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Zero to Hero Part 2: The Kawasaki ZX-14R is unveiled in Anderson, SC
By Paul Cavanaugh
There are many people who race bone stock motorcycles on the drag strip. If this bike were one of them Angie would have had it on the track a few weeks ago, but this is a woman who knows what she wants and would not settle for anything less than race ready to show it to her fans in Anderson, SC.
Bike prep for its debut
Before the debut party the bike spent some time with Coby Adams and his crew at Adams Performance getting a full tune with the new Power Commander V Brocks Performance supplied. The bike ended up pulling 203 HP on pump gas. Somewhere down the road Angie would like to run race fuel although that is not in her budget right now.
Next the bike needed to be stretched a bit and Roaring Toyz came to the rescue with a set of extensions.
Lastly, an air shifter needed to be installed. For this Dan Rudd with MPS supplied the airline, fittings, compressor and air solenoid. Brock sent the components to attach the air shifter piston to the shift linkage and I supplied the air bottle and air piston along with a new MPS Killbox I had bought and never used.
The last two items I volunteered to take care of so I told Angie to bring the bike by the house on Friday at 9am so I could install them for her.
Here is an text I received at 9:51am on Friday morning:
I am 38 miles away from you we run into the Ronin’s bad wreck on 85. Traffic Jam. We are moving again.
Angie: (Then a few minutes later)
Rain rather I don’t know what a Ronin is. Stupid smart phone.
No problem. See you soon. Ronin is a class of Japanese Warrior related to the Samurai.
No we didn’t run into any of them.
Air Shifter Installation on a ZX-14R
I am going to come clean here and admit I have never touched a ZX-14, but I have installed 7 or more air shifters on the Hayabusa, it takes about 2 hours working at a leisurely pace.
Prior to getting Angie’s bike I decided to do some homework and research the basics, like where to hide the air bottle, the air compressor, the MPS kill box, etc. I even called a friend and fellow racer Steve Jackson who runs an earlier model ZX-14. He was extremely helpful with his advice.
I am going to be brief in my explanation of the experience. Angie and her beau Gary after a few missed turns arrived at the house at 11am, they left at 9pm and it only took an hour to install the extensions. You do the math on the air shifter installation.
The Slick Wicked team has all types of items they market from t-shirts to jewelry with a vampire theme. So it seems fitting the team named the bike “Dragula”. (Not a reference to Grandpa Munster’s 400 HP casket.) Palmetto Moonshine graciously offered to sponsor the Slick Wicked team so they gave them the use of their parking lot to have the party for “Dragula’s” introduction to the public.
Palmetto Moonshine is South Carolina’s first legal moonshine distillery. I was able to spend some time talking with Benji Beck who is one of the distillers. We were able to trade moonshine making information because of my foray into the production of ethanol when writing an article about it a while back. It turns out we pretty much make it the same way except they are doing it in a 250 gallon copper tank which is soon to be a new 1,000 gallon tank due to demand.
Coby Adams from Adams Performance was on site. Adams Performance just finished converting the “Black Betty” GSXR 1000 to run on moonshine. Palmetto Moonshine will be supplying the fuel for this bike which will more than likely be run by Leah Smith on the track as Angie moves over to the ZX-14R.
Photo By Lisa Campbell
A large crowd of people came to see the Slick Wicked girls. There was live music, lots of moonshine to taste for free (3 shots per person), food donations were being taken for our military personnel overseas, tricycle races in the parking lot, Leah’s 78 year old Grandmother Mary Lou Cushman found out she liked moonshine and bought a bottle and Angie’s son Sgt. Chase Gray was there to celebrate his mom’s good fortune in winning the bike.
Some of the members of the Slick Wicked team race the truck which just came back from having it’s motor freshened up.
It was on the truck I finally was able to see the paint job Angie came up with which resulted in the name Slick Wicked. It does look and feel like a snake skin. If you look real hard you will see it in the photo I took.
HITTING THE TRACK
Next Dragike.com will cover Young’s 1st runs on the track with the bike. She came a long way in a short time with “Black Betty” but this will be an entirely different beast. Young says she is ready and can’t wait to run “Dragula”.
Special Thanks to