Ahhh, New York. It’s the largest show on the IMS circuit with the greatest amount of enthusiasts, custom bikes and media presence. Since it’s the Big Apple, you never know who will make their way into the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. This year MotoGP champion Nicky Hayden made a guest appearance on Saturday and Marky Mark slipped in on Friday to check out the custom bikes.
Forty custom bikes were presented in 3 classes on the red carpet for the J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show. The MOD Custom class features street bikes with OEM cases and frames. FreeStyle is an unlimited class where anything goes and the Retro MOD class is for any bike that is older than 1984.
From the opening bell at 1PM on Friday to 5PM on Sunday the show was packed with guys checking the custom sleds and with many of them on the floor getting access to the fine details of the builds.
Retro and innovation was the name of the game for the 2014 show. The bike that garnered the greatest amount of enthusiasm from the builders was a custom fabricated café racer from Sam Coleman. The big gnarly blue lump turned out to be a 3-cylinder 1000cc Kubota tractor engine with turbo… Bananas!
The awards kicked off on Sunday at 4PM with Steve Iacona of Iacona Customs taking the American Iron Magazine Editor’s Choice award for his kick only Softail. You will be seeing his bike featured in an upcoming issue of the Magazine.
Once the ballots from People’s Choice were counted, Joey Duarte took the award and the 5 Ball Racing Special OPS vest and Bell lid for his Dave Perewitz painted 2013 prostreet custom. The Showdog Award is for the builder that works the show floor the hardest. There were many contenders for the “DOG” but Billy from Speedmill took home The Leatherworks Inc. solo bag. Each winner and runner up was treated to a case of cleaning and polishing products from Quality Aerosol. The winner of FreeStyle took home a Danny Gray custom saddle.
FreeStyle J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Winner
George Stinsman of Chaos Cycles took the win in FreeStyle with his latest creation called “The Menace”. It’s a Knucklehead with paint by Bob Mango. George calls it his Hot Rod and it embodies design queues from sport bikes, old school and new school bikes. The bike features a custom lakester-style exhaust, ISR hand controls , hand built FXR-ish frame, hand formed gas tank and fender. Bare Knuckle Choppers provided the velocity stack and Baker the tranny.
1. Chaos Cycles, George Stinsman – The Menace, Ground up custom
2. Sam Coleman – Turbo diesel race bike, 2014 Ground up custom
MOD Custom J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Winner
Evan Favaro’s part time job is the go-to guy for Orange County Choppers. He does the fabrication for Paul Sr. In order for him to get his TV gig he flew all the way to California to secure his job 45 minutes away.
When he is not on the small screen he’s building bikes. His latest winning café racer features a Ducati swingarm, CBR100RR front end and custom tail section with integrated oil tank and battery box. Named Barely Legal, it was painted by Toon Town Paint. It received the full engine update with race cam, CR carb, head work and all new internals.
1. Speakeasy Motors, Evan Favaro – Barley Legal, 1974 Honda CB750
2. Gravesend Cycles, Copper Mike – 2007 FXBD
Retro MOD J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Winner
Austin Andrella of Austin Martin Originals built his winning bike from his backyard garage. Over the past few years he has been racking the awards for his amazing bike builds. Double D’s faced stiff competition but in the end the 1981 Yamaha XS took the point. The bobber features a retro Hot Rod color scheme applied by Steve Hennis Flame Thrower Customs, all new electronics, polished covers, AMO one-off hard tail, vintage Avon tires, stainless spokes and powder coated rims.
1. Austin Andrella, Austin Martin Originals – Double D’s, 1981 Yamaha XS
2. Nick Beaulieu, Forever Two Wheels – Blue Every Thang, 2015 FTW Chopper
The Progressive International Motorcycle Shows rolls into 11 cities across the nation. The nationwide motorcycle extravaganza has something for every powersports lifestyle. Besides the nation’s largest custom bike show, it’s the best place to experience the latest in gear, aftermarket parts and accessories, see the all-new models from major manufacturers, enjoy rider seminars at the main stage and much more.
Special Thanks went out to Garwood Custom Cycles for their work with Autism Speaks and their effort to raise awareness through their motorcycle unveiling at media day with their custom Honda Grom. The J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show is produced by Jeff Najar of Bikerpros.com.