In 1972, Kenny Roberts was a youthful 21 years old AMA Rookie of the Year. An immensely talented and thoroughly analytical rider, Roberts was already three years into his professional racing career, and two years into a factory Yamaha contract. However, he was still not much known outside of the USA. Roberts went on to finish 2nd in the AMA Grand National Championship that year, his first season as an expert class rider.
Everyone thought Hollywood was showing his pride and paying tribute to the Oilers club– “Kinda funny story about this pic… Someone yelled out to me that a flag flew out of a car and was in the middle of the track. As usual I wasn’t paying attention to the races. I rode out, grabbed it and held it up so it wouldn’t flap around and hit me in the face– had no idea it was an Oilers’ flag until I got to the finish line to return it!” ~Hollywood AKA @knucklebuster1939 of the Oilers CC / MC. Photo (c) by Bryan helm
Moon Equipment Co. Transporter– 1938 Ford COE, originally an old Coca Cola truck, yellow was their color before red said Mel Stultz himself! — TRoG, The Race of Gentlemen 2018– Photography (c) by Bryan Helm
The Frozen Few may be the antithesis of The Race of Gentlemen in climate & conditions, but in spirit it’s the same balls-out combustible mix of freedom, speed, and more than a pinch of chaos that’s behind everything TROG founder Mel Stultz brings to the world. What’s in store for The Frozen Few & Crazy Eights ice-racing wrecking crew? You’ll just have to wait and see… For now, enjoy this amazing short film by Stephen M. Marino that just won the Tokyo Moto Film Fest award for “Most Inspiring Film.”
The Frozen Few
“Once upon a time, on a cold day in March, a group of men known as the ‘Crazy Eights’ crossed their American borders in search of an even colder climate in the ‘Great White North.’
It was in Sault Ste. Marie, Canada that their icy, snow-covered tires finally came to a halt. A forgotten land that once provided great trade between these two countries during their industrial revolutions—now a vast, almost-wasteland of buildings left behind; lost in time…
That is, until the Crazy Eights laid their eyes and wheels upon it! Once again, this land was looked upon with great hope and promise. Hungry and wild-eyed, they set their appetites for that ever-lingering taste of speed.”
-Meldon Van Riper Stultz
Mel Stultz, also founder of The Race of Gentlemen – Photo (C) Stephen M. Marino
Armed with a leaky old 35mm camera, and an iron clad determination to capture as many of the “Faces behind the Races” of TROG 2017— Sean Madden surely delivered the goods! Sean was snapping at a furious pace and wasn’t able to get everyone’s name – so help us out by sharing this post and/or leaving a comment if you see someone you know!
Sumner Dilworth has made quite a name for himself shooting incredible portraits, and some of the hottest up-and-coming models, brands & bands. We first met at our Greaser Getdown event with Triumph & Disaster in our New Hope, PA shop. Sumner has a commanding stature and presence that exude a gentle, self-assured confidence. His smooth voice and chill delivery immediately put you at ease. He went about setting up a very simple rig in our doorway consisting of a backdrop and a couple lights, and proceeded to take some of the most stunning portraits that any of us had ever seen.
Sumner fixed his attention on the numerous photos on the walls at The Selvedge Yard shop of The Race of Gentlemen shot by our friend and esteemed photographer Scott G Toepfer, and his interest immediately grew. From that Sumner was determined to bring his unique eye to TROG West (Pismo Beach, CA) and TROG EAST 2017 (Wildwood, NJ) that just occurred June 10th & 11th. Sumner has allowed TSY to share some of these latest photographs with you, and I am confident you’ll love them as much as we do.
Matt Harris of 40 Cal Customs racing his 1923 Harley-Davidson – Sons of Speed
Billy Lane of Choppers Inc. had a vision to race vintage board-track motorcycles with his friends, family, and other respected builders and racers. Sons of Speed finally kicked off in Daytona during the 76th Bike Week at the New Smyrna Speedway on March 18th, 2017, after having been cancelled due to Hurricane Matthew.
Waiting outside the New Smyrna gates, there was definitely some anticipation and excitement to see these bikes perform on the track. Since these vintage bikes have no clutch or gearbox, the four riders are positioned at the top of the banked track and are push-started with the help of gravity and some manpower. It’s so great to hear the bikes fire up once the twin engines roar to life, propelling the riders down the paved track.
Bummed that TSY could not make it to TROG West out at Pismo Beach, CA. Stoked though that our photographer friend Pierre Robichaud shot these amazing images for us to share with y’all. I can’t imagine The Race of Gentlemen without the colorful (in more ways than one…) backdrop of Wildwood, NJ… but damn if Pierre’s photography and words don’t make me even more sorry that we weren’t there.
Sean Madden came into the TSY shop last summer emitting an abundance smiles and good vibes. I liked this guy right away. We chatted about his passion for motorcycles and photography, and reconnected a few times since. Well, he decided to bite the bullet and come down to Wildwood, NJ and shoot The Race of Gentlemen 2016– which can be quite daunting as many of the best photographers in the business now religiously make the trek to TROG. When I got a look at some of his shots I was impressed enough to ask if TSY could share them with all of you. I especially dig his shots like the one above of Sushi racing. Sean’s shots where he’s intentionally cropping the images of the riders & machine flying out of frame emit a sense of speed and movement that I dig. Definitely very different from a lot of the standard TROG imagery you see these days. Hope y’all enjoy.
Man, The Race of Gentlemen 2015 already feels like a long time back. Damn the blasted holidays for drowning out the amazing memories on the beach and off-season streets of Wildwood, NJ! More good times, familiar faces, new friends, and great races than you could shake a stick at. Mel Stultz, Bobby Green, Sara Francello, Hollywood, and the entire TROG crew over-delivered on a great event, even in the face of a hurricane threat. In honor of them, and to relive the good times, here’s a great little TROG 2015 film shot by the crew at awol.tv x worthless.co–
“This is the closest thing to time travel we will probably experience in our lifetimes. The Race of Gentlemen challenges the owners of hot rods and motorcycles from the 1940’s and earlier to drag race as it used to be done– at the wave of the flag and on the beach. We ventured to Wildwood, NJ to watch the most unique racing we’ve ever seen.”