Culp Street Fighting S1000RR Vs. Sport Bike: Ready to Rumble!

The last Saturday of Daytona Bike Week is traditionally the big Rat's Hole Bike Show, a place for bike builders to see and be seen. Rat's Hole has been good to Shreveport, La., bike builder Steve Culp in the past, handing him wins for every bike he has ever entered. But this year, Culp decided to bypass Rat's Hole to take his custom BMW Street Fighter to the home turf of a different biking community.

At its core, of course, the Culp Street Fighter is a BMW S1000RR sport bike, but in its transformation, the plastic bits have been stripped away, leaving less Rickey Roadracer and more of something completely different.

How would the true and pure sport bike afficianados react? To find out, Steve decided to take the double-R to the heart of the competition, to the popular Maravilla Productions Sport Bike Fest in Daytona. It was a gamble, to be sure. To compete in the Sport Bike Fest, Steve would have to bypass Rat's Hole, on the heels of his Boardwalk win. It is a risk not many builders would take.

Sport Bike Fest is all about big. Big bikes done in big colors with big ideas and big bling. It is truly a place to go big or go home.

The themes transform the bikes into skeletons, sports teams, cartoon heroes, military operations. Swing arms are lengthened, bikes are lowered, lighting and chrome are added.

The bikes become highly individual and oftentimes, insanely expensive works of art. On the flip side, the Culp Street Fighter is understated, retro, muscular. Bling is in relatively short supply, but meticulous fabrication work is not. Would the Sport Bike Fest judges overlook lack of bling for concept, finish and execution?

The answer came when the announcer called the name of the winner of the Hottest Bike. "I was amazed," said Steve. "When I heard my name, I just couldn't believe it. I'm still stunned. The crowd at the Sport Bike Fest is not the biking crowd I normally am around. I didn't know what they would like and whether I had any chance at winning." Now he knows. Biking people may like different styles of bikes, music and clothing, but the appreciation of a creative idea executed well seems to unite us all.

A photographer asks one of the models to pose with Steve's Street Fighter for some publicity photos.


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