American “Flying” Fred Merkel raced his No.27 Honda to clinch the inaugural Superbike World Championships title when the series wrapped up at Manfeild in October 1988.
These days the Californian motorcycling superstar calls Taupo his home and it’s his young son, Travis, racing on his own Honda No.27 and taking it to the front of the pack in the formula two class at the Victoria Motorcycle Club’s popular Winter Series meetings.
The 19-year-old Travis Merkel has only been racing a short time, but already he is featuring on the podium. Just over a week ago he placed 2-2-3 in his three outings to finish third overall in the F2 class at round two of the winter series at Manfeild.
Travis Merkel is well supported by several local businesses, including The Merchant of Taupo, Taupo Plastics and Replete Restaurant in Taupo.
Read the full story about the remarkable Merkel family in your next issue of Kiwi Rider magazine.
There you will find out the secret weapon Travis uses to rattle his opposition.
© Words and photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com
Full story and more photos in your next issue of KIWI RIDER magazine.