Article By: Xavier Muriel
Originally Published In The June/July 2020 Issue Of Cycle Source Magazine
Well, we didn’t see this one coming, did we? It was kinda like the universe just said “Whoa, Nelly” to everyone’s life. Don’t worry; I’m not about to get into all the personal crap about this whole COVID nonsense. There’s enough out there on any media site if you choose to listen to all the different political, social, and any other opinions that you wish. I’m sure just like all of you, I can’t wait for this pandemic to be over and done with. I’m itching, along with most of my motofamily to get back what we love, motorcycles, and the people that make it happen. In my last article, I was headed to Daytona Bike Week, so let’s just pick it up from there. Bike Week didn’t disappoint at all! I was Honored to have Providence Cycle Worx set up at “The Handmade Lot” at the Broken Spoke Saloon all week. The lot is comprised of handpicked builders and artisans to represent their work and create a destination for people to visit, discuss, and enjoy all things motorcycle. Mr. Bill Dodge of Bling’s Cycles hosted his Teenie Weenie Tuesday party; I’m pretty sure you can guess what the food of choice was. I was joined at the lot every day with some of the industry’s most iconic builders as well as some of the new breed making a name for themselves. One of the coolest parts of The Handmade Lot is that at any given time you can stop by a tent and hang out and just converse with someone, who just like you, wants to gain more knowledge about motorcycles, building them, customizing and how to make this industry stronger for the next wave of enthusiasts.
The Spoke was home to all the great things that it has become known for Minibike Races, custom Bike Shows as well as a ton of great live music. The Black Smoke Sinners did our first of hopefully many shows during Bike Week and made some new fans. The company that I’m building a Raffle Bike for was also at the Handmade Lot. “High Seas Rally” is a cruise that is all biker related. It was fantastic, throughout the week I had visits from various people who have done the cruise in the past and were excited to hear that myself and Cycle Source are going to be bringing a whole new element to this year’s cruise with the addition of the “Grease & Gears Garage.” That’s right, Chris and I will be hosting multiple tutorials on fabrication, maintenance, and other motorcycle DIY segments. Plus, yep, you guessed it, we are bringing the nowinfamous Minibike races to the High Sees Rally! Yeah, drag racing…on a ship… can’t get any cooler than that.
At the start of the rally I had the chance to head to the New Smyrna Speedway to see the 10th running of Billy Lane’s “Sons of Speed’’ and man o man didn’t it get wild! It’s crazy to think that it’s already been ten races that have happened since his wild idea of assembling racers that are running motors that are over 90 years old… The bikes are getting faster and faster, some topping nearly 85 MPH! It’s insane when you think that these machines were meant to travel on dirt roads and never get above 15mph. Oh, and let’s not forget that they don’t have clutches, starters, mirrors, and yeah, NO FU*%ING brakes! I’d call that a lil Insane and dare devilish, but trust me, it’s a total blast.
After a jam-packed week of events, food, music and seeing so many friends from across the nation and around the world, my most favorite thing to do is usually at the end of the week once all the craziness starts to wind down, and that’s to take a lil ride with the Cycle Source Family. We all stop and remember to take a bit of time to enjoy while we’re really there in the first place… to ride motorcycles with our loved ones and to experience some of the joy in life. If you’ve never been to Daytona Bike Week and done the nature loop, allow me to paint a picture… two lanes, slower speeds, palms, ancient oaks covered in Spanish moss that overhang the road, sun shining through spots in the trees, scenic views galore. If you’ve ever seen a pic in many magazines taken by Michael Lichter of Billy Lane, Indian Larry, Paul Cox, Paul Yaffe, and so on and so on, and it matches my painting then you get the idea. There’s nothing more tranquil and gratifying to me than ending an amazing Bike Week with that ride. Those few hours reminded me that above all else, the chaos, the hustle, and bustle, and sometimes wondering WTF am I doing here. That wrapping it up ride makes it all worthwhile. But I always, always remember it’s the people past and most of all present that make it what it is… an experience! Take Care of Yourself and Each Other. God Bless X.