Photography by Tadashi Kono
Growing up as a kid, Kevin Busch always looked up to his Grandfather. You see, his Grandfather was a mechanic, fabricator and engine builder who had a passion for going fast. He used to build drag bikes in the 1950s and his JAP drag bike was one of his favourite builds, built and raced by him and few of his friends until 1960. “After 1960 the bike was taken apart as they had all moved onto racing dragsters” says Kevin. “Some of the bike was parted and was forgotten about and left in the back of the shop gathering dust for many years.”
Saw this amazing Norton-JAP (J.A. Prestwich) in a British classic motorcycle mag a few months ago. After trying to find some more info on it I discovered a detailed article on The Vintagent (If you haven’t checked this site out it’s a must). This bike has had an impressive history on and off the track over the years. Here’s some technical info straight from the story “Although it is based on the ‘Stronger’ 1100cc JAP mk2 Crankcases, it is fitted with 2 Speedway heads and barrels giving a nominal 998cc. The GP carbs are in fact 1 1/4″ and the SU floats came from an XK Jaguar. It runs on straight Methanol and gives circa 100 BHP. The JAP is mounted in a 1952 350cc Manx Norton rolling chassis (the 350 version is lighter than the 500 being made in lighter gauge tubing).” For the full story on this beautiful machine check out the wonderful The Vintagent.
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This Saturday 19th July the Ward Brothers’ Collection of vintage motorcycles and automobiles go to auction. The auction will take place at Henley-on-Thames, UK but overseas bidders are welcome via phone/online. For those collectors out there this will be one you won’t want to miss. They have a range of vintage bikes from a 1920’s AJS through to 1950’s Vincent’s, Norton’s and BSA’s (if only i had room in my garage!). They even have a very rare 1928 McEvoy-JAP that’s expected to sell for more than 120,000 pounds (thats around $200,000 us). If you are interested or just want to drool over the auction catalogue visit Bonhams.
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