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Race Report - EX#434 - LRRS Round 2 (lots of round 2 pics)

  1. #1
    You dont know slow... PainfullySlow's Avatar
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    Race Report - EX#434 - LRRS Round 2 (lots of round 2 pics)

    Arriving at the track

    I flew into Bradley International Airport sometime around 1AM Friday morning, slept for 3 hours, then loaded the truck and trailer for the trek to NHMS for LRRS Round 2. As per usual, traffic sucked so the ride was long but uneventful. I got the trailer set up and then spent some of the evening meeting up with my teammates and friends at the track.

    Saturday Practice
    Quite opposite of round one, things were unseasonably hot with temps in the upper 80s. I will gladly take sweating and tons of grip vs. freezing and no traction any day so I set out to turn some laps. Mostly uneventful although I was hopeful as I clicked off a few 1:21’s in practice.

    GTL

    I was very excited for this race as it was my first ever start from the front row! Somehow I was gridded in 1C just to the right of LRRS Legends Rick Doucette (#1/6) and Scott Mullin (#24).

    I was determined to make my first front row start a memorable one so I put my head down and watched the flagger for the slightest twitch. The moment he moved I dropped the clutch and took off like I was running from my wife. Turn 1 loomed ahead and I couldn’t believe that I was actually out in front! My first EX Holeshot!

    My mini-victory was very short lived as Scott reminded me that I had absolutely no business being up there and passed me on the inside of 1A to drop me back into 2nd place. I followed Scott as best I could and got passed by ultra-fast Rick going into the chute for T3 to drop me back into 3rd. If I can ever figure out to ride as well as I start I might actually be a threat ;-).

    I was so intent on watching Scott and Rick while trying to keep up that I was riding like a complete tool, much to the dismay of Glenn Coolbeth (#95) who was right on my tail and having a difficult time passing because I was so erratic (sorry Glenn). He followed me for a few laps, unsure of where to make a safe pass but when I finally realized that I was riding like a moron I smoothed out a bit and he passed me like a punk which dropped me back into 4th place however right about this time I saw race leader Scott Mullin had crashed! A crappy way to gain a position but it put me back into 3rd.

    Rick was long gone and Glenn was steadily pulling away from me despite my best efforts. I nearly highsided coming onto the front straight at some point, you can see it in the video at around the 15 minute mark. You can even hear the rear tire chirp a few times as it hooked back up. My feet were completely off the pegs and I was hanging over the tank but I was way too close to give up my chance at a podium so I never even let off the gas and rode it out. Somehow I managed to get back on the bike and made a mental note to take it a little easier in that section of the track.

    My team was giving me the “you have a lead” sign from the front wall so I eased off a bit to try to conserve my strength for the brutally long GTL.

    Either I misread the sign or I was looking at someone else (things are a bit blurry at ~120mph) and I was utterly surprised when someone was showing me a wheel a few laps later which turned out to be returning racer Seth Hahn (#686). There was no way I was giving up my first podium without a fight and since there was some Amateur traffic I started to make some aggressive passes in the hopes of barring Seth from getting past me.

    I held him off for a few laps when disaster struck. On the 2nd to last lap I caught a false neutral in the bowl (about the 20 min mark in the videos) and Seth dove under me while I tried to figure out what the hell to do. I was so pissed off I jammed the bike back into gear and gave chase but it was not to be. I ended up in 4th and I spent the rest of the day pissed beyond words.

    Front video:
    GTL-Front-052012.wmv - YouTube

    Rear video:
    GTL-Rear-052012.wmv - YouTube

    Finish: 4th out of 16
    Best Lap: 1:20.064


    Lightweight Grand Prix

    I knew this was going to be challenging for me as I was dealing with the emotional turmoil of botching what should have been my first EX podium.

    I began this race from the 2A grid (2nd row, inside) which is my least favorite starting spot. Scott Mullin had a mechanical and had to drop out which left me with a straight shot up the inside if I could manage it. I did get a pretty good start and went into the first turn in 2nd place directly behind Rick Doucette (#1/6). Our own Pete Gaboriault (#82) rocketed up the inside of T4 on the first lap to push me back into 3rd.

    Sean Byrnes (#111) made his move in T11 of Lap 3 to push me back into 4th and Glenn Coolbeth (#95) took me under power on the front straight as I continued to drop back to 5th. I don’t recall exactly when but I was also passed by Chris Cuccinotta (#88) on his SV650 and although I held off Doug Fogg (#65)and his ridiculously overpowered Buell 1125R for two laps he finally bull rushed into T6 and left me without a line. I had no choice but to check up and let him go. Once he was in front I had no chance of regaining my position due to the massive power differential.

    I finished the race in a very disappointing 7th place but at least I was able to squeak my way back into the teens while also keeping Seth Hahn (the guy who took 3rd place from me in GTL) behind me.

    Video:
    LWGP-Front-051912.wmv - YouTube

    Finish: 7th out of 22
    Best lap: 1:19.969


    Sunday Practice

    Practice went as expected without any mishaps or drama. My times were in the 1:21 range so I was expecting that I had some work to do after yesterdays poor showing.

    Lightweight Superbike

    Again gridded in my least favorite spot, 2A. I got a mediocre start and was in 4th going into T1 behind Pete Gaboriault, Scott Mullin, and Rick Doucette. Since I started on the inside I had someone just to the outside of me which was forcing me to stay on the inside line which was fine until Rick checked up, causing me to check up which left me with nowhere to go and 3 people immediately passed me on the outside. My worst start to date, I ended up in 8th place after the first turn so I really had some work to do.

    Not much happened throughout the race. I couldn’t push myself and ended up exactly where I started when the race was called early due to a crash. A very mediocre performance to say the least and I was not happy at all.

    Video:
    LWGP-Front-051912.wmv - YouTube

    Finish: 8th out of 20
    Best Lap: 1:20.282


    In Closing

    Again I made no significant improvements in my lap times which is frustrating, in fact I am still a full 1.5 seconds off of my best and show no signs of achieving even that marker in the near future. Between the near highside, giving up my first podium, races ending early, and just general crappy riding I am not pleased with my weekend.

    On a positive note I did manage to get back into the teens, I had my first EX start and holeshot (however short-lived), and despite my best efforts I managed to keep it on two wheels.

    I have a lot of work to do before the classic if I am going to re-establish myself as a potential front-runner so I will be buckling down to get it done.

    I would like to take a moment to thank my sponsors: Gregg Spears, EBC, Motul, Sportbike Track Gear, Knox Armor, Dyno-Solutions, and Tonys Track Days for all of the assistance you continue to provide to make this possible.

    I would also like to thank my family for their support, all of the friends that came up to visit and participate at the track, the NHMS staff, and the marhshalls and cornerworkers who keep us safe.

    Finally a shout out to RSP racing: What a fantastic group of people, I couldn’t ask for a better team!

    See you in June with a vengeance!

    Some shots from the weekend, the full gallery can be found here

    Rich getting ready for his first ever race start. Put that visor down, Rich!


    ...and Rich's first checkered flag. Way to go!


    To the people who dont think things are a little bit different in the EX brackets


    Why is this the "meatgrinder" class? Ask Christian.


    Christian hauling the mail


    Eric Wood and his supernatural body position


    Bill Cool getting it done with a rockin start.


    Lou of Mad Monkey Speed putting the power down! Looking good Lou!


    Keith showing that nearly fossilized old dudes can still ride


    Our own Mr. Kurtz gettin it done


    Adam reminding Bill that he means business


    Me in 1A courtesy of OTMPix.com

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  2. #2
    Bikeless in Blackstone The Snowman's Avatar
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    Re: Race Report - EX#434 - LRRS Round 2 (lots of round 2 pics)

    Another good weekend for 434. Sorry I didn't hold Seth off longer in the GTL. He was behind BJ and I for quite a while until I nearly ran into the back of BJ's rear wheel in T3 and Seth capitalized on the mistake.

    Up to that point, we were running fairly close to you, maybe 10 lengths off.

    Your starts are definitely rocking. I need some pointers.

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    CCS/LRRS Expert#39, retired | Tony's Track Days, Instructor #11, retired
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  3. #3
    Rookie Rada's Avatar
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    Re: Race Report - EX#434 - LRRS Round 2 (lots of round 2 pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by PainfullySlow View Post
    Me in 1A courtesy of OTMPix.com
    Awesome shot!!

    Totally bad ass starts.
    Congrats Mike!!!!

    Forgot to add. You have the BEST write ups!!! Thanks for the love.

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    Last edited by Rada; 05-25-12 at 11:12 AM.

  4. #4
    You dont know slow... PainfullySlow's Avatar
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    Re: Race Report - EX#434 - LRRS Round 2 (lots of round 2 pics)

    MY 3.652 SECONDS OF FAME HAVE BEEN STOLEN!!!!

    Someone got this video with a camcorder of my GTL start
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o4kbQ...ature=youtu.be

    You can hear Bruce announcing "David Dayon got a great start and will hold off the #6 of Doucette" :-p

    Dammit! David is a great guy and I know it must have thrown Bruce for a loop for me to be there but jeez! I feel cheated! :-p

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