Supercharged 2 Engine 1700cc
Weslake Powered Drag Bike
This bike first appeared on the motorcycle drag racing scene in June 1975 and in just a couple of months was established as one of the quickest and fastest drag bikes in the World. Designed and built by John Hobbs in 1974/75, the bike became the fastest accelerating motorcycle this side of the Atlantic. The Hobbit name came about following a competition in Motorcycle Weekly, who sponsored John at the time.
Although not the first European motorcycle to run under 9sec for the S.S 1/4mile, it was the first to take part in a side by side all 8sec European drag race, establishing John as Europe's fastest drag bike racer of the time. The bike went on to better the S.S 1/4mile World Record with a two way average time of 9.185sec and later ran an all time best of 8.07sec @ 176mph.
The mid to late 70's were halcyon days for European drag racing and large crowds attended race meetings to see a wide variety of different international machinery compete for supremacy on the 1/4mile. John's battles with the late Henk Vink "The Flying Dutchman," became legendary as did their battles with the American's who visited Europe frequently including Tom Christianson on his double engined Norton "Hog Slayer" as well as Marion Owens and Danny Johnson on their monstrous 3500cc double engined Harley Davidson's. Towards the end of the 70s the reign of the double engined drag bike was coming to an end. Their complexity, weight and difficult maintenance meant they started to struggle to compete with the rapidly improving lighter and less complicated single engined, multi- cylinder Japanese powered machines.
John retired the Hobbit from competitive drag racing at the end of 1982, but in 1990 he retrieved the bike from under the workshop bench, restored it and started a 32-year involvement in classic racing. Over the years of classic racing, he won many events, including The Brighton Speed Trials, the Straightliners Classic Bike Championship and the Northweald Classic Bike event. He dominated the annual Santa Pod Dragstalgia meeting for over 11years, as well as taking many wins and FTD awards at VMCC and NSA sprints. John finally retired in July 2022, after 56 years of racing, at the age of 75 having broken 11 World and 13 National speed records during his racing career.
Engines: 2 x 841cc Weslake 8 valve 360deg parallel twins. Bore 77.81mm, Stroke 88.5mm. Power: Estimated 500BHP @ 8,500rpm running 60% nitro methane.
Superchargers: 2 x Shorrock C142B 1400cc Rotary Vane delivering 14psi boost. Carburetion: 80% of fuel supplied to superchargers via 2" SU carburettors.
Fuel Injection: 20% of fuel injected direct into inlet ports.
Transmission: 3 speed hydraulically operated epicyclic, planetary gear box. Clutch: Centrifugally operated sintered iron "Crowerglide" slider clutch.