Photos By: Matt Reel
Originally Published In The September 2016 Issue Of Cycle Source Magazine
Well, the best event of the year has come and gone again, The Big Mountain Run once again out did last year. This year brought with it all the riding, camping, site seeing, and friend making of the last along with the addition of The Hillbilly Hot Shoe Flat Track Races. Once again, my favorite event did not disappoint. I’m talking about the Led Sled Sportster Challenge. With the end of last year’s BMR one question was floating around in my head. Would we be able to pull off another Sportster Challenge or was it a one hit wonder?
Ideas of an Asian Challenge, European Challenge along with several others were bounced off each other. A month or so later the answer to my question was apparent when I already started getting phone calls from people wanting to enter the Sportster Challenge for next year. Our sponsors from last year, Led Sled Customs and Browns Custom Coatings, jumped right back on board along with the addition of Lowbrow Customs joining in to provide our builders with great deals to help with their bikes. This year’s competition included a “Lunch Run” to a local watering hole. However, with the addition of the Flat Track to the BMR grounds there were a couple of casualties before the ride (yes, these guys were riding their freshly built customs of the track).
As the time for the ride approached a couple of the builders were dealing with blown head gaskets, cracked gas tanks, and major oil leaks. Since the original rules stated that the bikes must complete the Lunch Run I left it up to the other sportsters builders what to do. Just as I expected they all agreed that they did not want anyone disqualified and all bikes should be judged even if they were not able to complete the ride. These are stand up guys and know what it’s like to bust your ass only to hit another setback.
With the ride over it was time to hand out the awards. As with last year it was no easy task picking the winners, these bikes were top notch. This year’s winners were: Best Chopper-Chris Carpenter, Best Evo- Dave Mattei, Best Iron Head-Matthew Marshall, Best Paint-Chris Wannenwetsch, Best Rigid-Terry Summers, Best Swing Arm Brian McCartney, and Led Sled Choice-Ross Latimer. After the awards were given out Pat Patterson from Led Sled hooked all the builders up with some swag as a “job well done” to all. Well, with another BMR and Sportster Challenge in the books its time for a little break and then back to the planning for next year. What will the next hold? Another Sportster Challenge? Maybe something different. I guess I’ll wait and see if my phone starts ringing with people wanting to enter. Until next year just remember, The Big Mountain Run-It’s really not that great, but the Sportsters are pretty damn cool.