Hot Rod

Thu Mar 28 2013 13:27:51 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

Russ Collins on his drag bike.

Jeff Regal

Thu Mar 28 2013 16:53:40 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

Responding to the double-engine "trend", RC Engineering raised the bar another notch. Russ Collins built the "Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe", a thundering, three-engine, nitromethane-burning, Honda. This frightening machine became the first, seven-second motorcycle in drag racing and the first Top Fuel bike with a Japanese engine to hold a NHRA National Record. The "AT&SF," also, became the first motorcycle to win NHRA's coveted "Best Engineered Car" award at the Springnationals in 1973.

Russ Collins' three-motor monster eventually ran a best of 7.80 sec./179.5 mph but, in the end, proved a death-defying ride. In 1976, it was destroyed in a horrendous crash at Akron, Ohio that nearly killed Russ, put him in the hospital for several weeks and kept him in a wheelchair for several more. You can't keep a wild man down, though.

The Stig

Thu Mar 28 2013 17:39:27 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

That thing can't be comfortable to ride... But when you're holding onto a rocket at 180mph, I guess comfort isn't that important