How cool would it be to hang out with Rick Fairless, have him show you around Strokers Dallas, then sit down and brainstorm together on a custom paint job for your bike? Fairless’ skills in the paint booth rank with the best of them, his color-splashed, comically-themed combinations his signature style. Better yet, what if it was a motorcycle you won in a sweepstakes? In this case it’s a Victory Vegas 8-Ball with the custom treatment already applied by Fairless and his Strokers team featuring fresh designs making their industry debut. Thanks to Allstate Insurance this dream will soon be somebody’s reality courtesy of Allstate’s annual motorcycle sweepstakes. This is the fifth year Allstate has held its motorcycle sweepstakes but is the first time the grand prize will be a motorcycle customized by Fairless.
We caught up with Rick at the Allstate Insurance booth at the Speedway during Daytona Beach Bike Week where we got to check out the Victory Vegas 8-Ball he took from stocked to rocked. When asked why he picked the Victory Vegas 8-Ball for this year’s Allstate Motorcycle Sweepstakes bike, Fairless said because it’s a cool bike with a little edge to it and appeals to a wide range of riders, and he wanted something that would have mass appeal. Fairless said Allstate insures a diverse group of riders and he wanted something that would appeal to that diversity, be it a young guy with his first bike or an iron butt veteran with a hundreds of thousands of miles to his credit.
To give the Vegas 8-Ball a little mean streak, Fairless added a 23-inch wheel called the “Southern Cross” on the front. Strokers kicked out the rake angle to help accommodate the larger hoop, added fork gaiters, and slapped on a Fairless front fender. They fobbed up a hand-built exhaust called the “Fairless Collector” that gives it an extra kick in the pants, as does the new forward-facing air intake tucked beneath the tank. The cover he created to replace the stock intake sports a little Texas “Lone Star” flavor and is nice and thin so riders can hug up tight to the bike. The controls and chin spoiler are also Fairless additions, as are the “Boogie Bars” that rise above the tank, the tank receiving a black and blue checkerboard design. Fairless is fan of mesh and said they did a lot of stuff with mesh to give it a rougher edge, from the chain guard and front pulley cover to the screen over the headlight. But the part he’s most proud of are the motor cages, an idea he had that he’s never seen before, an addition that ups the cool factor and gives a little edge to it.
“One of the things I’m really proud of are these motor cages. This is something new that I’d never seen before. One of my big with these custom builders is they don’t do anything to the motors, so I wanted to do something to the motor so you could decorate it up and make it look cool but at the same time put a little edge on it,” Fairless said.
The motor cages on the Allstate Victory Vegas 8-Ball are a new idea Fairless came up with because he believes dressing up the engine is often ignored in the customization process.
We got a chance to check out the Fairless customized Victory Vegas 8-Ball at the Allstate Insurance booth at the Speedway during our recent trip to Daytona Beach Bike Week 2014.
Fairless said he wanted to give the Victory Vegas 8-Ball he built for the Allstate Motorcycle Sweepstakes even more of an edge. What do you think?
A front fairing from his good friend Arlen Ness and a custom leather solo seat round out the customization. And while the seat pan and fairing aren’t Fairless originals, just about every other custom part is available at strokersdallas.com.
As the conversation continued, Fairless said he’s proud to have been working with Allstate for three years now and enjoys their partnership.
“They’re doing a lot of good things. It’s not like they’re using this just to sell insurance. They care about the motorcycle industry. They give back to the motorcycle industry. They have the ONE campaign, Once is Never Enough, where they put up signs at dangerous intersections around the country. They’re doing things in the industry because they want to make motorcycle riding safer, and at the end of the day that’s what we all want. So if we can work with the big boys like Allstate, it’s a win for everybody that rides,” he said.
When asked how things are going at his multi-dimensional shop and fabled biker hangout Strokers, Fairless replied, “Strokers Dallas is doing good. We’re right there in the heart of Dallas and for people who’ve never been out there, I welcome you to come see us. It’s two-and-a-half acres, a motorcycle shop, a bar and grill, a tattoo parlor and my custom parts company.
“On any given Saturday and Sunday we’ll get 500 to 1000 bikes out there. We’ve got bikini girls selling beer, we’ve got live music, it’s just a big party. It’s Strokers, and here’s what I tell people. I don’t care if you’re riding a Harley or a Victory or a Hayabusa or a Honda, I could care less. I don’t care if you’ve got a car out front. I don’t care if you’re Ross Perot, who’s one of my customers, or you’re an unemployed ditch digger. Everybody is the same. Everybody is treated the same and everybody is treated good. It’s just a place where motorcycle enthusiasts can gather, hang out and have a good time.”
Finally, we were wondering how his cantankerous Ma was, to which he smiled and said, “My Ma is doing good. Everybody always asks why I don’t bring her out to these things. If I brought her say here (Daytona Beach), she’d wipe out this whole infield here at the Speedway. She’s not nice like me, she’s mean. I have to keep her under control.”
So if you’d like a chance to win an all-expenses paid trip to Strokers to possibly meet Ma, definitely meet Rick, and have your new custom Victory Vegas 8-Ball receive the paint job of your dreams, be sure to go to the Allstate Motorcycle Sweepstakes web page and get signed up. And don’t be afraid to tap into the funk and flair of the fearless Fairless.