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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

May 1973

Great balls of fire! Via AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame: Mark Brelsford was the 1972 AMA Grand National Champion, riding for Harley-Davidson. During his short six-year racing career, the Californian won seven AMA nationals.

Brelsford will forever be remembered for the fiery crash he suffered at Daytona in 1973. Riding at a high rate of speed through the speedway infield, Brelsford hit a rider whose machine had broken and was going slowly and his Harley road racer burst into a ball of flames with Brelsford still aboard. The impact and huge fireball was captured on film by a photographer for the Daytona News-Journal. The infamous photo ran all over the country and became perhaps the best-selling motorcycle racing poster of all time.

Photo Daytona News Journal/AMA

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