Brittens at the 11th Annual Barber Vintage Festival


The Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum’s Britten V-1000

One of 10: The Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum’s Britten V-1000. Photo by Neale Bayly.

The 11th Annual Barber Vintage Festival at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama, happens Oct. 9-11, 2015. This year’s event pays tribute to New Zealand architect and engineer John Britten, the visionary creator of the incredible Britten V-1000 race bike. Drawing from a clean sheet of ideas and built using composite materials, John Britten’s V-1000 was without question the most innovative motorcycle of its day and quickly proved the soundness of its creator’s design on tracks around the world. Unfortunately, John Britten died at the age of 45 in 1995, after just 10 of his iconic pink and blue V-1000s were built.

The 2015 Barber Festival is slated to feature the largest gathering of Britten V-1000s ever held, with at least six machines expected to be on hand — and possibly more. Barber museum executive director Jeff Ray says the Brittens will be the centerpiece for this year’s museum fundraiser, An Evening with Britten.

The dinner event will be held in the museum restoration shop and will feature an interview with John Britten’s wife, Kirsteen. The owners and caretakers of the assembled bikes will be on hand as well, answering questions and discussing their machines. The Friday night event will be followed by a not-to-be-missed parade lap on Saturday, with at least four of the Brittens on the track! The Brittens will also make appearances in the race paddock throughout the day. There’s no word yet on dinner ticket prices, but festival updates are being posted regularly on the Barber Festival website.

Other event features include the American Motor Drome Company’s Wall of Death, with vintage Indian motorcycles running circles inside a 15-foot wooden drum; the Ace Corner inside turns 14-17, a special area hosted by Dime City Cycles and Ace Cafe North America for fans of café racers, customs and specials; the annual AMCA and VJMC shows; the Century Parade, a special exhibition race for bikes 100 years old or older; plus hundreds of vendors in the America’s First Fan Zone and one of the best vintage motorcycle swap meets in the country.

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