WATCH THE VIDEO: Insane 3 Hour Mini Bike Enduro Race is a Nonstop CRASH AND BURN!! | 2022 GPS 180
Three hours of mini bike racing on a grueling 3.5 mile rocky race track. Bikes hold up astoundingly well considering the terrain, but the competition is fierce! Some built an awesome full suspension racing mini bike, and racers do their absolute best on this mini bike race trail.
Only about half the bikes that started this race made it to the finish line.
When you see the number 180, what’s the first thing you think of? For many, it’s a complete reversal—you’re going in exactly the opposite direction from which you came. If you’re Go Power Sports, though, it’s a three-hour enduro race run entirely on minibikes in the wilds of its Texas grounds.
The guys behind the Cars and Cameras YouTube channel participated in both 2021 and 2022. Naturally, the most recent 2022 run was all about improving on mistakes made last year. I mean, that’s what all racers do, isn’t it? Overall, the experience did go a bit better, but there were definitely some hiccups that could be improved upon for 2023.
About 60 or so bikes (give or take) lined up to compete on the day, divided into three different classes. There was a junior class, for young racers. There were also two separate classes for riders with full suspensions, and hardtail riders (who were allowed to have front suspensions). The Cars and Camera crew, in their infinite wisdom, built their full-suspension entry and got it together just one day prior to race day.
While the bike and riders did pretty well, considering, as you’ll see throughout the video, building a bike the day before you plan to race it may not necessarily go how you planned. Although the team was hoping to get on the podium this year, unfortunately, that didn’t end up happening thanks to things like a chain that kept continually trying to pop off the rear sprocket. Also, have you ever had to hold a loose carburetor onto a running bike with your knee?
As they later noted, these are the kinds of things that could have been avoided if they’d had a day or two to properly shake down and test the bike prior to taking it racing. Fixing small issues and tuning the bike would have been a definite plus—and it’s something that the team is planning to do right for next year’s competition.
The attrition was pretty serious, with maybe about half the racers (or possibly less) actually finishing the race at the end. The team was very proud to have finished the race at all, which it did—and although it didn’t end up on the podium, the C&C crew did manage to bag fifth place in the softail class. The mud and memories will last a lifetime—and hey, there’s always next year.
It begins with the story of the legendary Suzuki Hayabusa. When that beast launched back in 1999, it triggered a hurricane of anxiety among various manufacturers – and it all came down to the top speed of the bike – a stunning 194 mph.
The Hayabusa represented a quantum leap in speed and made it the fastest motorcycle you could buy and ride on the streets. In fact, it took the title away from the already insanely fast Honda CBR1100XX Super Blackbird, and it did it by a startling 14 mph.
In answer, Kawasaki announced the creation of the Ninja ZX-12R, and it promised a top speed of more than 200 blistering miles per hour. That announcement led regulators to consider tamping down the lust for speed among manufacturers, and it also led to what’s come to be known as The Gentleman’s Agreement among the top motorcycle manufacturers across the globe.
As the story goes, the “agreement” called on manufacturers to set the upper limit on motorcycle speed at 200 mph. Since then, that agreement has been violated to varying degrees, and here are some of the motorcycles that flirt with – and exceed – the barrier posited by The Gentlemen’s Agreement.
The Yamaha YZF-R1M, which purports to achieve a top end of 185.7 mph, has itself become legendary for its on and off-track precision and power. The R1 line and the street legal R1 models achieve their punch following a power-and-less-bulk formula.
Offering lightweight carbon-fiber construction and powered by an explosive 998cc, liquid-cooled “cross-plane” inline-four, the R1 creates 200 hp and offers 89.2 lb-ft torque. When that kind of juice moves through its 6-Speed manual, the R1M does 0-60 mph in a snot-loosening 2.3 seconds. One of these beasts will set you back just over $26,000 USD.
Next up on this rogues gallery is the KTM 1290 Super Duke R. This KTM is a naked hypersport bit of lunacy that packs a 1301 cc, 75-degree V-twin motor into a novel frame. The 1290 Super Duke R wacks the limits of physics to the tune of 180 hp and cranks out 103 lb-ft of torque.
At a svelte 462 lbs. dry weight., the Super Duke R covers 0-60 mph in just 2.6 seconds and is limited to 186 mph. If you must have one, this KTM will set you back right around $18,000 USD.
The Hayabusa is back, and the 3rd Generation variant uses the same 1340cc inline-four motor to produce a healthy 188 hp and 110 ft-lbs of torque and covers 0-60 mph in a serviceable 3.2 seconds.
While it’s now restricted to 186 mph top speed, it does its progenitors proud. It will be priced at just north of $22,000 USD.
The BMW S1000RR represented a huge technological leap for the time, and when it launched in 2009, it was packed to the brim with electronics and rider-assist features unheard of even for the sophisticated ‘ultra bikes’ of the time.
The latest iteration, the 2021 BMW S1000RR is powered by a water/oil-cooled inline-4 motor that generates a stunning 205 hp and 83 lb-ft of torque.
In ‘Race Pro Mode’ it covers 0-60 mph in 3.1 seconds and is capable of reaching a top speed of 192 mph. All that performance does not come cheap and the sticker price is expected to come in around $30,000.
An Aprilia RSV4 1100 Factory is a sublime example of Italian design and engineering and an amazing achievement when you consider the fact that the has only been in the game since the end of the Second World War. Aprilia is dedicated to motorcycle sports and they use the competitive anvil to forge their lightning-fast and supple machines.
The RSV4 1100 Factory is powered by a 1099cc V4 engine which turns out 217 hp and 90 lb-ft of torque. And perhaps most critically, it weighs just 390 lbs and that finely-balanced power-to-weight ratio means it can do 0-60 mph in just 2.9 seconds and achieve a reported top speed of 198.8 mph. The Aprilia RSV4 1100 Factory sports an MSRP of $25,999.
Known for the subtlety and innovative character of their designs, Ducati remains iconic for their blend of finish, style and pure power. The Panigale V4R combines carbon fiber and their signature desmodromic engine, Desmosedici Stradale R 998 cc Inline-4, produces 221hp straight out of the factory and you can ramp that power up to 234 hp with the addition of an Akrapovic full-racing exhaust.
The Desmosedici Stradale motor puts out 92 lb-ft of torque and travels from 0-60 mph in 3.2 seconds before ultimately achieving a top speed of 199 mph. You can be the proud owner of a 2021 Ducati Panigale V4R for just under $23,000.
As we near the top of this list, we find a pair of Kawasakis perched near the pinnacle. The ZH2 and the Ninja H2 are both said to be capable of 200+ mph, and these novel supercharger-boosted motorcycles feature 998cc inline-4 motors that crank out 200 hp and 101 lb-ft of torque.
The ZH2 with the ability to cover 0-60 mph in under 3 seconds and reach a top speed of more than 200 mph also represents a devil’s bargain of sorts. For 2021, Kawasaki ZH2 is priced at just over $17,500.
The lunatic Kawasaki Ninja H2R – with a stated top speed of 248 mph, is a track-only machine and therefore not allowed on our list. The H2R does hold the record holder for top end speed as it reached a snot-loosening 250 mph in just 26 seconds. For 2021, the Kawasaki Ninja H2 is priced at $29,500.
But the bike at the top of the list of mad-dog bikes you can ride on the street belongs to the Lightning LS-218.
Electric motorcycles are clearly the future, and the neck snapping torque offered up by an electric motor is surely attractive to wild fools in search of speed at all costs.
The Lightning LS-218 is powered by a 380V electric powerplant coupled to any of three battery packs: 12, 15, or 20 kWh. At its top tuning settings, this nearly silent monster churns out 200 hp and 168 lb-ft of torque and can reach a top speed of 218 mph.
Coupled with a demented 0-60 mph time of just 2.2 seconds, it takes the top slot when it comes to streetworthy guts. The 2021 Lightning LS-218 comes in at around $39,000 USD out the door.
Of course, most of these figures are reported by the manufacturers and results may vary according to conditions and tuning…
Pahrump Valley Speedway is for sale. Again. But don’t expect any imminent news on that front.
“The 12 years that I’ve had it, the racetrack has been for sale for eight of those years,” owner Chad Broadhead said. “It’s just that real estate is getting up there, and I’m trying to figure out what to do for my retirement. I’m getting up there in age, my health isn’t that good, so I put it up and hopefully in the next couple of years someone will come up and buy it.”
Broadhead’s pride in the racetrack is not diminished, but he does not have the resources to make the most of the place.
“It’s been good for me,” he said. “I’ve done the best I could with what money we’ve had to put into it. I’m hoping some investor will buy it and bring concerts in here, bring in motorcycles, bring in monster trucks. I also hope someone can finish the idea of putting a drive-in movie theater for weeks off of racing.”
Broadhead noted that the track is dark most of the year, and making the improvements needed to bring in more events could make the place far more lucrative.
“There are 365 days a year, we’re open 21, and people think we’re making millions, and we’re not,” he said. “I love this racetrack to death. This racetrack means a lot to me. I’m hoping we can find someone to come in and finish developing it and make it what it can be.”
Broadhead said he has no desire to lease the track, and selling it would allow him, eventually, to retire. He also wants to sell it now so his wife would not have to deal with that after he’s gone.
But he would stick around for at least a little while after any sale.
“I would have to for the first year until they get the hang of it,” he said. “It’s not something you can just walk in, take over and think you can run it.”
Broadhead has been in Pahrump for more than 20 years and is proud of the fact the speedway is among the oldest operating businesses in town.
“I don’t want to see the place close down,” he said. “The way property’s selling right now, some investor might come in, buy it and just sit on it for 10 years.”
As long as that buyer keeps the cars during those 10 years, Broadhead would be fine with that.
As he put it: “I want to get rid of it, I want to sell it, but to the right person.”
Tribute motorcycles are a dime a dozen in the custom industry. Most of the time, though, these builds like to honor older self-propelled machines, be they two- or four-wheeled, but that’s not the case with the bike in the gallery below.
This is another creation of German custom Harley garage called Thunderbike, and the bike we have here, originally a Breakout model, is a nod to one of the most famous race tracks on the American continent: Laguna Seca.
The 2.2 miles (3.6 km) long Californian circuit is home to both car and motorcycle races from MotoGP, Formula 750, AMA Superbike, and so on. That means it is only natural for people to dream about driving or riding on the tarmac where motorsports’ greatest names have once been. In the case of a Thunderbike customer, that dream took the form of this specially-made Breakout.
Shown a while back at the Custombike fair in Bad Salzuflen, Germany, the Harley-Davidson Laguna Seca sports all the Thunderbike modifications we are used to by now.
Wrapped in a unique custom paint created by Ingo Kruse, the bike also comes with a wealth of custom parts, ranging from the front and rear fenders to the wheels, sized 23-inch front and 21-inch rear. The headlamp, triple tree, handlebar, grip set, and exhaust system are also of Thunderbike design.
Thunderbike is a German Harley dealer that for the past 20 years has also doubled as a custom shop. The finished product covered in this piece is part of a larger series of custom builds the group has made over the years, one called Racing Series.
This family includes other racetrack tribute bikes like the Silverstone and Mugello. We’ll bring them under the spotlight in the coming days as part of our Two-Wheeler Month feature.
A making off video for the Laguna Seca motorcycle is attached below.