Project Badger: putting the competition back in Cafe Racer

Dailies -



What if a Cafe Racer actually raced? Some friends of ours in New Jersey intend to find out. They’re building a “rat cafe” out of an old Royal Enfield 500 and intend to ride it to Mid-Ohio for some proper vintage racing.

“Can we build a Royal Enfield Bullet ( which, let’s face it, has a dubious reputation for durability on a good day) that is street legal and registered, yet can go like hell on the track? Asks Leon Stanley. “Can it be made to hold together? Can we do it on a very limited budget and race competitively against well-funded and better pedigreed teams? Can we raise the game even higher? Forgo trailering the bike to and from the track, and ride the damn thing? Truly conjure the spirit of Post-War British motorcycling and club racing?”

“The name hit like a lightning bolt. “Project Badger”. A Badger: cranky, mean, stubborn, fearless. Most assuredly- badass. And not particularly pretty.”

You can help the team make this happen by visiting their Kickstarter page.

  • JaySD

    Honey Badger?

    • Wes Siler

      Leon Stanley don’t care.

      • Frosty_spl

        Vintage bikes don’t give a shit!

  • Scott-jay

    You, too, can sponsor a road race team!

    • Leon

      Just to be clear, the funding we are seeking via Kickstarter is just for the film project, with none of those funds going to Cycle Icons, the bike, or the racing.

      If, however, anybody wants to throw the bike and race program a couple of bucks, I’m all ears. As we say on the Team: “Badgers don’t run on kittens!”


  • george_fla

    Made reliable enough to ride from NJ to Mid-O,sure. Millions of Indians and Paki’s ride the piss outta them everyday. Reliable enough to do that and be competitive in vintage racing,presumably in a Proddie class or worse yet a class like Premier 500, not so much. But I’ll follow along.

    • Leon

      We plan to race in 500GP. It will be tough. But go big, or go home. Though Chumma can build a very stout motor, with little resemblance to stock, we will of course be down quite a bit on power against the Manx’s and Matchless’s. We intend to make it up under braking. :)

      • george_fla

        500GP?!?! The name should be changed from “Project Badger” to “Project Backmarker”. This coming from a guy that races/wrestles a Triumph twin against Hodakas and Pentons in Vintage Enduros. GIVE ‘EM HELL boys!!

        • Leon

          Backmarker? Probably. But I’m hoping coming up on a ratty looking Royal Enfiled with a New Jersey license plate on it will disorient the opposition into submission. Brain fart. Holy shit! Where am I? The Turnpike?


          • Leon

            And just to insure that it’s a fair fight between us, and bonafide GP machinery, we will be on DOT rubber, and running pump gas. But with NJ no longer inspecting motorcycles we can build the bike with out turn signals, At least that will be in our favor.

            • george_fla

              HA!! Glad to see ya’ll have a sense of humour as well.

  • Anthony Wayne


  • kidchampion

    I used to work for an obese woman who only had sex with fat cops and she was a self-proclaimed “Badger”. Maybe your friends can revise it to “likes to fuck WITH cops”.

  • BMW11GS

    This is awesome, I love seeing projects like this

  • Matt

    Did I spot a Hammarhead Industries t-shirt on the welder at 27 seconds?

    • Leon

      Yep. And big fans too.

  • Mattro

    man. i’m way, way, way into this. but, please, put some decent tires on it.