Glitz and glamour from LA
Our roving correspondent in Los Angeles, PAUL GARSON, went along to the 2017 Grand National Roadster Show. Here’s a brief run down...
As the event’s name implies, this show, first launched in 1949, focuses on four wheeled vehicles albeit not all technically qualifying as “roadsters” which back in the day meant an open two-seater minus doors and even windshields. Tracing the nomenclature further, “roadster” initially was the label attached to a horse well-equipped for traveling, the term later applied to bicycles and tricycles by the end of the 1800s. Sportiness was the operative word no matter the size of the chassis so “roadster” could include the full spectrum of cars from an Everyman’s Model T to a celebrity’s 16-cylinder Caddy. It’s noteworthy that “roadster” is an American creation, the Brits calling such cars a “two-seater tourer.”
So, to stretch the rules a bit, motorcycles, in that they are very “open” and often offer seating for two, have found their way into the Grand National Roadster Show including this year’s 68th running of the event. First staged in Oakland, CA aka the Oakland Roadster Show, this go-around was the 14th year the GNRS was held at the Pomona Fairgrounds Fairplex.
RIGHT The exceptionally talented designer/builder Kiyo Mitsuhiro, working out of his Gardena, CA shop, Kiyo’s Garage, mindmelded this double-engined, Weber carbed 1620 cc 1972 Honda CB, entering it in the Competition category. Bike is heading to El Miraj to take on record breaking attempt. LEFT Anthony Robinson’s company A-C Garage Door Company installs garage doors all over California, but he spends his spare time building special bikes, two of which, both 500cc Triumphs, were on display. The bikes took the first two places in the European Class. This is Anthony with the winner, named “La Mosca”.
ABOVE The second place bike is based around a Daytona 500 and is known as the Root Beer Barrel bike. An example of the attention to detail can be seen in the milled and engraved rear hub – the engraving is the work of a friend’s 12-year-old son.
ABOVE Tank slapping Harleys and Indians made for one hayfullava display of TT racers, all thanks to the efforts of the Hell on Wheels MC.