You know your company’s slogan is perfect when people not only start repeating it, but living it. So when Star Motorcycles coined the term, “We build it, you make it your own,” we figured that many riders would step up and personalize their own Road Star, Roadliner or Raider cruiser to suit their own tastes. And they have. But the message has hit even a more powerful chord as some historically important custom bikes have already been created around Star Motorcycles, taking Best in Show at some of the world’s top custom shows. Still others have elevated the Star mission to even greater heights, and you’re looking at one of them here.
The Ice Bike, based on a new 2008 Raider S, was donated by a California Star Motorcycles dealer and a Los Angeles sports-medicine clinic, and then customized for an auction benefiting the Kings Care Foundation, the LA Kings hockey team’s official charity. When the gavel fell on February 24, the Ice Bike had raised an impressive $35,000 for this charitable organization serving young people in Los Angeles. Not only that, but the Ice Bike also became the evening’s single largest-grossing auction lot and one of the top five auction items in the history of the charity event.
“It was literally a 10-week project in four weeks,” says Ice Bike originator Jim Riley, the owner of a two-year-old Star Motorcycles dealership in Madera, Calif. Just a month before the Tip-A-King Fundraise auction, Riley and his brother in law, Dr. Robert Bray, Jr., CEO of the D.I.S.C. Spine and Sports Center in LA, hatched a plan to build and auction off a new Raider S. And then Riley shot into action. He rallied the support of a cadre of topflight customizers to handle paintwork, chrome and even the design and manufacture of special billet wheels.
One of the first orders of business was the dynamic purple and black paintjob, which features Kings logos, flying hockey pucks, and the signatures of Kings players beneath the shimmering clear coat.
With the tank, side panels and fenders underway at Ogawa Designs, master technicians David Reed and Edgar Johns began rebuilding the Raider with custom pipes from Tejas Thump Cycles, additional bright work from MecLec Chrome, and a mean custom seat from Rocky’s – in Kings purple, naturally. Last up was a unique set of 21-inch front, 18-inch rear billet-aluminum Sinister wheels featuring CNC-machined crowns, the Kings’ official emblem. The rear wheel carries an enormous 230mm tire for a look as muscular as the team’s goalie.
When Riley stated that the Ice Bike was constructed in a highly compressed timeframe, he wasn’t kidding. After an intense month of work, the reformed Raider arrived at the Kings Arena for its public debut just 45 minutes ahead of schedule. And then Ice Bike fever began to build. With exposure at four Kings games and publicity on area television news networks, it quickly became the most anticipated item of the Tip-A-King Fundraise. But this wasn’t just an ordinary auction. Held at Universal Studios Hollywood after hours, the event featured rides and attractions hosted by Kings players available for conversation and autographs. Anyone could attend, and the $85 entry fee was also earmarked for charity. After the conclusion of a silent auction for L.A. Kings collectibles, the Ice King took center stage – in fact, none other than an actual stage used for the TV show Fear Factor.
“There was a starting bid of $15,000,” says Riley, “It slowly went to $20,000 before the auctioneer took some time to talk about the bike a little more. Then the bidding started again, went from $23,000 to $24,000 quickly, and narrowed to four bidders at $29,000. Then two remaining bidders took it to $32,000 and finally $35,000.”
After the auction the Ice Bike’s adventures were still building. It was featured in a special reception at Riley’s Star Motorcycles dealership where it garnered still more media attention before finally going to its new owner, an LA-area businessman and hockey fan. Now that’s what we call a Raider to Riches story!