September 16 2008.

A Sutton Coldfield dealer is in a race for glory after his modified 180mph Suzuki B-King was shortlisted for Britain's Got Biking Talent - and put up for the public vote.

Steve Woods, 40, who is general manager of Suzuki dealership Sutton Motorcycles has spent £23,000 on the B-King, boosting its power and adding tweaks such as a camera and screen which replace traditional wing mirrors. Now he's hoping the local biking public will get behind him as he vies with owners of other machines from across the UK for the £1,000 prize.

The winner of the competition will be unveiled to the world's press at the Carole Nash International Motorcycle & Scooter Show in November at the NEC. The top 12 machines will be showcased on a special Britain's Got Biking Talent stand at the show which is Europe's largest motorcycling event. They will also benefit from a professional photo shoot and be featured in the Carole Nash 2009 calendar, 120,000 copies of which will be distributed free at the motorcycle show and other biking events. As well as featuring in the traditional print version of Carole Nash's calendar they will feature in a digital version which the company will be offering as a free download.

The competition's judges - who include MotorCycle News editor Marc Potter, controversial Daily Telegraph and MCN columnist, Kevin Ash and top UK customiser Roger Allmond - whittled down hundreds of entries to produce the shortlist of 50 to be put to the public vote. Now Steve is hoping fellow regulars at biker nights at the Basset Pole pub in Sutton Coldfield and other local bikers will vote his super-charged Suzuki as winner before voting closes on September 19th. Many will already be familiar with the bike as Steve displayed it at Sutton Motorcycles before he had to remove it because it was creating so much interest it interfered with every day business!

But Steve's ambitions don't end there. He told MotorCycle News he plans to add even more power to the bike so he can go for break the record for the world's fastest wheelie. He plans to take the record from the mysterious Ghost Rider who filmed himself riding at illegal speeds on French roads although a more responsible Steve is planning his stunt ride on the private Elvington race track in Yorkshire.

"At the moment the front wheel on my bike will lift at 180mph," he told the paper, adding he hoped to increase its massive 430 brake horse power to over 500 in order to hit the 214mph record speed. But first he wants to take the Britain's Got Biking Talent title - and he faces some stiff competition.

Among other shortlisted entries are 'Sick 'n' Twisted', a curly-wurly custom chrome creation built around a Harley Davidson engine and a turbo-charged Yamaha R1. Other eye-catchers include a stunningly restored Norton-Triumph Triton 150 Caf√© racer and a custom Yamaha FS1M 'Fizzy' decorated with a Union Jack paint job. You can view Steve's Suzuki and all the shortlisted bikes and decide by visiting  

One of the competition's organisers, Rebecca Donohue of the UK's biggest motorcycle insurance specialist, Carole Nash, praised Steve for his work. "Steve's B-King is a fabulous, monstrously powerful bike and well worthy of a shortlist place. However this is by no means a one horse race as there are many other amazing bikes jostling for pole position so he will need to gather as much support as he can."

She added that whilst ultimate winner will ride off with that £1,000 cash prize the runner up will win a Shoei helmet worth nearly £400 and the third placed winner £250 worth of Spada biking gear courtesy of All three will also enjoy up to £250 off a Carole Nash insurance policy, free cover for the helmets and leather plus VIP passes to the show and a night's accommodation.