Steve Drane

Steve’s usually surrounded by motorcycles…

Steve was born in Victoria July 13 th 1955, raised at 3126 Albina st and attended Tillicum elementary, Colquitz secondary and finished grade twelve at Mt. View senior high. All my life I have had an interest in motorcycles and started riding home built two wheelers , powered by the famous gas powered washing machine engine(one horsepower) at the age of 8 years old. I progressed through a handful of modified production motorcycles and then on my sixteenth birthday got my drivers licence and started road riding on my 1966 Suzuki 250 that I had been rebuilding for the year previous in preparation of getting my class six licence. I had actually been working in a motorcycle dealership since the age of fourteen but of course could not road test any bikes at that time so I would do the rebuilds and repairs and the service manager would test them for me. At the age of sixteen I was a fairly accomplished rider and had the opportunity to be one of the founding members at the Vancouver Safety Council where we set up a motorcycle driver training course. Over the years we taught hundreds of people how to ride and I am still involved with the Safety Council as a member of the board of directors.
As I was growing up and working as a motorcycle mechanic I started to get more involved in different forms of motorcycle racing. Over the years I motocrossed, rode trials events, did cross country enduros,sidecar motocross and sidecar trials, hill climbed, drag raced, road raced, dirt dragged and rode thousands of kilometers touring all over North America.
In 1976 I opened my own dealership and retailed Harley-Davidson, Honda, Suzuki, Ducati , Bultaco and Can Am at different times over the years until 1987.I then separated myself from a partnership and opened a Harley-Davidson only dealership that I operated until April 2015 and  have subsequently sold .
As a Harley-Davidson dealer I was on their Dealer advisory council for seven years and belonged to other HD related performance and training groups. In total I was involved with Harley-Davidson for over forty years. In 1979 I attended a Harley-Davidson factory service school in Milwaukee at the Juneau Avenue plant.
I began hill climbing in 1972 at the famous Mount Doug site here in Victoria. After many years and lots of work we finally developed the winning combination using my 1979 Honda CBX 1000. We won the event in 79,80 ,81,82 and 83 setting the hill record that still stands today at 4.93 seconds. Mount Doug was closed and a new hill climb was built at the Victoria motorcycle club property on Happy Valley road. We won that with my 89 cubic inch Harley –Davidson in 1988,89,90,91,91 and93 and several top three finishes after that until its closure in 2006.
During the last 50 years as an enthusiast and 41 years as an actual dealer there wasn’t much that I hadn’t experienced if it was motorcycle related. I became a recognized expert witness by the crown and was often called upon to look at motorcycle related accidents and incidents and asked for my opinion in court and by many municipal police departments. I am a 45 year member(now life member) of the Victoria Motorcycle Club. The VMC is one of the largest and oldest motorcycle clubs in Canada.  Over many years I have also restored approximately 200 motorcycles from the ground up and have mechanically prepped many race bikes. I have been sponsoring Damian Cownden for ten years with his Top fuel drag race bike and we have been CMDRA champion for three years and finished second overall in the NHRA series last year in the USA. In 2014 I was nominated then inducted into the Canadian Motorcycle Hall of Fame. That was my proudest achievement.
As I shift into my new era after selling my H-D dealership I hope to become the self proclaimed ambassador of motorcycling here on Vancouver Island. More time now to attend the many motorcycles events and to be able to spend time with people, lend some advice, go racing and do some road riding!

And he’s a member of the Canadian Motorcycle Hall of Fame!