Plenty of the Red, White and Blue will be flying at this year’s Rolling Thunder rally as it celebrates its 25th anniversary. Four legendary custom bike builders have signed on to build motorcycles for this year’s event in honor of branches of the US Armed Services.
Memorial Day Weekend marks the 25th Anniversary of Rolling Thunder in Washington, D.C., an annual motorcycle demonstration run that attracts over 450,000 motorcycles and one million attendees. To commemorate this honorary event, four custom motorcycles will be built by four legendary bike builders.
“The commemorative bike build is such a great idea and it’s one of the better things we’ve ever done. It’s the builders giving back to veterans and troops and all branches of the service with this project. We’re very grateful to the sponsors and everyone involved for their generous support and recognition of Rolling Thunder’s efforts,” said Ted Shpak, President of Rolling Thunder, Washington D.C, Inc.
Jay Allen, creator of the legendary Broken Spoke Saloon, is facilitating the tribute build project. Allen’s custom built U.S. Army bike, featuring an S&S Cycle engine and Baker Drivetrain transmission, inspired the bike build concept. Since hitting the asphalt nationwide with his tribute U.S. Army bike, it has received more attention than a $100,000 custom motorcycle. This, in turn, compelled Rolling Thunder to complete the ultimate show of respect by reaching out to some of the world’s top bike builders to complete the military recognition to include all branches of the service.
“This history-making tribute bike build is coming together so beautifully. S&S Cycle and Baker Drivetrain are the definition of American made pride and they’ve stepped up to the plate bringing their high quality products to this entire project,” said Allen.
The bikes will be unveiled at the 25th Anniversary event on May 26th and the entire build process will be featured in leading motorcycle publications. U. S. Marine Corps: Brigitte Bourget of Bourget’s Bike Works feature with Iron Works magazine; U.S. Navy: Dar Holdsworth of Darwin Motorcycles feature with Cycle Source; U.S. Coast Guard: Kiwi Mike of Kiwi Indian Motorcycle Company feature with American Iron; U.S. Air Force: Billy Lane of Chopper’s Inc. feature with The Horse Backstreet Choppers.
“We’re excited that with the help of Avon Correctional Facility this tribute build will happen with Billy Lane who has always supported Rolling Thunder and the Veterans,” said Steve Broyles, the Vice President of The Horse Backstreet Choppers Magazine and the owner of Stevenson’s Cycle.
The build project is destined to be epic as these road-worthy bikes will then be toured around the country with the traveling “Wall that Heals,” at various military installations and events, Veteran Affairs locations, major motorcycle rallies, and potentially taken overseas to the troops. An impressive publicity campaign and production surrounding the Rolling Thunder 25th Anniversary observance is currently underway. Further production details to be announced.
“We’re so excited and honored to be a part of this monumental, historic event and to be selected because our bikes are no-compromise, American made motorcycles,” said Dar Holdsworth, who hails from a military family having served in Desert Storm, his father in Vietnam and his grandfather in WWII. “We truly understand that we could not do what we do without the sacrifice of the men and women of our Armed Forces. Each and every soldier has my deepest gratitude and respect.”
Rolling Thunder’s Demonstration Run has evolved to be not only a demonstration for the Prisoner of War, Missing in Action (POW/MIA) issue but also a demonstration of patriotism and respect for Service Members and Veterans from all wars. For more information, go to www.rollingthunderrun.com