The latest generation of Triumph motorcycles is the best in the company’s history. That’s an objective fact, and one that is indisputably true. Still, it is the legend of the old Triumph bikes that drives the brand forward … and that legend drives the brand’s fans forward, too. Fans like Alp Sungurtekin, who hopes to add a record of his adventures to the annals of motorcycling history.
Alp hopes to earn his place in those annals (huh-huh) by taking a sixty-eight (68) year old, 650cc, air-cooled, pushrod Triumph motor and boosting its output from 33 horsepower to more than 150. Enough, Alp hopes, to crack 200 MPH at the Bonneville salt flats.
Needless to say: Alp Sungurtekin is my kind of guy.
Alp Racing Triumph Speed Record Motorcycle
Helping Alp and his high-strung Triumph motor reach the double ton are an ultra lightweight chassis clothed in slick, low-drag bodywork.
The bike’s styling seems to be influenced by something between hummingbird and peregrine falcon, but- as visually impressive as it is- the real aero trickery is in that front fender. Alp has named it the “Flex Fender”, and it is an inspired piece of tech. “The SCTA and FIM banned dustbin fairings a long time ago,” he explains. “I had to come up with something that’s as good as a dustbin, but would pass scrutinizing. So I designed a fender that’s separate from the main bodywork, but keeps the benefits of the (connected, banned) dustbin style.” The Flex Fender is flexible, obviously. As such, it can overlap the main bodywork and still turn with the wheel. Technically, it is separate. It moves. But, critically, it maintains the aero benefits of an integrated, fixed fender.
Does it work? In a word: yes.
So far, Alp has made four passes with the bike. Hitting 170 MPH and, “an official timed speed of 149 mph, despite not being able to get into its power band.” Which is impressive in itself, given how bad the surface conditions at Bonneville have been in recent years.
Impressive isn’t enough for Alp, though. He’ll be taking his Triumph-engined
death trap motorcycle back to Bonneville again this summer, and doesn’t plan to come home without a 200 MPH timed run. Good on ‘im.