Article By: Ronster Ron Brefka
Photos By Ronster & AMA
Originally Published In the August-September 2020 Issue Of Cycle Source Magazine
The Lake was Frozen, the Ice was Fast, and the excitement ran high for the Motorcycle Ice Racers ready to do battle for the AMA #1 National Titles at the High Voltage Show’s 2020 AMA Ice-Race Grand Championships in Wisconsin. And what a great day for championship ice racing it was! Race day dawned bright as almost 200 ice-race entries waited under a clear blue and cold day. The ½ mile ice track was good and wide with big “sweeper” turns that are a favorite of the racers wanting to hit the wide outside at high speed.
Racer support trucks and trailers packed the large on-ice motorcycle pit area. The sweet sound of revving ice-race engines cracked through the crisp winter air in anticipation of the Start. Suddenly, Ice chips and crowd cheers tore through the air with the roar of the first heat racers tearing down the track! The High Voltage AMA Ice Race Grand Championships were on and it was evident that this was real competitive championshiplevel ice-racing. Dam good Ice racers from several US States and even Canada were fighting for the National Championship in their class and weren’t holding anything back. There was high speed, high action racing in all classes. The many different race classes were a showcase of sorts for the Ice Race Grand Championship and gave pretty much everyone a chance to race. Classes included the superfast 450cc and Open Classes. There was a Women’s class, a 250cc class, and the Veteran’s class along with the wily and seasoned riders in the Senior’s class.
The Vintage class had great riders and even a few vintage Harley flat-head ice-bikes. There was a fascinating “Rubber tire” class with specially prepared non-studded tires (worth a story on their own) and of course, the Kid’s classes, a crowd favorite, with racers as young as 5 years old on tiny 50cc ice bikes and also kids on 65cc and 85cc class iceracers.
Of course, the High Voltage Hooligan Class was my favorite. This was the first ever Hooligan Class in AMA Ice Race Grand Championship history. The AMA even printed “High Voltage Hooligan” on the #1 National Champion plate. Pretty humbling but also a great honor. For those that don’t know, “Hooligan Ice-Racers” are mostly Harley Sportsters set up as ice bikes: but, any twin-cylinder bike over 750cc and fitted with 19” wheels can race. So of course, I had to enter my ‘82 Harley Shovelhead Ice Racer and I somehow placed 4th but still well behind the new 2020 Ice Race Grand National Champion in the Hooligan Class; J.J. Flairty. At the end of the day as the last checkered flag fell, and the low but bright winter sun skimmed the treetops, excitement still buzzed as the day’s 39 Winners headed for the High Voltage award podium. Smiles were big and wide and were everywhere, especially for the thirteen new 2020 Ice Race Grand Champions who would be awarded their coveted #1 AMA National Champion plates.
The award podium, with the large WeCareFund logo, reminded everyone that this blazing bright day of Championship ice-racing was all to benefit cancer research. Thousands of dollars are raised and go directly to the WeCareFund for cancer research at the Medical College of Wisconsin. This makes for an even greater day of Championship ice-racing! 2020 is the 5th Anniversary year for the High Voltage Vintage Motorcycle and Chopper Show. The 5th Anniversary Show will be held on Saturday September 12th 2020 at Humboldt Park in Milwaukee. The show is always free for spectators, and it also benefits cancer research. It is a great show and just like the ice races should not be missed. Be sure to follow High Voltage on Facebook and Instagram.