The Rat’s Hole compound, from the bar to the party tent to the cordoned-off stunt track in back was shoulder-to-shoulder as the annual Leesburg Rat’s Hole Custom Bike & Chopper Show was in full effect with 110 bikes and trikes battling for ‘Best of Show.’ It was an interesting ensemble of two and three-wheeled vehicles including the first Harley V-Rod trike we’ve encountered, this one with a sporting two-front, one-back tire configuration. A custom-painted Polaris Slingshot garnered a lot of attention, but not near as much as “Hondog’s” ultra-popular rat rodded 1986 Kawasaki 1200, complete with an equally ratted-out trailer.
But Judd York and Flat Broke Customs out of Ellijay, Georgia, were the big winners of the day, first winning ‘Best Bobber’ before adding ‘Best of Show’ to their coffer as well. His rigid bobber was well-deserving, the build tidy and uncluttered, from its leaf spring fork to its tiny metal seat pan. Copper ribs connecting the split tanks and brass fuel lines feeding the highly polished engine gave it a touch of steampunk while its rigid rear and big kicker added to its old school vibe.
The day was a whirlwind of activities as lady bikers crowded the Budweiser Stage for the Mr. Luckyman competition, cameras in hand to catch the bare-chested action. Around the corner, the high-flying antics of the Disc-Connected K-9’s were a big hit as well, the world famous team of Frisbee-fetching dogs providing family-friendly entertainment. But Saturday’s festivities reached a crescendo when Puddle of Mudd’s Wes Scantlin broke into the first chords of the band’s hit “Control.” Thousands of fans packed into Towne Square as the band played an electric set, everybody on their feet singing and dancing in a mass of music-driven kinetics. After the show, the crowd slowly dispersed, some calling it a day while others filled nearby watering holes to top off the night.