KEWANEE, Ill. — Kewanee is a town that boasts a rich history, one that includes one of the best motorcycle racers of all time. Roger Reiman was a national champion motorcycle racer in the 1960s.
Reiman moved to Kewanee when his parents opened the town's Harley Davidson dealership, and he soon thereafter entered the family business, but as a professional motorcycle racer.
Reiman began racing as a teenager and Shortly after graduating from Kewanee High School in 1956, Reiman began his racing career, one in which he captured three Daytona 200 victories.
His first Daytona 200 victory came in March of 1961. For winning the race, Reiman was brought on as a guest for NBC's "Today Show." At home in Kewanee, the town celebrated with a parade and the giving of a town key.
In 1964, Reiman won his second of three Daytona 200 crowns while notching top-10 finishes in 14 of the season's 17 races en route to a national title.
Reiman took a step back from racing in 1970 to run the family business. It was during this time that he became the head mechanic for the legendary Evil Knievel. Reiman continued racing until his death in 1997 during a pile-up crash during practice.
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