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Bikes, Big Riffs and Fire-Breathers: Inside Born-Free Motorcycle Show

Bikes, Big Riffs and Fire-Breathers: Inside Born-Free Motorcycle Show

Each year, custom builders and chopper enthusiasts roll in from all over the world, making the annual pilgrimage to Silverado, California, for the Born-Free Motorcycle Show. The 2017 edition, Born-Free 9, took place on June 24th and 25th and was a riotous weekend fueled by booze, rock & roll and attendees' passion for all things moto.

The festivities kicked off with the Moto Stampede flat track races held at the Costa Mesa Speedway — racers included Roland Sands, Steve Caballero, Twitch, Leticia Cline and Carey Hart. In his second flat track appearance, Caballero took a rough wall ride on his '44 HD flat head during the semi-finals, but pulled it back together in the finals and secured second place in the vintage tank-shift category. 

Out at Oak Canyon Ranch, Born-Free 9 showcased the raddest bikes built over the past year — accompanied by live performances by stoner-rock bands Petyr and the Shrine — as well as an array of fire-breathing amazons, beautiful tattooed girls, hellbent bikers and one massive albino python (watch the video above and see for yourself).

"Action sports, skateboarding, motorcycling, building custom bikes — it all comes together in one place," says motorcycle design icon and custom bike builder Roland Sands. "And this is the place to see it all come together."

Skateboarding rolled in with a heavy presence this year as Vans sponsored a massive vert ramp that was littered with pro skaters all weekend — Steve Caballero, Bucky Lasek, Christian Hosoi and Lizzie Armanto, just to name a few. The iconic brand also showcased a custom 1955 pre-unit Triumph built by invited builder Bryan Thompson — a bike inspired by the design and colorway of the shoe company's longstanding bestseller, the Half Cab.

"After seeing Steve Caballero's bike that Bryan built last year, I decided I'd love to have a Triumph built for us at Vans," says Vans Vice President Steve Van Doren. Thompson's latest creation was selected at Born-Free to show again at the 2017 Mooneyes Hot Rod Custom Show in Yokohama, Japan.

Watch the video above for an inside look at all the action at Born-Free this year.

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