Sultans of Sprint is a wacky and fun-looking event that wends its way around various European towns, celebrating the custom building scene. Points are scored not only on straight-line drag race results, but on “style, creativity and craziness” as well – a setup that encourages a very fun mix of machinery and an atmosphere all of its own.

Indian Motorcycle has had plenty of fun with prior Sultans events, most memorably in 2017 when it put together a 185-hp, Nitrous-breathing Scout build it named after a famous headless chicken. But as quick as “Miracle Mike” was, this year’s entry will trounce it on style and creativity points.

Built for Indian by Workhorse Speedshop and set to race in Italy, France and Germany over the next few months, “Appaloosa” – named for a famously fast American horse breed – also takes the 1200cc Scout as a starting point, to celebrate 100 years since the first Indian Scout made its debut back in 1919.

That open nose reminds us of early jet fighters

It’s hard to look at the open-nosed front fairing of this thing and not think of early jet fighters like the Mig-15 and F-86 Sabre. Behind that, the fuel tank has been chopped down into just a lightweight cover that sits over a tiny 2.5-liter (0.66-gal) fuel cell that provides just enough power for a burnout and a run down the strip.

This time, there’ve been no internal engine modifications, but Workhorse has bumped the stock Scout’s 100 hp up to 130 hp with the addition of a nitrous oxide system, an Akrapovic exhaust, direct intake, a racing ECU and a Power Commander to manage fueling. The team has tossed the stock belt drive for a chain, and stuck on a quickshifter for fast gear changes at full throttle.

Extended swingarm for the drag strip

Much of the back-end of the bike is custom, including a stretched aluminum swingarm designed to add length to the bike and help keep it from wheelieing on the drag strip. Likewise, there’s a new subframe and seat unit, with lower clip-on bars at the front, so the rider will lie stretched out over the tank with their butt up against a backstop to help keep weight forward.

Suspension is from Ohlins – an STX 36 piggyback shock and Retro 43 forks with a steering damper to control headshake – while brakes are 4D Aerotecs on dual small 230-mm front discs designed to reduce inertia and aid acceleration. Beringer also helped out by machining the hand controls and buttons, as well as machining some of the other Workhorse-designed parts like the swingarm.

Notrous oxide system and a few tweaks allows this bike to make 130 hp instead of...

Ready to roll in the Factory class after around 700 hours of design and fabrication by the Workhorse team, the Appaloosa will also sport a heck of a rider – indeed, possibly the best Grand Prix motorcycle racer never to win a championship. California’s Randy Mamola, who placed second in no less than four 500cc GP racing championships, has signed on to pilot this creation in Monza on the 18th and 19th of May, Monthlery on the 22nd and 23rd of June, and Leonberg on the 31st of August and 1st of September.

500cc GP legend Randy Mamola is signed up to race this thing

The bike itself will also get a public airing at the UK’s Bike Shed in late May, and at France’s Wheels and Waves festival in mid-June. Lots more photos in the gallery.

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