It was a pain in the ass — literally. “I spent two years training my ass,” Carl Reese tells me via phone, shortly after his announcement of YACCR (Yet Another Cross Country Record). “I was serious about my fitness. I even sat on my seat (a Sargent aftermarket replacement, with backrest) while I was on my computer doing my job. But by the time I got into Pennsylvania, I was in so much pain that it was affecting everything else. I was hitting the kill switch on the bike instead of the turn signal because my senses were overwhelmed. I was glad to see that New York skyline.”
As a devoted, even bigoted, owner and rider of Honda motorcycles, I was tempted to make a comment about BMW riders and their proclivity for “training their asses.” Instead, I let Carl Reese, already familiar to TTAC readers from the Tesla cross-country electric-vehicle record with Alex Roy late last year, keep talking about how, and why, he rode his BMW K1600GT across the country in a shade over thirty-eight hours, ass pain and all.
I got the call at about 6 p.m. last night. It was Greg Ledet, one of the fellows who partnered in our infamous April Fools’ Day cross-country hoax.
“I’m heading out to meet Alex Roy at a Tesla Supercharger near Dayton and clear traffic for him between here and Columbus. You want to go?”
“I’d love to,” was my unconvincing reply, “but I just had a bunch of screws drilled into my left tibia and every moment I stand up is an exciting battle between nausea and vertigo. However,” I added after a moment’s pause, rifling through my nightstand for the bottle marked Morphine EXPIRED!, “I could meet you south of Columbus for a few minutes.” Hopping down the stairs on one foot, I grabbed the keys to my Accord before anyone could object. “All I have to do is use this gimpy leg to push the clutch once in a while!” I yelled, while backing out in hop-skip-and-jump fashion.
Five minutes later I was back, tears streaming from behind my tinted-lens ProDesign frames. “If anybody wants to drive me to Grove City,” I conceded, “I’m buying dinner.”
The perennially shy Alex Roy took delivery of his Morgan Trike last year and has dutifully operated it under all conditions, including during the arrival of Hurricane Sandy. There’s something awfully charming about the “Three Wheeler”, even if the price of it would also put you in a brand-new six-speed Corvette Grand Sport. As far as not-quite-motorcycles go, I much prefer it to the Can-Am Spyder, anyway.
Much of the appeal of the Morgan is its novelty value; we didn’t get very many Morgans of any type in this country, much less three-wheeled ones. The T-Rex is probably the only other non-bike-based trike on the market. In the UK, however, the “Moggie” is just one in a large field of competitors. Some are closer to the original Morgan design than the Morgan itself, while others are futuristic in the creepy Seventies sense of the word. The Telegraph recently put eleven of them together for a short test.