“Going out and having fun with the homies is what it’s about, and #flatoutfriday always brings them together,” posted lc_pojazdu (a.k.a. Christopher Milanowski) on Instagram. And nobody was having more fun at the Flat Out Friday races during Harley-Davidson’s 115th anniversary than Milanowski, who took every opportunity to launch his pull-start scooter off the ramp while competing in the Boonies class.
“I forgot to even race, I was so excited just to catch sick air off the jump,” he added.
Flat Out Friday at the Harley 115th anniversary turned out to be part circus sideshow and part stone-cold flat-track racing. In one round you’d be watching Prince on his Purple Rain bike battling an oversize banana riding a Yamaha XS, who was dicing it out with a black and white Road Glide. Ten minutes later, the bellow of Sportsters on the gas would be bouncing off the walls of Milwaukee’s Panther Arena as Hooligan racers with game faces on rocketed around the concrete short track.
One of the most riveting races of the night was the Brakeless main event, a competition between four-stroke bikes with no brakes and no suspension. Warren Heir grabbed the holeshot from the outside with Chuck Dickenson slotting into second, the 78-year-old Dickenson sporting Evel Knievel-like red, white, and blue leathers. A few laps in Heir ran wide, allowing Dickenson to sneak up the inside. His lead was short-lived though, as Christopher Zielinski ran him down and allowed Heir to slip by the ageless rider too. A couple of laps later the two leaders got tangled up and Zielinski went down. Heir ripped off a couple of fast circles until lapped riders slowed him down, allowing Dickenson to run up the inside again, forcing Heir to the wall. The next lap, Heir ran wide again and clipped Zielinski, who was still down on the track. Dickenson powered to the lead and never looked back on his way to the checkered flag as the crowd showered the determined rider with cheers of approval.
Breaks in the racing action were filled by a police skills demonstration and performances by the Wheelie Wizzard, Tyler Sheppard, who wowed the crowd on his little Honda with no front wheel. The hostess of ceremonies, Dianna Dahlgren, also filled the void by chatting with various celebrities, from UFC fighters TJ Dillashaw and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone to Ink Master Oliver Peck, who actually competed in the Boonies race on the Cheap Thrills scooter.
The Hooligan main saw a stacked field with 11 riders squeezed onto the tight track. Rich Heverly from Souderton, Pennsylvania—the fastest qualifier and heat winner—grabbed the holeshot from the inside line. Benny Carlson also got a strong start to slot into second place. The duo quickly distanced themselves from the pack, but Heverly ruled at this Flat Out Friday, grabbing the victory by 0.32 second. Louie Lauter was a little over a second back to grab the final spot on the Hooligan podium. Post-race, in true Hooligan form, four riders put on a smoke show by roasting their back tires simultaneously, filling Panther Arena with gray plumes.
“This is the biggest win I’ve ever had by far—and to do it in front of all these fantastic Harley-Davidson fans… Harley-Davidson throws one kick-ass party and I’m glad to be a part of it,” Heverly said.