Thunderbike, Germany, wins 9th annual AMD World Championship of Custom Bike Building

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Tuesday 14th Aug 2012Filed under News


For the first time an authorized Harley-Davidson dealer has scooped the custom motorcycle industry's top design and engineering prize.

Thunderbike, of Hamminkeln, near Essen in Germany, was chosen by fellow competitors and selected VIP judges to have built the stand-out 'class of 2012' custom motorcycle with 'PainTTless', a hand crafted one-of-a-kind tour de force that oozes stunning design and engineering craftsmanship from every angle.

Using a restored and modified 1000cc Harley-Davidson Ironhead Sportster engine in a one-off, hand-built custom swingarm frame, Andreas Bergerforth and the dedicated team at Thunderbike ( have cemented their reputation as being among the world's foremost motorcycle customizers, following up on their multiple AMD European Championship wins and AMD World Championship top-five placings.

Their work received widespread acclaim for its attention to detail, originality, quality of execution and design harmony, beating off stiff competition from a field of top quality examples of custom motorcycle craftsmanship from all over the world.

Thunderbike has made a double-dose of custom motorcycle industry history at the AMD World Championship this year - not only are they the first authorized Harley-Davidson dealer to take home the ultimate accolade for their work, but they are the first customizers from Germany to take top honors at the AMD World Championship; there have now been winners from 6 different countries in the nine years that the AMD World Championship has been staged.

Second place went to noted up-and-comer Jeremy Cupp (LC Fabrications - of Crawford, Virginia. Jeremy came to AMD World Championship program prominence in 2009 with a 6th and 14th finishes.

This year his 'Old Black', a hill climber based on a 1976 Harley-Davidson Ironhead Sportster engine in a custom made rigid frame made Jeremy the winningest American competitor and secured him a place on 'Team USA' 2013 to go and compete in the 10th annual AMD World Championship at the Big Bike Europe expo at Essen, Germany in May 2013. (

Third place was taken by Sam Reali and the team at Abnormal Cycles, near Milan, Italy ( with 'Speed-Demon', a lovingly recreated homage to the days of Harley-Davidson board track racers. Featuring a 74 cubic inch Harley-Davidson JD engine from 1919 in a 1930 VL frame.

Winners of the Modified Harley-Davidson World Championship in 2011, Abnormal Cycles won through to the FreeStyle class at this year's AMD World Championship by scooping top honors at the AMD World Championship program affiliate show staged at the Beaulieu National Motor Museum in England in June this year.

Fourth place went to George Tchor, of Kreater Custom Motorcycles, Toronto, Canada ( with '18', a 96 inch Harley-Davidson Twin Cam engined rigid in a Kreater 'Steam Punk' hardtail custom frame.

George's success made it a clean-sweep of the top four placings for Harley-Davidson engines - another AMD World Championship program first.

Fifth place was scooped by Sweden's Claes Warefors and his collaborators KDK Performance with 'Gryphon', which features an 88 cubic inch Swedish built Mectec engine in a KDK built custom swingarm frame.

Claes is another competitor who won through to be at the AMD World Championship through the program of international affiliate events, having taken the win at what is believed to be the oldest custom motorcycle show still in operation, the respected 'Custom Bike Show' operated by Twin Club MC at the coastal port city of Norrtelje, north east of the Swedish capital Stockholm.

Sixth place went to Kenny Williams, KW Customs, of Angier, North Carolina, with 'Tantalizer', the much admired Mike Garrison 120 cubic inch engined 'bagger' with which he scooped the 2011 US Championship at Daytona Bike Week.

Kenny's determination to compete at the AMD World Championship, having had to take a rain-check on qualification until this year, has been royally rewarded - Kenny won the second of the three qualification spots on offer at Sturgis for 'Team USA' at the 10th annual AMD world Championship at Big Bike Europe in May 2013.

Seventh place, and the third of the 'Team USA' qualification places, went to Larry Moore, Moore Customs of Wichita, Kansas, with Bad Influence, an 80 cubic inch Harley-Davidson engined, Redneck Engineering rigid framed stretched-out Pro-Street style chopper.

Eighth place was taken by fourth placed George Tchor with his second entry in the field this year, 'Vitalogy', a Zipper's Performance Modified 124 inch Harley-Davidson TCB engined trike - one of two trikes to make it into the top ten at the AMD World Championship - the first time any three-wheelers have done so well.

The second of those trikes was World Championship regular Rafik Kaissi's 1000cc Aprilia engined 'RK Thing' in ninth place (RK Concepts, Round Rock, Texas -

The top ten in the FreeStyle 'Class of 2012 was rounded out by Jon Shipley, of Hoosier Daddy Choppers of Bloomfield, Indiana with 'Whiskey Bent', a 1977 Ironhead Sportster engined, Dirty South Choppers Pro-Street style rigid retro chopper - making it six out of the top ten in engine terms for Harley-Davidson - three of them Ironhead Sportsters!

Click on any of the thumbnail images for an 800x600 low-res version.

Click here to download high resolution versions of the images accompanying this press release [53MB]

Freestyle top 3 in studio

Top 3 in the Freestyle class: Jeremy Cupp of LC Fabrications (left) (2nd place), newly-crowned World Champion Andreas Bergerforth of Thunderbike (center) and Samuele Reali of Abnormal Cycles (3rd place).

Photography credit: Studio bike shots by Onno Wieringa and Frank Sander.

Freestyle 1st place, World Champion, Thunderbike (Germany)

Freestyle 2nd place, LC Fabrications (USA)

Freestyle 3rd place, Abnormal Cycles (Italy)

Freestyle 4th place, Kreater Custom Motorcycles (Canada)

Freestyle 5th place, Claes Wärefors (Sweden)

Freestyle 6th place, KW Customs (USA)

Freestyle 7th place, Moore Customs (USA)

Freestyle 8th place, Kreater Custom Motorcycles (Canada)

Freestyle 9th place, RK Concepts (USA)

Freestyle 10th place, Hoosier Daddy Choppers (USA)


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