Cycle News

Cycle News 2011 Issue 23 Jul 19

Cycle News is a weekly magazine that covers all aspects of motorcycling including Supercross, Motocross and MotoGP as well as new motorcycles

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CN III ARCHIVES P86 BY LARRY LAWRENCE THE RACING ENTREPRENEUR W endell Phillips was a good road racer and an even better businessman. From figuring the fastest way to hit a corner's apex, he went on to find the best ways to market racing gear. Phillips parlayed his love for racing and business and combined both worlds to eventually became the owner of Lockhart Phillips USA, one of the biggest sportbike product distributors in the world. Along the way Phillips gave back to the sport in the best way he knew – he sponsored racers and teams and even started a program to encourage sport riders to make the jump to the racetrack. Wendell Phillips and his daughter Jenny pose in front of the Team Phillips was a sports car enthu- Lockhart AMA Endurance Championship Suzuki in the mid-1980s. siast/mechanic when he was in college. He had a car set up for autocross, but if it vices for missiles. They were looking to develop broke at a race he didn't have any way to get back commercial products and Phillips helped launch to his classes at the University of Maryland, so he a popular line of motorcycle alarms that ballooned bought a Honda CB500 simply as a reliable form the company's profits. All this time Phillips was road racing with the of transportation. "I started riding that bike and started getting a lot AFM on all sorts of bikes, but most famously with of tickets," Phillips said. "Forrest Kerns was an ERA Mr. Jags Norton. Phillips raced Sears Point, Rivroad racing champion and he took me under his erside, Willow Springs, Ontario and in Phoenix. wing and got me to the racetrack. This was before He was racing Superbikes in club events and track days, so we went to Summit Point, rented the even raced in the Daytona 200 in 1983, where track and I rode all day and that was it. I turned my his Kawasaki Z1 locked up solid on the banking. Honda commuter into a race bike and never rode TV cameras caught Phillips struggling to bring the bike under control and fortunately he was able to on the street again for six years." Phillips road raced for a year on the East Coast guide the bike off the banking without crashing. In 1982 Lockhart Consumer Products hired and then, in 1976, took work promoting motorcycle shows in California and made the move out West. Phillips to try to turn around its failing oil cooler After several years promoting motorcycle shows, business. he was hired by a company that made arming de"They were the OE oil cooler supplier to Har- 86-87 Archives.indd 86 7/15/11 3:46 PM

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