The first-ever Drag Specialties King of the Baggers race is officially in the books, and Indian Motorcycle’s only two entries in the entire field took first and third. Any rider or team would have to be pretty pleased with that kind of performance, exhibition event or not.
Tyler O’Hara raced the S&S Cycles Indian Challenger and quickly got out in front of the pack at Laguna Seca, but ran wide at Turn Two. He was able to get back on track and win, but not before dropping back down to third for a short time.
The most exciting moments of racing typically happen when racers have to pass each other—not go around in a big, fast parade around a track. O’Hara managed to claw his way back up to the front, eventually finishing the race with a healthy 1.9-second lead over Hayden Gillim, who piloted his Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson to second place. O’Hara’s best lap time was a 1:36.211, while Gillim’s was a 1:38.815.
Frankie Garcia followed in third on his Roland Sands Design Indian—definitely a good end to what could have been a rough weekend for the guy. While doing a practice start prior to race time, Garcia had a big get-off that involved his ginormous race steed going over completely backward and landing on him at the start line, as you can see in this video. Thankfully, he was completely fine afterward—but that’s a pre-race trick that no one wants to do.
Three racers who took the start line did not finish the inaugural King of the Baggers event. Ben Bostrom was the first racer out, followed by Michael Woolaway and Josh Herrin. Racer Michael Barnes was unfortunately unable to start the race at all. The eight-lap race completed its run in just over 15 minutes from when racers first rolled off to when the final racer crossed the finish line.
Will this become a regular annual event—or perhaps even a short series? All that remains to be seen, but no matter how you cut it, it does seem like this event was pretty well-received by all concerned.
Sources: YouTube, Instagram, Roadracing World