Motorcycle drag racing in the mid-20th century was a hotbed of mechanical creativity thanks to the ingenuity and fearlessness of gearheads that wanted nothing more than to go fast. Racers became legends among peers for pushing boundaries on the clock, and the bikes had almost as much personality as those at the helm. No leather? Run the quarter-mile in jeans, it’ll be over quick. Why not mount a Chevy V-8 in there, or link those Inline-Fours you got lying around? No holds were barred when it came to going fast. Even though rules are stricter nowadays, that raw, unconstrained spirit lives on and ICON
has labored to embody it in its newest build, the Speedmaster.
) An M&H Racemaster Drag Slick is ready for duty at the strip. (Below
) The 75 Shot Fork Mounted Nitrous Oxide Wet System provides a healthy boost of power. The Honda Dream 150 headlight illuminates the road ahead.
ICON’s no stranger to Triumph Motorcycles and has done a few wild projects on Tiger 800 XCs and Speed Triples, but for the Speedmaster inspiration was neither apocalyptic nor hooliganish. The Portland-based company has been dialed into vintage racing during development of its new 1000 line and it’s been a big influence on recent bikes coming out of the Slabtown shop. The previously featured Iron Lung
drew upon endurance racers from the ‘70s and the Speedmaster is unabashedly built for the quarter-mile.
One of the key pieces of the ICON Speedmaster is an M&H Racemaster Drag Slick that’s ready for duty at the strip. ICON builders then chopped the rear fender and built a new, gracefully upswept tail that features a New Church Moto custom-designed seat. It also serves as a minor failsafe against sliding off the back of the bike under heavy throttle…
For some extra grunt and snarl they fit a Vance & Hines
Custom Exhaust. Air flows in through a Custom Ram Air intake with new K&N
Pod Filters. Add a PBI Sprocket and EK Chain and the Speedmaster is ready to handle the huge boost in power from the 75 Shot Fork Mounted Nitrous Oxide Wet System perched conspicuously on the leading edge of the front forks, as was often done in the good ol’ days. Latus Motors Triumph tuned the package to ensure optimum performance.
The fork was shortened by an inch and out back ICON fit dual Progressive
970 Piggyback shocks. EBC brake pads grip Galfer discs in the front and rear and the rubber is wrapped around a set of Triumph Tiger 800XC wheels.
There are also a few pieces taken from other bikes, such as the ZX-10 master cylinder and 1960 BSA C15 250 tank which took a healthy amount of fabrication to fit. A Honda Dream 150 headlight illuminates the road ahead. Zombie Performance Clip-Ons were tacked on and the juice comes from a Biltwell Whiskey Throttle.
Some pieces are less auspicious, like the eBay-found levers. But the amalgam of parts and the resourcefulness necessary to complete the puzzle is itself a reference to the dragsters of old, which were often home builds of varying degree, making do with what was available.
ICON’s new 1000 Collection
draws its inspiration from vintage racing and the Speedmaster is right at home among the new gear. Check out the video below to see the Speedmaster in action.
ICON 1000 Triumph Speedmaster from ICON 1000 on Vimeo.