Flat-out beaming with pride accurately describes how I felt upon receiving this photo of my sister Ella Jane and her celebrity husband, author and premiere motorcycle historian Jerry Hatfield, in which both are pictured with Tonight Show host Jay Leno. Leno offered to promote Jerry's latest and greatest book, Flat Out: The Rollie Free Story, not because he was paid to do so (he wasn't), but because he's a Rollie Free fan who admires Jerry's outstanding contributions to motorcycle history. After learning of their mutual interests a number of years ago, Jay took Jerry on a personal tour of his garage and its impressive collection of motorcycling memorabilia, including Rollie's original 1948 speed-record trophy. The two have been friends ever since.
The above photo was taken prior to taping a promotional video in which Jerry and Jay discuss the book's tribute to one of the greatest motorcyclists of all time:
In between Leno's trademark jokes, this engaging seven-minute video shares some interesting Rollie Free trivia and includes a visit to the garage's "Vincent Wall".
- Besides being Ella Jane's sister, I suspect my only other Jay Leno connection is my mother’s middle name – which, coincidentally, is Leno.
- In true coffee table book fashion, Flat Out is crammed full of beautiful illustrations. It's a work of art worth sharing, and is therefore placed on my own coffee table. :)