Tom Rose is a journalist specializing in motor sports, outdoor and adventure stories.
The stories are all true, relating to actual events and real people. The subject matter includes vintage, classic & modern motorcycling, racing, flying, railroads, hunting & fishing and competitive sports. These stories have appeared in local, regional and national publications.
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Sunday, May 22, 2011
Riding Into History - May 2011 - Grand Marshal's Historic Ride
Riding & Dining with Number 34!
I have had the great pleasure of participating in the numerous facets of this outstanding event over the years. On Friday May 20th I checked off one area that I had missed, the Historic Ride. Arriving at the WorldGolfVillage at RIH Chairman Larry Meeker was busy registering riders as former Chairman Bill Robinson lined up the riders & bikes on the starting grid. The green flag was scheduled to drop at for a 55 mile Florida back road ride into the Ancient City of St. Augustine, FL. The destination Harry's Seafood Bar & Grill on the waterfront in the shadow of the Castillo de San Marcos (the fort built by the Spanish in 1762). How fitting that we are indeed Riding Into History in the nations oldest city. Yes, old bikes, old riders, old city and the old fort all adding up to a great ride.
The ride did not disappoint. We followed 2 lane blacktop roads along the banks of the St. Johns River and then through farmland and Florida jungle to the ancient brick streets of the old city to Harry's. I picked a couple of my favorite bikes and positioned to ride with a BMW R60 and a beautiful 67 Velocette 500 Single. Ahhh, the sound of that big thumper! It was motorcycling at it's best, 50 bikes and riders lead by the legendary World Champion road racer Kevin Schwantz riding a Suzuki GS 1000 E.
Lunch was a treat, the best of company, conversation and food. I took the opportunity to talk with Kevin about some racing topics as he remains a part of the highly successful Suzuki AMA Pro Racing teams. A real insight on the tires and new pavement at Daytona, cooling the fuel, etc.
Riding Into History is without question one of the premier motorcycle events in the US. The all volunteer leaders and staff present a world class event and do things the right way. Put RIH on your schedule.