We’ve posted several articles over the past few months about the inaugural American International Motorcycle Expo (AIME) because the motorcycling public is invited to attend what looks like an industry/trade show. And we’re not the only ones excited to check it out.
Kenny Roberts, perhaps the best-known American motorcycle racer of all time, has signed on to the AIME show as “American International Motorcycle Champion.” In this role, Roberts will serve as the proverbial face of AIMExpo, joining in the celebration of the inaugural show with the entire powersports marketplace – industry, trade, media and consumers. It will be held on October 16-20, 2013 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.
“I’ve admired KR’s longstanding world champion stature, his instant recognition to many generations of motorcyclists, and his continued commitment to the sport today,” said Larry Little, Vice President and General Manager of AIMExpo.
“I’ve known Larry and other members of the AIMExpo team for a long time,” said Roberts, “and they are the right group to bring the popular European model of an all-inclusive motorcycle event to the American market. Having it in the fall makes so much sense for dealers and consumers when all the new products are coming out. I really appreciate and relate to their enthusiasm to challenge and change things up, and I look forward to seeing everyone this October in Orlando!”
Roberts became an icon in the world of racing during the 1970s, first capturing multiple U.S. Grand National Championships, which featured dirt-track and road racing disciplines, before going on to contest the FIM 500cc World Grand Prix Championship (now known as MotoGP). In 1978 he became the first rookie rider and the first American rider to win the title, cementing his icon status by nabbing three consecutive world championships. His record of winning the championship as a rookie still stands.
In addition to his incredible talent on the track, Roberts also established himself as an advocate for Grand Prix competitors, leading to greater financial support for riders and long overdue improvements in safety regulations. He went on to be a successful team owner, overseeing the three-year run of world championships by fellow American Wayne Rainey.
As “AIMExpo Champion,” Roberts will play a key role in the festivities of the inaugural event. He will “Champion” the show via pre-event publicity and promotion, play a role in the grand opening of the expo, and share his championship experiences during the consumer days of the show.
In an effort to recognize his significance to AIMExpo and to pay tribute to his American dirt-track roots, show producer Marketplace Events Motorcycle Group has commissioned a Star Bolt by Yamaha in Robert’s now famous yellow “track-graphic” livery, which will be given away at AIMExpo.
“Like Kenny did for his fellow competitors and the fans of Grand Prix, AIMExpo is bringing needed change, energy, and excitement to the business of motorcycling, so we’ve got a lot in common,” added Little. “The Bolt represents a fun way to recognize our appreciation for everything KR has done for motorcycling in the U.S.”
For more information, visit the AIMExpoUSA.com web site, and keep up to date on the continued progress by visiting AIMExpo’s social media pages. “Like” the American International Motorcycle Expo on Facebook by visiting the AIMExpo page, and “Follow” on Twitter: @AIMExpo.