Riding Into History is the premier American motorcycle concours d’elegance. Now in its eighteenth year, RIH continues to set the bar for how to put on a great motorcycle event.
Presented on the beautiful grounds of the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, FL, RIH is a full two day affair. Beginning on Friday morning wherein some forty vintage bikes took part in a tour of the lovely north Florida countryside on their way to a riverside restaurant lunch stop. Leading the fifty mile ride was the Grand Marshal, Hall of Fame motorcycle champion, Miguel Duhamel on a classic Honda CB750.
Later that evening over 200 guests, including Miguel’s Hall of Fame father Yvon, attended a dinner in their honor. After dining, Brian Slark, Technical Director of the Barber Motorsport Museum, led an entertaining conversation with Miguel and his renowned crew chief Al Ludington. Their tales of years of racing together were educational, noteworthy, and hilarious.
But Saturday is the main event at Riding Into History. Over 75 volunteers are up before dawn getting ready for the show. The organization has been honed and polished over the years and functions as a well-oiled machine. In two hours three hundred motorcycles are registered and parked by class, arrayed around the lake on a half mile walkway of brick pavers.
This year, the fortieth anniversary of the Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Club, RIH featured Japanese motorcycles and honored Japan’s manufacturing ethos of Kai Zen, continuous improvement. However, these represented only about a third of the motorcycles. Another hundred and fifty or so motorcycles were entered for judging representing all types from all over the USA. In addition to the competitive entries there were a number of very special displays. Jim and Sharon Dillard brought half a dozen exotic Italian racers from their collection. We also had a display of survivor bikes, another of Jubilee Triumphs, and, for the first time in the US, a complete set of Spanish Bultaco Metrallas. Finally, there was a special class of ten widely varying motorcycles that was judged by a group of young people.
In the serious concours scoring, a dozen judging teams had the unenviable task of selecting the close to one hundred award winners. Among the notable winners were Ken Porter’s Best in Show 1927 Henderson DeLuxe, Garry Gassew’s sandcast 1969 Honda CB750, Preservation Award winner Floyd Webb’s 129,000 mile 1980 Suzuki GS1000E, and the Spirit of RIH winning Harley-Davidson Scat of Terry Warnkin.
Riding Into History is a 501c(3) charity organization that has raised nearly $500,000 for local charities in northeast Florida, including over $150,000 for the K9’s For Warriors. Next year’s Riding Into History will once again be held at the World Golf Village on May 19.
For more information please visit www.ridingintohistory.org.
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