Bask in the glory of yesteryear during the Barnett Sidecar Revival, held during the annual Barber Vintage Festival Oct. 6-8 at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, AL. Sponsored by Laroque Motorsports, Barnett Clutches and 3 Wheeling U.S, the Festival gives a nod to sidecar motorcycle racing.
Sidecar Motorcycle Racing Renaissance
Sidecar motorcycle racing is experiencing a rebirth, thanks in part to efforts by Maurice Laroque-Turgeau, founder of Laroque Motorsports. The Barnett Sidecar Revival is the brainchild of Laroque-Turgeau, AMA Hall of Fame member and International Sidecar Champion Larry Coleman, and Barnett Clutches. Laroque-Turgeau said sidecar racing is an event all ages can enjoy, inspiring a younger generation of riders who want to learn more about the sport.
“Seeing the recent influence of the Bagger Series we wanted to find something to generate the same type of enthusiasm for the vintage crowd,” Laroque-Turgeau said. “In our research we found that sidecar racing is one of the few forms of motorcycle racing that really reaches out to fans of all ages. At every event we worked or attended, when the sidecars were announced to go on track, we watched kids grab their parents and spectators of all ages head trackside to watch the action.”
Experience the Barber Vintage Festival
The Barber Vintage Festival is one of the largest festivals of its kind, with more than 80,000 spectators attending the four-day event. Laroque-Turgeau said this year the Sidecar Revival will focus on BMW-powered sidecars, to dovetail on the 100th anniversary of BMW Motorrad. In addition to vintage motorcycle displays, the Barnett Sidecar Revival will feature meet-and-greet sessions and other driver-interactions.
“There will be vintage motorcycle racing of all types – road racing, off-road, trials and for the first time at Barbers, flat track racing,” Laroque-Turgeau said. “Also, during the weekend, there will be several vintage motorcycle shows, a huge vintage swap meet, a Fan Zone with displays and exhibits with activities for the entire family. Our portion of this event will include a racing sidecar exhibit featuring vintage and modern racing machines. Also on display will be a visual history of sidecar racing in the U.S. along with featuring some of the personalities that made it famous.”
Laroque-Turgeau said some of the meet-and-greet sessions will include several Americans who have raced on the Isle of Man, as well as the all-women’s race team from New Zealand, the Car Cox Motorsports NZ Sidecar Team. Cost to attend the event is $65 for a weekend pass, $45 for Friday or Saturday only, and $30 for Sunday only. Score 15% off with the code LAWTIGERS15, used to purchase tickets at this link.
In addition to racing, vintage displays, merch and vendor areas, the Barber Vintage Festival includes concerts, workshops and a swap meet. The Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum will be open, featuring interactive displays, the story of George Barber, and a collection of motorcycles that span more than 100 years of motorcycle production. Museum hours vary; admission to the museum is $18+tax a day for adults and $12+tax for children. A weekend pass is available, check the website for pricing.
The 18th Annual Barber Vintage Festival is held at 6030 Barber Motorsports Parkway in Birmingham, Alabama.
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