National Endurance Series Round 4
Speedway, Fontana, CA
June 12, 2004 by
The passing of President
Ronald Reagan was announced as I left Chicago for California. Ronald Reagan was
the greatest president of the United States in the 20th century. He
was a great friend of the motorcycling community. As the sitting president in
1984, he took the time to answer a questionnaire from the AMA. He hand wrote,
ďI do not believe the state has the right to force riders to wear helmets. It
is their decision.Ē Ronald Reagan inspired me to run for Congress in 1984. I
did not win, but I learned a great deal about politics. Talk radio was a great
friend of mine, as I made my trip west.
It was a bright and sunny
day in southern California for the fourth round of the Dunlop/WERA National
Endurance Series. The temperature was in the mid-eighties as the green flag flew
for the start of this six-hour event. Tray Batey took the Vesrah Suzuki to the
lead with Bradley Champion on the Velocity Racing Yamaha R-1 in second. HST
Racing, also R-1 mounted, was working their way through traffic bringing Army of
Darkness, current points leader, and CherokeeChallenge.com with them. Phil
Caudill, the starting rider for Team Chicago, ran in the top ten during the
first hour. Before the start of this race, I warned both Phil and Steve Karson
that if either crashed during this race, they would be done for the year. Phil
was very obedient during his first stint.
Forty-five minutes in, and
CherokeeChallenge.com clipped one of the fake curbings in the first turn
chicane. With the bike down in the racing line, the red flag flew.
Vesrah Suzuki took the lead again with the green. A battle for second
overall developed between Velocity and HST. When these two SuperStock legal
R-1ís stopped for fuel, Army moved to second. As the top of the second hour
came, Velocity ran down Army to take second as FDK grabbed fourth with Neighbor
of the Beast now fifth. I took the Team Chicago/4 & 6 Racing R-6 out at the
end of the second hour. I was not that happy with the track, but it was just
okay. We were riding the new, totally stock 2004 Yamaha R-6 and we were down in
power to most of the teams. When I turned the bike over to Steve, we were in 14th
Fifteen minutes into the
third hour, one of the Honda boys of HMR Racing lowsided in turn six. This
brought out the second red flag of the day. After a brief break in the action,
the green flew again. Again it was the Nielsen Enterprise Vesrah Suzuki taking
the lead. Disaster struck with Velocity Racing off the track, heading back into
the pits. After analyzing the situation, the Velocity crew decided to go to the
backup R-1, losing the sixty-three laps gained during the first two hours.
halfway point, the two tight skirmishes on the track were in the Lightweight
SuperBike class and the Middleweight SuperStock class. Bellís Suzuki II held a
one-lap advantage over Dixie Mafia with Blue Ridge Performance closing fast, all
SV Suzuki mounted. R-6 Yamaha mounted Cherokee was two minutes ahead of Neighbor
with B & S Roadracing another lap back in third. Steve rode his heart out,
did not crash, and moved the Team Chicago R-6 to fourth in class, but we were a
couple of laps back.
Vesrah Suzuki continued to
pour on the coals, gaining a three-lap advantage over Army during the fourth
hour. Bellís Suzuki had a problem that let the Dixie Mafia gain the lead in
the Lightweight SuperBike class. Team Cycle World on a stock Kawasaki 1000 ran
fast and steady to lead the Heavyweight SuperStock class with Team Xtreme/Maxxis
Tires one lap back, second in class. Phil move us up to 12th overall
with some steady, fast laps.
With the end in sight, HST
Racing began their quest for the podium. With Jay Tanner and Corey Eaton riding
the last two hours, this twosome turned up the wick. After running down
Cherokee, they took after FDK. In the Lightweight SuperBike class, Dixie
Mafiaís lead was short lived as they dropped out of the race. Bellís
regained the lead with Blue Ridge second and Dealís Gap third. Team Xtreme/Maxxis
recaptured the lead in the Heavyweight SuperStock class. Vesrah Suzuki continued
to lead overall with Army second. I lost one position during my stint, but we
maintained our 4th place in class standings.
During the final hour, HST
Racing took their Yamaha R-1 to third place overall. Cherokee moved to fourth,
passing FDK. Vesrah Suzuki took the overall win, taking the points lead from
Army. Jay Tanner of HST Racing stated, ďWe accomplished more than we came do,
we finished third overall and second in class, we had a lot of fun, it was a
Riding a stock motorcycle
on this fast, complex racetrack just proved to me how great the new Yamaha R-6
really is. We were down in power, but the bike handled very well. As the season
progresses, we will continue to develop this new bike.
OVERALL: 1. Vesrah Suzuki,
Suz 1000, 2. Army of Darkness, Suz
600, 3. HST Racing, Yam 1000, 4. CherokeeChallenge.net, Yam600, 5. FDK, Suz 600,
6. Neighbor of the Beast, Yam 600, 7. B & S Roadracing, Suz 600, 8. Team
Xtreme/Maxxis, Suz 1000, 9. Bellís Suzuki II, Suz 650, 10. Team Cycle World,
Kaw 1000, 11. Blue Ridge Performance, Suz 650, 12. Deals Gap Racing, Suz 650, 13
Team Chicago, Yam 600, 14. Team So Cal Elite Racing, Hon 600, 15.
Roadracingworld.com, Suz 650
OVERALL (after 4 rounds)
1,Vesrah Suzuki, 418, 2.
Army of Darkness, 417, 3. CherokeeChallenge.net, 308, 4. FDK, 297, 5. B & S
Roadracing, 296, 6. Bellís Suzuki II, 284, 7. Neighbor of the Beast, 281, 8.
Team Xtreme/Maxxis, 275, 9. Team Velocity, 259, 10. Canton Racing #1, 255, 11.
Canton Racing #2, 221, 12. Yeager Racing, 219, 13. Dixie Mafia, 205, 14.
Dealís Gap Racing, 196, 15, Team Chicago, 186.
PHOTOS BY Power Sports Photography, Ed Dellis
Visitors as of 02/10/2011
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