Sunday, December 27, 2015 was AVDRA’S annual Rider Appreciation Day race at Motoland, in Casa Grande, AZ. The RAD event allows the club to get together on the holiday to show our new Christmas gear, accessories and spend time with family and friends. Only, there is always a free half time race to allow new comers or visitors to ride the track and experience race like conditions. There are always sons, daughters, wives, girlfriends, neighbors and all sorts of motorcycle devotees in the race. Everyone who finishes gets the same trophy, but the bragging rights go on for ever.
This year was unique. Dave’s Boydstun and his AMS crew played Santa Claus and delivered a 1974 CZ 400 to 84 year old Paul Hedger, who rode in the event with his two sons, both on vintage Yamaha TT 500’s. Paul was the original owner of this bike and finally decided to get professional help in rejuvenating his CZ. The Hedger family has been competing in Arizona for decades and Dave is the best resource in all of Arizona. Kevin Hedger discovered the project, its stumbling blocks and made it happen in time to deliver his Dad’s Christmas surprise. Kevin even drove to Tuscon to pick up the TT 500 his brother rode in the RAD event. Paul II, credited Kevin (and Dave, of course) for making this incredible event happen, father and two sons in the same moto…and you should have seen the brothers dicing for position and Dad’s pace was incredible for a Senior Citizen.
Paul’s first bike was the infamous Whizzer in 1944. Since then, he has ridden just about every kind of motorcycle. He was particularly fond of his BSA A10, Golden Flash, sidecar model, which he modified for Drag Racing. His record time was 12.3 in Utah at Altitude !! Paul experienced the birth of motocross through scrambling and dirt track. He even remembers cutting his own knobby tires. He built his sons mini bikes and has enjoyed riding with them throughout the years. “The sensation of the wind in your face” is Paul’s motivation to ride. It is Exhilarating !! “You don’t have to win every race, but you have to try your best” was the advice he wanted to give to the club members. I did not see the outcome of the RAD race, but I was assured by both brothers and Dad, “We all won today.”