Teenager Yasuyoshi Chikazawa, a.k.a. Chica, got hooked to motorcycles when a friend let him ride his motorcycle in the streets of Osaka. Passion for American motorcycles got fed via looking at the customs featured in American magazines like Easyriders. Although Haley-Davidson motorcycles sold in Japan are 2 to 3 times more expensive than in the US, Chica succeeded in acquiring a used FXE. But because labor rates are prohibitive Chica had to learn how to fix, fabricate parts and maintain his own motorcycle. He went to work for a Honda then a Harley dealer in Kyoto and rapidly realized that his custom motorcycle dreams could only be fully expressed in America where, as he imagined, everything is possible and permitted (it was before CARB and EPA start their enforcement patrols,)
Chica transitioned to the US via a job at a friend’s shop in Californis, ending up in 1995 opening Chica Cycles in Huntington Beach. During 15 years Chica has specialized in the old style of today, mixing old engines with a soul with new technology parts, finishing his bikes with multiple very fine details whose lines are evidently inspired by his Japanese culture. Through builds like “Blue”, “Von Dutch”, “The Unicorn” and “The Snake Charmer” Chica has created a style of motorcycles that never existed in the 50’s but still fitting perfectly with this motorcycling era. A man of a few words, especially in English, a shy Chica disclosed to me his likes and dislikes.
Cyril. Who were your childhood heroes? Chica. Motorcycle Cop.
Cyril. What was your 1st vehicle? Chica. Honda CBX400F
Cyril. If you were not working in the motorcycle industry, what would you do? Chica. Automobile Mechanic.
Cyril. What is your favorite way to relax? Chica. Playing soccer. Smoking cigarettes.
Cyril. What is the last music you downloaded in your iPod? Chica. Dark Moor (a Spanish Heavy Metal Band)
Cyril. Do you have any tattoos or piercings? Chica. No tattoo. But I had piecings before.
Cyril. Name five things you hate. Chica. C.A.R.B (california Air Resource Board), Rules, American style Sushi. Oil leaks, Stock Market.
Cyril. What is the person you would love to meet? Chica. Brazilian Soccer players Kaka (playing with Spanish team Real Of Madrid) and Inzaghi (playing for Italian team AC Milan)
Cyril. What is your best life achievement? Chica. My family.
Cyril. What do you miss most at home when you are on the road? Chica. Nothing. I enjoy single life if for short times.
Cyril. Do you have any guilty pleasures? Chica. No…
Cyril. Do you collect anything? Chica. No…
Cyril. What was your worst buy? Chica. Cheap tools that you could use only one time…
Cyril. How do you take your coffee? Chica. Black.
Cyril. What was the most embarrassing thing you have ever made? Chica. I don’t remember…
Cyril. What is the best thing you can cook? Chica. Cup noodles.
Cyril. When was the time you were really angry? Chica. Each time I am lied to.
Cyril. What is your perfect weekend when you are at home? Chica. Playing soccer, then BBQ in my backyard.
Cyril. What is your preferred rally? Chica. Sturgis at the Broken Spoke Saloon.
Cyril. What is the worst question a journalist asked you? Chica. I am not sure because I don’t really understand English…