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2014 Motorcycle Cannonball set for September 5-21

This BSA ran in one of the previous Motorcycle Cannonball runs.
This BSA ran in one of the previous Motorcycle Cannonball runs.
Ken Bingenheimer

It may have been intended as a flash-in-the-pan when it was started in 2010, but the Motorcycle Cannonball Endurance Run will cross the country again in September, and if you're anywhere near its route it will be worth turning out to see this rolling museum.

How many times do you have the opportunity to see more than 100 ancient motorcycles actually out on the road burning up miles? The only bikes allowed to participate in this event are those built in 1936 or before. Would I take my 1980 Honda CB750 Custom across the country? Well, yes, but only with considerable trepidation. But I'll have to wait another 44 years before it's eligible to run in this event.

Just because that's mainly what was getting built back then, the majority of the 100+ bikes running this thing this year are Harleys, Indians, and Hendersons. There are also a decent number of BMWs plus about seven or eight other, miscellaneous bikes.

For example, there will be one 1923 Neracar. Never heard of that? Neither have I. Here's your chance to actually see one. Or how about a Moto Frera? There will be two of those, a 1926 and a 1928, both ridden by Italians who are shipping them over here just to run in this thing. A couple other Italian riders are bringing their Moto Guzzis.

The run will start out on Sept. 15 from Daytona Beach, Florida. The final destination is Tacoma, Washington. There will be 16 days of riding with one day off in Junction City, Kansas. Most days they expect to cover 250 to 300 miles, with one longer day and two shorter ones. With bikes that old, that's probably pretty optimistic. My recollection is that in previous rides there were plenty of break-downs. I see no reason why it shouldn't be the same this time around.

I'm looking forward to this one.

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