by Bill Werner of Milwaukee, WI
Motorcycle racing is one of the most traditional forms of competition in the United States. It blossomed when riders would compete on dirt county fair horse race tracks. This dare-devil extreme sport became known as Flat Track racing. The riders would shoulder through the flat turns at high speeds leaning a great deal to the inside of the turns and becoming vulnerable to high danger.
As public road compositions changed to hard surfaces the leisurely drive down twisting country roads grew into road racing. Once again the motorcycle riders, always searching for the quickest path, developed techniques and driving styles that only the fearless would attempt.
Groups such as the American Motorcycle Association, which was formed in 1924, help organize, regulate and sanction all types of motorcycle racing still today. Akin to the four wheel dare-devils, there are many levels of competition ranging from the hobbyist to professional riders. The Racers Reunion Banquet will bring you stories of triumph to tragedies as we feature motorcycle racing.
Flat-track tuner Bill Werner is a 13 time AMA Mechanic of the Year. Werner has tuned motorcycles for a star-studded list of Hall of Famers including Scott Parker, Jay Springsteen and Gary Scott. Werner was part of 13 AMA Grand National Championships. Tonight, Hall of Famer Werner, will present the history of AMA Grand National Championship motorcycle racing and share stories from his illustrious career. Werner will be joined by famed historian Bill Milburn and AMA Grand National Champion Mike Kidd for a roundtable and Q&A session.