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RSP Racing #29 - LRRS Round 7, 2014

  1. #1
    You dont know slow... PainfullySlow's Avatar
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    RSP Racing #29 - LRRS Round 7, 2014

    Race Report LRRS Round 6, 2014
    RSP Racing #29

    Pre-Race

    I was unable to leave for the track until early Friday morning which suited me fine considering the morning temperatures. I arrived around 11am and got the pits and my trailer set up…despite the fact that someone had moved into the spot I had occupied for the last 5 years!

    My entire goal for this weekend was to make sure that I was able to race Formula 40. I just had to finish the race to secure my 3rd place overall so everything leading up to it was going to be taken pretty easy.

    Friday Practice
    I actually arrived at the track with a fully functional and ready-to-go motorcycle, which was a pleasant change. I was really amped up and ready to turn some laps. Still I took it early for my first session back to get a feel for things before I started pushing. By my 3rd session I was clicking off laps in the low 16’s and my final session I did a few high 15’s. I was working on a few specific places of the track and it seems to have worked well.

    Friday night was spent helping fellow racers get their bikes ready to roll as well as just socializing with the awesome folks of the LRSR series. It was SO nice to not be in a rush or under a deadline to get something done.

    Saturday Practice
    Very cold and wet. It wasn’t raining so much as just…wet; It was misting with some drizzle mixed in, enough to keep the track surface wet but not raining enough to keep our rain tires cool. The weather looked like it could go either way come race time so I opted to keep my Kawasaki ZX6R on DOT race tires and put rain tires on my GSXR600 so that I could make a last minute decision on which tire was the correct choice.

    I ended up going out for one practice on the rain tire shod GSXR mostly because I hadn’t ridden it in about 4 months and not on rain tires in about 6. I shouldn’t have worried as the GSXR felt like putting on a comfortable pair of jeans. Things immediately fell into place as I had forgotten just how easy that bike is to ride compared to my ZX6R. I turned some easy laps and decided to save my tires.

    GTU
    It was one of those days where there was no right tire choice. The track surface was wet but it wasn’t actively raining. I decided I would rather ruin a $400 set of rain tires than risk a $20k+ motorcycle on race rubber so I took out the GSXR.

    I was in 4th place for points in this series behind Kris Knopf (#31) by 10 points. My only chance at taking 3rd overall was if something unfortunate happened to Kris. I figured I had no control over that in any case and since the GSXR is for sale I decided to simply take it very easy and have some fun. For those of you who shy away from riding on the track in the rain, it can really be a hoot! I finished last but frankly I didn’t care as I had fun. It is amazing how much fun you can have when all the pressure of lap times and finishes are out of the picture.

    I came in with a smile though despite the fact that I had completely destroyed my rain tires…they were shredded!

    Finish: 4th out of 4
    Outlap: 1:32.384 (wet)
    Best Lap: 1:27.120 (wet)


    Middleweight Grand Prix
    I opted to skip this race as I wasn’t in point contention for the series at all and instead did some shopping for the upcoming BBQ and fundraiser that was to be held that evening to benefit Larry and the Brain Injury Associate of New Hampshire. It was actively raining for the race and since my rain tires were completely shot from earlier in the day I wasn’t going to buy another set for the last round of the season.

    Saturday Night
    It has become a “thing” now for the center garage (that’s us and a bunch of others) to have a communal BBQ which is usually spearheaded up by the Adam and Wendy butler. Adam wasn’t racing due to some broken ribs and bronchitis (an ugly combination. Imagine coughing with broken ribs) but amazingly they both made the trip up just to come support RSP Racing and to cook for the BBQ. If that isn’t dedication (or insanity), I don’t know what is. I cannot thank both Wendy and Adam enough for being a part of the RSP team and for making such huge efforts to support the LRRS community.

    We normally just ask people to show up and a bunch of us provide the food, drinks, and other stuff that makes a BBQ happen but this time we decided to pass the hat around to raise some extra money for Larry Hanlon and his charity efforts. In the end we all had some great food, I made over 200 moscow mules :-p, and a good time was had by all while we raised an additional $237 to go to Larry and BIANH.

    What followed was the annual Low Down Racing/T1A Halloween party. I think it is best to leave the details out but suffice to say that it was a great time, as always. I will part with the statement: some things cannot be unseen.

    Sunday Practice
    I awoke with a smile when I saw that the sky was crystal blue (ok, it was still dark when I woke up but you get the idea) and not a hint of a rain cloud in sight, however it was pretty cold at 40 degrees but began to warm up as soon as the sun rose. Administration had changed our schedule a bit this weekend to get things going earlier so that we could all get home before midnight which was appreciated but it meant that instead of having two practice sessions, we instead got one 15 minute practice which suited me just fine.

    I don’t know if it was a night of restful sleep or the fact that the day was shaping up so beautifully but I was in a great mood and so went out and “casually” clicked off a few low 16’s.
    It really amazes me how speed becomes relative so quickly. A few months back I would have had to push my absolute hardest to hit low 16’s with any consistency and now I felt as if I were on a Sunday drive turning the same times.

    Today was all about having fun on the track and taking it easy so that I can finish my F40 race and secure my 3rd place overall so this was a great start.

    Middleweight SuperSport
    This ended up being the highlight of my weekend. I had a bit of a rivalry going on with Seth Hahn (#91) dating many years back to when I was racing lightweights. Seth recently picked up a middleweight and immediately we started to go back at it which was fun!

    Anyway, there was some usual shit-talking between rounds and so my only goal for this race was to beat Seth :-p

    I had a horrible grid position of 2A (2nd row, inside) which did not bode well as it is very easy to get “rail roaded” and stuck on the inside while people pass you on the outside. I did manage to get a killer start and was right behind race leader Scott Greenwood (#4) but just as expected I got passed by the train as I had to slow down due to my shallow entry angle. I think I ended up 5th out of that mess but surprisingly Seth was still behind me.

    What ensued was 8 laps of pure mayhem as Scott Greenwood and Joel Allen (#35) took off leaving another of my old lightweight rivals-move-to-middleweight Riley Rodgers (#48), Kristopher Knopf (#31), and myself to battle it out for 3rd place. There was some awesome racing with lots of passing, showing wheels, and other good stuff. I am happy to say that I actually felt like I was being held up and after looking at the video there were plenty of passing opportunities that I didn’t take.

    Things got very interesting when we started to encounter very heavy Amateur traffic and the three of us did our best to slice through them but I always seemed to catch them right at the worst possible moment causing me to check up and then have to make up lost ground. At one point I pulled ahead of Kristopher while driving up turn 4 when his back tire slid out and my Pirelli’s just kept gripping (thank you MTAG!) but it was short lived as Kris made a mad dive into turn 9 and I had no choice but to let him go. At one point Kris and an AM bumped and it was assholes and elbows everywhere, although everyone managed to stay upright but it allowed Christian Chronin (#58) to get by me (and I think others as the race progressed).

    I was able to keep it in a very tight bunch of racing until on one of the final laps I threw my bike into turn 9 and had my helmet rubbing against the fairings of an AM I was passing which reminded me that I really needed to finish this race in one piece so I regretfully turned it down just a little to give me some breathing room. I rolled across the line in 6th place with Seth firmly behind me :-p This race was a TON of fun!

    EAT IT SETH! See you in 2015 buddy! =)

    Finish: 6th out of 14
    Outlap: 1:19.672
    Best Lap: 1:15.654


    Formula 40
    This was the race I had been waiting for all weekend and although I *really* wanted to try to throw down some hot laps and try for a new personal best, I knew that the smart move was to simply finish the race to secure my 3rd place for the season.

    I was in grid position 1C and got a fantastic start but was no match for Dennis Levesque (#17) and that monster of a Ducati who powered past me on the straight. I actually got ahead of him for the first turn but went wide and he ducked under me and put the hammer down.

    I knew that I wasn’t going to be able to keep Dennis in sight so instead I decided to just roll around and have some fun as it didn’t matter where I finished, as long as I finished. I turned a comfortable 1:15 for my first full lap and then slowed way down into the 18’s as I began to lap the Amateur traffic. It was such a blast to be able to ride around at this pace without any stress at all.

    I think it was the 7th lap when John Van Lenten (#69) passed me and I know it isn’t very racer-like but I simply didn’t care. I wasn’t going to push for my last race of the year and risk everything so I ended up taking 3rd place but most importantly took 3rd in the series and went home with an un-mangled motorcycle.

    Finish: 3rd out of 7
    Outlap: 1:18.861
    Best Lap: 1:15.751


    In Closing
    What an incredible weekend to close out the year on. The weather was absolutely miserable on Saturday, and absolutely perfect on Sunday. As I look back at this last racing season I see so many incredible things to be thankful for. I surpassed my goals for the year, and even went faster than I ever thought possible.

    It has me already looking towards 2015 with great anticipation.

    Thank you to my friends and teammates on RSP racing, including our two newest members Savvas Kosmidas (#508) and Noel Guidone (#514), for all of the friendship, teamwork, and general ass-kicking that you all provide.
    Also thank you to all of my sponsors listed below. I leaned very heavily upon them this season with getting the new bike together and they all came through with style.

    Mostly I would like to thank my wife for her unwavering support as I spend our hard-earned savings (someone buy my GSXR, please!). I couldn’t, and wouldn’t want to do this without her. Best. Wife. Ever.

    Keep your eyes open for pictures and video from this round as well as my annual Year In Review video!

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  2. #2
    Have you seen my baseball GingahNinjah's Avatar
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    Re: RSP Racing #29 - LRRS Round 7, 2014

    Great Job out there buddy its awesome watching how comfortable you are on that ZX6R after such a short time. Thanks for all of your advice, support and assistance all season. looking forward to 2015 with you and everyone in the RSP garage

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    https://www.facebook.com/LRRSBT1R #54 EX 2007 SV650 "Work hard. Play harder. Die broke and happy!" Boston Tier 1 Racing Pirelli Tires Woodcraft-CFM Armorbodies Penguin Racing School Vortex Shorai Batteries DP Brakes Riders Discount SIDI Leatt

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