Deadly World Of Sport Bikers

Sports biker does a stunt on city streets in Dallas. CBS

They are the fear of the freeway.

"We all know the risks were taking. We're adrenalin junkies," said one biker.

Like ground-borne missiles that fly the fast lanes, they've been clocked in traffic at speeds of a 160-plus, reports CBS' Bob McNamara. Even in broad daylight riders pull stunts.

"I've done wheelies next to people and looked over and waved and they're like going, you know like they're looking at a scary movie," said sport biker John Sherman.

In Dallas, Thursday night usually finds sport bikers gathering at a drive-in on their $10,000 machines.

"There's no drinkin', no druggin'. Everybody out here is sober," said Jason Gordon.

But what happens after the bikers leave has them at odds with police.

On city backstreets the bikers will do their repertoire of stunts before police locate the law-breakers.

Still it's the flat-out street racing that's most life threatening of all.

Novice-biker Kelly Howard was killed when her speeding sport bike crashed on a Dallas freeway curve last spring.

"I think I deal with it better, but I don't know if it's really easier," said her mother, Sherri Howard.

Kelly had just graduated from college. She loved fast cars, and is now remembered on the nose of the sport bike a boyfriend seldom rides since her death.

Sport bikers say if they had closed tracks to do their stunts and race, they wouldn't be on highways putting lives at risk. But police don't buy that.

"The kids who say that, often have a kind of twinkle in their eye cause they know that they like to run from the police. That it's not hard core street racing if you're not on the street," said Dallas police officer Patrick McCully.

Sherri Howard says the heartache that brings her to her daughter's grave began with a phone call she cannot forget.

"She called me at work and said 'Mom please don't be mad at me, I know you don't like motorcycles, but I bought me a motorcycle.' I said 'oh honey you didn't,' I mean I just coulda died."

And on a night two months later, Kelly Howard would die at age 23 on a sport bike she was only beginning to learn to ride.
  • Bootie Cosgrove-Mather

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