Weekly Update

Greetings Riders,
I hope everyone is taking advantage of this great riding weather we are having. It doesn't get much better than this for riding all over the State. Summer is growing near and we will start planning our longer trips around the Western United States. I have a few of my own in mind. If any of you are interested in going to California, take a look at the 7 days that Mrs. C. and I did starting in Santa Barbara, CA. Click Here to view maps and pictures.
Along with the extra riding that we will all be doing we also need to raise our safety awareness. I am  kind of a numbers guy and enjoy reading statistics about things that I am involved in. It seemed like I had been hearing about an awful lot of motorcycle accidents lately so I wanted to find out if there was any validity to that. A statistic I came across from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that validated my thoughts was the alarming 50% increase in motorcycle fatalities over the last 5 years. My next question was why? Why are there 50% more fatalities in the last 5 years? That exact answer wasn't available but there were a few statistics that were interesting and might help us become better riders.
When I think of motorcycle crashes I envision that a driver of a car is usually the cause. But according to the NHTSA, 46% of motorcycle deaths in 2002 occurred in single-vehicle crashes. This means that almost half of the time, it could have been rider error or something in the road, etc. But a very interesting statistic is that 44% of deaths in single-vehicle motorcycle crashes in 2002 involved drivers with blood alcohol concentrations at or above 0.08%. So of almost 1/2 of the single vehicle deaths the rider was legally intoxicated. An enlightening statistic.
There were 54% of the deaths that occurred in multiple vehicle crashes. This is where we really need to be sharp. Of those 54% I would assume there were a fair amount of rider lapses or errors that even caused those accidents. No matter how good we are, sometimes we can get in a hurry and make a bad decision. To this day I still think about the story I did about Debra Moran this past January. An excellent rider that made a bad decision. It could happen to anyone. Here is the story, it is worth reading again to keep you aware.
Here are some other statistics that I found interesting:
*24% of all fatally injured motorcycle drivers in 2002 didn't have valid licenses to operate their motorcycles.
*90% of motorcyclists killed in 2002 were males. 66% of the remaining 10% were females who died in a motorcycle crash in 2002 were passengers. So if you work the numbers on this backwards,  approximately 3.3% of Women riding their own bike were victims in a crash. And if Women make up around 20% of the riders out there, it appears that they are doing a pretty good job of riding safer than the men.
*44% of motorcyclists killed in 2002 were 40 years old or older compared with fourteen percent in 1990. Deaths among motorcyclists ages 40 and older started to rise in 1993 and in 2002 were about 3 times as high. But the largest percentage increase was in the over 49 age group. Part of this statistic probably reflects the new buyers of motorcycles in this age group.
*Motorcyclist fatality rates were 33.96 per every 100 million vehicle miles traveled.
*64% of 2002 motorcycle deaths occurred during May-September. They peaked in June and August and were lowest in January and December.
*59% of 2002 motorcycle deaths occurred on weekends (Friday-Sunday).
*48% of 2002 motorcycle deaths occurred between 6 pm and 3 am.
*Over 50% of motorcycle deaths occur on major roads other than freeways.
Helmet use is almost as emotional of debate as abortion, and the statistics are hard to really understand. There are pro helmet and pro choice riders. But as we all know, wearing a helmet is no guarantee of survival in a crash. In 2002, when the helmet law was still in effect, 96 of the Pennsylvania's 140 fatalities wore helmets, according to PennDOT. The NHTSA reported that in 1999 there were 44% of fatalities that were not wearing a helmet and 53% that were. I don't know what that tells us, but you would think that you would be better off with one than without. But the fact still remains that everyone should have a choice.
These are just a few of the many statistics. But the NHSTA concludes their report with the following that could explain the increase in motorcyclist fatalities: 
Exposure data show more motorcycles on the road with more vehicle miles traveled;
*More people over age 40 are operating motorcycles;
*Larger engine motorcycles are being bought and operated;
*There are more motorcyclist fatalities on rural roadways in recent years;
*Undivided roadways account for a majority of motorcyclist fatalities particularly on rural roadways;
*Speeding is still one of the major factors in motorcycle crashes especially among riders under the age of 30;
*High Blood Alcohol levels continues to be a major problem among motorcycle operators;

According to the NHTSA there are over 30 million motorcycles on the roads in the U.S. There were 3244 that lost their lives in 2002. That is a very small percentage, but one that we don't want to be a part of. 

The bottom line is that we need to stay alert and at the top of our game at all times. It only takes one lapse of judgment to put yourself in a tough spot. If you think about some of the statistics above, it might help you alter some things that could make you a better rider and be more aware. There are risks in everything we do, but the freedom of riding motorcycles on the open road is one of the most enjoyable, exciting, exhilarating past times I have ever been involved in and I am willing to take those risks and do the best job of riding I can do. To this day, when I get back from a trip, I am already planning the next one. God Bless us all for safe riding.
If you need a refresher course, check out Skunkwork Motorsports free seminar on "How to ride Safe" conducted by T.E.A.M. Arizona this Saturday.
Here are a couple of links for you to further research on your own.

Arizona Statistics:

National Statistics:

In This Issue:
Skunkwork Motorsports Presents: How To Ride Safe
Run To The Racetrack
Scooters To Hooters
Bonsai Ride To The Wall
Phoenix Chapter of A.B.A.T.E. 13th Annual Luau Poker Run 


This Week's Events

Eli's American Grille Tuesday Bike Night. Live Music "Rule 11" Every Tuesday Night 8:00PM. EXCELLENT Sliders and a Great Band. Many of you know about Eli's located at 70th St. and Shea in Scottsdale. They have been a popular stop around Scottsdale for many years and the owners are avid riders. They are now doing a special night for motorcycles including live music featuring classic rock tunes from "Rule 11". If you haven't been by Eli's yet, be sure and try one of their 9 varieties of sliders served until midnight. You will not be disappointed. You can also watch your favorite game on TV while you eat, play some pool or sit out on the patio in front watching the bikes roll in. Eli's is your motorcycle friendly grille located on 7000 E. Shea in Scottsdale right behind Claim Jumpers. 480-948-9800. Stop by this Tuesday night. 


The Wild Hare Wednesday Bike Night. Looking for a Bike Night on the East side? Here is a bike night for the East side of town at a really nice location. Stop by and take a look, you will be impressed. It is called The Wild Hare located at 4910 W. Ray Rd. That is the NE Corner of Ray Rd. and Rural Rd. This is a really nice place with a very large outdoor patio. The inside has just been remodeled to double the seating along with adding a DJ, pool tables and games. The Wild Hare has a broad menu including 20 different appetizers, salads, wings, 17 different sandwiches, chicken, filet mignon, burgers and desserts including strawberry cheese cake. There will be food and drink specials that will run during bike night from 6 PM till close.  Stop by and take a look, I'm sure you will like what you see. Info: 480-897-6200. 

Thursday Night
Thursday Night features 5 Bike Nights all over the Valley.

Hooters at Arrowhead Bike Night. Ride by and join in on the fun! Hooters will host a Bike Night every Thursday at the Hooters at Arrowhead located just 1 block S. of Bell on 83rd Ave. Stop by for some great food and Hooters Hospitality. There will be 20% off menu items (25% off with V.I.P. Card). $2.00 Corona Thursdays and plenty of parking next to the outdoor patio. Stop by for some giveaways and raffles from Hooters and Arrowhead Harley as well as great wings and fun at Hooters. Click Here to see Pictures and all the detailed information.

Casey Jones Grill Bike Night  The evening riding weather is good. You can always count on lots of bikes here. Ride in for what I call the Best Cheesesteak Sandwich in town. This thing melts in your mouth. They have 3 new pool tables, darts and foosball. Located in the Mervyns Shopping Center on the SE corner of 43rd Ave. and Thunderbird Rd. Casey Jones is a great place for a bike night featuring a large outdoor seating and over 150 people inside. And for those of you that want to watch a sporting event they have 50 TV's scattered throughout the restaurant connected to satellite to get any game you can think of. They have a full menu for lunch, dinner and a Happy Hour from 11:00AM - 7:00PM and a reverse happy hour from 10:00PM - 12:00 Midnight. $1.75 domestic bottles and $2.00 Jacks. There are always a lot of bikes showing up for bike night at Casey Jones Thursday night. Join them for open mic night on Wednesdays. Sunday.

Hooters at Ahwatukee Thursday Bike Night. Continues Giveaways and Raffles. The riders in Ahwatukee were wanting a Bike Night of their own, so Hooters Ahwatukee stepped up to provide a great place to come on your motorcycle on Thursday nights. Stop by for raffles, good times and good food at Hooters in Ahwatukee located at 4804 E. Chandler Blvd. There will be raffles and giveaways from Chandler Harley and Hooters as well as 20% off menu items (25% off with V.I.P. Card). $2.00 Corona Thursdays and plenty of parking next to the outdoor patio. Click Here for the pictures and all the details.

The Bike Night At The Billet Bar. Voted "BEST BIKER BAR IN PHOENIX" by New Times. There is no better place to watch all the Bikes ride down Scottsdale road than from The Billet Bar Patio. The Billet is ALWAYS packed with bikes Every Day. The new bars front and rear provide spacious seating, fresh air atmosphere, perfect temperature and courteous staff. The food is amazing and always the latest in cold libations await. You can sit at the back bar and watch your favorite TV on any of the seven big inch televisions. Play pool, listen to the latest music and socialize. The front patio seats over 75 people and is perfect for people watching on Scottsdale Rd. The Billet Bar is located right next to Genesis Custom Cycles on 3752 N. Scottsdale Rd. Check it out this Thursday night and all weekend long. Info: at 480-941-1876. Click Here for the New Billet Bar Page with pictures.


Cocomo Joe's Sunday Bike Day. Live Music Every Sunday from 1:30-4:30pm. Live music is also Thursday - Saturday nights at 8:30pm. Many of you have been to Cocomo Joe's in North Phoenix. There is now a day just for riders. Cocomo Joe's is a very open and comfortable place to hang out that is decorated in a Jamaican theme. They have a new large outdoor patio as well as 2 smaller ones around the side. There is a large dining area with TV's all around to keep up on all NFL football on Sundays. See the pictures here. After football season they will be bringing in live entertainment on Sunday afternoons. There is also 3 pool tables and games for your enjoyment. There will be food and drink specials for ride days starting at 10:30am as well as blocked off preferred parking for motorcycles. The day starts at 10:30am with breakfast foods available. Bike day is from Noon - 6pm. Cocomo Joe's is located on the NW corner of Tatum and Dynamite Rd. So if you are riding to or from Cave Creek, or want to take a ride up North and not have to run the DB gauntlet, stop by Cocomo Joe's. 28244 N. Tatum Blvd. 480-538-8008. Stop by this Sunday for opening day. Click Here for all the details.

Sugar Daddy's Blues Biker Sunday Brunch.
Now is the perfect weather to be sitting out on the Sugar Daddy's patio, listening to Live Music while dining from the Brunch Menu. And Sunday Brunch Just Got Better! You now have 3 options to choose from. Option #1: Eggs Benedict Ė Grilled English muffins, smoked ham, poached eggs and hollandaise sauce.
Served with your chose of fresh fruit or crispy potatoes. ($8) or
Sugarís Pancakes Ė You wonít eat pancakes anywhere else. Buttermilk pancakes served with butter and syrup. ($5)
Option #2: Canít decide what to eat? How about an All-You-Can-Eat buffet for ONLY $12.
Option #3: Order off our regular menu.
Our 5,000 sq. ft. temperature controlled patio has six air conditioning units, misters, and plenty of shade. Sugar Daddy's patio, food and entertainment is becoming a regular Sunday stop. If you haven't tried it yet, give them a try. Complimentary coffee is now served. Make Sugar Daddy's Blues your stop on your ride down Scottsdale Rd. for
Brunch or Lunch from 10am - 5pm. Enjoy live music from 1-6pm Or maybe just relax on the patio with your favorite beverage and enjoy the beautiful weather and watch the bikes roll down Scottsdale Rd.  Click here to see the awesome pictures and details of Sugar Daddy's located at 3102 N. Scottsdale Rd. between Indian School and Thomas on the West side of the road. Stop by and check it out. A great place to hang out. Plenty of Bike Parking. If you have suggestions, email them at . 480-970-6556.

This Week 

Wednesday, May 19
Run For The Wall. You can join up with the Southern Route Riders in Tonopah, Exit #94 on I-10 West of Phoenix. Depart Tonopah for Phoenix at 3:15pm, I-10 east with DPS Escort to Wesley Bolin Plaza in Phoenix arriving at 4:15pm for a "Wreath Laying Ceremony" at Wesley Bolin Plaza with a RFTW Volunteer Honor Guard. RFTW will depart Wesley Bolin for Carl P. Hayden VAMC & AZ Soldiers Home at 5pm with DPS Escort. Arrive at VAMC, 5:15pm for visitation with Veterans at VAMC & AZ Soldiers Home. Dinner will be served at VAMC after visitations, provided by Church of the Son. Travel on your own to the Holiday Inn after dinner. More information from Bob Rogers: 602-439-4517. 

Saturday, May 22nd
Run To The Racetrack. 100% of the proceeds will be donated to the Arizona Hepatitis C Coalition to provide public awareness about Hepatitis C in Arizona. Sign in at Hacienda Harley, 15600 N. Hayden Road, Noon to 2pm. $10 per person. Run will end at Manzanita Speedway. Your poker card is good for free admission to the Sprint Cars and Mini-Sprints that evening. More information at 602-690-2810.

Saturday, May 22nd
Skunkwork Motorsports Presents: How To Ride Safe. Do you need a little tune up for yourself in the area of riding safe? How about some fresh ideas to keep you out of tight situations. We all need to be reminded from time to time on Safe Riding. This is your opportunity to hear it from the professionals of T.E.A.M. Arizona Motorcycle Training. Stop by Skunkwork Motorsports for a good seminar on safety. Hot Dogs and Soft Drinks will be served. And while you are there, your discounts on ordered parts will start at 12%. Skunk Work is a business dedicated to supplying quality motorcycle parts, accessories, and Service to the motorcycle enthusiast at Discount Prices! Every Day! We keep our overhead low and pass the savings along to our customers. We are dealers for most of the largest suppliers of motorcycle parts and accessories in the World!  202 W. Main St, Mesa, AZ 480 649 2800.

Sunday, May 23rd
Scooters To Hooters. Join Hooters for their Annual Scooters to Hooters Poker Run. This is a 7 Card Stud Draw that will take you to all of the Hooters in the Valley. The ride starts at the Tempe Hooters located at Mill Ave. & 5th Street in Downtown Tempe. Registration and 1st draw from 8-10am. Draw cards from the Hooters Girls as they wait for you to arrive. Lunch catered by Hooters at the final stop. There will be Raffle Prizes, T-Shirts, Ride Pin, 50/50 and Hooters Girls at every stop. All proceeds benefit local Children's Charities. Ride cost is $25 per person includes Lunch, Poker Run and Ride Pin to the first 300 riders. For more information call 480-967-4600.

Sunday, May 23rd
Bonsai Ride To The Wall. If you have a desire to visit The Wall, but can't take the time to travel with the regular Run For The Wall organization, or would prefer to pack with a smaller group, this is your chance. This ride is not for the wimpy. The Bonsai Ride will take you to D.C. and back in less than 2 weeks. You will be covering 600 miles per day in order to reach the rally point in Tom's Brook, Virginia for the Police escort into Washington, D.C. For more information click the above link or call Red at 480-980-4241.
Sunday, May 23rd
Phoenix Chapter of A.B.A.T.E. 13th Annual Luau Poker Run. Run starts at Slapshots located at 7941 W. Glendale Ave. Sign in from 9-10:30am. $15.00 per hand includes 1 meal ticket (extra meal ticket $5.00) Run ends at the New River Station. Last card drawn at 1:00 pm. Ride in Bike Show and Live Music. More information call Dwayne at 602-319-8621. 

Next Week 

Saturday and Sunday, May 29-30
The Hungry Bear Roadhouse Grand Opening Party. Many of you remember Hailey's Grill in Mayer, AZ. Hailey's went out of business last fall and the building was purchased by the owners of Grand Canyon Harley and is re-opening as The Hungry Bear Roadhouse. The Roadhouse has been completely remodeled to provide meeting rooms for motorcycle groups or any special events. The usable space has now been expanded to the front patio. You can now sit out on the huge patio and eat your breakfast or lunch and watch the bikes roll in for a weekend ride. There will be tables and chairs as well as stools next to the railing to relax and enjoy your favorite beverages. There will be live music with 3 different bands for the Grand Opening Weekend. You will also enjoy many specials, giveaways and discounts from the dealership next door. Roadhouse hours are 8:00am - 10:00pm. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner will be served. Stop by the Hungry Bear for the Grand Opening Party next weekend. I will be riding up Saturday for this one. More Info at: 928-632-4211.
May 29th and 30th: Breakfast 8am - 11am.,
11:00am - Close, Free sample appetizers and cookies. $2.00 Well Drinks, Margaritas and Draft Beer. Full Service Menu. 11:00am - 3 pm. Live Music with Dave Bowman. (Sun. Mel Reynolds Band) Raffles every 1/2 hour. Pictures at the Onyx Bar.
4:00pm - 7pm. Live Music with Mirage. Free Bear Gift to the first 250 attendees.


As we all know, timing is everything and according to Murphy's Law things will happen at the worst time. That is what happened to me 10 days before Bike Week. My bike decided to grenade itself from the bottom up. It sheered a crank bearing and sent metal throughout the entire engine destroying just about everything in its' path. This of course meant a complete rebuild from the bottom up including splitting the cases. Needless to say, my bike was not going to be available for Bike Week. Since Mrs. C. and I wanted to take a couple of rides out of town, and I didn't want to ride on the back, I needed the use of another bike. Since I am very curious about other bike builders, I asked Chad at Genesis Custom Cycles if he would let me demo one of his Victory Vegas bikes. He gladly sad yes and set me up with the Arlen Ness designed Vegas. I'll admit, I was a bit reluctant at first, but I knew that this bike couldn't be that bad if it had beaten out the Vrod and won the Cycle World cruiser of the year award.
Wow, was I right! Once I got past the part that it wasn't a Harley or a custom, I fell in love with this thing. This bike has great styling and comes stock with a counterbalanced 92 cubic inch motor with 85 hp right out of the box. And with a few electronic tweaks and some pipes they tell me it can get to almost 100 hp with little expense. But never mind that. This bike runs great just like it is. I gave it a great test in all conditions. Open road, cornering through Prescott Forest and highway riding as well. The Vegas is fantastic. It is smooth as can be, very powerful with plenty of torque in every gear, and corners as well as any bike. (Keep in mind that is coming from someone that has a lot of miles on a Vrod.) I have to admit, I was thoroughly impressed and surprised by the handling and performance. This has to be one of the best kept secrets in motorcycles. Chad has several of them in stock starting at only $11,900. Not only is this a great value for a first bike, but also a very easy bike to ride for a Women. I would like to have one for road trips myself. Stop by Genesis Custom Cycles at 20th St. and Indian School and ask Chad to show you one for yourself. 602-667-0527. Tell him I sent you. Click here for a review from Motorcycle Cruiser magazine. And here for an in depth comparison with a Deuce.
As for my bike, I have the first 500 break-in miles on it now and is back at Custom Performance getting the oil change and checked over. Should be back on the road in a couple of days.
Until Next Week,
Blessings and Safe Riding To All,

Barry Caraway
"The Road Is Yours - Take The Ride"

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