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Thread: Atc 4 Me

  1. #31
    Old 179's Avatar
    Old 179 is offline At The Back Of The Pack Arm chair racerAt the back of the pack
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    Mike,
    I found your interview with "Valerie Amarillas" in July 82 3wheeler mag. Had where you had lived. ( some "Ohio" members may be interested in your teens years there!) Rick Callaway influence on you, First racer "as a 138cc" at Speedway 117. Your first site of the 250r in the desert , and that Sam bought one right after that. He had built it and you raced it, about desert racing, and what got you on with Honda.

  2. #32
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    you should see if you can`t scan that interview and put it on here for all of us to read Old 179,that would be cool!

    trikes owned:
    1982 ATC 185S
    1983 ATC 185S
    (2) 1984 ATC 185S
    1984 ATC 200M
    (2) 1984 ATC 200S
    (3) 1984 ATC 200X
    made one an auto-x,easy swap
    1985 ATC 250R (stolen!...the bastards!...it was mint!)

    own now:
    1985 ATC 250R (running)
    1986 ATC 250R(parts bike)
    1984 ATC 250r w/ 280cc kit in it(pretty rough-needs TLC)
    1984 ATC 200s (running)
    1982 ATC 185s (running)
    (2)1984 ATC 200s(parts)
    1984 ATC 70 (parts)
    1983 ATC 70(off ebay-running)
    1985 ATC 70 (running)
    198? ATC 70 (running)
    1984 ATC 200x (running)(have made it an auto-x until i rebuild the top end of the X motor)
    1985 ATC 200x roller(gonna make another auto-x)
    Eric

  3. #33
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    That IS me on the brochure you have posted.
    (1983 ATC250R brochure) lol ..... You'd be happy to know that you have been framed on the wall of my garage for about 15 - 20 years now. Welcome Mike.
    J. Jonny D, --- Quad - Trike relations committee Chairman and all around swell guy.

    Rides: '91 Warrior, '87 TW200, 1984 YTM225DX, 1984 ATC125M, '71 CL350 Scrambler

  4. #34
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    Hey everyone, hows it goin'? I'm having a good time answering your questions. I'll try to answer some more.

    Jeb.
    The Kawasaki's......... Well, lets face it. When they were first introduced, they were faster than the Honda's in STOCK configuration. They were also a little faster when modified too. Overall, I feel the Hondas still had an advantage in the handling and "overall powerband" and suspension areas.

    The later Kawasakis were good too, but by this time the Hondas were EXCELLENT. Again, the Kawi's were probably making a little more "peak" power. A problem with Kawi's was vibration. The Kawi's didn't use a counter balancer in the engine like the Hondas did. Yamaha's?? I don't know. I know many people liked the TriZ's, but to be honest I feel they were always down on power compared to the Hondas and Kawasaki's.

    The gas tank location and other "ergonomics" seemed to keep them from handling really well and being truly competitive. They enjoyed limited racing success, mostly desert racing, but Yamaha never "fully" backed a team that could have developed it more and possibly made it more competitive at the short course races. In stock form they seemed pretty good. I'm not biased, but overall the 1985 and 86 ATC250R were probably the best overall performance three wheeler's ever made.

    I did race at Boyd. It was an excellent race track. Mike Kidd raced for Honda then, and he invited the team to race there. Boyd was one of my favorite flat track style racing tracks. The first time I raced there I crashed pretty hard in the main event and did not have a good finish. The second time Honda was forcing us (Team Honda) to use Ohtsu brand tires. The Ohtsus would only last a handfull of laps and then start shredding. I had a poor finish then too. We had Hoosier tires, but could not use them in the races, only for "comparison" purposes. I lost a number races because of tires alone in 1985.

    250rBeast

    Tom Carlson was/is a very talented engine builder, and just a super guy too. His modified stuff ran as good as any on the race circuit. Tom did race as well, but I don't think he was as interested in the racing part as he was in the engine part. I may be wrong on the last statement. I don't recall ever racing against him head to head in the "open" class where I raced often. I remember him or his sponsored racers were mostly in the 200X races, or someone racing his 200X in that class.

    Well, have a good weekend and keep on with the questions.........

    Mike
    Last edited by CoeShow; 11-04-2010 at 10:50 PM. Reason: typos, additional data

  5. #35
    Billy Golightly's Avatar
    Billy Golightly is offline Always finding new and exciting ways to not give a hoot in hell Catch me if you can
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    This is a question thats kind of been asked alot over the years that no one is really sure of. What did Honda do with the Factory trikes after the last race season? Did they crush them, or were you allowed to keep them?

    If someone was looking for an old factory race bike, what could they look for that would set them apart from most of the other 250R's?
    One can only beat their head up against the wall so often before they get blood in their eyes.

    Note to members: Stupidity is a BANABLE offense, mods can decide if YOU are being stupid and WILL ban you!

  6. #36
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    Hey Mike
    long time fan here......ever since my first 3wheeler in 83!!!!!
    i was just wondering why you were not allowed to use the 85' mugen kit? and did you ever try one out???....
    thanks
    Pete from accoss the pond

  7. #37
    Curtis-Tecate3's Avatar
    Curtis-Tecate3 is offline At The Back Of The Pack Arm chair racerAt the back of the pack
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    Pete,

    Read up here first..
    http://www.3wheelerworldforums.com/s...t=40980&page=2

    I am sure Mike will let you know if he ever tested or rode a Mugen motor but he was clearly not allowed to compete with any "Unapproved" parts while at Honda.

    Curtis.
    I love anything with an engine except a lawnmower...
    .
    1986 Tecate and original owner of a 1985 200X.
    3 wheeling since 1975.

  8. #38
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    Oh contrare Curtis-Tecate3 !!

    Allowed? NO. But, after getting slow engine components all season (which I theorized was to boost Marty Harts chances to beat me) Oh Hell yes!!

    Harry Klemm and Bill Cervera both helped me with engine stuff after I simply couldn't take getting such pitifully slow components from Paul Turner!

    My first race with Harry's stuff I won. At the Lorretta Lynn National in 1985. I won the following race as well at Colorado Springs. The final race of the year was at the San Jose National. I had a Paul Turner ROCKET for that race. After qualifying fastest I never got to race that engine. If any one wants to hear that story, just let me know. What a sham that race was.

    What A lot (most) of the 3 wheel faithful never knew was that Honda MADE UP an impossible points system that ensured Marty Hart received the number 1 plate for 1985. This was the first year that the AMA was to promote the professional racing program for ATV racing. I WON the Title based on the original point system. To make themselves feel OK (Honda management) about themselves, they PAID me on the original system. I won the money, but Marty got the #1 plate. I guess Honda mangement did this because they couldn't come to terms with letting the points champion go. Marty HAD to be the champ no matter what. Marty had like 3 DNF's and what should have been a D.Q. at the Loretta Lynn's woods race. With his results he wasn't going to win the title.

    Another FIASCO! Ask anyone who was there. Wanna Know? Just ask me.

    Check it out with the AMA. They somehow lost all of the race results and their records of the 1985 ATV racing YEAR. How is that possible? The AMA was and had been in Honda's pocket for many years. What ever Honda wanted to have happen, happened.
    Last edited by CoeShow; 12-21-2010 at 11:47 PM. Reason: typos, additions

  9. #39
    RichinMO's Avatar
    RichinMO is offline At The Back Of The Pack Arm chair racerAt the back of the pack
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    I recently read in a 3wheeling back issue about the 1985 season wrap up and awards (where they handed our the little clocks made out of cut up trees!) It said that you were the only racer to gain points in every race and showed that you won more money than Hart. After reading that, you know there was some shady stuff going on.
    1985 ATC250SX
    1984 ATC200S "Little Red" - Trailer hitch, Hondaline: Front and Rear Racks, Cooler Rack, Tripmeter, HL Grille, Rubber Footpeg Covers, Mudflaps.
    1985 ATC70 - Sons first trike.
    2008 CRF230L - Dads first dual sport. "More fun than I though it would be!"

  10. #40
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    Hey Mike
    i'd love to know what went on back in 85 races......HART never should have been crowned champ from what you have said......
    THANKS
    Pete

  11. #41
    Curtis-Tecate3's Avatar
    Curtis-Tecate3 is offline At The Back Of The Pack Arm chair racerAt the back of the pack
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    Mike,

    Thanks for the info and welcome to the board. I never posted when you first arrived but I want to say that I am very thankful that you are sharing your information with us.

    I am surprised (and pleased) to hear that you were able to obtain assistance from others after unsuccessfully running hand-me-down Paul Turner stuff for most of the 85 season. You said that you had help from Harry Klemm (Klemm Research) and Bill Cervera (Bills Pipes). Did they provide you with complete motors or just cylinders & pipes? Were they working together with you to get your bike up to speed or were they competing with each other for your work? I have had the pleasure of personally talking to both of these guys in the past while trying to dig up the right parts and info for my 86 Tecate and they are both top notch guys.

    Thanks again for your participation.

    Curtis
    I love anything with an engine except a lawnmower...
    .
    1986 Tecate and original owner of a 1985 200X.
    3 wheeling since 1975.

  12. #42
    Jez is offline First Time Rider Arm chair racerNew to the board
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoeShow
    The final race of the year was at the San Jose National. I had a Paul Turner ROCKET for that race. After qualifying fastest I never got to race that engine. If any one wants to hear that story, just let me know. What a sham that race was.
    Hi Mike,

    Just wanted to say welcome. It's great to have such a legend posting on the board. I'm absolutely loving reading your posts. It'd be great to hear more about the 1985 San Jose National.

    Cheers,
    Jez (From across the pond)

  13. #43
    mad_max is offline Just Too Addicted Arm chair racerJust too addicted
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    Mike,

    This is some great "behind the scenes" info. I appreciate you taking the time to share it with us.

    It dosent surprise me that Honda was pulling strings with the AMA... I dont encourage unethical practices but I can understand why it might happen.
    BTW, I still think the "Big Red Machine" was the best team ever.

    Max

  14. #44
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    Hey every one! I'll try to shed SOME of the crap that happened in 1985 and answer some other questions. I warn that this may get long.........

    Curtis,

    Harry Klemm worked with me individually(in secret) and we tested some very good stuff. At the time Honda had sent over a number of specially designed WORKS HIPO cylinders that would bolt on and were ALMOST indistinguishable from the stockers. While Harry's stuff was excellent, using everything of his on top of one of the WORKS cylinders made even better power. Bill's helped me big time with the 3 wheelers and then more when I was running some one-off quads for Yamaha.

    The late Mickey Thompson was quite a salesman! He talked Yamaha into sponsoring into his Off-Road Gran Prix, and then came back and said,"Oh by the way, displacement limits for the quad racers is 250cc!! Yamaha was anticipating being able to race Banshees! No luck. Instead, My brother modified the Banshee frames to accept YZ250 engines. He built 2 for myself and another for Don Turk who raced with some success for a few years.

    Nobody in their right mind wanted to spend any time working on something that they couldn't turn around and market for sale. Bill's still came to my rescue and made some Excellent hand built pipes for my YZ powered Banshees and for the one off Blaster I raced at a few races too. Unfortunately The Yamaha's were never as competitive as I would have liked because they were so different and every thing was unique to them.

    For the last National of the year at San Jose in 1985, Chuck gathered together all of the parts for us to test and come up with a combo that we liked best. The testing session was held at Corona Raceway and was just incredible. While typical testing sessions were sometimes like splitting hairs to tell a difference, this day everything we tried kept making the trike faster and faster and faster.

    When we left the raceway, I was ecstatic at how the trike was running. I KNEW I would be at the front at San Jose NO question. I had just come off of back to back victories at the last two Nationals and was in top form as well.

    The cylinder that we chose for this race was a VERY custom reworked cylinder. The transfer ports were all epoxied up and recontoured and were VISIBLY modified. There was a boat load of work done to this cylinder. Chuck Miller my mechanic (and now current Honda Race Team Manager!) was convinced that the trike was clearly the best we had (using Turner components) for the season. The stopwatch doesn't lie. Somehow Steve Carter(Marty's mechanic) and Paul Turner felt that this cylinder was no good as it had clearly been run by them prior to making into our "pile" of leftovers for us to test.

    Well, San Jose comes and we go out and set fast time in practice and Marty is struggling. I had absolutley no issue's other than some slight jetting changes that just made my trike even faster. We were looking forward to wining three in a row!

    Chuck and I went to Sizzler that evening for dinner. Afterwards we went back to our hotel and were ready to call it a day. We were in my rental car when we came back to the Hotel and when we got there our Honda Box Van was GONE!!

    We both went into a slight panic and Chuck started making frantic calls before calling the Police and reporting it stolen. Just about this time, Wes McCoy, the team manager got ahold of Chuck and informed him that the van wasn't stolen.
    We both felt a huge relief, but then we asked, "Were is our van then?"

    We were informed that Marty was unhappy with how his trike was running, and that his mechanic just wanted to "measure out" my top-end to possibly make a duplicate for Marty to try early the next day. I didn't like the sound of how things were going..... Not the night before the last NAtional of the year!! Wes said "Don't worry, everything will be fine" "Just go and get a good night rest". I did not like it.

    Chuck and I drove over to where Paul Turner had a friend with a shop there in San Jose. Nobody expected us to show up there. We parked about a block away and walked up to the open doors of this shop. Heres Wes, Steve, and Paul Turner all thrashing about and there's MY 3 WHEELER all torn apart!! I was LIVID! I started yelling at them asking WTF were they doing!! They just kept saying that they wanted to "copy" it so that Marty might be more competitive. Then Steve gets in my face saying I should be more of a team player and other crap like that. I had been getting royally screwed over for the entire year using the crap Paul Turner/ left over parts. I had it up to here with his and Steve Carter's BS. I let it fly.

    Well, I drive to the race track the following morning and Chuck can't even look me in the eye and looks as if he is really digusted. I get my riding gear on and when I look my trike over it's got a completly different topend on it!! I couldn't F**** believe it!! Chuck assembled my trike with a brand new top end, with no time on it. It promptly stuck in the first practice session. MY heat race just happened to be the first one of the morning. Chuck thrashed like a madman to put on another top end. In his rush, he assembled the engine with another cylinder that had been bored first over, and without realizing it, he put it together with a standard size piston. When I kicked it over it did start, but you can imagine what it sounded like. They promptly called my race to the start and I don't really remember where I finished. Its amazing the thing ran at all By now I'm on fire!

    In between races I worked my way over to Marty's area. (we were supposed to be a team, but Steve and Marty always parked away form the rest of Team Honda) Anyway, they see me coming and Wes and Steve rush over to keep me away. Nothing could, and I got close enough to see it. There it was in all its Glory!! Martys trike had MY TOP END AND PIPE mounted. I was stunned to say the least!

    I was so frustrated with all the turn of events I just couldn't help it and I lost it. I was between tears and yelling for what seemed like minutes. The wind had completly left my sails thats for sure. All I could think of was how political this season had become, and how it wasn't any fun anymore, and how much of a TEAM it wasn't.

    I can't remember my finish at that race (anybody know?) By the main Chuck had a decent combo bolted up, but I had like the last pick of the back row to start in the main.

    My finish still would have made me the points champion anyway, but Honda changed the points AGAIN to somehow allow Marty to collect a bogus championship. Even the Kawasaki guys knew it was all rigged. I did come away with a big pay check for the season, some consolation, but I still know I was the 1985 250 class champion.

    It still gripes me to this day. Can you tell ?

    Another story?? This is where it really got going and cooking. OK

    At the Loretta Lynn's National earlier that year(85) It was a two race deal. The first day was the motocross race which I won. I went 2-1 to Marty's 1-2, giving me the win. The next day was the woods race. I don't know how many of you out there ever ran one of the early woods races, but let me tell you, the start is KEY. After you enter the woods it is single file, no exceptions. There are very few places to pass if you can, but not many.

    Donny Luce gets the holeshot and is riding very well. I think I'm in 4th or 5th and making good time. It is a long race. 3 hours or something. Guess what? These races are dead engine start. When the flag drops, you have to kick over your machine and go! Unknown to me at the start, Marty's trike fouls the plug and does NOT START! By the time his mechanic figures out he has a fouled plug its 5+ minutes later.

    Well, they get this BIG Idea thinking NO one will know. They throw Marty's trike in his box van and take it down the road some miles to where the course comes out near the road. They unload, throw in a new plug, and they wait until they can hear racers approaching. Then Marty takes off..... IN THE LEAD! Since it is such a long race you have to pit for fuel and goggles and stuff. Donny held the lead from the start, and I was being filled in during the pit stops of my positions and of the mounting fiasco with Marty and the race. It was clear that some serious stuff was going to hit the fan.

    Marty stayed in front and Donny was credited for second place and I was third I believe at the finish. Kawasaki had watched the stuff with Marty unfold and they protested.

    The Promoter (Dave Coombs) was a very honorable guy, but Honda had such an influence on these promotors that he said he couldn't act appropriately. He said that Marty SHOULD be DQ'd, and that Donny should be the victor, and me second.

    After hours of behind the scene gesturing, they finally came out with the results. Donny first, MARTY SECOND and me third. Still totally bogus!!! I actually pulled in to the Kawasaki pits after the race because I was so mad at what was happening!

    Chuck informed me that if Marty didn't get at least 2nd place, he would have no shot at the points title. (too bad)

    I still went out and won the Baja 1000 as my final race effort for Honda in November. My fourth BAJA 1000 victory in as many years. As a consolation, The Honda "A" team (Marty, Wax, Curtis Sparks) for the 1000 had what was supposed to be the fastest off road 250R of all time. Turner and Carter spent untold amount of time and effort building this missle that was supposed to spank everything and set a land speed record. My team, consisting of Tracy Dickson, Steve Wright and myself (B Team) had a few Turner components and we went testing right threre in Baja. We quickly learned that our stock pre-runners were faster than our Turner "prepped" race trike! We started swapping on stock OEM parts onto the race trike until it was faster than out worn out pre-runners. That is what we entered and used to win the Baja 1000 that year. What happened to the "A" team?
    Seems as though they broke down early in the race. Anyway, it was a sweet victory and my last ride for Team Honda ATC.

    After reading some of these posts, it may appear as though I'm bitter and may have a poor outlook. I do not. Not one tiny bit. The good times clearly outnumbered the bad. I have no ill feelings about Marty Hart either. He was an excellent racer, but there were some agonizing events towards the end of my racing career at Honda that he was involved with, along with some troubling personal issues with the ATC Team mangement and my feelings of being handicapped with "lesser" performance equipment from Paul Turner.

    Mike
    Last edited by CoeShow; 11-04-2010 at 11:18 PM. Reason: updates and typo's

  15. #45
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    That's some ridiculous **** right there. Wow.

    Also, the second to last paragraph reminded me of something. Do you have any pictures of those 1985 250R baja racers? Big bug eye lights and all? I can only find like two shots of those online. I know you don't have a scanner yet but when you get one, I for one would LOVE to see a bunch of shots of those BAJA machines. I'd like to build one up like that.

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