Last year Nick Beaulieu (Forever Two Wheels, Windham, Maine) took 2nd in New York and 2nd in the Ultimate Builder National Championship in Chicago. This year he threw down the gauntlet to his fellow competitors with 1st place FreeStyle and MOD Retro wins at the Javits Center, New York City round on the weekend of December 10/11.
Billed as “the nation’s largest motorcycle builder competition series,” the J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show features more than 350 motorcycles and the talents of dozens of local builders at each stop of the Progressive International Motorcycle Show series tour.
|Freestyle class winner – ‘The Hate Machine’ by Nick Beaulieu of Forever Two Wheels, Windham, Maine|
In the FreeStyle Class Nick’s ‘Hate Machine’ custom chopper featured a custom-made girder front end, hand-made frame with Pentagram downtube and axle blocks, one-off Pentagram wheels, hand-made exhaust with Pentagram exhaust tips, custom tail section and aluminum gas tank, powered by an S&S 111 incher with a Baker 6-speed, featuring a BDL belt drive.
Jeremy Cupp (LC Fabrications, Grottoes, Virginia) was second in the Green Earth Technologies sponsored Freestyle Class with a custom Sportster.
Beaulieu also scooped the Royal Enfield sponsored, K&N Filters supported Retro MOD class with “Cupcake”, a 1963 4-speed kickstart Panhead with open belt, hand-made exhaust, one-off dual Brembo rear brakes with hidden mount, 21” spool front wheel with a super narrow front end, and hand-made purple glass headlight lens, shift knob and taillight.
Nick spent over $10,000 on hand-chiselled engraving and a hand-made steel gas tank with aluminum side panels with a hand-formed tail section and hand-tooled seat. Runner-up was Charlie Vanvalkenburgh with a 1966 Honda 305 Scrambler.
With Harley as presenting sponsor and J&P Cycles, J&M Motorcycle Audio and K&N Filters providing product sponsorship, Steve Iacona (Iacona Customs, Brooklyn, NY) won the Modified Harley class with ‘Phoenix’, a 1992 1200cc Sportster modified with a hand-fabricated oil tank, oil cooler shroud, front and rear fenders, front fairing, gas tank, tail section and exhaust pipes. Michael Cupelli was runner-up with a custom Softail.
Evan Favaro (Speakeasy Motors, Wallkill, NY) took the Condor sponsored MOD Custom class win with ‘Ethel’, a 2015 hardtailed tribute bike with prototype billet/Lexan valve covers, custom neck, leaf spring front end by Kiwi Indian, bevel gear throttle, hand-fabricated split tanks, fenders, stainless exhaust, stainless seat with hand-tooled pad, 21” front wheel, custom intake and rear brake. Runner-up was Sam Kiley with a 2016 custom Indian Scout
|Modified Harley winner – ‘Phoenix’ by Steve Iacona, Brooklyn|
‘Best Paint’ was awarded to Michael Cupelli for his custom big-wheel Softail. The People’s Choice recipient was Steven Clark for his turbo-charged 100ci EVO custom chopper. He won a custom 500 lid from Bell Helmets and $100 gift certificate from J&P Cycles. Mark Klein of Different Horse Customs took the ‘Ingenuity Award’ for his Indian Motorcycle Scout reverse trike. The ‘Most Original Award’ went to Paul Andrecola of Green Earth Technologies for his killer custom trike that is detuned at 1200 hp.
The K&N award winner is #175, Thomas Foulds of DIY Cycle Parts. His 750cc Yamaha Virago features a custom cafe racer style build with paint from Working Class Choppers.
The “Sho Dog” is awarded to the individual that works the show to promote their business and the custom bike industry. Dennis Tang won The Leatherworks solo chopper bag, the home of the nickel bag.
|‘Cupcake’ by Nick Beaulieu of Forever Two Wheels, Windham, Maine|
Elite-level, custom motorcycle creations compete for cash and product prizes. The Chicago stop hosts the Championship round of the J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show, and both professional and amateur builders from throughout the US will compete for cash and product valued at $50,000, the largest prize of any competition in the United States.
There are four classes at the J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show. These classes accommodate every conceivable custom creation, as there is a bike for each class and a class for each bike.
1) FreeStyle – Open class for any build with a motorcycle based drivetrain; any 2 or 3 wheel motorcycle as defined by the DMV. Motorcycle must run.
2) Retro MOD – Open class for any build with a motorcycle based drivetrain 1984 or older; OEM driveline with stock, modified or aftermarket frame. No reproduction engines allowed. Any 2 or 3 wheel motorcycle as defined by the DMW. Motorcycle must run.
3) MOD Custom – Must have a major OEM engine and frame. Neck may be cut to rake or stretch frame. Hardtail sections, stretched swingarms and wide tire kits are acceptable. Includes OEM cases. Any 2 or 3 wheel motorcycle as defined by the DMV.
4) MOD Harley – Must have Harley-Davidson engine cases and frame. Neck may be cut to rake or stretch frame. Hardtail sections and wide tire kits are acceptable. Touring models, Softails, Dynas, FXRs, Sportsters and V-Rods qualify for this class. Must be a 2 or 3 wheel motorcycle configuration as defined by the DMV.