Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1970's

Cycle News 1971 06 22

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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~ w Z W ..J U > U IYIII I ••• IVi¥i: ..America's No. 1 weekly motorcycle newspaper. You'll always see it FIRST in Cycle News'" Publisher Charles Clayton Business Manager Sharon Clayton General Manager Tom Culp Managing Editor John Bethea David Swift Assistant Editor Circulation Manager Rheba Smith Circulation Ass't Marla Tarbet Production Manager Steve LeHuray Production Assistant Ed Drechsler Advertising Assistant .. Barbara Richard Bookkeeper Dorothea Lang Bookkeeper Ass't. . Eleanor Duke Lab Technician Larry Groves Cycle News East. Dixie Cycle News, and National Advertising information: Tom Culp, National Advertising Director. Cycle News (West), P.O. Box 498. Long Beach, California 90801. (213) 427·7433 - L.A. 636-8844. TELEX NO. 673-474 Subscription: One year 2nd class mail 2 years 2nd class mail 3 years 2nd class mail Single copy price . . · .$9.00 · $15.00 · $18.00 · . $.30 Published weekly except the first and last week of the calendar year by Cycle News, Inc., Post Office Box 498, Long Beach. California, also publishers of Cycle News East, and Dixie Cycle News. Second Class Postage paid at Long Beach, Calif. Editorial stories, cartoons, photos, etc. are welcome. Addressed, stamped envelope assures return of editorial matter. Reprinting in whole or in part only by permission of the publishers. Advertising rates and circulation information will be sent upon request. See S.R.D.S. ~=J================= Writin'around WORTIDNGTON, OIDO - Nine months have passed since Russ March moved into headquarters here as the new working boss of the AMA. From that day to this, the AMA building on High Street has hummed with productive energy. When March set up housekeeping, he brought in a phalanx of new faces, creating new jobs and fmding bright young motorcycle men to man them: Ed Youngblood, "Managing Editor" of the retitled AMA magazine, AMA News, but actually the public relations chief for the whole association; Mike Vancil, "Amateur Activities Director" writing an up-to-date set of drag racing rules, organizing America's 6-Days Trial teams, struggling with motorcycle club sanctions and paperwork; Chet Winter, "National Lobbyist" changing plaes at Chicago, en route to Oregon, Texas, California, Tennessee - wherever the battles are cooking. The "old staff" is there, too, at least the ones that kept the association going through the difficult decade past: Jules Horky with his mysterious map of 6,000 sanctioned events on the office wall, winning staring contests with a wooden Indian some wag has installed in the corner Oules used to race Indians); BeeGee Pennell, starter Duke's Mrs., who used to assign those racing numbers that contained more messages than coincidence allows (Benny Sims' Amateur number was 51m, which spelled Sim wilen you squinted at it; Larry Palmgren's national number was 5 so younger brother Chuck became, naturally, 6, etc.) BeeCee was out the day I visited, so I don't know what she's doing now. And AI Ismon, putting out the best magazines he's done in 17 years, now that the clamp is off, with the help of two young reporters. Russ March has dragged the AMA kicking and screaming into the 1970's. Some of the screaming hasn't even started yet. For instance, rules are going to require mufflers on ALL machines entered in competition next year. And (let's hear it form the industry) the Joe Blow member is going to get some representation on the all-powerful Executive Board. March got the board to okay a $7 membership dues and put together a mighty attractive package for the future. Group insurance is the biggest bargain in the deal, but the individual assurance that one gets from belonging with the number one outfit in motorcycling is worth the whole fee. VOICES OF THE WEST ONE -OR TWO? I'm referring to the article written by John Grout regarding Jim Wilson Oune 8, 1971): I'm a racer that has been following both Cycle News and Jim for several years and never have I read such an, erroneous article in your paper. Where did John Grout get his information? He certainly did not see what he wrote as ] was there and saw as well as many other fans. First, no mention was made of two very positive improvements Indian Dunes had made - namely a large pipe for the starting and chain link fencing surrounding the course to keep small fry and dogs off. The disagreement between Jim and one of the managers came about when Jim reported two riders cutting the course. He was told that the ndio control man at the lower end of the track was to report numbers of any course·cutters. However, when questioned, this radio man did not even know where the course was himself and the only consolation Jim got was a sltrug of the sh oulders. One of these coune-cutters was paid for first place in the 250 race. Jim lost his cool as I think any red-blooded American racer would when the management repeatedly takes no steps to correct this unfair practice. Wilson was not disqualified in either race as the article stated, but was suspended for 30 days. Nor did he make any "age old gesture of insolent ill will to some spectators" as stated in Cycle News. After winning the final 500 moto he snapped his fingers and gave what appeared to be a shake of his head in disgust. There were others there that observed the course-cutting and attempted to straighten out the management, to no avail. Since when does a rider get cut down It's too bad that the majority of AMA's 130,000 cardholding members only join up because they have to, to ride the events they like. As far as they're concerned, the AMA is just a dunning letter when the renewal comes due, and a lot of extra pencil work for the clubs. A few thousand are in it for the points, which the AMA's computer'translates out of the club's pencil marks. Some merely like to collect pins. It's too bad they don't realize that a lot of their $ 7 checks go to finance the war against the anti-motorcycle forces on many fronts. It's a helluva a war (nobody gets killed), and we are winning~ Nine months ago, I couldn't have made that statement. N ow that the bucks are really starting to roll in, commentator Bob Hicks, Cycle Sport Magazine, observed that the AMA is a consumers association, financed by the consumer ($7 member) and controlled by the industry (Executive Board, open only to manufacturers, distributors, and publishers in the motorcycle field). The Executive Board hired, and can fire, Russ March. It was the E-Board's decision to overrule the wishes of the Competition Congress on the 16-year-age rule, national championships and new mufflers. Hicks is right. But is that wrong? So far the Board has guided the Association better than I would expect the $ 7 members to guide it. As merchants of equipment to the very members we speak of, they are extra-sensitive to their wants and do their best to give satisfaction. I have seen powerful sports committees fumble and fall after the "users" have driven the dealers out. So would theAMA. This subject is so important I shall squander another paragraph on it. If the industry were not already interested and involved in motorcycle users activity, we should have to get them interested in it. What the AMA $7 member needs now is equal representation on the Executive Board, but I wonder if there is any $ 7 member ready to give up his riding time to attend aU of the board meetings and represent his fellow. If there is, I think that the board can be pressured into adding a few more chairs around the conference table. That's another statement I couldn't have made nine months ago. By Charles Clayton for attempting to race an honest race? TItis type of reporting is an injustice to Cycle News, the riders and, most of all to motocross racing in our U.S.A. A motocross racer myself, BOB BROOKS Torrance, Calif. lohn Grout reported what track officials was the reason for disqlQ.lification ~nd theirs was a judJnlent of what 11m's gesture looked lik•... Ed. EDITORIAL Write If You Like It • Too! By John Bethea Politicians, like all other breeds of Homo Sapions, are human - let's face it; they enjoy praise just as much as anyone else. Motorcyclists are just now getting into the habit of writing letters to their representatives and, we swpect, most of those letters sent are written with a bad taste in the writers' mouth. But, even these types of letters appear to be read as several events in the past few weeks seem to show; specifically the AB 2985 which was printed in part on Page I of this publication tltree weeks ago and was since amended (although it still goes to the floor on June 17), and the action taken by the Orange County (Calif.) Board of Supervisors on June 9 in which they voted unanimously to allow a permit to be issued for a 630-acre motorcycle park and recreation area to be opened in the Yorba Linda area. In events like these, especially in the latter case of the unanimous vote in favor of cyclists, two-wheel enthusiasts should "follow-up" on their letter-writing campaign; this time tolet the representatives know that cyclists appreciate their vote. Politicians, contrary to what seems to be the case, are not out to make enemies but, instead, make friends. A word of thanks, or polite congratulations, will be received as a welcomed cltange by a representative who sltifts through mounds of unfavorable mail daily. We are now writing letters to stop legislation "as motorcyclists;" it's now logical to take the next step and write those representatives, who supported your view when it came to voting, and let them know that you "as a motorcyclist", saw and realized their support. Most everyone else who writes to a representative is asking for something - if not demanding it. We, as motorcyclists, should go further than our opposition and give the representatives who heed our pleas a little boost and some form of thanks. That little action, in the long run, will go a long way; we still have a long way to go and friendly representatives can get us there a lot faster. ---.TH£ GRAVE: DIGG£R- NO RACE TRACK A recent public hearing with the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors ended with the bigoted homeowners association triumphing, and the motorcyclists receiving their usual boot out the door. The Supervisors sent the motorcycle and mini-bike issue back to the Planning Department, who is supposed to feel out the Forest Service (Los Padres Forest) as to ideas - possibly obtaining land from them for a park, and get together with our County Parks Dept. and Commission to formulate such an area. The Parks Dept. has no idea how much work and studying this will entail, not to mention the costs involved to set-up, maintain, and pay for liability insurance. I don't know if tItis is another stall, or if the board was sincere in this request. The major outcome was that the feeling of the Supervisors for "NO RACE·TRACK" was quite prevalent. The Santa Barbara Starters M.C. (made up primarily of Motocross competitors) will look southward to Ventura County for land. If unsuccessful there, well approach the county in about 6-months and see what they have to say after they cool off from this last motorcycle issue. ALBUCK Goleta, Calif. / f , L-------..... . .__-------=-=-__ - {

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