About Black Art Racing

THE TEAM  racers jim higgins kim greg wattersTHE TEAM racers jim higgins kim greg watters

In 2006, Greg Watters and Kim Krebs met Californian fireman Jim Higgins in the middle of nowhere .... that’s nowhere Australian-style.  One hundred and thirty miles from the nearest town and 100 miles at the end of a rough dirt road.  It’s BYO everything (water, fuel, food, shelter and parts).  That’s Land Speed Racing in Australia, at Lake Gardiner.

Greg and Kim were sharing a 1999 turbo GSX1350R and Jim freighted his Buell (with help from Ack Attack, who brought his streamliner and a few other fast Americans such as Joe and Jon  Amo and John Noonan).  Like all LSR, nothing goes like you plan.  The dusty 160km track into Lake Gairdner is an adventure in itself.  The isolation is another.  Jim hurt the motor on his turbocharged/nitrous Buell very early in the week long speed trial, which gave him time to mingle ... ... and so the Aussie LSR friendship began.

A bit of luck

In 2008, Greg travelled to the USA to do a reconnaissance of the Bonneville Salt Flats, with the help of Jim.  But no adrenalin seeking LSRer can turn up empty handed.  Having bought a sight-unseen 1999 GSXR 750 on eBay, Greg carried the turbo unit as hand luggage onto the flight to San Francisco.  A bit of frame straightening, installation of the turbo, and a snappy fresh paint job(all done in one week) saw Jim and Greg ,with the help of crew chief Mick Donohue, set about breaking a few 750 records.  It could only be described as a successful recon trip.

The records begin

In 2009, Kim joined Greg and Jim – the three riders sharing a 1996 and the eBay 1999 model GSXR 750 (both turboed).  The Black Art team set 7 new AMA, FIM and SCTA records and were starting to learn how to ride fast, safely, and with reliability.

In 2010, the team set a further 6 motorcycle land speed records, with Greg Watters setting the BUBs Speedtrial meet’s outright fastest motorcycle speed, beating even the streamliners.  Kim retained the record of fastest Australian Woman’s motorcycle land speed racer, and was awarded the SheEmoto Award from Erin Hunter.  Kim is the first person outside of the USA to be recognised and awarded this honor from Erin Hunter.  In 2010, El Mirage also got a visit, with Greg earning a "200 Dirty Red Cap", Jim setting a new naked blown 750 record and Kim getting her Rookie runs under her belt.

In 2011, with new body work bought from 2010 prize money, Black Art Racing headed back to the USA to set more records.  It turned out to be a year of finding problems.  More importantly, it ended up as a year of solving problems.  Although the electrical, mechanical and aerodynamics all conspired against the team, they still managed to qualify for records and to gain the attention of other racers.

 

In 2012, the team returned to the Bonneville Salt Flats, this time joined by fellow Australian Neill Finlay who met Jim, Greg and Kim in 2009.  Joining us in the Black Art pits, his turbocharged Hayabusa added to the team's racing fleet, now expanded to Greg riding a 1407cc turbo Hayabusa, Kim on the turbo GSXR 750 and Jim on the naked turbo GSXR 750.  Running at BUBs, World of Speed and Cook's Shootout, the team sucessfully set 3 American SCTA records, qualified for one SCTA record, and set two FIM World Records. Both Kim and Neill earning their "Red Hats" and joining the prestigious Bonneville 200 MPH club. Kim is one of only 5 women in the world who are members of the 200 MPH Club via motorcycle records.

Greg's SCTA 2012 record of 253.3mph earned him the title of the fastest sit on bike at the salt at any SCTA event ever.

2013 was a Land Speed Racing campaign that was impacted on by rain.  The last two days of BUBs Speedtrials was washed out and World of Speed was canceled due to the continued inundation of water over the salt flats.  Despite the perserverance of the organisers, eventually Mike Cook's Bonneville Shootout was also washed out.  A new date of 10-14 October wasn't an option as we had the return back to Australia, including the shipping freight of the race bikes.  By the close of the 2013 racing season, all the land speed records held by Black Art Racing were maintained, and the team continues to be elite world performers.

Black Art Racing is gaining an international profile, and 2013 has featured in a series of Nurofen television ads that are shown across the United Kingdom, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. This exposure is helping to raise the profile of both Black Art Racing and the sport of land speed racing.

Like most dedicated Land Speed Racers, Black Art Racing is at the extreme end of a hobby.  Reliably fast, and prepared to travel to the other side of the world to see whether we’re made of the right stuff.  Sponsorship and support is hard to find, but the smiles and help from our LSR mates is the biggest reward.

Thank you to those who support us and believe we have the right stuff to stay on top the world’s list of successful land speed racers.

If you would like to become a sponsor, we would welcome the chance to take you and your business on the ride of it's life.