The current field is made up of machinery ranging from Kawasaki Ninjas and Yamaha FZ07s to Harley-Davidson 750s and even Ducati Hypermotards. But to give you an idea of what Indian is going up against – on the flat track as it is on the road – the title has been won by Harley for the past six years running.
To take on its targeted rivals, Indian is developing an all-new, liquid-cooled 750cc V-twin engine, around which it's building a custom chassis. Fortunately it has some help in that department, as it has recruited Jared Mees – a multiple AMA Grand National Champion – to serve as test rider. Look for the bike to mark its debut sometime this year before taking on the full calendar next season.
Indian Motorcycle Racing to Utilize Proprietary New Liquid-Cooled 750cc V-Twin Competition Engine
MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(Marketwired - Jun 14, 2016) - Indian Motorcycle®, America's first motorcycle company, is proud to announce its re-entry into the AMA Pro Flat Track series with its first full-factory racing effort since the 1950s.
AMA Pro Flat Track is highly competitive and has evolved into a demanding, technical and specialized event that typically sees bar-to-bar action and sublime motorcycle control at high speeds on varied dirt surfaces. The Indian Motorcycle Racing Team will contest the series with an all-new proprietary liquid-cooled 750cc four-valve V-Twin competition engine specifically designed for flat track and engineered into a specially built chassis.
"We are very excited to return to the AMA Circuit," said Steve Menneto, President of Motorcycles for Polaris Industries. "We have established the new Indian Chief and Scout series as the cornerstones of our production line-up, and now is the time for us to return to racing in a big way. We know that fans of Indian Motorcycle have been anticipating this announcement and can't wait to see Indian Racing back in action."
Indian Motorcycle has a significant history in flat track, at one time dominating the sport with legendary riders and motorcycles. Perhaps best-known was the Indian Motorcycle Wrecking Crew, consisting of Bill Tuman, Bobby Hill and Ernie Beckman, who won race after race and carried the message of power, balance and quality that lives on in today's Indian® Scout®.
"Indian Motorcycle was born out of competition, and through its history used racing to develop and improve the product as well as expand the appeal of the brand," said Reid Wilson, Marketing Director for Indian Motorcycle. "As shepherds for the brand, we will continue that push towards excellence on the street and in competition, and our team is beyond excited to bring the brand back to professional racing."
Multi-time AMA Grand National Champion Jared Mees will join the Indian Motorcycle Racing Team as a test rider in 2016. Mees, 30, won the AMA Grand National Twins Championship in 2009, AMA Grand National Singles Championship in 2012, and the unified AMA Grand National Championship (GNC1) title in 2012, 2014 and 2015.
"I can't express how excited I am to be the guy to bring Indian Motorcycle back into the forefront of AMA Pro competition," said Jared Mees. "We will have a lot of work to do to develop a 100 percent new race platform, but I'm committed and excited at what I have seen on the drawing boards and what the plans are for Indian Motorcycle Racing. This is history for the brand, and being a part of it is truly exciting for me and this sport."
Indian Motorcycle will race the new motorcycle at a circuit to be determined in 2016 in preparation for a full season of competition in 2017. Stay tuned to IndianMotorcycle.com and Indian Motorcycle social media channels for continued updates on our progress and details on the bike's first race.