Who’s hitting Bike Week 2013?

Advance Auto PartsIf you’ve been reading my column, you know that I’ve got a thing for classic muscle cars. I dream about ‘em, I cruise the classifieds for ‘em, and I’ve got one in my own garage.

But with Bike Week 2013 around the corner, let me tell you that I’m also a motorcycle guy. Big time.

Shoot, every gearhead I know loves bikes, and let me tell you why: there’s just nothing else on earth as fast and fun as a motorcycle.

Some of you young guns haven’t been around long enough to remember this, but there was a time when most cars were slow as molasses. In particular, the 1970s were a lost decade for speed. The OPEC embargo sent gas prices through the roof, car companies responded by strangling their engines’ output, and the result was serious disappointment for speed demons like me.

But guess what: even the fastest motorcycles are incredibly fuel-efficient, so they kept right on being fast.

And when I say “fast,” I mean faster than the fastest cars.

Let me give you an example: I had a 1974 Kawasaki H2 Mach IV, which was known as “The Widowmaker” because let’s just say its chassis wasn’t up to the standards of its motor. But what a motor! It made 74 horsepower, which was a whole lot for a bike that barely weighed 400 pounds. I could turn 12-second quarter miles all day on that thing. Not even the strongest muscle cars could touch me, even the ones that were built before OPEC got stingy in 1973.

Of course, it’s not only the speed that seduces you; it’s the wind in your hair, the sense of absolute freedom as you’re running through the gears and leaving everyone and everything in your dust. I’ve never ridden a horse, but I always thought of motorcycles as like horses—it’s just you and what’s underneath you, and as long as you both stay upright, there’s no better feeling in the world.

I could keep going like this all day, but let me bring it back to Bike Week 2013. I can’t make it this year, but if I could, I’d be rolling in on my 17-years-new Ducati 916, which is the best motorcycle ever made, if I do say so myself, and which I plan to be buried with when that day comes. I just put on a fresh set of Ferodo brake pads – only the best for my baby – and she stops on the proverbial dime, better than the day I met her. So when all you Bike Weekers are having fun in the sun down there, I’ll be with you in spirit. Ride with pride, and be safe out there.

By the way, I’ve prevailed on the good folks here at Advance Auto Parts to stock some Ferodo brake pads of their own, and they’ve got some great deals right now. And, I promise they’ll hook you up with the right pads for your ride.

Editor’s note: If you’re heading out to Bike Week, be sure to check out some of the great events in store!