The AMCA (Antique Motorcycle Club of America) Fall Nationals were held in Davenport Iowa and Marty from GoMoto in Osseo Minnesota made the trek there on a Fly Scout 110cc bike. His account of the 550 mile trip follows:
Its 3:30 AM when I pull the Scout down the drive way, the sky is cloudy, but it’s comfortably in the low 60s. I’m on my way to Davenport Iowa for the vintage swap meet and half mile races, then onto Springfield IL for the short track and mile nationals. I decided to leave this early because I’m riding a 110 cc Scout from Fly scooters. With a top speed around 50 MPH I want to get through Minneapolis while there is little traffic.
Heading south east for the first hour and a half on a four lane highway, there is only the occasional semi blasting past. Its getting cooler as I pull into Cannon falls for gas and food. Cooler still when I get back on the bike, should have brought a sweater.
Traffic will be starting to pick up now so it’s time to hit the back roads. It’s starting to get light as I get to Kasson, just west of Rochester and it’s time for gas and something warm to drink as it just keeps getting cooler, the bank thermometers are showing 51 degrees now. The tank on the scout holds a whopping 3 quarts, even at 95 MPG the gas stops are frequent. We continue south through Le Roy and into Iowa where we pick up a nice strong westerly wind. Heading east to Decorah cruising is easy at a brisk 50 miles per but its time for some more warmth at the Kwik Trip. (Where is that sweater)? The roads in northeast Iowa make for some great riding and scenery, as we wind our way over to the touristy McGregor and then south to Guttenberg.
Its late morning and I make the obligatory stop a Breitbachs in Balltown for lunch. This was the oldest restraint in Iowa until it burned down a few years back, then it burned down again? There is no way to retain the real charm it had, but the food is still good. The same can be said about the roads in this area. As they are “improved” they get wider and straighter, they to are fun but have lost there charm. On the other hand the scout, clone that it is, is just like ridding a vintage Honda passport.
South through Dubuque we go the long way to Davenport following the river along the bulge on Iowa’s eastern border through Clinton and into the Quad cities. At the most inopportune time the scout starts to sputter, running out of gas. I am on a four lane road with lots of traffic and no shoulder, just a tall curb up to a sidewalk. I manage to get stopped without getting run over and lift the bike onto the sidewalk. Try that with a FLHRTCLQP Ultra sooperdooper glide. I whip out my extra quart of gas and finish the trip to the fairgrounds.
If you appreciate old motorcycles this is the place to be on Labor Day weekend. It’s all here from 1910s board trackers racing on the half mile, to a concourse shows good as most anywhere. An entire fairgrounds full of antique and vintage only parts for sale, including lots of rare scooter stuff.
I have to get going early on Saturday to help on the pits for the short track, so it’s off at 7:30. I cross the Mississippi into Rock Island and continue south. The skies are perfectly clear but it’s still very cool. Did I mention I should have brought a sweater? Fresh new pavement for the most part during the 160 miles to Springfield means seldom on this stretch did I use up both inches of suspension travel. I waved at Bart and Lisa as I rode by their house on the way to the track, arriving about 11:30.
The Scout used no oil and needed no adjustments for the 550 mile trip south averaged 95 mpg riding 45 – 50 mph and was remarkably comfortable.
As for the races Henry Wiles cruised to victory on Saturday night with the Kawasaki and Brian Smith took his Kawasaki to its first mile win on Sunday. As for the scout and me. We rode home in the van with the race bikes.