It was like Woodstock for motorcycles. Bikers descended en masse on Kyalami over the weekend to attend the second South Africa Bike Festival, powered by Discovery Channel.
Mostly fair weather – except for a chilly Sunday morning start – greeted festivalgoers who rocked up at the Midrand circuit between Friday and Sunday to gaze at motorcycles both new and old, and all their associated toys and accessories.
While organisers are still finalising attendance figures, they declared this year's festival a roaring success which was visibly confirmed by the large crowds thronging the exhibition area.
Live music, food stalls, and beer kept the party rocking over the three days, but the real stars of the show were the latest motorcycles on display from KTM, Harley-Davidson, Ducati, BMW Motorrad, Suzuki, Yamaha, Honda, Can-Am, Aprilia, MV Agusta, Hyosung, CSR, BetaRacing, Polaris, Linhai, Zontes, Husqvarna and Indian Motorcycles.
Superbikes rubbed shoulders with motocross machines, cafe racers, adventure bikes, cruisers, and everything in between, and while some visitors were content to merely gaze at the gleaming bonies displayed in the pit exhibition area, many also took the opportunity to test some of the two-wheelers around the recently-revamped circuit. Offered in association with ZABikers.co.za, over 3000 test drives took place.
On the Friday and Saturday evenings festival goers were treated to stunt shows presented by Monster Energy, with international FMX star Jimmy Hill performing high-flying daredevil acts alongside local riders Alastair Sayer and Dallan Goldman.
Sunday morning dawned distinctly chilly but that didn't deter over 1200 motorcyclists from taking part in the Dunlop charity ride from Fairland’s Shopping Centre, which ended with two laps around Kyalami – all proceeds going towards the Ride for a Reason-Claw and Paws Charity organisation.
SA Bike Festival 2017 also hosted a round of the SuperGP Champions Trophy, with Clinton Seller (MiWay Yamaha Racing R1) claiming two comfortable race wins and setting a new outright lap record.
In Saturday's race one Seller was involved in a scrap for the win with pole-setter Lance Isaacs on the SupaBets/Sandton BMW Motorrad S1000RR, until Isaacs crashed out with just a lap and a half to go. This left Seller to take the win from Greg Gildenhuys (Autohaus Towing Kawasaki ZX10R) and Michael White (Consortium Shipping Yamaha R1).
Seller won Sunday's race two from Isaacs, the latter narrowly beating third-placed Gildenhuys after a tight scrap.
Heinrich Rheeder (Rheeder Racing BMW S1000RR) claimed both races in the SuperMasters category.