American Motorcyclist March 2018

Hall Of Famer Passes

Johnny Gibson: 1930-2018

Johnny “Crashwall” Gibson, a 2004 inductee of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame and winner of the 1956 Daytona 200 and more than 100 dirt-track, road-race and TT races, passed away Jan. 30 in Boca Raton, Fla. He was 87.

Mr. Gibson was a leading AMA Grand National racer of the 1950s. His biggest victory came in the 1956 Daytona 200 riding a factory-backed Harley-Davidson.

He also was one of the stars of the popular Friday night Ascot Park races in Gardena, Calif., along with Hall of Famers Sammy Tanner and Al Gunter.

Mr. Gibson played a key role in the revival of Speedway racing in Southern California during the 1970s and 1980s. He built a track in Irwindale and helped foster a generation of riders that would bring the United States back to world prominence in Speedway World Championship racing.

In all, Mr. Gibson scored 26 top-10 finishes in AMA national competition, including eight podium finishes.