Bub Exhaust History of Speed Exhibit

Five fast machines.

Photography by Gregor Halenda

Bub Exhaust History of Speed Exhibit

One of the displays that drew a big crowd at the 2007 Cycle World International Motorcycle Show in New York City was Bub Exhaust's "The History of Speed." The exhibit–which has traveled to all the Cycle World shows this season–brought a variety of full and partial top-speed streamliners together for close inspection, from Joe Petrali's 136-mph yellow 1936 Harley to Bub's Chris Carr-piloted 350-mph hand-built (and current) land-speed record holder. The display is a fascinating opportunity to see how tightly packed are the sleek hulls of these two-wheel rockets.

"Seven" (it’s the 7th streamliner Bub owner Denis Manning has designed over the years) is currently the world’s fastest motorcycle. It’s powered by a custom-built, 16-valve, turbocharged V-Four engine in a carbon-fiber and kevlar monocoque chassis. It was piloted to the record by seven-time AMA flat-track champion Chris Carr who, while a neophyte to the salt, had no problem eliminating his routine left turns to take the record this past September.

Other bikes at the display were Manning’s early effort, the "Cal," a streamliner from 1969 powered by a Sportster engine, and the "Turnip Eater" (a reference to Triumphs at the time being called "Turnips"), another ’70s-era Sportster-powered speed machine that set a 202-mph record and was the first non-streamliner ever to break the double-ton.

"The History of Speed" exhibit offers a rare chance for everyone to sample a taste of our motorcycling heritage. It’s definitely worth a look when the show comes to your area.