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WAY LATE!! Race report for Aug 31/Sep1

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2001

    WAY LATE!! Race report for Aug 31/Sep1

    Well folks, here is the much diluted, way late race report for the weekend of Aug 31/Sep1 2002. Remember, Gerard and I were in the same races at this time and we raced the 3 hour endurance race at the end of the weekend. Gerard and I both had pretty good grid positions for the whole weekend, however I can't recall them after all this time has lapsed (must get reports out quicker).

    The weekend started off pretty well for both Gerard and I in the Middleweight supersport race. This race was VERY hotly contended, with 48 entries. Gerard finished 18th with a very respectable 1:22.3 top laptime. I raced probably my best race so far at the time and managed a 7th place finish and I was ecstatic at my 1:20.7 laptime. JJ Walsh (we always seem to race about the same) finished 5th and he had started pulling 1:18.2 laptimes. I heard later on from a third party that he had some "work" done to the bike after a pretty hard crash the weekend before.


    Saturday, race 8, Middleweight superbike.

    Gerard and I both had a flying start in this race, but old G-Man got the jump on me. After a couple of laps I managed to claw my way past him and didn't see him again for the rest of the race. It seems he had some kind of, "ahem"...er, mixture problem??? (way way lean apparently) and retired to push the bike home. I finished a very disappointing 12th but had a top lap time of 1:21 which was ok I guess, but not what I was hoping for. I had a couple of gear changing problems during this race and decided to have the chain adjusted (thanks Mick) in-between races.


    Saturday race 10 HWSS:

    Gerard and I both skipped this race as we wanted to save our slick tires for the Sunday ss races.

    Saturday race 14, Heavyweight Superbike.

    Wow! This was probably the most exciting race I have had so far at that point. Gerard and I battled it out for most of the race and we finished 7th and 8th only 6 seconds apart and only .5 of a second difference in laptimes. I had some MAJOR shifting problems in this race and had to slam the bike to select gears after about lap 5. In lap 7 I stuck the bike in 3rd and left it there for the rest of the race except for the chicane and to get it into 4th if I could on the start-finish straight. I could feel it crunching and cracking under me as I shifted.

    Right after this race, Bill tore down the motor and found that the clutch was destroyed (plate material everywhere). I rushed down to buy a Barnett clutch and Bill had it fitted in no time. Still not dice, the bike wouldn't shift above 2nd. We decided to work on it the next morning. Next day we opened up the clutch housing again and Bill found a tiny bend on the shifter rod sprag inside behind the clutch. Pete Kolodziek (spelling?) happened by and took the part away to be welded. 15 minutes later he showed up with the part looking good as new, awesome. Bill fitted it, AWESOME! It shifts!!! Unfortunately I didn't get any practice time in as when the bike was ready Pete and Gerard jumped on it to practice and set it up for the endurance race that afternoon. That was to prove a BAD thing for me in the next race:

    Sunday, race 2, MWGP

    My favourite race...usually.

    Gerard got a FLYING start off the line. I nearly flipped the bike...twice! The Barnett clutch was NOT like the stock Honda one. No progression at all, just on.......then BANG! The clutch engages and she's away. Once I had got the front wheel down for the second time I was about 8 seconds behind Gerard and decided to try to make up some time by doing my "cut everyone up the inside of turn 3" manoever. Well, what I had forgotten was that Pete and Gerard are carrying a few more pounds than I am and had jacked the front suspension a bit harder than I had it originally. I hit the brakes VERY late trying to outbrake everyone and the forks didn't even TRY to dive. The front wheel just skidded out from under me and I slid through the traffic on my ass and into the tire wall. The bike seemed ok as most of the brunt had been taken by the frame slider. That wa smy race over. Gerard stampeded his way to an awesome 6th place and 1:21.02 laptime...his best yet.


    We decided to use Gerard's bike for the endurance race with my bodywork on it (we had registered 105 for the race and that was the easiest way to make sure we were ok for the race). You have all heard the race reports and seen the photo's of the endurance race so I won't go into huge detail.

    Basically, Pete started and left us in 4th ot 5th with consistant 1:22's and 1:23's . Gerard went second, putting in a great set of laps in the 1:24's. During the next pit stop where I was to start my stint, Gerard got off the bike and said "the tires are fucked" (this is a racer technical term meaning "slightly out of design parameters") I said "oh, great!" and got on the bike to start my session. Well, first time out of turn 2 I realized what Gerard had meant, ANY throttle input had the bike sliding all over the place. Shortshifting out of 2, 3, 6 and 12 I managed to nurse the bike around as I passed the pit I signalled that I was coming in as I thought the tires were just too dangerous. Next lap around I started getting used to the slides and decided that I was having too much fun to come in just yet. I gave the thumbs up to the pit and settled into some laps in the 1:24's, then 1:23's and eventually a couple of 1:21's. I was just beginning to really get into the groove of things and I flew by a 2 stroker (TZ250 I think) into the bowl and was at maximum lean at the apex when there was an almighty thud and I was heading for the grandstand. I tried to keep it upright but when I hit the rocky dusty shit there I couldn't hold on to it. Amazingly, the stroker stayed on his bike and continued racing after his trip into the gravel. I was pretty dazed (helmet wrecked and dust and dirt everywhere (INSIDE my suit even) so I nursed the bike back to the pits and the guys did a fabulous job of putting the bike back together in less than 13 minutes. I have a feeling that deep down they were hoping for a spill so they could do their "pit-crew" thing and show off how efficient they were. Let me tell ya, we looked the balls out there with our uniforms and hats. Pete took the bike back out for the remainder of the race, and we did NOT finish last in our category. we did really well despite the crash. Results here:


    That's all folks. Gerard, your turn!!


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  2. #2
    I'm Sorry, What? Jank's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    North Walpole, NH

    WAY LATE!! Race report for Aug 31/Sep1

    Ahhh memories...
    Nice job Degs!!

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    Chris J.
    "You're going the wrong way!!!"
    "How does he know where we're going?"
    03 Aprilia Tuono, 06 Yamaha R6, 16 Yamaha XSR900, 13 VW Touareg

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