Indian Motorcycle has recently announced that it will participate in the 2020 AMA Pro Hillclimb Series, marking a return to a sport it once dominated more than 80 years ago. To ensure that its presence is noted well and its entry is bang on, Indian Motorcycle has modified an FTR750 specifically for this series.
The modified Indian FTR750 hill climber will be piloted by the company’s newest factory rider and 10-time AMA Pro Hillclimb Champion John “Flying” Koester. Regarded as one of the sport’s top riders, Koester was the first U.S. racer to win all three National AMA Pro Hillclimb titles in a single season.
Koester, along with his father and crew chief Gordy Koester, spearheaded the dramatic transformation of the FTR750 from a flat track race bike to a full-fledged hill shredder. Modifications include an extended swingarm, knobby tires, redesigned rear tail, and an upgraded Rekluse clutch to account for the increased clutch use demanded by hill climb racing. The team also worked with S&S to design an exhaust system specific to Koester and his riding position.
Since 1901, racing has been a part of the Indian Motorcycle DNA. Founders George Hendee and Oscar Hedstrom met at a bicycle race and maintained their passion for speed and competition when developing the brand in its infancy. Today, Indian Motorcycle has honoured its forefathers by continuing the brand’s racing prowess through various forms of racing, including flat track, land speed, bagger racing at the upcoming, inaugural MotoAmerica King of the Baggers event, and now hill climb.