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19th European H.O.G. Rally

16th Jul 2010 - 18th Jul 2010 19th European H.O.G. Rally

Swiss Harley Days incorporating 19th Annual European H.O.G. Rally

Happy Harley Days!


The beautiful Lago di Lugano in Switzerland was the setting for this year’s fantastic European H.O.G. Rally which, for the first time, was integrated with Swiss Harley Days.


From July 16-18, the city of Lugano, neighbouring Italian town of Campione d’Italia and the surrounding area hosted more than 60,000 visitors and 15,000 bikes. The setting was the perfect destination for all those who rode to the event. Snaking through the surrounding mountain passes enjoying stunning scenery and gorgeous riding conditions, the final destination did not disappoint.


The heart of the event, located in the Piazza della Riforma was the focal point for the event. The main stage provided live music throughout the event with Swiss rock band Gotthard taking centre stage on Saturday night. Surrounding bars and restaurants were heaving with H.O.G. members and Harley enthusiasts as they relaxed in the Swiss sunshine.


The lake-front Harley Village housed local dealers, H.O.G. Information and event merchandise, which attracted many visitors. The trader area was a veritable feast for shoppers with Harley-Davidson merchandise for sale from Roadhouse, sweet stalls and motorcycle accessory dealers as well as demonstrations from freehand pinstriping expert Captain Blaster.


The Custom Bike Show was held in Campione d’Italia on the Saturday, attracting a wide range of beautifully customised bikes that adorned the lakeside location. Entries from all across Europe provided a visual feast for visitors with a particularly high quality of antique motorcycles on display, reflecting the passion of local enthusaists for classic, older and Bobber-style vintage Harleys. 


As well as many local winners, trophies were also won by visitors from Germany, the UK, Ireland, Italy and Czech Republic. As part of the event’s affiliation to the AMD Championships of custom bike building, one lucky winner receives €5,000 and an all-expenses-paid trip to compete at the legendary Sturgis in 2011. Taking home this prestigious prize for the Best Modifed Harley was Hardnine Choppers from Switzerland with the ‘DMX’ antique bike. Beautifully restored and customised to look like a BMX bike, Danny MX was thrilled to receive such recognition for his work.


Many H.O.G. Chapters participated in the Chapter Challenge with the Roman Village Italy Chapter taking the overall prize with 116 points. Dani Antonio from the Padova Chapter Italy took first place in the Poker Run with David Cecchini and Fabio Calzetta, both from the Roman Village Chapter, taking second and third palces respectively. The Observation Run was won by Federica Rizza with second place going to Anna Maria Louato, both from Roman Village.


Prizes were also awarded to Abdul Elah Baghdadi and Omar Baccar from Saudi Arabia for the furthest travelled, and Rex Menciassi, 80 years old, for being the oldest biker at the event.


Despite the heat, many took advantage of the availability of brand new Harley-Davidson motorcycles and experienced the rumble of the V-Twin on a specially designed demo route. Taking in the surrounding mountainous area and lakeside roads, visitors were given a real riding treat.


The parade on Saturday evening was a real highlight, drawing 3,000 bikes to the Lugano lake-front line-up. The 7km stretch of bikes travelled up into the hills, snaking through pretty villages, across the lake and into Campione d’Italia before returning to Lugano. Crowds lined the streets, local residents waved from their balconies and children jumped for joy as the thundering procession rode past. Lasting almost an hour and a half, participants returned to the main plaza ready to party!


The humid heatwave was finally put to rest as the heavens opened just ahead of the closing ceremonies. Even thunder and lightning couldn’t dampen the spirits of the thousands of visitors who partied all night long, enjoying the live music and tremendous atmosphere that is synonymous with every Harley-Davidson event.


Join us next year as the 20th European H.O.G. Rally heads to Biograd, Croatia to celebrate this milestone event.


Check out the photos at www.hogeuropegallery.com

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