Story by Heather Wilson
Photos by Jeff Guciardo
Elmar Kruza of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, is back vying for the Moto Armory AMA Off-Road Vintage Grand Championship.
He raced a Husqvarna 250 in the post-vintage hare scrambles and another Husqvarna 250 in the vintage hare scrambles in the 50-plus class on Friday, July 8, during AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio.
“I’ve been to AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days every year they’ve had it; I’ve never missed a year,” Kruza said. “I remember when we used to race motocross on the infield, and my son was 4 or 5 years old when I first brought him. He’s 20 now.”
Kruza said Tim Shepherd of Sugar Grove, Ohio, and AMA Hall of Famer Jeff Fredette of Beecher, Ill., always keep him on his toes.
“Those guys are fast,” Kruza said. “It’s fun keeping up with them for a while. It’s good company even though they beat me every time. Next year, I can race the 60-plus class and maybe they won’t be in it.”
Kruza plans to compete in 40-plus and 50-plus motocross races on Saturday, then trials on Sunday.
Kruza said the things that keep him coming to AMA Vintage Motorcycle days year after year are: “Just all the old bikes, of course … competition, the swap meet. I always have to make it to the Wall of Death. Everything is good.”
AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is happening this weekend, July 9-10, at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio.
For 2016, with the generous support of Suzuki Motor of America, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days honors the career of Suzuki rider and AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Wes Cooley.
The infield display, Celebrating 40 Years of AMA Superbikes, presented by Suzuki, will showcase the rich history of AMA Superbike racing with a number of historic championship-winning machines. The central piece of the display will be Cooley's 1980 championship-winning GS1000, which Cooley will ride in demonstration laps around the road race course each day.
The weekend includes the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Bike Show presented by Old Bike Barn, the American Motor Drome Wall of Death, a classic motorcycle field meet, demo rides of current production bikes, seminars, live music, raffle bikes and displays of AMA clubs and custom bike builders.
Tickets are available for purchase on the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course website at www.midohio.com or at the gate. A weekend pass is $60, a single-day admission for Saturday is $40 and a single-day admission for Sunday is $35. Kids 12 and under get in free.
For more about AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, see www.facebook.com/AMAVintageMotorcycleDays.
AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is a fundraiser for the nonprofit AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. Financial contributors include Moto Armory, Nationwide Insurance, Suzuki Motor of America, Federal Motorcycle Transport, Old Bike Barn, Iron Pony/Pony Powersports and Sena Technologies Inc.