The Original Wrecking Crew
In 1968 Harley’s factory team posed for a photo at Daytona, instantly drawing comparisons to a similar shot taken of H-D’s original Wrecking Crew of the ’20s. The original Crew consisted of Bill Ottoway, Maldwyn Jones, Ralph Hepburn, Fred Ludlow, Otto Walker, Ray Weishaar, Jim Davis, and mechanic Hank Syversten. Ottoway was a racing engineer who developed the eight-valve racing engine for Harley-Davidson and made the already fast bikes even faster. The crew dominated flat track and board track throughout the ’20s.
A picture, or better yet advertisement, is worth a thousand words.
In 2009, Harley introduced the XR1200 homage bike to the American public where it met great enthusiasm from the H-D faithful. Unlike the old 750, it has a few more comforts for the road and features a Sportster motor.
In 2009, Harley introduced the XR1200 homage bike to the American public where it met grea
The XR1200 Series:
The Adventure Continues
Last year, the XR’s racing legacy moved forward yet again. The AMA Pro Vance & Hines XR1200 series hit the track during Road America last June. It was a set of five racing events on pavement that ran through September. Vance & Hines was the presenting sponsor. They also supplied the race kits for the class (exhaust, Fuelpak, bodywork, 17-inch front wheel, steering damper, oil cooler relocator, and race decals). V&H cited the XR1200’s proven record as an exciting platform for spec racing in Europe as a big reason for its involvement. Since the complete race kit ran for $3,500, it allowed new talent to compete without the use of a second mortgage or a loan shark. In addition to the supplied kit, teams could also tweak their suspension, controls, brakes, and instrumentation. The restrictions are aimed to emphasize rider talent over throwing money into a heap of performance parts. Here’s when and where you can catch the action for the remaining season:
Miller Motorsports Park
Barber Motorsports Park
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
Virginia Int’l Raceway
New Jersey Motorsports Park
(An additional September event— To be determined)
AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame (americanmotorcyclist.com) Harley-Davidson Archives
Heroes of Harley-Davidson, edited by Ed Youngblood, published by MBI Publishing Company and Motorbooks, 2003
The Harley-Davidson Motor Company Archive Collection, by Randy Leffingwell and Darwin Holmstrom, published by MBI Publishing Company and Motorbooks, 2008