Motorcycle Exhibit Updated
MUSEUM GEARS UP FOR MOTORCYCLE WEEK
Bob Coy has revved up the North East Motor Sports Museum with new bikes and a larger display in time for Motorcycle Week in New Hampshire.
The bike pictured on the near right is new to the museum and was ridden by John Bettencourt to a 1978 win in the AMA Loudon Superbike National. It’s a 1978 Yoshimura East Suzuki Superbike.
The #92 MSDS Parilla is also new. With a tiny 15 HP 175cc engine, the production racer was built in 1959 and raced as far away as Sicily. The bike’s instruction manual is framed and is part of the display.
#68u has been in the museum for more than a year but we’re keeping it due to the unusual character of the bike. Built in the Keene, NH Rokon factory, it is one of four factory flat track machines produced. It has an automatic snowmobile type of transmission and was raced at the Bryar short track back in the mid-70's. Bryar was the predecessor to the New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
#97 is a 1960 Ducati 250 that started life as a street bike. Its early years, 1960s-70s it was raced in Canada. The frame was chromed during its competitive years. When it became uncompetitive in the 250 class in the early 70's the bike was put in storage. The onset of vintage motorcycle racing in the 80's gave it a new life to race locally in New England. It was last raced by Leif Gustavson in 2000.
Way out back, the Hawaiian Tropic bike was owned and ridden by Gina Bovaird. Gina was the first woman to complete the Daytona 200 and race a European 500GP on this bike. She and her husband Tom took out a second mortgage on their home to buy the bike. Gina won Expert level races atop this 1980 water-cooled four cylinder Yamaha TZ 500.
The bike on the far right, #14, was built by the Honda factory and was run as a factory motorcycle on dirt tracks, winning DuQuoin in 1984. Later it was raced by Brian Caron on tracks as big as a mile (Syracuse & Indianapolis) as well as locally at Utica Rome, NY, Lebanon Valley, NY and Essex Junction, VT. The display includes Caron’s leathers which were stitched back together after he endured a huge accident wearing them.
Not shown but on display is the big block Buick-powered drag bike run by Eddie “The Savage” Sarno at speeds of over 140 MPH. That one is in the front lobby.