36. Easy Rider replica chopper part of Biketoberfest

Top 100 Local Stories of 2014 in Central Florida / Headline Surfer®
Easy Rider replica chopper a big hit in Daytona Beach, FL at Biketoberfest / Headline Surfer®
Headline Surfer® video and photo /
Rick Buxton of London, England, shows up at Biketoberfest 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida with a replica of thye chopper in the 1969 movie, Easy Rider.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Bikers have come to Daytona Beach for decades hoping to see someone riding in on that one-of-a-kind motorcycle truly stands out in the crowd. 

The head turner.

And there's no better representation than that of the red, white & blue: The Captain America chopper from the 1969 counter-culture hippie biker movie, "Easy Rider," starring Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Jack Nicholson.

Rick Buxton, a retired British firefighter has the next big thing -- a replica of the red, white & blue with the fender-less raked-front end as well as the peanut tank and vintage fish-tail exhaust pipes.

The cost? A cool $40,000.

And just like the original, Buxton's replica chopper has a helmet with the stars and stripes affixed to the sissy bar that perfectly matches the flag paint scheme gas tank. About the only real difference between Buxton's replica and the original bike in the movie were rounded handle-bar grips and, of course, a front brake, the latter required by law for safety.

Like countless others, the 58-year-old Buxton said he was determined to have the replica of the Captain America chopper built after watching the movie at a drive-in back in London when he was a budding teenager.

Buxton, retired after 20 years as a firefighter, has split his time in recent years -- between his homeland across the Atlantic in the summers and winters here in Port Orange and Edgewater.

Easy Rider / Headline Surfer®Photo for Headlin Surfer® /
Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper take a cross country trek across America in search of freedom in the 1969  movie, 'Eay Rider.' What they discovered was far different.

And while the movie centers on the counter-culture scene of the late 1960s, with emphasis on hippie communes, dropping out and even "dropping acid" and smoking "grass," which Peter Fonda's character explains to the Jack Nicholson character as marijuana, Buxton said that is not what he's about -- certainly not at this stage of his life.

There are really only two constants from Easy Rider that Buxton sees as reflective of his life -- the bike and the music from the movie soundtrack the movie that are apart of his personal existence to this day. There's the chopper and fondness of the music from the movie soundtrack, like Steppenwolf's "Born to Be Wild," the anthem at Daytona biker rallies.

"It's great to hear those classic songs in the bars here while enjoying a cold beer, but I'm not into the drug scene," he emphasized. 

And with Buxton, a rather shy and stoic man sitting on his thunder machine parked on the curb along an endless cavalcade of bikes of different styles, paint schemes and varying degrees of chrome, he was enjoying the camaraderie of biker enthusiasts with video cameras in hand and their collective delights of seeing is believing.

After all, there was no debate among revelers as to who had the coolest motorcycle in Daytona during the three-day rally that drew upwards of 75,000 bikers to the usual spots -- here on Main Street, across the bridge on Beach Street a ell a the main attract in Ormond -- the Ironhorse saloon and Bruce Rossmeyer's Destination Daytona -- and several smaller and scattered locales in Port Orange, New Smyrna Beach, Edgewater, Osteen and DeLand. 

And sitting on that signature chopper, parked parallel to the sidewalk curb on Main Street, Buxton, with grey hair and glasses, was the spitting' image of Peter Fonda, who has shown up a couple of times in the past at the larger 10-day Bike Week in March tat draws upwards of half a million bikers. Still, he takes it all in stride, recognizing appearances can be deceiving. 

"I may have a chopper like the one that Capt. America rode in Easy Rider, but there' only one Peter Fonda and I'm not him," he aid with a wry smile. 

Rick Bufton / Headline urfer®Peter Fonda in Eay Rider / Headline Surfer®Rick Buxton, owner of a replica Captain America chopper like the original in the 1969 movie 'Easy Rider,' resembles the actor in the lead role, Peter Fonda, shown here in the inset.

And sitting on that signature chopper, parked parallel to the sidewalk curb on Main Street, Buxton, with grey hair and glasses, was the spittin' image of Peter Fonda, who has shown up a couple of times in the past at the larger 10-day Bike Week in March that draws upwards of half a million bikers. Still, He takes it all in stride, recognizing appearances can be deceiving. 

"I may have a chopper like the one that Capt. America rode in Easy Rider, but there' only one Peter Fonda and I'm not him," he aid with a wry smile. 


Headline Surfer® videos /
These two video clips illustrate the wacky, bizarre and unexpected that come with biker rallies in Daytona.


Buxton's replica Easy Rider chopper vomesd in at No. 36 in the HeadlineSurfer.com countdown of the top 100 stories of 2014. 

Top 100 Countdown of 2014 / Headline Surfer®


The HeadlineSurfer.com Countdown of the Top 100 Local Stories of 2014...   

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Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.