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Old 07-09-2005, 06:07 AM   #11
bkail
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

I never met him but my father did at a race at Elkhart aLake Wisconsin in the 1960's. It was only later, after the race that he realized it had been McQueen he had been talking racing with. McQueen keeps coming back to me as an enigma. I saw "The Magnificent 7" when it first came out as a kid, I was 8 or 9. Here were all these cool guys - cool and slim. They all knew how to handle a gun, and back down the other guy. And McQueen was the coolest. What an impact that film had on me. Of course I share McQueens love of motorcycles, and fast cars. As far as backing down the other guy? Well maybe, ...on a good day. His honesty struck me too in everything he did. I recently bought a copy of "Wanted Dead or Alive" Season I. Even at such a young age he was so good at what he did. His work weathers well. In our heart of hearts we all want to be McQueen. And on a good day, maybe we can be, atleast for awhile. - bk
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Old 07-09-2005, 06:29 AM   #12
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

Steve McQueen's the real deal alright. I remember watching "Bullit" and "The Sand Pebbles" with my parents at the drive-in. I always consider him a motorcyclist that acted, not an actor who rode motorcycles,



Charles Bronson and Lee Marvin were the real deal. Lee Marvin was a Marine who fought and was wounded @ Saipan, Charles Bronson along with Jimmy Stewart and Clark Gable flew combat missions over Germany with the 8th AAF, many other old school actors fought in WW11, without swaggering around calling themselves tough.



When you've already proven the point why bother
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Old 07-09-2005, 06:41 AM   #13
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

The bikes S McQ rode were far from "easy." Though they may have lacked the top end HP of the current generation of sportbikes, they also lacked modern suspension, moder chassis, modern tires, modern brakes and most other modern performance amenities. They did have one thing that modern bikes don't have and that was a lot more weight. If one were transported through time onto a racing motorcycle from the 60's or 70's they would, IMO, quickly embrace modern technology on their return to the present.



The best riders of any generation are always very good and transcend the machinery of their time.



-mhh
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Old 07-09-2005, 06:41 AM   #14
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

Great read. Good on ya Pete.
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Old 07-09-2005, 07:14 AM   #15
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

In the old days we had Steve McQueen,Ben Johnson and Ward Bond.Now we have Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio.Why state the obvious?
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Old 07-09-2005, 07:26 AM   #16
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

Sorry Hackwood, you lost me on your time travel thing. I haven't a clue as to what you are trying to say. The big difference in todays riders is they start at a very early age and have a graduated career path thru faster and faster machinery. Look at MotorGP, the riders that come up thru 125 and 250 classes are ahead of the Superbike crowd. Granted that they start out with about the same physical equipment of past gererations. That is true of all fields of endeavor today. But I am talking of the average competitor in what were mostly amature events riding street machines of modest capability. I make an exception of the flat track racers .
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Old 07-09-2005, 07:28 AM   #17
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

They taught " Boys how to be Men."
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Old 07-09-2005, 08:14 AM   #18
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

What he tired to say is, you either have the skills, or you don't. Steve had em and it wouldn't really matter what generation of vehicle you talk about, he would master it.
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Old 07-09-2005, 08:51 AM   #19
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Default Mulholland

Back in the '60s it was known that on Mulholland Drive above LA, you could race in the early hours of Sunday (1-3 am) without being bothered much by the cops. A friend of mine took his race prepped Spitfire up there to play one night. He thought he was doing pretty well, until a VW passed him on a curve. It was McQueen, who had taken a Porsche 911, removed the body, and welded on the upper body of a VW bug. As McQueen pased him, he gave a big SEG and kept flying. McQueen actually did some of the driving on the Bullitt chase scenes. Many years ago, I read a write up by a reporter who went along on one of the sequences in the movie. McQueen was driving down one of those steep streets in SF that end in the Bay. When the cameraman said they could stop since he was out of film, McQueen said, "We're out of brakes, too." The braking system had been trashed during the drive. McQueen calmly brought the car to a stop using the transmission and sliding sideways to scrub off speed. You got the distinct impression that the writer needed a change of underwear when he finally got out of the car. McQueen, of course, never lost his cool.



Yeah, he was the real deal.



Francis
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Old 07-09-2005, 09:16 AM   #20
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Default Re: Steve McQueen: Hollywood Behind the Iron Curtain

Your reference to flat trackers proves the point-where did the likes of 80's GP stars come from? Guys riding old tech flat track bikes-essentially the same bikes raced in McQueen's day. The only reason they don't arise from these ranks today is the rule changes from the AMA that don't award points to riders for both flat track and road racing-



Think of the environment WWII fighter pilots endured prior to the advent of G suits, GPS navigation, radar and launch & forget missles. You think these guys could compete given the opportunity to use the new technology? Of course-in fact they might have an advantage due to their non reliance on same. The lack of basic dog fighting skills and an over reliance on technology, radar and missles nearly wipped out the air force in their technologically superior F4's (originally built without a gun) against the VC in their 25 year old Mig 15's in the early stages of the conflict. It was only after going back to the basics of dog fighting and re learning to use a machine gun in air combat did the USAF turn the tide. (Read "Boyd" for more insight into this as well as why the F-16 came to be)



Not only did Steve Mcqueen have the prerequisite skills, he actually competed in desert and other off road racing events as well as some auto racing too. I think Steve McQueen could hold his own with the 100 HP+ you wax about-that is not as big a deal as you make it out to be. Courage, skill, persitance and determination do transcend time and machinery.
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