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Old Man who Breaks World Record 36 years after Death : Story of the World’s Fastest Indian

The movie World’s Fastest Indian is both about racing and a remarkable life tale. And one that is genuine. Burt Munro actually existed, and despite being short on both time and resources, he nonetheless set speed records.

Who is the World Fastest Indian?

Burt Munro, a native of New Zealand, has always had a yearning for speed. He lived a life motivated by the ambition to go faster and push boundaries, whether he was competing as a professional speedway driver or racing the fastest horse across his family’s farm. The 627th 600cc Scout to depart the American factory was Munro’s 1920 Indian Scout.

The bike’s top speed was 55 miles per hour. Not enough at all. So he made the decision to begin adjusting. Munro worked all hours of the day and night to perfect his bike, which he came to refer to as the Munro Special, despite having little resources and no money at all.

Munro began claiming a series of New Zealand land speed records in the 1940s, and by the 1950s his Scout was too quick for the country’s speed circuits. He created a new objective: to compete on the vast, level Bonneville Salt Flats.

Munro and his Scout competed in nine races on the Bonneville Salt Flats throughout the years, with three of them producing world records. Burt Munro visited the Bonneville Salt Flats for the last time in 1967. By this time, his bike had evolved into a one-of-a-kind collection of specialized parts that required disassembling and rebuilding after every ten minutes of use.

He achieved an unofficial high speed of 205.67 mph and set an official land speed record of 184.087 mph thanks to his determination and creativity. Burt Munro was honored for the pursuit started eight decades ago by being inducted into the AMA Hall of Fame in 2006.

What happened to the World’s Fastest Indian

The World’s Fastest Indian, an immensely popular film starring Anthony Hopkins, was based on a true incident that is even more amazing. Burt Munro, a self-taught New Zealand engineer, spent 46 years working on the Indian Scout in his shed before traveling to the American Bonneville Salt Flats to establish a new record of 183.58 mph, the fastest speed ever recorded for the brand. At the time, Munro was 68.

Original Bike Like?

Only 50 mph was the top speed of the 1919 Indian Scout, a 600cc V-twin with side valves and a three-speed hand-change gearbox. A double down-tube cradle frame that housed the engine had no back suspension but featured a leaf spring up front that provided around two inches of motion.

How did Munro Becomes Fastest Indian ?

Munro spent 46 years perfecting his Scout in his garden shed, spending 16 hours a day there and only once taking a half-day holiday for Christmas. He was constantly looking for ways to make it run faster. He made his own barrels, pistons, flywheels, cams, and followers over the years, as well as his own lubrication system on a budget.

He hand-carved con-rods from an old tractor axle, built barrels out of cast iron gas tubing that he scavenged from the neighborhood gas company after it had been dug up, and even used a kitchen knife to remove the tread from regular tires to create high-speed slicks!

What Records did He Placed?

Before traveling to Bonneville in 1962 and achieving a new 883cc class record of 178.95mph, Munro had already set six speed marks in his native New Zealand. Five years later, Munro broke the 1000cc class world record with a speed of 183.58mph after having the Scout bored out to 1000cc.

Except for Burt himself, no one has ever traveled more quickly on an Indian. Munro’s outdated streamliner was clocked at a staggering 190.07mph on an unofficial one-way run (world records must be established over a two-way run).

Where is his Bike now?

The bicycle that Burt Munro dedicated his life to is currently displayed alongside lawnmowers and barbecue grills in a hardware store in Invercargill, New Zealand. After Munro passed away, the late owner of the shop, Irving Hayes, purchased his old friend’s bike and added it to his store, E. Hayes & Sons Ltd. Now, his grandson carries on that legacy. John Munro claims that the Munro Special made in Invercargill is the most genuine.

Dad brought his bike back with him the first time he visited Bonneville, but that proved to be too expensive. From that point on, he only carried the engine and gearbox back each time, leaving the frame and shell behind. He also had another engine here, and when he sold a motorcycle to American collector Dean Hensley, he dressed it up, painted it, and chromed it. However, the motorcycle in Invercargill is the genuine article because it still bears the original engine number.

Offerings to the God of Speed

The age of his bicycle is now 47. Everyone is looking forward to breaking the previous record now that the American audience has already had the opportunity to witness what he is capable of. Although the pilot already has heart issues, her wants are more intense as before. The original engine components have an 88 km/h top speed limit.

Burt must clear the qualification track in order to compete, and although no time is recorded, some people think he reached speeds of above 250 km/h. He makes a second stop and achieves a new record of 292 km/h. The judges are concerned for his health and decline to recognize it as an official record despite his belief that his bike is capable of a little more. 304 km/h is the unofficial result. Strong enthusiasm in one person can produce absurd results.

Let’s reiterate that Burt had no sponsors and no money. He was a tradesman who frequently fixed bikes to save money, poured all the parts in his workshop, occasionally used tin cans, and occasionally roamed the morgues. When the bike breaks or his body has another mishap, he does not lose hope. Every additional kilometer is a dose of happiness that this mechanic wants to feel repeatedly. Speed is contagious. When his official record was 294 km/h, his son informed the organization in 2010 that there had been a calculating error.

When the American Indian Motorcycle Company was revived 3 years ago after a more than 50-year hiatus, its new owner Polaris Industries recognized the historical connection to Munro and gave the 21st-century Indian Streamliner the name “Spirit of Munro.”

What is more significant, though, is that Burt Munro was inducted into the AMA Motorbike Hall of Fame in 2006 and that the record set by the vintage Indian motorcycle still remains. One of the best racing movies ever filmed, the movie was created the year before, in 2005.


Source : Wikipedia | please dm for removals


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