New Zealand Classic Motorcycles, Nelson, New Zealand is sponsoring a 1916 3.5 h.p., 3 speed, all enclosed chain drive Sunbeam in the 2016 Cannonball.
It will be ridden by Tom Sturgess, also of Nelson, a 65 year old classic bike enthusiast and sheep farmer.
The bike is currently being switched from beaded edge (clincher) tyres to modern bias ply tyres, having its petrol/oil tank evaluated for replacement, and being prepared for accumulating a targeted 1000 mile commissioning regime.
Participant in the previous three Lonnie Isam Jr. Cannonball endurance rides. I’ve been involved with motorcycles most of my life and got seriously involved in antique motorcycles around 2005. I now collect, restore and sell classic and antique motorcycles of various brands with a focus on Indian and Triumph. I plan to ride my 1915 Indian in the 2016 Cannonball.
Frank Rick, Elkhart Lake WI, my faithful friend and mechanic is scheduled to support me once again. I’ve had support from many friends and family on the past three rides such as my good friend Mark Moses of Victory /Indian of Charlotte. His support included providing me “Indian brand” clothing that keeps me looking fairly good and protecting me from the wide range of weather encountered. Individual supporters have been too many to list here, but a few faithful supporters are well knowns in the motorcycle and collector world like: Pete and Jackie Hill, Louie Hale, Lonnie Campbell, Eddie Garrett and Steve Philbeck. Of course my brother Steve Petty is my favorite fan – he also designed the rear brake system on my ’15 Indian, which has saved me several times.
My video submission is a compilation of a sample of some of my favorite photos from the three rides – many of them taken by the gentleman artist and photographer Michael Lichter. I included photos of many of my fellow riders I spent a good bit of my time riding with. Wish I could have captured everyone.
The Cannonball is such a valuable learning experience, a test of your determination and a rollercoaster of emotions – elated days of trouble-free riding to disappointing setbacks and late night recoveries. You’re happy for your fellow riders when they have a good day and you feel their pain when you see them struggle. The end - as they say - is bitter sweet. You're happy to have made it, but realize it’s the end of the ride.
This is my video that's a requirement for entry in the 2016 coast to coast ride on motorcycles 100 years old and older that is scheduled for Sept. The video is suppose to be about yourself and your entry bike for 2016. I think my 3 previous completed cannonball rides capture it and show just a portion of my friends that I had the pleasure to ride with. Most photos are the property of Michael Lichter unless purchased from Mr. Lichter. Photos by Jim Dhoms as well. It's much better to the Kid Rock song - Born Free... but that's not allowed for use .
In 2010, a good friend of mine, Cris Sommer-Simmons was doing a vintage motorcycle race across the country on a 1915 Harley. I didn’t know much about it then, but thought it sounded like an incredible adventure. In 2012, my husband, Scott Jacobs decided to do the race himself, and I figured I would ride along on my new Harley. Not only had I never ridden a foot clutch or tank shift bike before, I had never ridden any bike 4000 miles at one time. When I saw and felt the bond between the riders, I knew that I wanted to be a part of it next time. We started looking for bikes that met the criteria for 2014, and found not one, but two 1936 HD VLH bikes. I chose the 3 speed instead of the 4 speed, and after having it completely restored, I learned how to ride it. That was the easy part.
Day 1 - Seized my pistons! Day 2 - Replaced the pistons with over 70’s in an 80 bore, and managed to finish that day! Day 3 - Seized my pistons!!! Yes, really. Thankfully, because we had the other ’36, we stripped the top end, and overnighted it to the hotel. My mechanics changed everything out within 3 hours. Unfortunately, I had lost two full days because we had to wait until Monday to ship, so although I was out of contention, I wanted to finish what I started. I crossed the finish line after 17 days, (the last 12 days with a perfect score) and not only was it a physical accomplishment, but also an emotional and personal victory! When Lonnie announced the 2016 Century Race, I started looking for the next machine to conquer this feat. Watch me in 2016 where I’ll be riding a 1915 Harley-Davidson F11 with my wonderful and supportive Cannonball Family. Can’t wait!!!
I have two creeds: “life is good” and “ If you can dream it, you can do it!” Motorcycle Cannonball fits both of these creeds as this is an exceptionally way to feel that “life is good” riding and living with friends and family through beautiful America. Freedom is the most important thing we can have and people did grow their freedom by building and riding motorcycles and cars. It was the freedom of travelling whenever and wherever you want. The Harleys, Davidsons and Fords had a dream and did it! I realized a lot of my dreams in the past 50 years and now it is time for one more dream come true: Cannonball 2016.
My name is Paul-Emile BESSADE, I’m a 59 Frenchmen, but living in Uruguay (South America) were I own a Farm growing cows for meat purpose only. We live there with my wife and my youngest son since 2004. Uruguay it’s a very small but nice country where life is quiet and sweet.
In 2016 I will try to do my third Cannonball, I was there in 2012, and 2014 with a 1929 4 Cylinders Henderson, achieving with all the miles only in 2014, in 2012 we broke all the valves on by one until it’s runs clear. This time I decided to buy a Harley Davidson 1915 3 speeds just for the purpose of the rally. A very nice man L. I. found the bike in Seattle and I just bought it trusting my friend in his choice. But this time the challenge will be far more much difficult, and for me the goal is: just do it, do as much as you can, try to arrive as far as you can, and ENJOY EVERY SECOND YOU DRIVE, there will be perhaps no second opportunity to do this in your life. I’m very excited by this event and just want to add that I came very late to the motorcycles beginning in 2004 with a 1961 BMW R 69 S, and then falling in love with pre 1945 bikes.
Jared and I are very excited for the opportunity to compete in the 2016 Motorcycle Cannonball. We are identical twin brothers who grew up around Indian Motorcycles. At a young age, we developed a passion for antique motorcycles while helping our Dad and Granddad (Buck’s Indian) work on the old bikes. We traveled with our Dad and Granddad all over the country finding and buying the old motorcycles and attending various AMCA swap meets. At fifteen years of age, we helped our Dad restore a pair of 741 Indian Scouts. We then learned how to ride them and obtained our motorcycle licenses with these Scouts. Jared and I enjoyed taking these bikes out on rides together, while occasionally riding them to high school. Then, a couple years after graduating college, we each restored an Indian Chief. From 2009-10, Jared and I restored a 1947 and a 1948 Chief while living and working in same town (Canton, OH).
We have always been Indian motorcycle enthusiasts who not only enjoyed working on the old bikes, but also riding them. For example, Jared and I took our Chiefs and competed in the 2011 Great Race in Yosemite, CA. This was the first “Great Race” in the United States. We have always been up for adventures on the amazing Indian motorcycles, and this is why we are extremely excited to participate in the 2016 Motorcycle Cannonball. This will be our first time participating in the Motorcycle Cannonball, and we intend to complete this race as a team. We will be taking turns riding the same machine on alternating days. Jared and I will be riding a 1916 Indian Powerplus that we will once again build with our Dad. We are extremely excited to share this adventure with our Dad and Granddad, and look forward to the journey that begins in Atlantic City in 2016.
With our inaugural event in 2010 a small band of riders proved that antique motorcycles could indeed be put to the ultimate test. A test that would pit rider and machine against the North American continent. Following in the tracks of our forefathers these brave riders followed a tradition that was over a century in the making. They made history.
Now after three successful events, the Cannonball has become an American institution. Bringing in riders, and collectors from all over the world. Restorations have taken on a new meaning as skilled engine builders have had to reevaluate what it takes to put a 100 year old motorcycle coast to coast. Aside from using their machines for the purposes they were originally intended for, riders are also learning the meaning of the word endurance. Mainly that it pertains to them as much as it does their motorcycle. Nearly 300 miles per day is not easy.
In 2016 we are planning something very special. A true Century Race. In order to qualify for this next event riders will be required to have a 100 year old motorcycle. Only 1916 and earlier machines will be allowed to run in the 2016 Cannonball. As in the years past, a very limited number of entrants will be allowed. Only 100 riders will be chosen to participate in this historic endeavor.
Although each particular stop has yet to be confirmed, we have planned out a route that is both scenic and challenging while still being doable for our smallest single speed motorcycles. On Saturday, 10 September, 2016 100 riders will depart Atlantic City, New Jersey and travel 3400 miles across America to end up in San Diego, California on Monday, 26 September. Sixteen days on the road with one day off. Most of the route will be on two-lane back roads with less than 100 miles on interstate highways. An ambitious ride to say the least, averaging around 300 miles per day this will be a true endurance run.