Historically, a rider was only eligible to win the BSR Big Johnson Award just once, but so many of the prior winners continued to provide deeds worthy of a second award that we had to change the rules. Then later at a couple events, non-members raised the bar even further so now even non-club members can be nominated and even win this not-so-coveted award.
Each year the prior year’s winner and Big Jim Johnson are in charge of putting together a list of nominations. You can send nominations to them along with a description of the faux pas and screw ups.
- 2004 - Jim Johnson - Award Namesake - For getting lost, falling over, and then running out of gas during the club’s only Poker Run.
- 2005 - Stan Stille - GPS Challenged. For going to the wrong town for the Iowa Rally, even after Stan’s son Ryan had put the location (Marengo) into Stan’s GPS. Stan went to the location of the rally the prior year (Kalona). After losing his sleeping bag and tent on the way, Stan ended up spending the night in a hotel room in Coralville.
- 2006 - Doug Shonley - Adventures with Pickups. Shortly after Nancy Rae got her new truck, Doug moved it out of the way to get his bike out. Doug then proceeded to back into the truck with his motorcycle and fall over. Nancy Rae was laughing to hard to assist with getting the bike back up.
- 2007 - Steve Martin - Tent Stake Packing. After arriving at the Spring Campout, Steve claims he had forgotten to have packed his tent stakes. He loaned a few spare stakes from the others, and then fabricating the remaining stakes he needed. The next morning Steve found he had not forgotten his stakes, they were under his tent and he had slept on them all night.
- 2008 - Judy Walker - Turn Demonstrator. While demonstrating how to do a proper corner at a MSF class, Instructor Judy accidentally fell down and hurt her ankle. Actually this happened on the course when class was not in session and Judy was practicing.
- 2009 - Sue and Steve Lee - The Wild Berry Incident. Sue vomited wild berry Tums onto her husband Steve while moving at speed as they traveled on separate motorcycles in Nebraska.
- 2010 - Dale Nordlie - Torque Challenged. Dale lost the back wheel off his GS motorcycle while on his way to Baxter Cycle Open House and Campout in Marne. No one was hurt and there was no serious damage. Dale now safety wires his wheel bolts on.
- 2011 - Marc LaDue - Camping Prowess. For his outstanding camping stories after purchasing and carrying his new camping gear on his Trans-American Trail trip... and never using it.
- 2012 Dan Watson - "I Forgot About Texas". During his big year of riding, Dan headed from Arizona to his friend Dick Edward’s home in Arkansas. After an early morning start with thoughts of an easy one day ride, realization set in. In his own words Dan says “I forgot about Texas”. He had forgotten to account for time to cross Texas. Even after that fact sunk in, Dan kept going because “I was getting really good gas mileage”. He arrived at Dick’s shortly after sunrise the next morning as Dick and Janice were leaving the house for the gym.
- 2013 Terry Hughes and Steve Martin (Jim Hawthorne Honorable Mention) - “Invisible Cornering Harley”. During a group ride Terry failed to negotiate an on-ramp curve and ended taking his Harley Road King off road into some very high prairie grass. Jim following said the bike just disappeared and when he went to look all he could see was Terry’s helmet sticking out of the grass. Amazingly Terry managed not to dump the bike. The first tow truck operator to arrive and suggested riding the bike out, but Terry had no interest in this whatsoever. Jim went and got on the bike and found he had no interest in trying it either due to the high grass and an incline. Ultimately two trucks were required to winch the machine out. Steve Martin received a co-award after he confessed to being Terry’s MSF rider coach.
- 2014 - Brion Hase - "Local Navigation Skills". After managing to elude this award for years, Brion Hase finally received the Big Johnson Award for 2014. Brion's local navigation skills where brought into question when he was not able to find the grave site of our lost friend and fellow rider, Al Agrimson during his funeral. In Brion's (my) defense, there are many, many grave yards in Sioux City "near a golf course". Obviously, this was not a great defense because Brion lost by a nearly unanimous vote from the members (Brion voted for Jim). Sorry Tom, for leading you on a one hour ride to no where, but it really was a beautiful day and I think Al would have a real chuckle over our grand ride to find him. Al always preferred riding over golf, and boy did that hearse take off fast. I sure hope one of you other clowns can do something grand to win next year.
- 2015 Lynn Johnson (wife of the award's namesake) "Orange Rider". After riding her R1200RT off the road, sort of destroying it, and cracking a few ribs on her way to the Mothers Day Campout, Lynn ordered her husband Jim to find her a new bike. When asked what kind of bike, she requested an orange one.
- 2016 - Tom Fountoulakis - "Plenty of Air". After riding from Sioux City to Jasper, Arkansas, Tom announced to a group upon arrival in Jasper that he was running 28 lbs in his RT tires to get better traction. Someone noted his tires looked pretty low, even for 28 pounds and that his tire wouldn't last the trip on that air pressure, Tom would have none of that. The next morning when Tom came out of the hotel the tire was flat, he purchased a new tire the following day.
- 2017 - Randy Roos - "Return Randy" - During the ride to Randy's fourth US corner near San Diego in April, his riding buddies Steve Martin and Mark Roth were both following him as they traveled through a tiny little village of Elida, New Mexico. Elida, with less then 200 residents, has two busy full time police officers. Either the light at the local speed trap indicating "15 mph when blinking" was not blinking, or Randy failed to notice it. In any case Randy's follower's were both pulled over in order to personally donate to the local municipality in the form of a ticket. Randy failed to notice this and continued on. A few miles later, after realizing his buddies were no longer in tow, Randy returned to find them chatting with the police officer near the site of alleged infraction. After a short discussion about his return, the officer told Randy that since he had returned, it was only fitting that he also donate to the village. Randy was provided with the paperwork to do so and was released.