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AMA heads to Las Vegas for the 2009 Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

by Richard Backus


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The AMA is pulling out the stops this year and moving its Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and related events to Las Vegas this weekend. Normally held at the AMA’s Motorcycle Hall of Fame Museum in Pickerington, Ohio, this year’s induction ceremony and Hall of Fame Concours d’Elegance will be held at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

More than three-dozen AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers will be attending the AMA Racing Championship Banquet, presented by KTM North America. Many well-known legends of motorcycling will join hundreds in the motorcycling community to congratulate AMA's 2009 amateur racing champions on Friday night, and welcome a new class of heroes to the AMA Hall of Fame on Saturday evening.

"The list of confirmed AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers who will attend the Induction Ceremony as our guests is impressive," said Jack Penton, chairman of the board of the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation, which raises funds for the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. "This is an opportunity for these motorcycling heroes to catch up with each other, recognize the new class of inductees, and take in the extravaganza that has become the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. For fans of motorcycling, it's also an opportunity to meet their heroes in an incredible setting."

Many AMA Hall of Famers in attendance will have the opportunity to participate in both days' activities. At the AMA Racing Championship Banquet, AMA Hall of Famers will be presenting special awards, trophies and No. 1 plates to some of the 2009 amateur racing champions. On Saturday morning, several AMA Hall of Famers will help judge the motorcycles entered in the 2009 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Concours d'Elegance, presented by FOX Racing Shox.

Led by Master of Ceremonies Perry King, legendary actor of stage, screen and TV, the Induction Ceremony will officially welcome the 2009 class to the AMA Hall of Fame. This year's inductees are industry innovator Robert Bates, off-road racer Randy Hawkins, motorsports giants Bob and Geoff Fox, suspension pioneer Gilles Vaillancourt, off-highway rights activist Mona Ehnes, longtime motorcycle safety proponent David Hough, noted race team manager Gary Mathers and successful dirt-track racer and tuner Chuck Palmgren.

The night before at the same location, the AMA Racing Championship Banquet, presented by KTM North America, will recognize the champions from 2009 AMA Racing premier events and series. In addition, special awards, such as the AMA Racing Athlete of the Year, the AMA Racing Sportsman of the Year and the AMA Racing Female Rider of the Year, will be awarded.

Advance ticket purchase is required for both the AMA Racing Championship Banquet, presented by KTM North America, and the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. Admission to the Hall of Fame autograph session and the Concours d'Elegance, presented by FOX Racing Shox, bike show is free.