Reports in Japan suggest that '90s AMA racer Tiger Sohwa is/was in legal hot water over borrowing a rare motorcycle from Kawasaki Japan.
Reportedly, Sohwa--who raced for Muzzy Kawasaki and Fast by Ferracci Ducati here in the US--borrowed a Kawasaki KR500 from Kawasaki for a magazine photo shoot and did not return the bike in a timely manner.
Kawasaki valued the 1980s oddity--monocoque frame, square four two stroke engine--at $4.5 million dollars, making Sohwa's alleged long term loan of the unit a matter for the police.
Reportedly, Sohwa returned the bike as he was being taken into custody and he was released shortly afterward.
There are very few intact KR500 Kawasaki GP bikes today. Most were crushed after Eddie Lawson crashed his factory bike at Laguna in 1982 and injured his neck. Kawasaki USA man Norm Bigelow hid one on the way to the crusher and it is now a prize in Kawasaki's collection. Lawson came tantalizingly close to winning the Daytona 200 on a Kawasaki 500 but largely the bike was more a new technology test lab than competitive race bike.
Here, former racer Korky Ballington takes his KR500 down the street in flip-flops.