The main reason they were built was to provide Icon
Motorsports with a hard-core way to test its new Raiden
line of adventure bike gear. Each bike had two Icon-clad
riders. Mark Vanscourt, who was the foreman for the
whole project, teamed up with Johnny Scheff on the white
Triumph. Joe Bolton and freestyle/stunt rider Ernie Vigil
rode the yellow one. If you don’t know who Ernie Vigil is,
Google him. Among other things, there’s a video of him
riding a Triumph Scrambler that’s just amazing.
Mark started on the project months ago, so he had time
to test the stock Triumph and come up with a game plan.
The truth is that a standard-issue Triumph could conceivably finish the course. But, it would be brutal. Most of the
effort went into making the bike more comfortable in rough
terrain. Job one was Ohlins suspension. The shock was a
bolt-on replacement, but the fork required a kit. The stock
fork was gutted and an Ohlins cartridge was installed.
Soupy’s Performance makes suspension linkage that
allows you to adjust the seat height of the bike, which was
handy considering the fact that Mark and Ernie are about a
half-foot different in height. The yellow bike was almost an
inch shorter than the white one. A GPR steering stabilizer
was used with Flexx bars to cancel out any impacts that
made it past the suspension. For the seat, Seat Concepts
came up with something that allowed more mobility than
the stocker without sacrificing any comfort. The wheels
were rebuilt by Woody’s Superlace with mousse inserts.
Motor work was limited to an Arrow pipe and EFI remap-
ping. When you have motorcycles this fast, making them
more powerful isn’t the point. Road-book navigation was
used on both Triumphs, which meant they had large, elec-
trically advancing roll charts instead of a GPS. The bike
also had a Safari main fuel tank and a Rally Raid auxiliary
tank, bringing the total fuel capacity to 10 gallons. That’s
far more than they would actually need.
This year, the NORRA course was essentially the same
as the long version of the SCORE Baja 1000 course. That
means that Mark, Ernie and company were riding the
same sections as the 450s that dominate that race. Even
NORRA doesn’t have enough big twins to separate them
into a class, so there were no illusions that the Triumphs
could actually win. At this point, a good solid finish was
a noble goal. And, who knows? If there were enough fast
sections, the big bikes might win a stage or two.
As it turned out, the bikes routinely topped out around
130 mph in the dirt. At that kind of speed, a bike creates
The cockpit is dominated by the navigation gear. The hard-core guys still use a road book instead of GPS.
Icon Motorsports put together the project to test
its new line of Raiden adventure bike riding gear.
The Triumphs were built
by Mark Vanscourt with