Slidin’ Sonny Nutter is a legend of flat track racing. He started scrubbing gunk from bikes at 13 years old, and by the 1970s, he was raising a family by racing five nights at week throughout the speedways of Southern California, including that iconic track in Gardena: Ascot Park. He won the California Speedway Championship twice, and he was asked to captain the American team at the World Speedway Championship in Israel. All that, and he’s a nice guy to boot: he was voted the AMA’s “Most Liked” racer in 1970.
Triumph Thruxton Tracker for Sonny Nutter
As part of their Legends Series, the Triumph specialists of California’s British Customs have been building an array of tribute bikes, each honoring a legend from the golden heydays of motorcycle racing. We recently featured “Triumphant,” their Eddie Mulder tribute bike, and now the BC boys are back with a bike for Slidin’ Sonny.
The base is a 2004 Triumph Thruxton. They discarded the cafe bars for 1″ Biltwell tracker bars, boring the stock Thruxton controls to fit, and they laced up a set of dirt-tracker wheels with Excel rims. The bike is running a British Customs skid plate and Slammer seat with integrated taillight.
Sonny still builds his own “Nutterized trackers,” throwbacks to the old oil-in-frame machines of the 1970s. He was closely involved in the design and build process, helping the BC team engineer a number of original parts to be marketed to the public. The most notable is the Slash Cut TT Exhaust System. Team member David Bumpus explains:
“The Slash Cut TT Exhaust System was designed closely with Sonny Nutter himself. When we were building the bike and showed him some concept drawings for the exhaust, he whited out parts and drew all over them and showed us how to make the pipes just like the way they used to. Thus was the Slash Cut TT Exhaust System born, designed to look and sound like the real deal of vintage tracker exhaust.”