Doug Domokos the Wheelie King

Remembering Doug Domokos, who set a world record for riding 145 miles on one wheel, and became one of motorcycling’s most colorful characters.

| July/August 2019

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What’s the longest wheelie you’ve ever pulled on a motorcycle? Fifty feet? A football field? Perhaps a full mile?

Doug Domokos, aka the Wheelie King, rode a bike for 145 miles without letting the front tire even so much as dab the pavement. That was a Guinness World Record, one he set in 1984 at Talladega Superspeedway aboard a Honda dirt bike that he modified for sustained one-wheel travel.

The year before, the Wheelie King played like King Kong, riding on one wheel at the top of the Empire State Building — a stunt he termed the World’s Tallest Wheelie, although there’s no account of that being a bona fide world record. At the least, we should consider it a bona fide “tall tale,” one that afforded him further acclaim within the motorcycle community at the time.



But whether he was setting wheelie world records, or simply playing around in a parking lot, Domokos proved to be an especially colorful and charismatic character. He first rose to national prominence in 1978 when, prompted by Kawasaki factory team motocross racer “Jammin’ Jimmy” Weinert, Kawasaki Motor Corp. agreed to support the young man from Michigan with modified KX250 dirt bikes and a pickup truck. Armed with first-class equipment, Domokos set out to showcase his talent at Supercross races, among other venues, during the coming months. As the story goes, famed Supercross promoter Mike Goodwin once bet Domokos that he couldn’t wheelie the entire distance of the Anaheim SX course, considered to be among the premier tracks on the schedule. One lap later the Wheelie King collected a cool $10,000 from Goodwin.

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