Q&A With The Winner:
Lewsader: What got you into motorcycles?
Rohr: I’ve been riding most of my adult life. Back in the day, all my friends had sportbikes, and the first time I rode one, I was hooked, and had to have one. I picked up a 1983 Honda Interceptor 500 and learned to ride with my friends. What a feeling, the freedom of two wheels and the G’s, and the skill and the thrill of riding the twisties (and the challenge of doing it well) is exhilerating! And are you kidding me? What’s not to love – they’re frickin cool! There’s nothing quite like killing bugs with your teeth.
LL: What got you into Streetfighters?
Rohr: I’ve always admired stunters – that’s where I first saw the look, and I liked it. Nothing but a badass machine, no fluff, nothing to cry about when you slam it into the ground from a 12 o’clock. I think the look is cool. It’s different.
LL: Why did you build the bike you did?
Rohr: I had to sell my 636 a couple years ago and haven’t been able to afford another bike since. I came across this beat up junkyard bike on Craigslist and talked them down from $1000 to $350. It didn’t run and needed a ton of work. I bought it on a wing and a prayer using rent money (pissed off the landlord!) because I saw some potential somewhere in that heap and I just couldn’t pass it up for the price. I was going to restore it, but I’ve had plenty of sportbikes over the years, so been there done that, and it didn’t really look that hot from the factory anyway. I just wasn’t psyched about it. I wanted to do something different.
I love classics like the old Nortons, Enfields and Triumphs. Lately, old-skool custom cruisers, bobbers and cafe racers had been catching my eye. I fell in love with cafe racers, and in many ways, streetifghters are the new cafe racer. The culture and history is fascinating, they share roots, and the look is cool. There’s great pride in building your own bike with your hands, unique and just for you, who cares what anyone else thinks. It’s about the machine, the raw ride and the road, not about flashy and fast.
I was originally going to go full streetifghter with it, something I could beat on and learn to stunt, but the build kind of evolved as I got into it and I realized it had good lines for a modern cafe racer. Once I took off the tail and tried dropping it, all I could see was a low riding, modern cafe style cruiser, so I went with it. The end result is way beyond my expectations.
Most importantly, The incident which led to me needing to sell my 636 turned into a painful, two year, life-changing struggle which culminated in the loss of my two beloved children, just about the time I bought this bike. So this build is dedicated to Shauna and Shay. Their names will be stenciled on the tail when it’s done. It’s therapy on wheels.
LL: Why did you enter this months FOTM?
Rohr: I didn’t think I would win – it’s not your typical street fighter, but I figured it was worth a shot. I wanted to put it out there and see what people thought of it. I didn’t expect such a positive response. Thank you all.
LL: What do you think your chances of winning Fighter of the Year are?
Rohr: I’m not sure – there’s plenty of really nice bikes already in the running, lots of drool-worthiness, many certainly nicer than mine. It’s so NOT your typical street fighter, so I think that lessens my chances, but on the other hand, I think being different sets it apart. It’s cool in it’s own way, so who knows. We’ll see, I guess.
A note from Lance. This is probably the most genuine interview I have done yet. When ya see Rohr on the forums give this guy some love.