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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone, been busy-- Raced Road America June 11/12/13 then last weekend, I raced Gratten (Michigan). Here's what I've been up to:
I got third place!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was a bad day Saturday. Bike ran like crap-- I was going the wrong way jet wise. In the end, I am actually one size smaller than stock. People have said that velocity stacks will do that. Then, at the riders meeting, the tech director said he has heard "some people are running velocity stacks in Production class". Nothing about them in the rule book-- nothing.
Pit politics are still going on. Add 3 women to the mix and the whining becomes unbearable. Everyone loved me when I was unknown. When I got 6TH at RA, things changed.
I was having issues with the transmission and more concerned about that than V stacks. My race was the second race of the day (40 minutes from the meeting) so I didn't mess with them. Did the warm up lap, screwed up my position on the grid (I swear it said second row-- it did-- second wave second row). I pull up and I'm like-- "Dood, you're in my spot-- and, your on a TD250!! The grid guy points at me and points back. I look to see everyone in my class looking at me! D-OH!! I waddle back, in gear, clutch in. It's as if it was a mile. I waddle as fast as I can-- I look back, I've covered 5 feet. My spot is another 20 miles back (or so it seemed). Finally, I'm in my spot. First wave takes off. I'm still in gear, clutch in. They wave us off. The guy in front (pole position) of me gets a good launch and so do I. I'm on his ass and another rider from outside row one is along side me. She comes down and takes my line. I could have stuffed her but-- hey, we're talking a piece of particle board with fake vinyl wood grain on it--OK? Exiting one, I pull her and I'm trying to catch the leader but-- RED flag! Someone in the 250GP class went down in 3. We can't even exit the track due to the carnage. We're directed to make a lap. Normally, they shunt us into the hot pit but, no one went there, instead, re-gridding. There we sat. I try to get my bike in neutral-- it won't go. We sit, and we sit-- and we sit. I'm starting to feel like the roast pig on the spit they were cooking for us for dinner that night. Finally, red flag comes in, board goes up. off goes the first wave. Suddenly, I feel a slight "clunk" and the engine quits. I yell the "F" word, hop off my bike with the intent of push starting it (which is not allowed once the one minute board is up). I pull in the clutch and try to roll the bike back. It makes about 1/2 a wheel turn and--"clank". It won't roll any further back. I thought I had the problem resolved after getting stuck in 4TH at RA but, I assumed, my Mickey Mouse repair didn't work (A new "E" clip on the shift shaft plus a set-screwed collar AND a washer between the shift lever and the case)d to keep the shift shaft from jumping inward and jamming the gears.
I pushed it to the side and motioned to the grid worker I was toast. They took off without me. Then, forgetting I was 62, out of shape, and a heavy smoker, I took off pushing the bike at a run as if I was 21 towards the exit (where the people cross the track into the infield). I got about 15 of the 25 yards I needed to go. I was badly (putting it mildly) winded and stopped. I was gulping air. Like trying to breathe through a straw. I sat there panting. I could hear the first wave going through the bowl. Ignoring the fact I was in real trouble, I started pushing again. I got 5 yards. Now I realize-- I AM in trouble. I honestly thought I would die right there. I was trying to figure out how to not look stupid for dying while pushing my bike. Something was restricting my breathing. I was gasping with all my might trying to get enough air in me to live. Somehow, I decided it was my gloves. I thought it was my helmet but in my mind I decided there was enough room to get air in. I got one glove off, threw it into the hot pit. That didn't help. Then the grid marshals noticed my difficulty and came over and asked if I wanted a push start. I shook my head and just pointed to the exit. They started pushing me. They got me off track and into the center of the hot pit. I would be in the way of anyone coming through the hot pit and-- I couldn't do anything more than keep myself upright. I had them push me off the hot pit and I coasted down to my pit lane. Finally, it dawned on me. My leathers-- size 44, more like 42 (Alpinestars-- they run one size small, I should have gotten size 46) would not let me expand my lungs. They are super tight and then, with the Bohn back protector, they are super SUPER tight!!
I unzipped my leathers and started to catch my breath. I was a mess. It took me an hour before I could get out of my chair.
That night, I lowered my forks 10mm to see if I could get it to stop running wide. And, I stuck in a set of 150 jets to see if I could get it to run better. Plus, added a new set of plugs. Morning practice, handling was 50% better. Engine ran even worse. I went down to 140 jets for the race ( I thought I would run lean with velocity stacks and straight through exhaust. 140's are one size smaller than stock!!). And, I removed my V-stacks. Thing ran like a raped ape!
I waited til the very last second to go out for my race and was one of the last to grid. John (Saturdays winner, the pole position) blew his motor (my VooDoo Hex worked!!) so I had a clear shot from the second row. I snicked it into neutral as I rolled up to my grid spot. The first wave took off. I waited til the board was sideways, put it in gear and dropped my visor. Flag dropped and I launched like a dragster. Brad was there taking pictures and he said I carried the front wheel for 10 yards. Same scenario as Sundays start. Barb (row one outside) was very fast. We were neck and neck at the braking point for one. She looked at me and I decided: I got balls, you don't, I'm not going to slow until you do. She tried to come down on me and I stuffed her. I saw her go waaaay wide-- I thought she was going off. I was in first place!! You would have laughed listening to me talk to myself. "Calm down, calm down. Ride your own race, don't worry about anyone else". It didn't work. A very slow 250 rider got in my way. It's been a long time since I've had to race/pass someone. He slowed me considerably. I got passed in 3 by a young guy named Matt. OK, OK, I'm in second. Stay calm! I tried to keep up with Matt but he's really fast. A 250 rider lapped me and I thought i would follow him. He was the eventual 250 race winner. He was very fast and sucked me into the hump at full throttle in 5TH. I never backed off. I was thinking OHHHHHHHH SH#T!! I got air!! I land and hit the brakes but didn't down shift. Made it through T5 and then downshifted and whacked the throttle-- wrong!! I was way off line and too fast for T7. Bounced off the inside curb, went wide, got out in the gooey stuff, washed out the front end, gathered it up and found myself in 5TH gear going into the bowl. That's where another kid passed me. Bastid!! I got my act together, caught him back in the Bus Stop and was going to slip stream him down the straight and either pass him (did it before in practice-- my bike is a good bit faster than his) or get him in turn one in the last lap. I'm under the paint on the straight, right on his tail. Then, I see the checkered flag! WTF???
I got 3RD. 1.23 seconds behind second but fully 6.96 seconds behind first. Remember the 250GP rider that lapped me? He completed 6 laps.I was the last one not to be lapped by the second place 250GP rider. Every production bike behind me was lapped by the 2ND through 6TH place 250GP bikes.
I got my first trophy in road racing. Took me 38 years but, I did it!!

Next race might be M-O. It's not an AHRMA race anymore but a lot of the AHRMA guys say they will run it this year. Last year it was pretty well boycotted. I swear I saw the same bikes over and over and the grids were super small. Or, I'll be racing at Beaver Run in PA on July 25TH~26TH. Then, one week later is VIR. I'm not going to drive all the way out to Miller-- not this year anyway in Sept. But, I intend to make Barber (beautiful place!) for the final in October.
Something is bent in the trans. If I just make sure to not let the clutch get hot, I think I'll be OK. I melted it at RA. Stuck in 4TH, they make us exit at 5 then wend our way up through the swap meet area, up a rather steep hill to our pits. There was a dumb bass on the side of the road-- parked-- talking to someone through the passenger window. I slowed and went to pass them on the left. Suddenly, they made a left turn right in front of me. I had to skid the bike sideways to keep from punching their door in with my front wheel. To say I gave them a piece of my mind would be putting it mildly-- you could hear me in Fon Du Lac!! There I was on a steep hill, stuck in 4TH and very mad. I melted my clutch going up the hill. That was a brand new Barnett. It held up at Gratten but it's way past the adjustment limit notch.
 

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:D :D :D Good story!.....Now go get a 1st place!.... :D :D :D Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sincerely-- want to thank each and every one of you that helped me. I can't tell you how much I appreciate it. With out you guys (and you know who you are) I wouldn't have gotten this far.

SO

THANK YOU!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
66Sprint said:
:D :D :D Good story!.....Now go get a 1st place!.... :D :D :D Steve

I did!! Just swept the weekend at VIR. Got back to back second places at Beaverun on the 24TH and 25TH of July. I am now #3 in the standings in my class (Lightweight Production) nationally. My next race is Barber. I'm not going to drive nearly 1700 miles one way to Miller-- not this year. If I did, I might end up 2ND (providing I did no worse than 3RD at both Miller and Barber). Barber is Oct 8-9TH.
Not bad for an engine that only has 125 Lbs compression! And is bone stock!!
I've been fighting a cutting out as I decell then suddenly catching as I try to accellerate. Very un-nerving when you are trying to hold a steady throttle in a corner. It was impossible actually. First, the bike would pitch forward as it lost power and the front tire would wash. Then, it would catch and accellerate faster than I wanted to forcing me to stand it up. I have run up and down the main jets from 130's to 160's. Plugs always looking black. Drove me nuts!! Cost me a lot of lost seconds per lap.
I fought it on a cold wet Road America track, a slippery as snot Grattant, Mich track, a pouring rain soaked Beaverun track and, a dry but horribly hot and humid VIR track. Until Sunday morning. Decided to celebrate a little Saturday night after a hard fought battle to my first 1st place. I'm not a beer drinker but the New England side car folks put on a feast and I stuffed myself and had 2 beers. Just enough to make 6AM way to early for me! Running behind, I checked my gas and was about to put more in but instead, not wanting to miss the morning practice, decided to switch it to reserve. Now, periodically the bike would run fabulous in the previous practices and sessions-- but only for a lap or two then-- back to it's antics. So, when it ran great-- I figured it was just tormenting me-- waiting til I was hung out to dry in a corner before acting like a bucking bronco with it's cutting out. But-- it didn't. I waited and waited. 4 laps, 5 laps, 6 laps-- running like a champ!!
WHY??
The only difference was-- I had switched to the reserve position. Don't ask me why. But, I've been anal about using the "on" position.
I took a flashlight and looked in the tank. The tall pipe was completely exposed.
Even after I filled the tank to the brim, it was only about an inch below the fuel surface.
When I got it, the tubes were completely corroded away. Being a cheap skate, I drilled them out and put in new brass tubes from the hardware store. With nothing to compare it to, I made the "on" tube a little too tall I guess !
Why it made the plugs black I can only guess because the gas was not enough to allow full combustion blacking the plugs.
In the end, I went from 135 size jets up to 155 and the bike runs like a raped ape! Plugs are a grayish tan color.
Beaverun -- in the rain. What a trip!! All the testicles you can beg borrow or steal is needed to hold it WFO down that back straight through those bends. Passing someone as you go through that kink (turn 9??) is a real go-no go situation. I had been swapping the lead and always losing it going into 5. On the last lap, again I lose the lead in 5 (bike cutting out on a hard, uphill right hander that falls away) but, sure I can catch my opponent by ten (Hard right hander, again-- up hill)nd pass him before the finish line ( what we had been doing all race long). But, he got through on a bunch of lappers and I was left to risk sneaking under 3 of them all heading for the same apex as I was. I chose to back off. Lost by 1.21 seconds. Oh well!! I was happy!

I'm sticking Steve's triple tree in as soon as I get the new set of ALL BALLS. Dropping the trees 10mm made a huge difference but, I still tend to run wide.
Chomping at the bit ffor a really good run at Barber. I'm getting used to the bike and I can't wait to see how I do now that it runs right..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Here's a few pictures from Beaverun
Racing in the rain-- it's just starting to come down. Within minutes, it was a deluge.
I'm #628. Leading-- for the moment.

07/25/10 Beaverun motorsports cmplx by wozerd, on Flickr

Fighting for second against a 500/ on Saturday. Can't believe I beat him. My new battery (total loss system) was defective. Luckily, I had 3 others capable of running all day.

07/24/10 Beaverun motorsports cmplx by wozerd, on Flickr

Side cars at Beaverun. Kristen and Bob (she can cook-- on and off the track!!)

Kristen and Bob Beaverun 2010 by wozerd, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
No video's of my race but here is the BEARS (British, European, American Racing Series) race. AHRMA will lump classes together based on similar performance so, I think there's a few 350GP bikes but they were racing in their own class. #600 (at the start) is Bob Demetrius. The same guy piloting the sidecar above. He's riding a Honda 350!! A very BUILT Honda 350 (he won his class both days).
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFo6Ma6MQyM

These videos were taken by those little $2.50 key chain cameras from Hong Kong!!
The rear view shots really show the drop in the corkscrew. I'd come off my seat as I started the drop!! It was like a ride at Kings Island/Cedar Point/Six Flags!! A real WOOO HOOO experience!
 

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WOZERD said:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFo6Ma6MQyM

These videos were taken by those little $2.50 key chain cameras from Hong Kong!!
The rear view shots really show the drop in the corkscrew. I'd come off my seat as I started the drop!! It was like a ride at Kings Island/Cedar Point/Six Flags!! A real WOOO HOOO experience!

A couple of those guys in the video are pretty good......
 

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WOZERD IS ROCK'N IT!
Right on man!

Hope you don't mind me posting this Bob, but it is just soooooo cool.

Hit link and scroll down to page 16.
http://www.ahrma.org/results/2010/road% ... %2015b.pdf

Aug 7-8 Virginia International Raceway Official Results:
Production Lightweight
1. Robert Aitken, HONDA; 2. Barbara Conner, 70 Honda CL; 3. Richard Brooks Jr, 71 Honda CR;

(If I am out of line here, PM me and I'll edit...)
 

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Good stuff :!: Keep it up :cool:
 
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