September 08. 2018 9:57PM

Motorcyclists competing in cross-country endurance run on pre-1929 bikes

By KIMBERLEY HAAS
Union Leader Correspondent


Dean Bordigioni, of Sonoma Valley, Calif., stands aside his 1914 single-cylinder Harley-Davidson in Rochester on Saturday. Bordigioni is one of about 100 competitors in the Motorcycle Cannonball Endurance Run. (KIMBERLEY HAAS/Union Leader Correspondent)

ROCHESTER - The parking lot at Harley-Davidson Shop of Rochester was packed Saturday as enthusiasts turned out to see the antique bikes taking part in this year's Motorcycle Cannonball Endurance Run.

The cross-country ride is a competition for people who own antique motorcycles. Competitors ride bikes built before 1929.

Dean Bordigioni, of Sonoma Valley, Calif., said this is his fourth time participating in the 16-day endurance run. He brought a 1914 Harley to the competition.

"It's challenging but taking a couple of weeks off to ride a bike is fun," Bordigioni said.

There are about 100 bikers competing. The course runs from Portland, Maine, to Portland, Ore., this year and riders are expected to average around 250 miles a day and maintain a speed of at least 43 mph.

According to the run's website, it is estimated that less than 10 miles will be run on interstate highways.

Members of the competitors' support crews said they are prepared for all types of weather, even the possibility of snow in states like Montana.

The event was founded in 2010 by Lonnie Isam Jr. He felt that antique motorcycles deserve to be tended to and ridden.

Isam, of Sturgis, S.D., died in August 2017 after a battle with cancer. He was 48 years old.

According to run spokesperson Felicia Morgan, there are riders from six different countries competing and a variety of pre-1929 bikes involved in the race.

As the competitors make their way across the country, there will be planned visits to various dealerships, museums and supportive communities.

For more information, visit www.motorcyclecannonball.com.