Video: I’d Rather Be Klunking

Vintage '70s video by Evening Magazine covers early Repack race & oozes mountain bike nostalgia

We recently discovered this incredible throwback video covering a Repack downhill race in the early 1970s. In case you skipped mountain biking 101, The Repack downhill race, founded by Fred Wolf and Charlie Kelly in 1976, is now touted as the first downhill time-trial race. The race earned its name from the need to repack the single rear hub brake on the vintage balloon tire “klunkers” after the 2.1-mile, 1,300-vertical-foot drop on an old dirt road in Marin County.

In this segment on Klunking, by the now-defunct “Evening Magazine” television show, hosted Steve Fox (and his amazing hair) and produced by Paul Colardo, we’re treated to interviews with Gary “The Fish” Fisher, Kelly and other legends, plus priceless action footage of the pioneers of mountain biking. Kick back and enjoy this visual feast of MTB history. And if you’re feelin’ nostalgic and tough – don the knee and elbow pads, grab a klunker, and go bomb a hill with only a coaster brake and the sheer will to survive on your side.

But remember, “Klunking is best away from the cars, the cops, and the concrete.”

Segments from the original Evening Magazine are brought to you courtesy the School of Multimedia Communications archive at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and Jan Yanehiro. These video pieces are under the ownership and copyright of CBS Television.

This story on Charlie Kelly appeared in BIKE's 20th Anniversary Issue in a collection of profiles by Mike Ferrentino called, "Measurable Impacts." PHOTO: Paige Green

This story on Charlie Kelly appeared in BIKE’s 20th Anniversary Issue in a collection of profiles by Mike Ferrentino called, “Measurable Impacts.” PHOTO: Paige Green

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