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Rickey Gadson Shakes Out Modified Ninja H2 With 8.2 Second Quarter-Mile (with video)


With a lengthened swingarm, carbon fiber rear wheel and other mods, Rickey Gadson trips the lights at 8.2 seconds in the video below with the custom Ninja H2 provided him by Kawasaki. Here is a press release from Kawasaki about this special bike:

On December 11, 2014, at the New York International Motorcycle Show, Kawasaki unveiled a highly customized race bike created specifically for use by Kawasaki-sponsored rider and eleven-time drag racing champion, Rickey Gadson.

This one-of-a-kind motorcycle was specially designed in conjunction with Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A. to meet certain drag racing specifications.

For Rickey’s part, he worked on a number of other modifications to enhance the motorcycle’s on-track prowess. These include a Strong Arm extended swing arm from Adam’s Performance. It accommodates a Brock’s Performance BST carbon fiber rear wheel to save weight, while a Ninja H2 cast aluminum front wheel was used on the front.

Completing the rear-end upgrades, Gadson added a JRI rear shock and equipped the motorcycle with a handlebar-mounted air shifter, which works in conjunction with the Kawasaki Quick Shifter on the Ninja H2.

To celebrate the unveiling of the Rickey Gadson custom Kawasaki Ninja H2 bike, Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A. has released a video showing the motorcycle in action.


  1. Jdilpkle says:

    Just another faster japanese sterillized no personality motorcycle in a sea of faster japanese sterillized no personality motorcycles. Oy.

    • paul246 says:

      Personality is a human attribute… not a machine’s.

      No matter what you (Jdilpkle) may think, you can’t go out and buy a personality, good or bad, either.

    • Brian says:

      Dare you to ride that thing and then tell me it’s “sterilized”…

      Everybody seems to think that their personal motorcycling preferences are the only “valid” ones. If you want to talk personality…in my opinion, blistering “OMG” speed is definitely part of it. I appreciate a gentle cruise around the countryside as much as the next guy, but a big part of the reason I ride motorcycles is cheap access to the kind of acceleration you’d pay $100,000+ for in a car.

      I’m not sure what “Japanese” has to do with it. Are you referring to the fact that most of their bikes lack that magical combination of vibration, noise, and unreliability often (at least in the past) associated with certain European and American manufacturers?

      If so, I’d say that “sterilized, no personality” is a feature, not a bug.

  2. Krisd says:

    I’ll prolly get flamed for this, but can someone please explain what’s the point?

    I don’t get it…..

  3. Ken says:

    Had 2006 ZX-14 built to 200 hp on gas with a 50 hp nitrous spray,10″ extended arm, wheels, shock,air shifter and it weighed 525 lbs with me driving at 225 lbs ran 9.15 at 155 mph in the quarter. I would think Ricky could break 9 flat on my bike.
    Really fast ZX-14s. And busa get in the mid 8’s so this bike set up getting in the low 8 second range or the high 7 second range with a small rider and good conditions is possible.
    I think the land speed teams are going to hit some very fast standing mile speeds with these bikes.
    If you purchase a new ZX-10 or BMW 1000 and have $15,000 in the bike and invest $10,0000 in turbo, on super charger you may do the same.
    But this Kaw is blazing fast and comes ready to race, pretty impressive.
    What will the insurance companies say, they probably will not insure these bikes.
    My ZX-14 with full coverage and a clean driving record at 45 was $2,200 per year for full coverage, just the basics $550 a year.
    Speed is not cheap,

  4. Grover says:

    That’s nice. But what does the stock H2 do the quarter mile? It not like we’re all going buy a 3 foot long swingarm and move to Florida.

  5. Hot Dog says:

    He went so fast he couldn’t even put his hat on straight.

  6. todd says:

    It’s hard to imagine that long swingarm not flexing to the side when the power is ON.

    • Norm G. says:

      does seem a bit spindly from his earlier designs (adams) but maybe those were just overbuilt…? from what I understand, the store of compressed air for the shifter is now in the arm so that would definitely add “tension force” to the system. hell, maybe the guy’s even ran it through FEA and knows how much…? good on ’em.

  7. TimC says:

    Neat stuff, but the ADD editing is terrible.

  8. paul says:


  9. ag_streak says:

    Is that 166.48 mph? Holy cr@p!

  10. ag_streak says:

    Seems like they were making a point of not mentioning the trap speed. Anyone see it on the board at the end of the video?

  11. stinkywheels says:

    I’m glad to see a stretched swinger that is needed and put to use by a real rider. The guys (RG) is the real deal, Pee Wee Gleason reincarnated.

  12. dino says:

    Cool… If only it had a wee-bit more power… Then I would be ALL IN!!!

  13. mickey says:

    I am amazed that 6 or 8 foot chain can take that punishment without snapping. Chains have come a long way in the last 45 years when CB750s and 900 Z-1s would snap them regularly at the strip.

    • todd says:

      A longer chain is stronger -as long as you keep it from whipping. All the power gets divided into each roller on the top run. More rollers, the more it’s divided.

      • RichBinAZ says:

        Interesting math

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I am no engineer, but I would think that the tension applied to the system would be the same at each link (each length transfers that load to the next, they don’t “divided up” the load. The only effects of increased length would be; 1) an increased chance that a defect is present, and 2) and increase in the amount of stretch under load.

        • xlayn says:

          Right indeed, plus the forces the longer chain introduce; as in sustained structures you have to include the weight of the cables in the weight…. the cables will sustain.

      • todd says:

        Right, I was wrong about that. The links are in series, they’d only be stronger if they were in parallel (like a duplex chain). Oops.

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “A longer chain is stronger”

        a chain is only as strong as it’s weakest link. (too easy)

        re: “All the power gets divided into each roller on the top run”

        sorry no. but you’re thinking, I like that.

        using an analogy from electricity, it’s still a “series connection” for the flow of power. the only way the power would divide is to give it a “parallel connection” which would mean double or triple chain rows side by side along with double or triple sprockets.

        at which point, the amount of power present at the output shaft (X) would have more than 1 physical path to travel on it’s way back to the rear wheel. the tensile strength for an individual roller/side plate is either sufficient for the load present…? or it isn’t. the one thing extra links added in series is not strength, but WEIGHT (both static and dynamic). heavy in your hand, heavy as SOM’BITCH at speed.

  14. jeece says:

    I consider myself a bit of a purist, but I do follow and enjoy motorcycle dragracing. That picture of the bike with that ridiculous arm on it, and in that setting, is pretty much off the hook. Wish I had Elvis money.

  15. Vic F. says:

    Rick, wish I could have been at the Rock to watch this in person. My kind of stuff. Sevens will be just around the corner.

  16. mickey says:

    Guy has some drag racing skills. have to give him that! That is one fast motorcycle under him too.