~ 1200cc bevel drive supercharged drag bike ~

Herman Jolink raced his new Ducati Dragbike after 3 years of hard work

Photos: By Remco Scheelings
Text sent in by Piet Mom [piet.mom@tiscali.nl]
Article first appeared at Dragbike.com

In the weekend of the 1st of July, Herman Jolink participated in the Dragrace Gegen Rechts event in Wittstock, Germany on his new 1200cc Ducari blowerbike. On Friday his mechanic Dietmar towed Herman through the pits a few times, to get a feel for the new Ducati, and they had the bike scrutineerd by the tech-inspector for the first time. 

On Saturday morning they went for it. After the third start-up attempt it kept running, so Herman cruised down the track, shifting gears three times. After checking everything in the pits, they took it to the strip again, for a full run ... 1.4 sec. on the 60 foot, 6.6 on the 1/8mile and 10.4 on the quartermile with 190 kmh. (not bad at all for a bike fresh from the workshop). Too bad it broke at the end of the track. A hole in the piston of the standing cylinder. 

Hear a run on this bike HERE

Herman says the frame is perfect, it only wants to go straight and he felt at home on the bike immediately. Using the ignition of the old Ducati was a golden idea and the 10.5 inch wide slick is not too much for the bike, Herman feels a lot more power than in the old bike. 

The Hermanator meets The Doctor in Bolognia

They could have repaired the bevel-drive engine, but the replacement pistons had the same clearance and valve pockets as the one he broke, so they decided to take it back to the "Fette" speedshop to prepare for next weekend, where the new bike will pick up it's first Euroserie Topgas points on the 1/8mile track in Drachten, where Jolink would meet riders from Italy, Sweden Germany, Belgium, Holland and the UK. 

The second weekend in July was the "Dutch Nationals", in Drachten, also the third race in the Euroserie TOPGAS. Herman was there (for the 25th year in a row) with Marc Lehman and Henry Evers as his helpers and the new bike... 

The first qualifying round on Saturday was a big surprise to a lot of people, including me. The first burn-out was an instant cloud of smoke, and it sounds like a little blown twin should. The turnout was a 6.8 and 178 Kmh. 

Everything checked for the second pass: it went 6.3, with a good 60 foot, but a bad top speed: 148 Kmh. The third round gave a 6.2 and another bad top speed. We were so lucky with the weather that a 4th pass was possible, with a 6.3 as result. 

That evening it was time for "reasoning". My impression was that it did not get enough gas (at the top end of the track) with only 300cc of consumption per run and the sparkplugs read the same. After a phone call with Dietmar, the gas-tank was connected to the blower (put under pressure) and the heads were checked. One exhaust-valve had "kissed" the piston but no real harm done. Things were smoothened out and the "Hermanator" polished the valve-seats late that night. And was sorry he did not bring the 9 inch rear wheel of his old bike.

Here's 2 close-ups from the right side.  You can see the air shifter, and the pulley that drives the blower. A part of the fuel-injection system is visible below the seat.

There was a 16-field of Topgas racers, all other 15 with "Harley"-type engines, some with over 2800cc motors The 6.2 was good for a 14th spot in the hard competition on Sunday on the fast 1/8mile dragstrip. Ricardo Gilliberto from Italy was the fastest with a 5.1, Herman was up against Gunther Sohn, who did constant 5.4's with his new engine. These two guys also made the finale pair, with Gilliberto taking it home with a 5 flat, and grabbing the European record along the way. 

So Herman found his "Waterloo" in the first round, but I could see that it was close, and Drachten lacks a scoreboard, but I could pick up the word "five" and waited for the timeslip to come out of the office. Henry took the little paper with him as he went to the end of the track on his tow-bike. It read 5.963 and 180 kmh. (0.007sec. faster than his last race on the old Duc in Västeras last month) Gasoline-consumption went up to over 500cc! 

I think a basic setup is found with lots of things to try to keep the team busy. Next race is in three weeks, in Mössling, Germany, but some testing in between will take place, probably in Wittstock.

Herman Jolink whishes to thank all his sponsors, and everybody else who made it all possible.

Piet Mom works for Motorgazet, Belgium, and the Herman Jolink drag racing team. 
Herman Jolink can be reached at Jolink@dragbike.com
For more information on the European Top Gas series check out www.topgas.com

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