AMA Supports National Historic Vehicle Register Act That’d Preserve Moto-History

Bill would create registry at Library of Congress to preserve records, history, culture

The American Motorcyclist Association supports a federal bill that would create a national register to preserve the records of historic vehicles, including motorcycles, that have made a significant impact on U.S. history and culture.

The National Historic Vehicle Register Act (S. 966), introduced by U.S. Sens. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio), would require the U.S. Department of the Interior to establish a register housed in the Library of Congress to preserve examples of American history and engineering innovation by documenting historically significant automobiles, motorcycles, trucks, and commercial vehicles.

“As a long-time motorcyclist, Sen. Peters knows there are few things better than the freedom of two wheels on the open road,” said Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations. “Whether traveling cross country or just across town, motorcycles are a part of America’s transportation culture.

1995 Britten V1000 #10 Significance in Racing Award 2017 Quail Motorcycle Gathering

This 1995 Britten V1000 superbike, No. 10 of 10, is a prime candidate for the National Historic Vehicle Register Act. 

“The American Motorcyclist Association thanks Sens. Peters and Portman for their leadership on this important issue, and we are pleased to support the National Historic Vehicle Register Act to help highlight America’s motorcycling history,” Allard said.

The Historic Vehicle Association has been working with the Interior Department on the register proposal since 2013, and the American Motorcyclist Association has been providing support.

The Historic Vehicle Association has documented 18 historic vehicles through the Interior Department’s Historic American Engineering Record. The record recognizes a broad range of historical engineering-related sites and structures, including bridges, ships and roads.

The National Historic Vehicle Register Act would create a standalone register to preserve the records of historically significant vehicles that would include short narratives, photographs and engineering drawings of each vehicle. To be eligible for the register, vehicles must be connected to a significant person or event in American history, have a unique design or be a rare model.

The bill has been referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

AMA Continues Partnership with The Quail Motorcycle Gathering

1949 Indian Arrow at Quail Motorcycle Gathering

AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Heritage Award to be presented

The American Motorcyclist Association is continuing its partnership with The Quail Motorcycle Gathering, which includes an AMA display and the presentation of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Heritage Award at the May 6 event at Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel, Calif.

“We are very glad to again be a part of The Quail Motorcycle Gathering, one of the premier motorcycling events of the year,” said AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman. “The Quail showcases some of the finest competition motorcycles in the country and highlights the elegance of these machines, as well as their performance.”

A member of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame will be on hand to present the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Heritage Award, which recognizes a machine that best represents a contribution or contributions that AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers have made to the growth of American motorcycling.

In addition, the AMA will be on location to greet supporters, sell memberships and provide information about the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame.

Gordon McCall, director of motorsports at the Quail Lodge and Golf Club said, “Our partnership with the AMA is very important to us, as this organization represents the advocacy that all of us motorcyclists need to protect our beloved hobby and sport. Over the years, every honoree of our ‘Legend of the Sport’ has been an AMA Hall of Famer. We are looking forward to hosting the AMA once again, as well as continuing to build our relationship into the future.”

The ninth annual The Quail Motorcycle Gathering celebrates the past, present and future of motorcycling. The featured themes include:

• American
• British
• Italian
• Other European
• Japanese
• Competition On Road
• Competition Off Road
• Antique
• Custom/Modified
• Extraordinary Bicycles and Scooters Class
• Norton Motorcycles – Celebrating 50 Years of the Norton Commando

AMA members receive a discount on tickets to The Quail Motorcycle Gathering by using the discount code at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/for-members/member-discount-codes.

More information about The Quail Motorcycle Gathering can be found at signatureevents.peninsula.com.

AMA Go Ride! Month Kicks Off

AMA Go Ride Month

Every April, the American Motorcyclist Association celebrates the riding season with AMA Go Ride! Month, the association’s annual campaign to promote the fun and fulfillment that motorcycling brings to so many lives. As part of 2017 AMA Go Ride! Month, Cycle Gear is hosting a month-long AMA Grand Tour offering cool prizes while promoting AMA membership in all of its locations.

“We ride for a lot of reasons, but one of them is to have fun,” said AMA Recreational Riding and Volunteer Manager Marie Wuelleh. “The Cycle Gear AMA Go Ride! Month Grand Tour is a great way to get out on your bike, engage with some fellow riders and hopefully win some new riding gear.”

The AMA and Cycle Gear, also a chartered AMA promoter, are partnering with bike rental company Eagle Rider, the ride-tracking and mapping app Rever and communications company SENA to manage the grand tour. Prizes include full kits of riding gear, Club Eagle Rider subscriptions, Rever subscriptions and SENA product.

“We’re excited that Cycle Gear is not just running an AMA Grand Tour that celebrates motorcycling and AMA Go Ride! Month, but is also offering membership in the AMA,” Wuelleh said. “The support of the motorcycle industry is critical to the AMA’s mission to promote the motorcycle lifestyle for generations to come.”

Participants can sign up now at www.cg-goride.com or using the Rever mobile app. There are three categories: street, v-twin and off-road. Earn points by riding, with bonus points assigned for visiting key locations. A leaderboard will track who is in line for cool prizes.

For non-members, Cycle Gear has added an AMA membership to its point-of-purchase software, so joining the AMA at a Cycle Gear location is as simple as buying a new inner tube for your dirt bike or some leather protectant for your saddlebags.

The AMA will close out AMA Go Ride! Month with the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Spring Bike Night, April 29, on the AMA campus in Pickerington, Ohio. Riders who attend can enjoy free entry to the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame, live music by Sneaky Pete & The Players, local club displays, raffle prizes, great food and an after party at North High Brewing. The Facebook Event page for the bike night is www.facebook.com/events/904839429655888/.

For more information about AMA Go Ride! Month, see the April issue of American Motorcyclist, the journal of the AMA, or visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com.

AMA CEO Dingman to Testify vs Motorcycle Tariff

AMA logo

Office of U.S. Trade Representative hearing slated for Feb. 15

American Motorcyclist Association President and CEO Rob Dingman will testify Feb. 15 against a 100 percent tariff on some European motorcycles proposed by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.

“We object to this proposed tariff because it would harm American motorcyclists,” Dingman said. “Significantly raising the cost of European motorcycles through a tariff could price thousands of families out of the motorcycle market.”

The tariff would affect motorcycles with engines displacing 51cc to 500cc from Aprilia, Beta, BMW, Ducati, Fantic, Gas Gas, Husqvarna, KTM, Montesa, Piaggio, Scorpa, Sherco, TM and Vespa.

The federal agency is seeking the tariff as leverage against the European Union in an ongoing dispute over the importing of U.S. beef to Europe that contains hormones. A public hearing is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Feb. 15 in Rooms 1 and 2, 1724 F St. NW., Washington, D.C.

At the AMA’s urging, more than 10,000 emails have been sent to Congress on this issue, nearly 10,000 comments have been made directly to the agency through Regulations.gov and more than 5,000 emails have been sent to President Donald Trump.

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is responsible for developing and coordinating U.S. international trade, commodity and direct investment policy and overseeing negotiations with other countries. The head of USTR is the U.S. Trade Representative, a Cabinet member who serves as the president’s principal trade adviser, negotiator and spokesperson on trade issues.

“We don’t believe non-agricultural products should be included in tariffs connected to agricultural trade disputes,” Dingman said. “In addition to substantially raising prices for American riders, this tariff would jeopardize the many small and medium-sized businesses that rely on the sale of European motorcycles, parts and accessories.”

European makers of 51cc-399cc motorcycles used for racing provide nearly half the units available to U.S. consumers, and nearly a quarter of the market in the 400-500cc class. There are not significant numbers of U.S.-made options for consumers in those market segments.

In the on-road motorcycle segment, 100 percent of the models 300cc and smaller are imported to the United States from abroad.

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative tried the same tactic in 1998 and 2008, but the efforts were thwarted when the AMA, the Motorcycle Industry Council and bike manufacturers and retailers rallied motorcyclists against the plan. At that time, the U.S. Trade Representative instead raised the tariff on a variety of European food products.

AMA Objects to Scope of Two New National Monuments

AMA logo

President’s designations raise concerns about motorized access to public lands

The designation of two new national monuments by President Barack Obama could jeopardize access for responsible motorized recreation on more than 1.6 million acres of public land in Utah and Nevada.

Using the Antiquities Act of 1906, the president designated 1.35 million acres in southeast Utah as the Bears Ears National Monument and nearly 300,000 acres in Clark County, Nev., just northeast of Las Vegas, as the Gold Butte National Monument.

“We are concerned about continued access to these public lands for responsible motorized recreation,” said Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations. “With the national monument designation comes a review of management plans that could curtail or eliminate some off-road riding areas.”

The Antiquities Act authorizes the president to issue proclamations to protect “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest,” while limiting those designations to “the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected.”

“These new designations cover far larger areas than needed to ensure that historic landmarks are preserved,” Allard said. “None of the Utah congressional delegation wanted this, and many Nevadans were opposed to it, too.

“The designation of national monuments, whether by the president or by Congress, should include careful consideration of the wishes of local stakeholders, including nearby communities, elected officials and those who use the land,” Allard continued.

Utah’s attorney general has threatened a lawsuit to reverse the Bears Ears designation, and the Utah congressional delegation vowed to pursue legislation to undo it.

A study by UtahPolicy cited by U.S. Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) found that 60 percent of Utah residents opposed designating the Bears Ears area as a national monument, while 33 percent supported the proposal.

Nevada’s congressional delegation was divided along party lines, with Democrats praising the designations and Republicans condemning them.

Christy Goldfuss, managing director of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, said the Antiquities Act does not give a president authority to undo a designation, a position the courts have upheld. She acknowledged that Congress could take action, though.

“The AMA supports the congressional delegations that work with local stakeholders and Native American tribes on these issues,” Allard said. “Presidents should not bypass Congress on issues of public access to U.S. lands, and the opinions of all stakeholders–gathered through town meetings and formal comments–should factor heavily into the final decision.”

AMA Objects to Exclusion of Motorcycles in New DOT Safety Plan

The new federal safety initiative–Road to Zero–announced today by the U.S. Department of Transportation ignores a significant sector of the nation’s road users–the millions of Americans who choose motorcycles as their favorite form of transportation.

The Road to Zero initiative is a coalition tackling the task of ending road fatalities within 30 years. The coalition includes the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Safety Council.

“We laud the efforts of these three federal agencies and the National Safety Council to reduce the number of crashes, injuries and fatalities on the nation’s roads,” said Wayne Allard, vice president of government relations for the American Motorcyclist Association. “However, during the announcement of this major initiative, no mention was made of motorcycles or motorcyclists, even though the safety of other vulnerable road users-including pedestrians, bicyclists, even joggers-was specifically highlighted.”

Allard said the AMA, which represents the interests of all American motorcyclists, must be a part of the discussion to ensure that motorcycle safety is at the forefront and to protect the future of motorcycling.

The Road to Zero Coalition initially will focus on promoting strategies such as increasing seat belt use, installing rumble strips, addressing truck safety, undertaking behavior-change campaigns and data-driven enforcement. The coalition then will lead the development of a new scenario-based vision on how to achieve zero traffic deaths based on evidence-based strategies and a systematic approach to eliminating risks.

A large part of the long-range plan for Road to Zero is the emergence of autonomous or semi-autonomous vehicles, referred to as highly automated vehicles by the U.S. Department of Transportation. These HAVs hold the potential for eliminating crashes that are caused by human decision making, such as drunken driving, speeding and distracted driving.

“The questions we have for the coalition and the DOT are ‘Was the exclusion of motorcycles intentional?’ and ‘Is a ban on motorcycles part of the plan to get to zero road deaths?'” Allard said.

“It is hard to imagine how you could eliminate all human decision making from the operation of a vehicle, especially a motorcycle,” Allard said. “If autonomous motorcycles were ever developed, no one would ride them. We also are particularly concerned that highly automated vehicles are not being developed in a manner that takes into account the detection of motorcycles.”

At the same time, the AMA is awaiting the appointment of the re-established national Motorcycle Advisory Council, which is to advise the federal transportation agencies on motorcycle-related issues.

“Motorcyclists should have been included in this project from the beginning, either through direct interaction with the AMA or through the Motorcycle Advisory Council,” Allard said. “Let’s not let another moment slip by without considering the safety of this important segment of road users and taking steps to secure the future of this popular form of transportation.”

AMA Petitioning vs Renewable Fuel Standard Proposal and Increased Ethanol Fuels

Don't Be Fueled by E15

Federal agency actions increase ethanol risk for motorcycles

The Renewable Fuel Standard proposal announced May 18 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would increase the risk of misfueling for motorcyclists and all-terrain-vehicle owners by forcing the widespread availability of higher-ethanol fuel blends, such as unsafe E15.

Act now by signing the American Motorcyclist Association’s petition to voice your concern. The deadline is July 11.

The EPA’s proposed Renewable Volume Obligations call for 18.8 billion gallons of biofuel for 2017, up 690 million gallons from this year. The obligations for 2015 were 16.93 gallons.

By increasing the amounts of ethanol into America’s gasoline marketplace, the EPA will exceed the blend wall by hundreds of millions of gallons! The blend wall is the point at which no more ethanol can be blended without forcing higher blends like E15 and above into the marketplace.

Doing so means ethanol blends of 15 percent or higher would become more prevalent and safe fuels like E10 or E0 could become harder to find.

In fact, the EPA’s RVO proposal intends the E10 blend wall, not as a barrier, but a “transition” with the goal to push higher ethanol levels into the market. The EPA plans on doing this by:
1. Regulation
2. Subsidies for blender pumps
3. Price subsidies to lower the cost per gallon for higher ethanol fuel; and
4. “[A]ctions not yet defined”
The EPA feels confident in its ability to push more ethanol into the marketplace. It states, “To date we have seen no compelling evidence that the nationwide average ethanol concentration in gasoline cannot exceed 10.0%.”

This contradicts the EPA’s past statements. In a regulatory announcement released Aug. 6, 2013, “EPA Finalizes Renewable Fuel Standards,” the EPA said that for 2014 “the ability of the market to consume ethanol in higher blends such as E85 is highly constrained as a result of infrastructure — and market-related factors. EPA does not currently foresee a scenario in which the market could consume enough ethanol sold in blends greater than E10…”

Remarkably, the EPA still recognizes these same constraints in the current proposal!

An increase in higher-ethanol blended fuel means the availability of E0 – fuel needed for older and vintage motorcycles — will decrease substantially. Since the distribution network for E15 and E85 is limited, fuel producers may be forced to reduce E0 output to stay within the RVO limits. The proposed rule acknowledges only marine recreationists as users of E0. Motorcycles and other small engines are not mentioned at all.

This is very troubling, because the EPA is calling for higher ethanol blended fuels and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture is spending your taxpayer dollars to make it happen, despite knowing that none of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and ATVs in use in the United States is approved to use E15 or higher ethanol blends. Using those fuels in motorcycles and ATVs is illegal and may cause engine and fuel system damage and void the manufacturer’s warranty.

Moreover, the proposed rule does not mention “misfuel” once in its 84 pages. The risk of inadvertent misfueling will increase as more retail stations sell E15 or higher-ethanol fuel. The rule claims “it is possible that 1,700 stations could offer E15 by 2017.” In comparison, there are approximately 250 stations that offer E15 today.

The EPA opened a comment period to allow the public to voice its opinion on the proposed rule. And the AMA has the tools to make it easy for you to submit comments by signing our petition.

The AMA will submit every name and address with our draft comments to the EPA. There is nothing more powerful than tens of thousands of riders joining together to express their concern with unsafe fuel for their machines.

Now more than ever, it is crucial that you and your riding friends become members of the AMA to help protect our riding freedoms. More members mean more clout against the opponents of motorcycling. That support will help fight for your rights – on the road, trail, racetrack, and in the halls of government. If you are a motorcycle rider, join the AMA at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/membership/join.

Please share with your friends on Facebook.

Sign the petition!

Bike Shows At AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days Feature All Makes, Models

On July 20-22, the American Motorcyclist Association and the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame will welcome a wonderful assortment of expertly restored and original condition motorcycles from numerous eras, styles and countries of origin at AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio.

“The fundamental elements of a motorcycle are simple — two wheels and an engine to move them — however, since the invention of the motorcycle, we have seen countless renditions of this basic form,” said AMA Director of Operations Jack Penton. “AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days offers the country’s most distinctive display of these machines, on the track, on the road and as part of the bike shows that anchor our appreciation of two-wheeled art.”

While the grounds of Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course will boast vintage motorcycles at every turn, four bike shows will highlight the best and most historic machines: the Hall of Fame Ride ‘Em, Don’t Hide ‘Em Bike Show and Scooter Bike Show on Friday, July 20, and the Hall of Fame Static Bike Show and Café Racer Bike Show on Saturday, July 21.

First, owners will have the opportunity to show off their running vintage motorcycles as part of the Ride ‘Em, Don’t Hide ‘Em Bike Show. The show begins with a lap of the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, then leaves the grounds for a 25-mile scenic ride, returning for a judged show at 2 p.m. Classes include American, British, European, Japanese and Specials/Customs, as well as special show awards. Registration will be on site at the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame tent starting at 8 a.m. on Friday.

On Saturday, the Hall of Fame Static Bike Show will feature pristine restored or original-condition vintage motorcycles outside the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame tent. Registration opens at 8 a.m., with judging starting at 1 p.m. and awards at 3:30 p.m. The Motorcycle Hall of Fame Static Show features motorcycles from the early 1900s through 1989. Bikes featured will include American, British, European and Japanese models that span various decades. The machines will be set on the show grid and be on public display throughout the day.

In addition, two shows will celebrate “Rockers and Mods,” the two-wheeled subculture that is experiencing a classic resurgence in America and is a focus of this year’s AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days. A Friday bike show will include the Italian metal-bodied scooters, while British café-racer motorcycles will take center stage on Saturday.

For specific bike show times and locations, see www.AMAVintageMotorcycleDays.com.

“AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is all things motorcycling, from the people, the motorcycles and the racing that defines our motorcycling culture,” Penton said. “The bike shows are a key element of that mix, and we expect to offer some amazing examples of motorcycle technology this year.”

With proceeds supporting the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is the country’s premier celebration of vintage motorcycles and motorcycling heritage. In addition to demo rides of current year street and off-road motorcycles, the event includes amateur national championship roadracing, motocross, hare scrambles, trials and dirt-track in vintage classes. The weekend also features North America’s largest motorcycle swap meet, bike shows, a classic field meet for motorcycles and scooters, and seminars on a number of topics by noted motorcycling experts.

Tickets to AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days can be purchased online at www.MidOhio.com.