Common Tread

News Cycles: January 11, 2019

Jan 11, 2019

Welcome to News Cycles, Common Tread’s roundup of what’s happening on our servers and everywhere else. Every Friday, look for a collection of news, stories, and all things moto from around the web. This week: lost photos of a secret workshop, Harley's electric revolution, and racing without a rear tire.

John Britten V1000
John Britten's V1000, captured by a starstruck kid with a camera back in '93. Matt Thompson photo.

26 pictures unseen for over 25 years: A visit to the Britten motorcycle workshop in 1993

John Britten’s racing motorcycles captivated the racing world when they debuted, especially young fan Matt Thompson. When his friends called Britten to ask if Matt could visit the shop for his 21st birthday, Britten actually agreed. He also let them take whatever photos they wanted as they wandered around the dream factory, as long as they kept them to themselves. 26 years later, Matt figures it’s safe to share what he saw, as it’s racing history now. 

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Carl Reese record motorcycle
Carl Reese's K 1600 GT is a highly specialized machine. Mecum Auctions photo.

For sale: Cannonball Run record bike

This 2015 BMW K 1600 GT was piloted by Carl Reese “currently holds the Guinness World Record for the greatest distance traveled in 24 hours on a track at 2,116 miles.” It also did Los Angeles to New York City in 38 hours and 49 minutes. Modifications like BST carbon wheels, a modular fuel cell, and an upgraded seat make for the perfect mega-mile burner. The bike comes with a new set of tires, as the old ones were a little worn. It's up to you if you'd like to use the radar/lidar jamming systems.

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Jerry Branch Harley
Jerry Branch launches one of his tuning projects. AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame photo.

Remembered: Jerry Branch

Inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2005, Jerry Branch was a pioneer of engine airflow research. He questioned existing practices in cylinder head flow design, eventually becoming a leading authority in the field and founding his own company that he sold to Mikuni. Branch made a real name for himself in Harley-Davidson performance, but his projects ran from flat-track bikes to Ducati roadracers. His recent passing concludes a life of investigation, experimentation, and motorcycling passion. (Incidentally, Jerry Branch helped John Britten advance the V1000.)

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2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire
Harley makes history with the LiveWire. Harley-Davidson photo.

2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire price, range, and speed

If you somehow haven't heard, Harley-Davidson released the first of a planned range of electric motorcycles this week at CES. They've only released a few of the Important Numbers, but we do know how much it'll cost, how far it'll go, and how fast it is. We don't know those figures for the two additional concepts launched with the bike, but HD says they have more electric plans in the near future.

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Down to the wire (wheel): Dakar rider continues riding after losing tire

Imagine preparing for Dakar, starting the race, and then having it all come to a halt when your bib mousse disintegrates, leaving your tire flat with no hope of repairing it? That’s exactly what happened to American Garett Pouche, except he didn’t halt. He decided to keep going with a little help from a teammate, eventually racing on a bare rim to the finish. Skip to 2:29 for his account of the race.

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Thanks for reading; that's all for this week! If you've got feedback or moto news you'd like to share, shoot an e-mail to Check back for more News Cycles every Friday.