VICTOR VINCENTE OF AMERICA (Michael Hiltner)

VICTOR VINCENTE OF AMERICA
Born Michael Hiltner in 1941 Los Angeles, CA.
Started racing at the age of 16. After
establishing the double transcontinental record, Santa Monica - Atlantic City - Santa Monica (36 days 8 hours 1975), Michael changed his name to Victor Vincente of America.

"I've been on a bike since I was 16 years old, it feels so natural that I forget that I didn't invent it."


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1957
Won his first race
1957
Was Southern California Junior Road Champion
1958
&
1965
All California Road Champion
1959
Member Pan American Team
1959
Winner of the Tour of St. Laurent
1960
Winner of the Tour of Somerville, NJ.
1960 1964
Olympic Team

 

1961
1962
1965

Worlds Championship Team
Bern,
Nurnburgring
St. Sebastian
1963
Placed 2nd in the Pan America Games Team Road race
1965
ABL of A. National Road Champion
1961
&
1966
Winner of many races in Italy
1969
Started the independent conception of human-powered vehicle and establish double transcontinental record. Santa Monica - Atlantic City - Santa Monica (36 days 8 hours 1975).
1978
Changed name to Victor Vincente of America
1979
Design, construct, pilot HPV Tachy Taxi . Design and mass production of the "Topanga"
1980 to 1995
Promoted Mountain Bike Races
1984 to 1995
Promoted two and three mountain bike tours
1989
Inducted to the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame
1996
Design the Olympic Mountain Bike medallion for the 1996 Olympic in Atlanta.
2001
Inducted into the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame
Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia.
-H. G. Wells

Victor Vincente of America (then Michael Hiltner) and Yvette Mimieux
I contacted Victor Vincente of America through his web site and asked for his recollections of his days as an Eloi and his history in bicycle racing.

How did you become an Eloi?
Attending Santa Monica City College (the name at that time) I saw a notice on a bulletin board that extras were wanted for a film. Applicants had to be short (I qualified at 5' 5.5")

Did you bicycle to the studio?
Yes. In those days I had no car. I first got a car in 1962, at age 21.

How did the production find out about your bicycle racing to use you for publicity?
Don't know, except that I was always there by bike; maybe they asked me. I was too shy to bring it up.

Which scenes were you in? Can we find you watching the film?
I remember a scene by a river where Yvette was in danger and was rescued, and a feast scene, and eating fruit. I remember sirens calling us to go underground. I saw the film once when I was in Florence, Italy, in 1961, and I thought I saw myself briefly in the river scene.


Victor's response after seeing this screen shot:
" Now I remember being directed to splash with my hands, I also remember veiwing the film in Florence, and thinking I spotted myself ever so briefly when that scene flashed by. "
I'm not familiar with the world of bicycle racing so I'll have to rely on you for any comments you wish to include in that respect
In 1958 I won the California road racing championship, at the distance of 50 miles, so during the filming in 1959 I was current champ.

In '59 I made the PanAm Games team (Chicago). Also '60 Olympic team (Rome) when I remained for two years in Florence to compete. '63 PanAm team (Sao Paulo) and '64 Olympic team (Tokyo). I was National road champion in 1965, as well as North America hillclimb champion (Mt. Evans, Colorado).

Later, after racing days, I established the double transcontinental record (Santa Monica - Atlantic City - Santa Monica) at 36 days, 8 hours. That record stood nine years. Then in 1979 I discovered dirt roads and independently invented mountain biking, and designed and produced some early mountain bikes. Others in Marin County were already doing that without my knowledge.

I've been inducted to the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame, the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame, and have been declared to be the "Most Significant Person" [in the History of Mountain Biking] by Mountain Bike magazine. I stayed with cycling because I was doing well with it, and I always craved attention and recognition.

During the filming of the Time Machine (in fact, all during my younger years) I was shy, timid, naive. When I recently logged onto Ms. Mimieux' website, I was shocked to realize she and I are the same age. I always assumed that she, being a movie star, was an older person than I. Seeing myself alongside her in the promotional photo is like a Time Machine experience in itself, and brings to mind the alternate universe that would have come to pass if I had had the nerve to talk with her, to make some connection. Even at this time, I would welcome an opportunity to meet her again.

Thanks again for your time. Feel free to bring up any further questions
. . . . Victor Vincente of America

See our Eloi and Morlocks page for more shots of
Victor Vincente of America (Michael Hiltner)

 

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The Time Machine Project 1998 Don Coleman
Web Site 1999 Don Coleman
Web site created by Don Coleman
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