PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Gavin Trippe, one of the most important race promoters and publishers in motorcycling during the 1970s and '80s, passed away Monday, July 2, according to his son, Gavin Trippe Jr. He was 78.
The elder Trippe was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2005.
His company, Trippe/Cox Productions, produced the first U.S. Motocross Grand Prix in Carlsbad, Calif., in 1973. He promoted the first AMA national road races at Ontario (California) Motor Speedway, the Champion Spark Plug 200. After the demise of the Speedway, he took that event to Laguna Seca Raceway to launch the current history of motorcycle racing in Monterey.
Perhaps Trippe’s most lasting contribution was inventing and promoting the "Superbikers" in conjunction with ABC Sports and its popular Wide World of Sports television program in the 1970s. Superbikers was the first motorcycle competition to bring together the stars of various specialties of racing to compete head to head. The concept of Superbikers later spawned Supermoto racing, which became a popular national and world championship division by the early 2000s.
Trippe will always be remembered as one of the premier promoters in the history of American motorcycle racing and an innovator who helped create an entirely new genre in the sport.
For more information about Trippe and his contributions to motorcycling, visit the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame website at www.motorcyclemuseum.org.
Facebook post from Gavin Trippe Jr.