Who wants to see motorcycle ice racing as a Winter X Games sport? Thanks to Harley-Davidson, this might just come true.
The Motor Company has equipped its newest motorcycle, the Street 750, with studded tires, rounded up some of the best flat track riders in the business, and is set to debut ice racing in conjunction with ESPN as an exhibition sport today at Aspen’s Winter X Games 2014. Better yet, Harley-Davidson is seeking the help of the general public on social media to see whether ice racing might become an official event in future Winter X Games. It’s asking fans to share their comments using the Twitter hashtag #XGIceRace to gauge public interest. ESPN will then share some of those comments on the last day of the broadcast. More information is available at www.darkcustom.com/iceracing.
“The attitude and capabilities of the Street were influenced by thousands of young adults in cities around the world,” said Dino Bernacchi, Director of North American Marketing Communications, Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “So while we think ice racing is hardcore, it’s only fitting that Harley-Davidson is having extreme sports fans around the world help decide the X Games fate of the sport.”
Riders who will be showcasing the potential of Harley’s Street 750 on the ice are 2013 AMA Pro Grand National Champion Brad Baker, who recently was awarded the lone seat on the Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track team competing on the vaunted XR750. Baker has been lighting up headlines recently after competing in MotoGP champion Marc Marquez’s Superprestigio event, which he won after bangin’ bars with Marquez. Joining Baker on the Street 750 is 2012 AMA Pro Grand National Champion Jared Mees and his wife Nichole Mees, who is an AMA Pro flat track racer as well. Mees hinted about his ride on the 750 on his Twitter account yesterday, writing “Packing for aspen CO for the x games.. Thinking I'm gonna do some sick slides on my ****.”
The Winter X Games ice racing event is also serving as the springboard for the U.S. debut of Harley-Davidson’s newest motorcycle, the Street 750. At the core of the motorcycle is an all-new liquid-cooled Revolution X engine, a 60-degree V-Twin with chain-driven single overhead cams and four-valves per cylinder. A six-speed transmission and 2-into-1 upswept exhaust completes the drivetrain, while a narrow frame, low seat height, 17-inch front tire and mid controls should equate to a quick handling motorcycle that’s easy to ride. A blacked-out engine and covers, pullback handlebars, fork gators and lowers, and jet black exhaust give it a mean disposition. It will also make the Street 750 stand out against the white of the ice when it’s ripping around the Winter X Games track.
“While the Street was designed to handle urban environments, its instant throttle response, lean chassis and super-low seat height make it perfect to ride anywhere,” said Dino Bernacchi, Director of North American Marketing Communications, Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “We modified several Street motorcycles by adding steel screws to the tires and let the world’s best flat track racers tear up the ice at high speeds. We think fans will be captivated by the extreme attitude and beauty they’ll see on the ice.”
In addition to its U.S. debut at the Winter X Games in Aspen, motorcycle enthusiasts will be able to see the 2014 Street 750 at the remaining International Motorcycle Shows in Phoenix, Cleveland and Chicago.
Motorcycle Racing on Ice (courtesy of Harley-Davidson)
While it’s difficult to pin down when and where someone had the idea of putting a motorcycle on ice, the first records of ice racing date from Sweden in 1924. Today, ice racing is primarily on quarter-mile, half-mile and road course tracks setup on frozen lakes or indoor arenas.
The sport usually is divided into classes for full-rubber and studded tires with speeds regularly approaching 80mph on straightaways and 60mph in the turns.
“Harley-Davidson has been pioneering action sports before they were even defined as action sports,” added Bernacchi. “In fact, archive photos in the Harley-Davidson Museum show enthusiasts racing on frozen lakes almost a century ago, so it’s exciting to see us back racing on ice with a new generation of riders on the newest addition to the Dark Custom motorcycle lineup.”
For more information about the Harley-Davidson Street 750 visit www.h-d.com/street.