By Titus Bloom, February 4, 2015

DukeEngineIn America we are continually impressed by the sheer numbers of racing enthusiasts in the little-populated large land of Australia. Dozens of Kaase Boss Nine hot rod engines have left our shores destined for the land Down-under.

But have you ever contemplated the engineering accomplishments from the even smaller population of New Zealand?

The World’s Fastest Indian

Bert Munro was a phenomenon from Invercargill, located at the very tip of the South Island. He developed a 1920’s Indian motorcycle that became so successful on the Bonneville Salt Flats a movie was made to celebrate his achievements, many of which were financed in later life by his weekly pension. Munro’s Bonneville record of 1967 remains unbroken today.

Then a generation later, John Britten emerged. Another Kiwi with a brilliant creative mind, Britten began his career as a sculptor and later as an outstanding architect. But in unaccountable contrast, for anyone who stood in the pits at Daytona in 1995 and witnessed his Britten 1000cc V-twin being started on the rollers, its irregular air-cracking staccato would remain indelibly in the memory. It competed against the best factory machines of the time and defeated them.

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