship event in August.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The nation’s best amateur hillclimb competitors will duke it out for AMA National No. 1 plates at Valley Springs Motorcycle Club this summer.

The club hosts the 2020 edition of the AMA Hillclimb Grand Championship at its Bay City, Wis., grounds Aug. 7-9. The club’s 500-foot hill also was the site of AMA Hillclimb Grand Championships in 2012 and 2014.

“The Valley Springs Motorcycle Club has a reputation for putting on stellar hillclimb events, and its facility has proven to be a great host for an amateur national,” AMA Track Racing Manager Ken Saillant said. “We’re looking forward to another year of great battles between the best up-and-coming hillclimb racers in the United States.”

In addition to competing for AMA No. 1 plates, racers will vie for awards recognizing the AMA Hillclimb Racer of the Year, AMA Vet/Senior Hillclimb Racer of the Year and AMA Youth Hillclimb Racer of the Year. The King of the Hill award will go to the fastest competitor in a run-off. Riders with the 10 fastest times during the weekend will compete for King of the Hill in a one-run class at the end of the program on Sunday.

As with most AMA amateur national championships, and in recognition of the range of participants in amateur competition, the event includes multiple classes to provide ample opportunities for amateur racers to compete. Classes are available based on rider age, engine displacement and motorcycle configuration.

For more information about the event and facility, visit the Valley Springs Motorcycle Club website at www.valleyspringshillclimb.com.

About the American Motorcyclist Association
Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world’s largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders’ interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com.

Not a member? Join the AMA today: www.americanmotorcyclist.com



Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Zach Osborne was injured during a practice crash in Florida this week following Round 8 of the 2020 AMA Supercross World Championship Series. Osborne suffered a broken rib, two bruised lungs and a sprained wrist. His return to racing is yet to be determined as he assesses the proper recovery time for his injuries.
“I’m really gutted with the timing of this incident but very grateful that my injuries were minor considering the hit that I took,” Osborne said. “It’s been a very tough start to the season for me and my team has been so awesome in picking me back up as they always do. This is just a bump in the road and I will be back as soon as I’m back to 100% and can reach my full potential again.”

Round 9 of the 2020 AMA Supercross World Championship Series will take place this Saturday, February 29 in Atlanta, Georgia where Osborne’s Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing teammates will line up inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Appaloosa v2.0 to be unleashed at 2020 Baikal Mile Ice Speed Festival

Highly modified Scout Bobber to make its comeback on the deepest lake on Earth

BELGIUM (February 18, 2020) – Indian Motorcycle and Workhorse Speed Shop have announced the comeback of Appaloosa at the 2020 Baikal Mile, an extreme test of rider and machine on the ice surface of Lake Baikal, Siberia. Appaloosa v2.0 will make its 2020 racing debut in Russia, revealing a radical new look, from February 25 to March 1.

The Baikal Mile first took place in March last year and is now set to become an annual fixture on the motorsport calendar. Run on the ice off the eastern shore of Lake Baikal, the festival is one of the most unique international motorsport and racing culture events due to the extreme conditions of Siberia. With specially prepared 1/8-mile and 1-mile ice tracks, teams will be challenging themselves to set speed records on a variety of specially prepared vehicles alongside stunt riding, drifting, drag racing, flat track and freestyle motocross.

Brice Hennebert, creator of Appaloosa, is looking forward to the challenge, “The feeling is crazy, it’s a bit like going racing on the moon. There’s absolutely no reference point, we go to a desert of ice in Siberia where it can be -40°C at night -20°C during the day. I’m super excited and a bit lost at the same time as we have no idea what to expect. With just a few days before the flight, I’m focussing on the practical aspects, but I know this journey will be one of the most insane experiences of my life.”

The Scout Bobber, originally transformed by Brice Hennebert for the 2019 Sultans of Sprint series, has been modified for the challenges of racing on ice and the extreme Siberian conditions with continued support from top-level partners Akrapovič, Beringer Brakes, Dunlop Europe, Evok3 Performance, Motorex, Öhlins and tuning advice from Flybike.

To grab the ice and propel Appaloosa down the strip, the SportSmart Mk3 tyres supplied by Dunlop Europe, have been hand-fitted with hundreds of studs, a task which took Brice’s mechanic, Dorsan, four days of work. To control the cooling of the engine from the extreme temperatures, the “mouth” of the fairing has been closed off with a new carbon fibre nose cap and smaller cooling intakes have been added to the side fairings.

Upgrading the NOS system was a priority for better reliability and power with the original system replaced with a Nitrous Express setup. Öhlins Racing has added a steering damper to the full suspension suite supplied in 2019 to keep Appaloosa stable at the higher speeds targeted. Finally, to protect the pilot and to keep a clear view ahead, areas around the wheels have been closed off inside the fairing to control the ice thrown up by the studded tyres.

With such a departure from its original purpose of tarmac sprints, it was fitting to give Appaloosa v2.0 a full makeover in the form of a new paint scheme designed by Benny Maxwell from Axesent, Japan (IG: @axesent) and expertly applied by Matthias from Moto Peinture (IG: @motopeinture).

For such an extreme challenge, Brice has chosen his teammates carefully. “I’m lucky enough to share this incredible adventure with two of my best friends. Sébastien Lorentz and Dorsan “DJ Peeta Selecta,” he says. “Seb, from Lucky Cat Garage and organiser of the Sultans of Sprint championship, will be piloting Appaloosa. Dorsan, the DJ for Sultans of Sprint, will be helping me with the technical aspects as he will all season. Dorsan will also be keeping the ice party going as DJ for the Baikal Mile Speed Festival.”

Sébastien Lorentz commented, “This will be an extraordinary adventure for us all, what can I say? I feel excited to race on ice for the first time, honoured to ride the IndianxWorkhorse Appaloosa and I can’t wait to see what we can achieve with that beast in such crazy riding conditions. I think we are well prepared, and we’ll all give our best to achieve a great result.” The completed build and new look will be revealed shortly after the team arrives at Lake Baikal in late February.

The epic trip to Siberia and the action from Lake Baikal can be followed across Indian Motorcycle social channels with the hashtag #IndianxWorkhorse.

Workhorse is the story of a passion. Brice Hennebert grew up surrounded by his father’s motorcycles and was raised by a creative mother. Learning mechanics at an early age, Brice later trained as a graphic designer before opening a custom motorcycle workshop in 2012 with a like-minded bike fanatic. In 2016, Brice returned to the workshop of his childhood in Nodebais, Belgium to launch Workhorse Speed Shop. Workhorse provides a full range of services from accessory fitment through to complete custom builds. To learn more, please visit www.workhorsespeedshop.com

Akrapovič is a market-leading manufacturer of premium exhaust systems for motorcycles and performance cars. It is a pioneer in the innovative use of super-alloys and at the forefront of carbon components. Akrapovič exhaust systems are renowned for increasing performance, unmistakable sound, innovative design, lightweight construction, quality workmanship, and durability. Founded in Slovenia twenty-eight years ago by former motorcycle racer Igor Akrapovič, the brand has grown to international prominence through its successful support of racing teams that lead their class in many forms of premier motorsport. To learn more, please visit www.akrapovic.com

BERINGER is a French human scale company which, for more than 30 years, develops and produces motorbikes brakes in a spirit of quality and performance. Our products range covers all models of motorcycles, from all brands from 1970 to our days. To learn more please visit www.beringer-brakes.com

Dunlop Europe is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of tyres with an impressive track record of motorsport successes. Dunlop Europe is a technical partner for two teams motorcycle Endurance World Championship Racing, the official tyre supplier to the FIM Moto2 and Moto3 World Championship and the most successful tyre brand in the history of the Isle of Man TT. Off-road, Dunlop is the choice of MXGP race winners and champions. On four wheels, Dunlop is the most successful tyre manufacturer in the history of the Le Mans 24h race. www.dunlopmotorcycletires.com

EVOK3 is your one stop partner for all your professional racing products. Being the Master Distributor for premium brands including Garrett turbos, AEM Electronics, G-Sport cats, Radium Engineering, Injector Dynamics, Vibrant Performance, Turbosmart and many more. Formed and run by engineers to help formulate the perfect match of products, to fulfil the requirements of racing teams and enthusiasts for the finest race bikes or cars. To learn more please visit www.evok3performance.com

ABOUT MOTOREX – Oil Of Switzerland
Manufactured to the highest standards in Langenthal, Switzerland, MOTOREX products are well-known around the world for their superior quality and performance. Founded by pioneer Arnold Bucher in 1917, the BUCHER-MOTOREX Group is an independent family-owned business that pride themselves on high-quality products and world-class customer care. To learn more, please visit www.motorex.com

Öhlins Racing has been an integrated part of the motorsport industry as well as the motorcycle and automotive industry for 40 years. Our focus has always been on high quality products, service and support, all the way from the MotoGP circuits to the local national racing events in over 50 distributing countries. Our philosophy has always been to supply the aftermarket, OEM partners and teams with high-end suspension technology and we are all dedicated to exceed our customer’s expectations throughout the world. To learn more, please visit www.ohlins.com

Indian Motorcycle is America’s first motorcycle company. Founded in 1901, Indian Motorcycle has won the hearts of motorcyclists around the world and earned distinction as one of America’s most legendary and iconic brands through unrivaled racing dominance, engineering prowess and countless innovations and industry firsts. Today that heritage and passion is reignited under new brand stewardship. To learn more, please visit www.indianmotorcycle.eu.


If you haven’t already heard, Royal Enfield North America teamed up with the BUILD Moto program! This year, 13 High Schools across Wisconsin are participating in the extra curricular activity of motorcycle mechanics. Over the next few months, 12 of the teams will be customizing a Royal Enfield Classic 500 to be raced in a select Flat Track event. Click the button below to learn more about the BUILD Moto program, or check out some recent articles below:
– Motorcycle Powersports News
– TMJ4
Learn more about the program


Husqvarna Media Center


Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s RJ Hampshire continues to make his presence known in the 250SX East Championship fight after claiming a season-best runner-up finish at Saturday’s Atlanta Supercross for Round 9 of the 2020 AMA Supercross World Championship Series at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

250SX East
Hampshire kicked off the day on a high note by securing a third-place qualifying position. In 250SX East Heat 2, he shot off the line to capture the holeshot and early lead. He battled inside the top three for the rest of the race to secure a third-place finish in the heat. In the Main, Hampshire once again grabbed the holeshot as he led the first eight laps of the race. From there, he engaged in battle with reigning 250SX Champion, Chase Sexton, where he ultimately finished only 2.78 seconds back for second-place.

“Each week we’re going to continue to get better,” 
Hampshire said. “Getting those holeshots felt good and we had a good flow out there. I want to win but I also want to be in this thing [championship] a few weeks from now, so we’re going to continue to fight week in and week out.”

His teammate, Jalek Swoll, got off to a solid fourth-place start in 250SX Heat 2. He made a mistake and got shuffled back to 10th early on but he fought his way back up to secure the final transfer position. In the Main Event, Swoll got off to an eighth-place start on the opening lap and he battled inside the top-10 early on. He settled into ninth and rode a solid pace to ultimately finish ninth for the night.

“I got a good start from the outside but I got hung up in the second corner and came out sixth,” 
Swoll said.“Two ninth-place finishes in a row isn’t too bad but I’m just missing a little bit of intensity in the beginning of the race. I feel like I can be a few spots higher but I need to get better starts.”

It was a tough ending to the night for 450SX teammates Dean Wilson and Jason Anderson, who had a great night of racing, despite some bad luck in the Main Event. For Wilson, the day started off well a fifth-place qualifying position. He grabbed a top-five start in 450SX Heat 2 and he diced back-and-forth for fifth early on. On the final lap, Wilson made a big charge to overtake fifth and he secured a solid transfer into the Main Event. In the Main, he got off to a great start in fourth and quickly settled into fifth, where he began an early battle with his teammate Anderson. While racing Anderson for the sixth spot, Wilson got tangled in a three-rider pileup and he dropped back to 10th. He did his best to make a charge in the final laps, where he ultimately secured 10th.

“I’m a little bit disappointed with my night because I feel like I was in a really good position to get a top-five or even a podium,” 
Wilson said. “Unfortunately, a few things happened that kind of held me up and I ended up crashing but I feel like I rode really well and my fitness felt really good.”

Anderson, the fourth-place qualifier, got off to a second-place start in 450SX Heat 1 and he battled for nine solid laps to secure a second-place transfer into the Main Event. In the Main, he got off to a sixth-place start and he quickly worked his way up to fifth by lap four. He mixed it up inside the top-six through the first half of the race before making a big charge late in the race. While attempting to make a pass for fourth, Anderson got off rhythm and lost two positions but he continued to push into the final lap. Despite a hard fight, Anderson succumbed to another bout of bad luck on the final lap when another took out his front tire and he went down, dropping him back to 11th where he ultimately finished for the night.

“The Main Event was just a battle out there and I didn’t get the good end of the stick most of the time,” 
Anderson said. “I ended up finishing not as good as my riding was but we’ll move onto next week.”

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Zach Osborne missed Round 9 due to injuries sustained during a practice crash last week. Osborne’s return to racing is yet to be determined as he assesses the proper recovery time for his injuries.

Next Event: March 7 – Daytona SX – Daytona International Speedway – Daytona Beach, Florida

Atlanta SX Results

450SX Results
1. Ken Roczen (HON)
2. Justin Barcia (YAM)
3. Cooper Webb (KTM)

10. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
11. Jason Anderson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing 

450SX Rider Point Standings
1. Eli Tomac – 200 points
2. Ken Roczen – 200 points
3. Justin Barcia – 177 points

5. Jason Anderson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 151 points
10. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 100 points
13. Zach Osborne – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 105 points  
250SX East Results
1. Chase Sexton (HON)
2. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
3. Shane McElrath (YAM)

9. Jalek Swoll – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing 
250SX East Rider Point Standings
1. Chase Sexton – 75 points
2. Shane McElrath – 70 points
3. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 61 points

12. Jalek Swoll – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 28 points 

AMA Supermoto National Championship Series kicks off six-round 2020 season in April

Schedule includes new venues in Colorado, Hawaii

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Two of the six rounds on the 2020 AMA Supermoto National Championship Series schedule take place at new venues, including one in Honolulu.

The series, sanctioned by the American Motorcyclist Association, kicks off 2020 in Primm, Nev., on April 4-5, followed by the round at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu on May 2. The remainder of the schedule includes four events in the United States and Canada. The other new venue is Colorado National Speedway, which hosts Round 3 on May 30.

The Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, Canada, round is sanctioned by the Canadian Motorcycle Association. That round, coupled with the event in Sturgis, S.D., determines the FIM North America Supermoto Championship.

“This year’s AMA Supermoto National Championship Series schedule features a great mix of proven venues and new markets for one of motorcycling’s youngest competition disciplines,” AMA Track Racing Manager Ken Saillant said. “We’re looking forward to another year of intense supermoto competition.” Supermoto racing includes a mix of street-style racing and motocross. Riders compete on tracks that feature dirt and pavement sections with jumps and turns. Venues can range from football stadiums to closed-course streets or parking lots.

The AMA Supermoto National Championship Series is promoted by DRT Racing.

For more information about the 2020 AMA Supermoto National Championship Series, visit www.drtracinginc.com.

2020 AMA Supermoto National Championship Series Schedule

April 4-5: Primm, Nev.: Anthony Hart Memorial Race
May 2: Honolulu, Hawaii: Aloha Stadium
May 30: Dacono, Colo.: Colorado National Speedway
June 12-13: Austin, Texas: 25th Annual Republic of Texas Rally
July 31-Aug. 2: Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, Canada: 51st Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières (CMA/FIM North America sanctioned)
Sept. 11-12: Sturgis, S.D.: 8th Annual Streets of Sturgis (AMA/FIM North America sanctioned)

About the American Motorcyclist Association

Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world’s largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders’ interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com.

Not a member? Join the AMA today: www.americanmotorcyclist.com

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Losail (Qatar), 24th February 2020


Today Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP riders Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi completed the third and final day of the 2020 MotoGP Official Test Losail. The Factory Yamaha duo finished the test in 1st and 12th place respectively in the overall standings.

1’53.858 / 84 LAPS
1’54.332 / 47 LAPS
Pictures for editorial use only. Copyright © 2020 Yamaha Motor Racing Srl
The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team successfully concluded their winter testing programme on the last day of the MotoGP Official Test Losail in Qatar. Continuing their strategy to wait for the temperatures to mimic the expected conditions for the upcoming Qatar GP, Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi spent the day perfecting their racing packages, setting the 1st and 12th fastest time of the day respectively.

Viñales used today’s session at the Losail International Circuit to its full capacity. Already happy with the balance of the YZR-M1 on the first two days, he again managed to up his pace on Day 3. He focused on riding with used tyres for most of the time, but in the final hour he put in a time attack. He set a 1’53.858s on lap 69 that catapulted him into P1 and also earned him first place in the combined Day 1-2-3 results, 0.033s ahead of his closest rival.

Rossi worked on tyre life today. He was inside the top-3 midway through his runs, demonstrating that his hard work over the last two days paid off. With the race setting provisionally locked for the Qatar GP, he then decided to push a bit further, but got caught out by the cooler and more humid conditions. It resulted in a small crash in Turn 2, but fortunately no injuries for the Italian. He was able to head out again but didn’t improve on his fastest time so far. His best lap, a 1’54.332s, set on lap 28/47, left him in 12th place in today’s and the combined timesheets, 0.474s behind his teammate.


Overall, we are very satisfied with the work done over the last three days. This test was crucial to make sure we are in a competitive condition before we return here within two weeks for the Qatar GP. We’ve seen both our riders make good steps and we managed to finish the entire 2020 testing programme, so we feel ready to start racing. Maverick is looking really strong. Of course, it’s a nice confidence boost to have him in first place in the timesheets, but it’s mostly his race pace that we are pleased with. Valentino suffered a small crash, which is easily done when the humidity increases and the temperatures go down, especially since he was pushing. Luckily, he was uninjured and could continue riding. Over the next week we will analyse his data and focus on improving his tyre life. Anyway, he is not far from the top, so we expect him to be in contention at the front. All in all, we feel eager to start the season!
Today has been a really good day for us because we have been working with very used tyres, especially when the conditions were difficult. We were trying to adapt ourselves when the conditions weren’t good. I tried my best with used tyres because sometimes in the race you get a kind of difficult feeling. So, I tried to understand what I have to do when the condition is not good on the track. I’m very happy, the team has been working in a really good way. Six days of testing, and I feel good with the bike. I feel the bike is there, and now we need to continue working, because there’s a good progression but it’s still not enough. Honestly, I enjoyed these last three days on the bike so much. For sure it’s going to be a long week, so I can’t wait for next Friday and especially Sunday on the grid.
First of all, it is incredible because also today we have fifteen riders within maybe half a second. It’s like Moto2, so this is very good for the championship, the fans, and the races, because it looks like there’s a good balance between the different riders and bikes. Today we are a little bit worried, not so much about the position – unfortunately I crashed with the second tyre and I think I could have improved the lap time – but more about the pace. We tried to make some long runs, but we had some problems with the tyres very similar to last year, so it looks like, that after some laps, unfortunately I have to slow down and this is not good news. But now the tests are finished we will see during the race weekends. In the races it’s always different.


Race Results


Race Results

American Motorcyclist Association announces James Holter as Chief Operating Officer

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The American Motorcyclist Association has named James Holter as Chief Operating Officer. Holter, most recently the AMA vice president of communications and marketing, assumes the responsibilities of Jeff Massey, who is leaving his position as AMA chief operations officer on March 6.

“James has demonstrated remarkable leadership skills as a member of our executive team,” said AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman. “It is a pleasure to welcome him to the role of Chief Operating Officer, where he oversees the department directors who are primarily responsible for the day-to-day work to fulfill the AMA’s mission to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling.”

As COO, Holter reports to Dingman. His direct reports are the department directors who execute the AMA’s mission in the areas of government relations, competition, recreational riding, finance, communications, membership and marketing, creative services, industry relations and business development, and all other aspects of operations.

“I’ve been a motorcyclist since my dad put me on a Tecumseh-powered minibike in the early 1980s, and it was a choice that fundamentally altered the trajectory of my life,” Holter said. “I’m honored that Rob would trust me with these additional responsibilities, and I’m looking forward to my expanding role with the AMA, particularly any and all opportunities to work with those inside and outside the organization to pursue our mission.”

Holter, 45, has worked at the AMA for 15 years, with responsibilities in editorial, communications, marketing and membership. Prior to his work at the AMA, he was a financial journalist with a focus on Chicago’s commodity and financial markets. A graduate of the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, Holter has ridden and competed in various amateur disciplines for nearly four decades. He owns both street and dirt bikes, including vintage machines.

Massey has served as AMA COO since September 2014. He will return to his hometown of Indianapolis and resume a career in education.

“Jeff Massey served with distinction and great integrity during his tenure here,” Dingman said. “Jeff and James have worked closely together on many levels, and a seamless transition is already underway.

“While Jeff is leaving AMA employment, I fully expect he will remain one of our most active members, and we will continue to find ways he can contribute to the AMA mission,” Dingman said.

About the American Motorcyclist Association

Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world’s largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders’ interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com.

Not a member? Join the AMA today: www.americanmotorcyclist.com

AMA National and Regional News March 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Gary Peters (D-Mich.) introduced S. 3249, the Motorcyclist Advisory Council Reauthorization Act, which would refine the membership seats of the federal Motorcyclist Advisory Council to ensure more national motorcycle organizations are represented and authorizes the council for six years. The AMA worked closely with the Motorcycle Riders Foundation and Harley-Davidson Motor Co. on the legislation, which is the companion bill to H.R. 5234 introduced in late November. S. 3249 would require the MAC to include five highway engineering experts from state or local governments, one state or local traffic safety engineer who is a motorcyclist, one roadway safety data expert on crash testing and analysis and one representative from each of the following groups: a national association of state transportation officials, a national motorcyclist foundation, a national motorcyclist association, a national motorcycle manufacturing association and a national safety organization. The current MAC, chaired by Mike Sayre-AMA government relations manager for on-highway issues-was authorized in 2015 and is finalizing its report to the U.S. Department of Transportation. The MAC advises the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, the administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the administrator of the Federal Highway Administration on transportation issues of concern to motorcyclists, including barrier design; road design, construction, and maintenance practices; and the architecture and implementation of intelligent transportation system technologies.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has granted Nuro’s request for a temporary exemption from some low-speed vehicle standard requirements, so the company can test its electric delivery vehicle, the “R2.” This exemption marks the first time the U.S. government has approved a company’s request to deploy a vehicle that does not meet the standards for cars and trucks operated by humans. Unlike a conventional low-speed vehicle, the R2 is designed to have no human occupant and operates exclusively using an automated driving system. Nuro will be permitted to produce and deploy no more than 5,000 R2 vehicles during the two-year exemption period, and NHTSA will closely monitor Nuro’s operations during and after that time. Nuro intends to operate these vehicles as part of a local delivery service for restaurants, grocery stores, and other businesses. The AMA opposes the use of public roadways for testing driverless vehicles-even low-speed delivery vehicles-because it increases the risk to motorcyclists and other road users.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Navy has released its final environmental impact statement for the planned expansion of the Fallon Range Training Complex in Nevada, making it available online. The complex is a training area made up of 12,256 square nautical miles of airspace and about 232,000 acres of Navy-managed land. The facility modernization will include:

  • Renewal of the Navy’s current public land withdrawal
  • Land range expansion through the additional withdrawal of public lands and the acquisition of nonfederal land
  • Airspace expansion and modernization
  • Upgrades to range infrastructure

The AMA submitted comments on the draft EIS in January, conditionally supporting Alternative 3 as the least disruptive to continued OHV use. However, the AMA also supported local riders, calling for reconnection of cherry-stemmed routes created by the Alternative 3 as originally drafted, and the creation of a special recreation area, codifying OHV use as legitimate, outside the expansion area. The AMA was encouraged by the Navy’s agreement to continue the annual “Vegas to Reno” race and, possibly, other competition events near three sections of the training area. Also, taking the Sand Springs Range and Fairview Peak-the latter having many roads and OHV trails and the popular earthquake fault destination-out of the training area was a positive for the OHV community.”

State News

TRACY, Calif. – Thirty-seven acres at the east end of the Carnegie SVRA reopened to off-highway vehicle recreation on Jan. 30. The area includes the 4×4 Play Area, Trials Bike area, and Motocross Practice Track. In January of 2019, this part of the park was closed due to litigation. Conclusion of the suit ends the closure of this popular part of the park and allows for recreation in these areas. The reopening re-establishes off-highway vehicle recreation opportunities that have historically been provided in the East Bay. Carnegie SVRA’s 1,300 acres serve California’s Bay Area communities with hill climbs, trail riding and track riding opportunities.

WILLOWS, Calif. – Mendocino National Forest Supervisor Ann Carlson issued an order that opens more trails and campgrounds for the Ranch Fire area, but continues the temporary closure of selected trails and campgrounds until more fire hazards can be removed. The new closure is effective until Dec. 31. Most of the road system and trails in the Ranch Fire area have been evaluated, and hazards have been removed. Forest Order No. 08-20-02 opens the majority of OHV trails on the Grindstone Ranger District as well as Pine Mountain Lookout and Bear Creek campground on the Upper Lake Ranger District. However, numerous hazards still exist within the general forest, along many roads and trails and in campgrounds. Forest Order 08-20-02, including the order, map and list of closed trails and facilities may be downloaded from the forest website: https://tinyurl.com/urx4jwu.

SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn. – The Town of South Windsor was unprepared for the overwhelming opposition it faced in February when Mayor Andrew Paterna proposed a ban on ATVs. Paterna said a small number of ATV riders had trespassed on and damaged some farms, and at least one resident complained about excessive sound from ATVs. But, when word got out that the ban would be considered, motorcycle and ATV enthusiasts packed the meeting chamber. A report from TV station WFSB stated that, “Every town resident who spoke at the Monday night meeting spoke out against the proposal.” Paterna later confirmed to the AMA that he will not raise the issue again.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – State Delegate Kathy Szeliga (R-Baltimore County, Hartford County) has reintroduced a bill that would allow lane splitting in Maryland, as well as require state agencies to create guidelines for safe lane splitting and ways to incorporate the practice into rider education. Szeliga’s H.B. 920 bill was referred to the House Environment and Transportation Committee. This is just the second time a lane splitting bill has been introduced in Maryland. This bill would require that the state agencies, including the Motor Vehicle Administration and State Highway Administration, develop guidelines for safe and appropriate lane splitting for motorcyclists and other road users.

CONCORD, N.H. – The decades-old tradition of riding motorcycles on a frozen Concord pond came to a halt this year, due to an obscure amendment to the state’s budget. Concord hired Suzi Pegg as its new economic development director in 2017, and she objected to the sound of motorcycles on the pond near her new home. So, she convinced the mayor to talk to state legislators, who included a ban on such riding in the $13 billion 2019 budget bill. Outraged motorcyclists visited the state capitol to urge lawmakers to reverse the ban. They caught the ear of state Rep. Jack Flanagan (R-Brookline), who proposed an amendment to House Bill 1316 that would reopen the pond for vehicular use on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. till 4 p.m. The AMA has supported the Flanagan amendment with letters to state Rep. Suzanne Smith, chair of the House Committee on Resources, Recreation and Development, which is investigating the change.

NEW YORK – The New York City Council is considering a law that would require side guards on trucks fulfilling contracts with the city, such as private garbage private trucks contracted by the city to plow snow. The side guards are designed to prevent motorcyclists, pedestrians and bicyclists from accidentally getting underneath the trucks in traffic. Sponsored by council members Ydannis Rodriguez and Ben Kallos, the bill would require these vehicles would need to be equipped with side guards by Jan. 1, 2021. A law signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio in June 2015 already requires truck side guards on city-operated vehicles and private trash haulers fulfilling a contract with the city.

KANAB, Utah – The U.S. Bureau of Land Management developed new land use plans for the Bears Ears National Monument and for three units of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Utah. The revised Bears Ears boundaries include two separate units, known as the Shash Jáa and Indian Creek units, that are reserved for the care and management of the objects of historic and scientific interest within their boundaries. The Shash Jáa Unit contains 97,393 acres of BLM-administered lands and 32,587 acres of U.S. Forest Service-administered lands. The Indian Creek Unit contains 71,896 acres of BLM-administered land. Lands that remain part of the 1 million-acre Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument are the Grand Staircase (209,993 acres), Kaiparowits (551,034 acres) and Escalante Canyons (242,836 acres) units. The BLM refers to lands that are now excluded from the national monument (861,974 acres) as the Kanab-Escalante Planning Area. The new management plans were prompted by a 2017 directive from the president, which called for “right-sized” boundaries for these public lands, while providing for the protection of objects consistent with the original intent of the Antiquities Act of 1906. The AMA and Utah officials have urged federal officials to adhere to the provision in the Antiquities Act that requires that monuments should be as small as possible, while still protecting artifacts and cultural resources. The boundary revision process included public meetings, collaboration with local, state and other federal agencies and participation by more than 30 American Indian tribes.

SELAH, Wash. – The Washington Off Highway Vehicle Alliance is asking OHV riders to attend a March 4 meeting with state officials regarding road management on state lands. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife and the state Department of Natural Resources will provide information and accept comments on the Green Dot program, which designates the roads in Yakima and Kittitas counties are open to public motorized use. The meeting is 6-8 p.m. March 4 at the Selah Civic Center, 216 S. First St., Selah. To view Green Dot maps or learn about the program, visit https://tinyurl.com/r5274lc.

Industry News

CARMEL, Calif. – The Quail Motorcycle Gathering will honor Roland Sands as 2020 Legend of the Sport at its May 16 event. Sands has set several track records around the world, and was the 1998 American Motorcyclist Association 250GP Champion. After 10 years of professional racing, Sands founded Roland Sands Design, a motorcycle, product and apparel. During the past five years, RSD has expanded into event promotion, with the Moto Beach Classic in Southern California and the Super Hooligan National Championship, a series that unites the custom-motorcycle scene with flat track racing.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Honda ADV150 may be coming to the United States, according to a report at Motorcycle.com, which said the California Air Resources Board certified the scooter for the 2021 model year. The “adventure scooter” features a 149cc overhead cam engine and an automatic transmission. The ABS model sold in Indonesia claims a curb weight of 293 pounds, while the non-ABS version is 291 pounds.

SHANGHAI – Switch Motorcycles has unveiled plans for its eScrambler electric motorcycle that is scheduled for sale in the 2022 model year. Switch is owned by New Zealand-born Matthew Waddick, who also produced electric conversion kits for the Honda Cub as part of Shanghai Customs. The eScrambler has a top speed of 93 mph, a 0-62 mph time of 3.2 seconds, and a range of 93 miles.

BERLIN – BMW Motorrad is developing a crumple zone for motorcycles, using a patented V-shaped component behind the front wheel. A report at Visordown.com says the device keeps the front wheel of the motorcycle from deflecting to the side in a front impact and holds the wheel straight, creating an impact zone that includes the wheel and forks.

NEW DELHI – Hero MotoCorp executives said they are willing to be Harley-Davidson’s partner to design and manufacture locally made, low-powered products, according to a report in The Times of India. Harley-Davidson and Hero have been in talks, but no agreement has been reached.

TÄBY, Sweden – MIPS AB, the Swedish-based developer of multi-directional helmet protection technology, announced that its design is being used in 583 models from 103 helmet brands in motorcycling, bicycling, snow sports, equestrian, hockey, rock climbing and construction. Professional motorcycle racers wearing MIPS-equipped helmets include Ryan Villopoto, Aaron Plessinger, Dean Wilson, Cole Seely, Romain Febvre, Clement Desalle, Taylor Robert and Ricky Brabec.

International News

MELBOURNE – A plan to create 151 on-street motorcycle parking spaces would open up sidewalks for pedestrians and increase pedestrian safety. The plan under consideration by the city would convert 36 car spaces to motorcycle-only use. “By introducing 151 new motorcycle bays we can divert motorcycles from parking in key congested footpath areas,” Lord Mayor Sally Capp told Motorbikewriter.com. “We are creating more space for people to walk while still accommodating our riders.”

JERUSALEM – Ride Vision has developed a collision-aversion technology for motorcycles that uses standard cameras as visual sensors that recognize and analyze relevant threats to safe operation. The company says its goal is to provide motorcyclists with an advanced driver assist system with off-the-shelf technology. According to a report in the Jerusalem Post, Ride Vision sets up two small cameras on the front and back of the motorcycle. The motorcycle’s left- and right-side mirrors have LED lights that flash different colors, depending on the threat detected. Ride Vision also integrates with Bluetooth helmets for audio warnings.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio – James Holter has been named the AMA’s Chief Operating Officer. Holter, most recently the AMA vice president of communications and marketing, assumes the responsibilities of Jeff Massey, who is leaving his position as AMA chief operations officer on March 6. As COO, Holter reports to Dingman. His direct reports are the department directors who execute the AMA’s mission in the areas of government relations, competition, recreational riding, finance, communications, membership and marketing, creative services, industry relations and business development, and all other aspects of operations. Holter has worked at the AMA for 15 years, with responsibilities in editorial, communications, marketing and membership. Massey served as AMA COO since September 2014. He will return to his hometown of Indianapolis and resume a career in education.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio – The AMA Board of Directors held its annual election of officers on Feb. 7. The board elected as chair Russ Ehnes, the member representative on the board from the Northwest Region. The board elected as vice chair Gary Pontius, the member representative from the North Central Region; as assistant treasurer Ken Ford, the member representative from the Southeast Region; and as executive committee members Jerry Abboud, an at-large director from Thornton, Colo., and Paul Vitrano, business member representative from Indian Motorcycle. Ehnes replaced outgoing chair Maggie McNally-Bradshaw, former member representative from the Northeast Region. McNally-Bradshaw had been AMA board chair since 2013 and served on the board since 2009. She exited her position due to term limits.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio – Get your tickets and make your plans to be at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, July 10-12 for 2020 AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days. AMA members can purchase discounted tickets now at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com/tickets. AMA members save an additional $5 off the already discounted early bird pricing. AMA members can also call (614) 856-1900 to order their tickets. A fundraiser for the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days showcases classic motorcycles of all makes and styles, and honors the riders who made them famous. Activities at the event include the AMA Vintage Grand Championship, which features road racing, motocross, hare scrambles, trials and flat-track racing. In addition, North America’s largest motorcycle swap meet is packed with parts, bikes and memorabilia from all eras. Bike shows feature some of history’s most beloved motorcycles. Attendees will be entertained by stunt shows, demo rides of current production bikes and live music, while seminars on numerous topics by noted motorcycling experts keep them informed. Non-AMA members and those reserving RV spaces must purchase tickets through Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. These tickets will be available in December online at midohio.com or by calling (419) 884-4000. AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is a family-friendly event. Admission is free for children under 12 accompanied by a ticketed adult. Free parking is also available on site.

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AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

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