First Look at Custom Indian Challenger Racing in the ‘King of the Baggers’
May the best bagger win.
A Indian Challenger modded by S&S Cycle will race a Harley-Davidson-heavy field of competitors at MotoAmerica Superbike Speedfest’s first-ever “King of the Baggers” invitational, and Maxim has your exclusive first look at the high-performance build.
Whipping around an 800-plus pound touring bike with a six-gallon fuel tank sounds absolutely insane, especially when considering that Monterey, California’s notoriously technical Laguna Seca circuit is the event’s locale. Fortunately, decorated veteran racer Tyler O’Hara will be sitting in the Indian’s saddle.
“I’m thrilled to not only be racing in the King of the Baggers event, but to be piloting the only Indian Challenger in the field. It’s an incredible opportunity for me, and I expect it will be a ton of fun,” said O’Hara, who holds supersport, supermoto, motorcross and flat track titles.
“The Challenger is a remarkable machine in its stock form, but I know the S&S team will be working its magic to give us the best chance to be successful come race day.”
Straight from the factory, the Challenger’s 1,768cc PowerPlus V-Twin cranks out 122 horses and 128 pound-feet of torque. For the last few months, S&S has been working to pump up the output of Indian’s most powerful stock engine to a target of 150 hp.
The Viola, Wisconsin-based outfit, which specializes in V-Twin modification, has remained understandably tight-lipped about precise details, but lead project engineer Jeff Bailey previously told Cycle World that they’ve ported the cylinder heads, installed new cams and built a lightweight exhaust.
The ride height and overall ergonomics have also been tweaked to allow for maximum knee dragging, and they’ve put the Challenger on a diet to shed 200 pounds.
The S&S-built bike won’t be the only Indian competing in King of the Baggers. In addition to 12 custom Harleys, a second Challenger created by SoCal’s Roland Sands Design will be piloted by Frankie Garcia of the Indian Motorcycle/RSD Super Hooligan race team.
If you can’t catch the King of the Baggers in person, the entire MotoAmerica Superbike Speedfest is available to livestream for $9.99. May the best bagger win.