What’s Chicago’s biggest motorcycle event of the year? Motoblot. Every year gearheads from around the Chicago area descend on West Town and the Cobra Lounge. Formerly Mods vs. Rockers, Motoblot is one of the most open events on our calendar. There are scooters, there are hot rods, there are motorcycles of every make and model. This event more than any other seems to really celebrate what it is love machines that turn gasoline into the noise and speed.

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Once again Motoblot took over the corner of Ashland and Fulton, in the shadow of All Rise Brewing and the Cobra Lounge. This year the event was bursting at the seams. There were bikes packed in, hot rods and weird, fun cars tucked in wherever they’d fit. The festival atmosphere invited builders and onlookers alike to come and participate in the biggest gearhead block party of the year.

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Motoworks Chicago was there in full force, rep’ing Triumph, Ducati, Vespa and Royal Enfield for the three days of the festival. We also participated in The Iron Moto Challenge again this year — taking a brand-new 2016 Triumph Bonneville T120, making it our own, and paying tribute to a boxing legend.

Saturday was a scorcher, with temperatures into the 90s. The occasional breeze would blow through and give us a few moments of relief, but otherwise there was no escaping a delicious summer day. With winter able to drag on for months and months, I think it’s important to enjoy hot weather. We all know we’ll miss it come January. The heat seemed perfectly fitting for such a big event though. While I mostly made my way from shade to shade, it was still terrific to be there among all our fellow enthusiasts.

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This year’s Iron Moto Challenge was hosted by Triumph. With Motoworks the reigning champ two years running, we knew we had to bring something special to this year’s build-off. For those who aren’t familiar, the Iron Moto Challenge is a Triumph build-off that happens every year at Motoblot. It’s a friendly competition between Motoworks and the two other greater Chicago-area Triumph dealerships. The idea is to take a Triumph Bonneville and build a custom bike live at Motoblot in just a few hours. Last year we celebrated Pride. This year, we celebrated the life and greatness of Muhammad Ali.

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Like last year, MJ did the wrenching in character. This time though, he was our Iron Moto heavyweight. Dani served as our ring girl, counting off the rounds as our bout against the bike, the heat and our fellow area Triumph dealerships went the distance. For extra fun, Jennifer Hickey put the fight on MJ’s face as the rounds progressed. Where both MJ’s face and the Bonneville T120 started clean and fresh, by the end, both showed the work they’d been through. Even though it was just makeup, the effect was startling. I even knew it was staged, but would catch a glance at MJ and think “Man, what happened to him?” before remembering the gag.

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In the end, our T120 TKO was a black-on-black bruiser, but we need your help in order to keep our Iron Moto Challenge crown. Vote for us here: Triumph Iron Moto Challenge. With your help, it’ll be a knockout three years in a row!

From bikes, to booths, to bands, to beers and babes, Motoblot 2016 was a huge success. Congrats to Larry and his team for yet another killer event!

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Motoblot 2016 Gallery: