Today marks the 54th anniversary of an unbroken 184.087 mph land speed record by Burt Munro.
Munro's 1920 Indian Scout was the 627th 600cc Scout to leave the American factory. The bike had a top speed of 55 mph. Not nearly enough. So he decided to start modifying. Despite limited means and a complete lack of funding, Munro worked day and night to perfect his bike, which he took to calling the Munro Special.
Starting in the 1940s, Munro started claiming a number of New Zealand land speed records, and by the 1950s his Scout was too fast for New Zealand’s speed courses. He formed a new goal—to race on the flat, expansive Bonneville Salt Flats. Over the years, Munro and his Scout raced on the Bonneville Salt Flats nine times and set world records in three of them. In 1967, Burt Munro made his final trip to the Bonneville Salt Flats. By this time, his bike was such a unique amalgam of custom-made components it needed to be torn down and rebuilt after every 10 minutes of run time. His focus and innovation paid off as he set an official land speed record of 184.087 mph, and posted an unofficial top speed of 205.67 mph.
Thank you, Burt.