Hooligan racing on Harley-Davidson Sportsters has been raging for several years now—with good reason. What’s funner than getting together with a bunch of bro’s and bangin’ bars on a dirt oval? And while hooligan racing’s resurrection started as a grass-roots movement, it’s evolved into a highly competitive sport, even making its way into the X Games. As competition levels have risen, so has the need for more speed. And who knows more about making American V-twins faster than S&S Cycle.
For this project we started with my wife Angie’s 2004 Sportster 1200 Custom. While we’ve gone over just about everything else on her bike, the one thing we’d never touched was the engine. A blown gasket was all the incentive we needed to upgrade to the S&S 1250cc Hooligan Kit for 2000–2018 Sportsters, as we would be doing most of the same work anyway, and this would result in much greater results.
Helping out with the install was our friend Bob Thiessen and his right-hand man Nick, better known as the pair that make up Redwood Cycles. Thiessen has come through for us numerous times over the years, from mounting new wheels to installing a Progressive monotube fork kit. For the installation of the S&S 1250 Hooligan Kit, he was kind enough to let my wife hang out in the shop and do much of the work herself under their guidance. It was an invaluable hands-on learning experience, and now she understands the intricacies of her engine at a deeper level. Goes to show it’s important to get to know your local shop and to support the independents out there who are the heart and soul of our industry, as they’re more likely to invest in you when and where it matters.
Case in point. In addition to letting my wife learn how to work on her engine, Redwood Cycles went above and beyond, from porting and polishing the heads, to cleaning up the carb, to adding a few old school racing tricks they had up their sleeve. They also installed a new Dynatek Dyna DSPT-1 Programmable Digital Ignition System to maximize the efficiency of your timing. Needless to say, Angie’s rockin’ one of the fastest Sportsters in town now.
For more information about the S&S Hooligan Kit, 1200cc to 1250cc for 2000–2018 H-D Sportster Models, click here.