Don Tilley, a hugely respected Harley-Davidson tuner, dealer and racing supporter, was killed last night as the result of a crash in North Carolina.
Tilley and his wife were involved in a streetbike crash while riding in the Blue Ridge Parkway. His wife remains hospitalized.
Quiet and selfless, Tilley stood as the heart and soul of Harley-Davidson roadracing for many years. He both owned and built motorcycles that were raced in the 883 class and the old BOTT class. He also raced a VR 1000 Harley-Davidson Superbike in the 1990s with Tripp Nobles and Scott Zampach as riders.
Tilley's desire to race was born in a previous era, when nearly every motorcycle dealer or "bike shop" raced as a matter of pride. Tilley had been racing cars and motorcycles since the 1950s.
Tilley was a good man, a great businessman and a hugely capable tuner.