Motorcycle Cannonball. Update 8.

Yesterday evening Wednesday September 22nd, riders arrived in Gallup, NM after 193 miles under pouring rain and 2 route changes because of unnanounced road work! All riders who started in the morning are accounted for. Since departure in North Carolina only 5 riders left the Endurance Run: Matt Olsen, Urban Hirsch, Bill Price, Drino Mille, and Bill Campbel. As a surprise to the organizers most machines are running better every day due to the fact that almost all riders work hard at fixing bugs at stage arrivals, with some participants fully rebuilding their engines overnight! But yesterday’s humidity created multiple problems to the vintage machines. No doubt, these guys and gals with their crews are some of the best Wrenches in the business. Today, more rain in the forecast? Magnetos getting wrapped in plastic… 

I remind you that ranking is done on time and total number of ridden miles. 10 riders still have the perfect score (have ridden all the miles from North Carolina) with Bradford  Wilmarth on a 1913 Excelsior still ranked number 1 with the best time. As of yesterday evening, riders have logged 2541 miles and are 4 stages away from watching the Pacific Ocean in Santa Monica. Today Thursday September 23rd, riders continue their run to California with the next stop this evening in Flagstaff, AZ. For a change, a few faces in the Challenge (taken before wet weather) and an updated ranking at page bottom. (pictures courtesy Martin Two Feather)

17 Responses to “Motorcycle Cannonball. Update 8.”

  1. 1 Brother T. Sep 23rd, 2010 at 7:54 am

    I’m curious. Could anyone comment on what the top end speed of some of these bikes would be, and about how far they’d get before they’d need to stop for more fuel?

  2. 2 Patumwan Sep 23rd, 2010 at 8:00 am

    For class 3, 2 cylinders, 3 speed, some have pushed a 1915 Harley -Davidson close to 60 mph.

  3. 3 Kirk Perry Sep 23rd, 2010 at 10:03 am

    This long on the road, even with sleep sessions won’t prevent “twilight-ing”.
    So along with deep shadows, purples and diminishing daylight, strange things are happening.

    If you start seeing coyotes disappearing into translucent mesquite bushes or most often, roadside cactus that appear to be hitchhiking, then it’s time to get off the road.

    Don’t trust the night.

  4. 4 raycwheeler Sep 23rd, 2010 at 11:12 am

    Sunday in Santa Monica at the finish line, that’s where action and history will collide.
    Simply a once in a life time, fantastic journey.

  5. 5 Brother T. Sep 23rd, 2010 at 11:23 am

    Crossing the country at 50 to 60 miles an hour sounds awesome.

  6. 6 Sugar Bear Sep 23rd, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    Where is the finish line in Santa Monica?

  7. 7 Patumwan Sep 23rd, 2010 at 2:51 pm

    Sunday. At the Santa Monica Pier. Grand Finish: 12:30 PM. Motorcycles on display for public viewing. 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM

  8. 8 LENNY SINNET ASTC PERFORMANCE Sep 23rd, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    This will be a great event to be at in Santa Monica I would not miss this. This is a great run for the bikes and the riders.

  9. 9 Felicia Morgan Sep 23rd, 2010 at 3:51 pm

    In answer to the speed/fuel question from Brother T…Class III speeds can reach 60-65 mph. Class 1 singles are doing well to maintain 35. As for fuel, it also varies, some report as little as 25 miles per gallon others more like 50, but many have modified their bikes and have auxiliary gas tanks, allowing them to avoid the pumps as often. Look at the machines of Dale Walksler #22 and Wayne Stanfield #3 as an example of such modifications. Pretty creative/practical solution to a nagging problem for riders.

    Go Cannonball!!

  10. 10 Mike Tomas Kiwi Indian MotorCycle Co Sep 24th, 2010 at 6:33 am

    I joined the Cannonballers in Flagstaff last night and will ride along with them to Santa Monica. When I arrived last night and visited with many in the parking lots, all I can say is WOW, a true testament for man and machine. This is no cake walk for anyone. Some bikes were torn apart with anything from rear wheel/brake rebuilding to full on out of frame engine rebuilds. One of my friends is riding a Pope (1914 I believe, its what I call the dinosaur era of motorcycles) and had his rear wheel guts break so he grafted a Yale rear wheel onto his bike (with the help of ratchet tie downs) all on the side of the road so as to maintain his spot. To see him ride in around 8pm fully exhausted but still under his own power was a true testament of the will power of these fine folks. This is without any doubt one of the biggest challenges of motorcycling. Riding 1930’s or 40’s bikes across country is certainly a piece of cake compared to what these guys and lady are accomplishing. My hats off to each and everyone of them. .

  11. 11 Brother T. Sep 24th, 2010 at 8:10 am

    Thanks to all who answered my questions. An amazing effort, to say the least!

  12. 12 DUHL Sep 24th, 2010 at 9:29 am

    I am out here in CA anticipating the finishing of this historic run. I am happy to say I have completed my race against time with the prizes, looking forward to seeing everyone again, last saw these bikes/faces when the sun came up over the ocean.

  13. 13 martin Twofeather Sep 24th, 2010 at 9:55 am

    Brother T 35 to 45 miles an hour,according to Dale baring any brake downs to which there are many,The 250 OHV JAP that Katrin Boehner is riding gets closer to 60 miles to the gallon and the bike is a 1907…….

  14. 14 Pepper Massey Sep 24th, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Amazing. Simply amazing!

  15. 15 Lou Sep 24th, 2010 at 11:38 am

    Hi folks, The event is an endurance run, not so much a race. Out of all the riders with a perfect score(miles traveled each day) totaled. Presently at 10 riders, the older bike will place higher on the list. If the age of the bikes are the same, then the older age of the rider will place higher. Pretty interesting concept. Saw everyone in Flagstaff yesterday. Amazing machines, mechanics and riders.

  16. 16 Big Mike Sep 25th, 2010 at 8:12 am

    This whole concept is awesome. Does anyone know why there are so many 1915 Harleys in the group? It seems a little odd that there are so many of the same year.

  17. 17 Mike Tomas Kiwi Indian MotorCycle Co Sep 27th, 2010 at 12:28 am

    The answer to your Q Big Mike is in 1915 Harley had THE bike and in mass production. It had 3 speeds and the engine was very reliable as was shown on the run. Indian had a kickass bike in 1916 with the PowerPlus. Some on the run say that was the last year that Harley made a decent bike with a laugh

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