Pigfoot N Beer

Tales of Booze, Blues and Bikes

Saturday, 30 January 2010

Proper Gander

Speed over safety in what was the closest experience yet to the Rome Gladiatorial Colosseum. Board track bikes of its era had no brakes, clutch, or throttle (carbs were run wide open, with the only control of the engine speed being an ignition cut-out). Glorious deathtraps!

In 1916, Indian introduced the Model H racer, and was offered to the public at $350. It featured overhead-valve heads with four valves per cylinder, and was easily capable of speeds of over 120 mph. In various forms, it was raced on the dirt track as well as on the boards with very great success. It is unknown how many of the 8-valve racers were manufactured, but production was very small; most were ridden either by factory riders or were "loaned" to promising riders.

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