Bonhams sent out an email about a upcoming auction with a bike that caught my eye. I always love a bike with a mythical name - Pegasus, Mark Brelsford's Goliath, and Boanerges (though let's not get into semantics about me confusing mythical and biblical...).
Anyway, according to Bonhams, who don' often get things wrong, this Goliath is a :
...unique, do-it-all-racing Harley-Davidson was a project started in 1979 by one Vance Breese, racer, of the Redwood City-Menlo Park adjoining neighborhoods just south of San Francisco, a hidden hotbed of engineering and machine shops. He teamed up with Alan Sputhe, engineer and racer, of the Sputhe Engineering Company then in Tujunga, north west of Los Angeles and close to the San Fernando Valley. Sputhe designed and manufactured his own big bore aluminum barrels and heads, amongst many other 'speed parts', a good place for Breese to start. Jim Belland actually built the motor for Breese, however. Over time the bike was constantly modified and improved, and more to the point focused, moving to the 'purity' of competition; drag, road race and speed record. Such was their early success that soon there was 'assistance' from the folks at the Juneau Avenue factory Race Shop. The bike is in its final form as a road racer ridden by John Cronshaw for Team Obsolete in 1989 in Europe. Its trick specification was as follows: a Sputhe all-aluminum (now) 1,200cc short stroke Sportster-based XR750-type motor complete with S&S forged flywheels, connecting rods and pistons, Sifton cams, a total loss ignition, a pair of 40mm Dell'Orto carburetors and a two-inch diameter custom exhaust built by Tony Williams, an XR750 clutch and 'C' ratio transmission. The final chassis is a genuine XRTT frame with Sputhe oval-section swing arm, complete with 'period correct' wheels, suspension and brakes and fairing. A time-warp 1980s tool room special!
These are the bike's career highlights.
• 1980 10.554-second quarter mile at 130.24mph (John Ulrich, Cycle World) • 1980 SCTA Bonneville National MPS-AG class record at 176.615mph • 1980 AFM series Unlimited Class road racing champion • 1989 John Cronshaw class lap record at Oulton Park, UK • 1,300cc Sputhe short-stroke, all-aluminium motor, now rebuilt at 1200cc
Goliath goes under the hammer in Las Vegas on 25 January. See more at Bonhams.com