National Endurance Series Final Round
Atlanta, Braselton, GA
14, 2005 by Dan Schmitt
It was a beautiful day in
northern Georgia for the final round of the eleven race Dunlop/WERA National
Endurance Series. Forty teams that qualified during the season lined up for the
12:00 noon start. With the flip of the green flag, Mark Crozier took the Team
Velocity Yamaha R1 to the lead with Tray Batey on the Vesrah Suzuki 1000 hot on
his heals. Ben Walters on the Army of Darkness Suzuki 600 ran third with Ben
Thompson on the Red Star Yamaha R6 following. The overall point championship was
being played out between Velocity and Vesrah, as the battle for the Middleweight
SuperBike class championship was going on between Red Star and Army. 5150
Racing, Bell’s ARNCHU Racing, Team Xtreme/Maxxis and Dalke Motorsports
followed closely around this 2.250 mile roadcourse. Working their way through
the pack was Kevin Schwantz on the Vesrah Suzuki 2 team. Joe Ball started the
race for Team Chicago and ran mid pack during the first hour. The bike looked
slow out there.
Thirty minutes into the
race the red flag flew. It seems that Batey crashed the Vesrah Suzuki going into
the chicane right in front of Jennifer Garner on the Wizard Racing III SV 650.
She had nowhere to go and crashed into the downed Vesrah Suzuki.
With the restart and
at the top of the first hour, Schwantz held the lead with Team Velocity second.
TVR 2 third, Red Star fourth, Army fifth and 5150 sixth.
During the second hour, Red
Star lost a connecting rod and their bid for the Middleweight SuperBike title. A
loose helmet camera brought Team Chicago to the side of the track, loosing two
laps in the process. Dixie Mafia went down in the chicane and did not return to
the race. 5150 charged to fifth overall and ARNCHU took over third. Jamie James
continued to lead with the Vesrah Suzuki 750. Team Velocity went to cruise
control, holding down second overall and having the championship in the bag. I
was riding during this hour and although the bike handled well, there was no
power down the long back straight-away.
During the third hour,
Velocity Crew Racing on the Suzuki 600 and Ridge Racing on the Kawasaki 1000
moved into the top ten as 5150 grabbed fourth overall and leading the
Heavyweight SuperStock class. Blue Ridge Performance led the Lightweight
SuperBike class with Ghetto Customs and Notorious P.I.G. in second and third.
Ted Cobb, one of the instructors with the Kevin Schwantz Suzuki School,
continued to lead. Team Velocity had their Yamaha R1 in second and ARNCHU ran
third on their Suzuki 750.
Five minutes before the
four o’clock hour, Justin Marm highsided in turn six leaving the 5150 Suzuki
750 in the middle of the track. This brought out the second red flag of the day
and ended the race. The Kevin Schwantz crew on the Vesrah Suzuki took the win,
but this had no bearing on the points. Team Velocity Racing had the overall
title for Yamaha. Ghetto Customs finished second on the track but took the
title. Army of Darkness captured their seventh title with seven wins this season
and announced their retirement from the sport. Chuck Ivey of Team Velocity
Racing said, “We have been consistent all year, the crew has been perfect and
the Yamaha R1 is just a great motorcycle.”
We finished the race fourth
in class. We were only fifty seconds behind Rivalry Racing. If we were just a
little quicker in the pits or quicker on the track, maybe we could have captured
third in class. When I got back to 4 & 6 Performance in Skokie, Illinois, I
did a leak down test and check the compression. Cylinder number three had zero
compression and 100% leak down. Considering that we were running on three
cylinders during this race, we did OK!
Suzuki, Suz 750, 2. Team Velocity Racing, Yam, 3. Bell’s ARNCHU Racing,
Suz750, 4. TVR 2, Yam, 5. 5150 Racing, Suz750, 6. Army of Darkness, Suz 600, 7.
MRP Racing, Kaw 600, 8. Velocity Crew Racing, Suz 600, Dalke Motorsports, Suz
600, 10. Ridge Racing, Kaw 1000
RESULTS by Class
HWS/bk: 1. Kevin Schwantz/Vesrah
Suzuki, 2. Team Velocity Racing, 3. Bell’s ARNCHU Racing
HWS/sk: 1. TVR 2, 2. 5150
Racing, 3. Ridge Racing
MWS/bk: 1. Army of
Darkness, 2. MRP Motorsports, 3. Velocity Crew Racing
MWS/sk: 1. Dalke
Motorsports, 2. Need a Sponsor, 3. Rivalry Racing
LWS/bk: 1. Blue Ridge
Performance, 2. Ghetto Customs, 3. The Notorious P.I.G.
1.Team Velocity Racing,
1065, 2. Vesrah Suzuki, 1020; 3.Red
Star, 913; 4. Army of Darkness,
898, 5. Bell’s ARNCHU Racing, 842 6. Darke Motorsports, 766, 7. Team Xtreme/Maxxis,
730, 8. 5150 Racing, 684, 9. Team Eclipse, 669, 10. Velocity Crew Racing, 640.
Overall Points by Class
HWS/bk: 1. Vesrah Suzuki,
1083, 2. Team Xtreme/Maxxis, 3. LA RACE.com
HWS/sk: 1. Team Velocity
Racing, 2. 5150 Racing, 3. Zyvax
MWS/bk: 1. Army of
Darkness, 2. Red Star, 3. Velocity Crew Racing
MWS/sk: 1. Dalke
Motorsports, 2. Dixie Mafia, 3. Need a Sponsor,
LWS/bk: 1. Ghetto Customs,
2. Blue Ridge Performance, 3. The Notorious P.I.G.
PHOTO BY: E Tech Photos
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