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Greg - NI Cup#3 / Vic Club #1No Hair Racing Race Report Victoria MC Club #1 / NI Cup #3, May 24 2003
Thursday evening after work saw Bob Knight and I (Chris couldn't make this round) leave Manurewa heading for Feilding and Bob's uncle's house. We had an uneventful drive arriving at about 11pm. Uncle Fred wasn't expecting us until Friday night so it took awhile for us to wake him up.
Friday morning was cool and wet when we headed off to the track for the test day before racing on Saturday. I'd spent the last few weeks putting a 1987 FZR400 motor back into my frame with as many 'good' bits from the 600 I could use, which included the ram air system. Ideally I should have had some time at our local track (Pukekohe) to iron out any bugs, but I had run out of time, so this was it's debut.
The motor fired up OK, but after a few laps on the wet track it was obvious that the carbs weren't set correctly. I had set them with 134/138 main jets and at about 10,000 rpm there was a deep hole in the power delivery extending to 11,500 rpm. I decided to richen up the needles 2 'clicks' which was completely the wrong thing to do as I did half a lap and the bike died completely and had to be pushed back to the pits. I'd guessed by now that I was running way to rich on both main jets and needles, but didn't have any jets the next size down, so made do with leaning the needles back 3 'clicks'. The bike ran fine in the pits, but as soon as I went to go to the track it died completely...after another hour of pulling things apart it turned out that I had pinched the vacuum supply hose to the fuel pump. By 4 o'clock all was fixed, but the test day was over...I'd have to wait until race day to see if it was any better!
Overnight the wind had changed to a southerly and temperatures dropped along with a few showers. Bob and I left our wet tyres on for the practice sessions and went out to play. Bob's bike is running an 18" rear wheel and we couldn't get a race wet weather tyre, Chris Haldane came to the rescue with a very soft Pirelli tyre that he spent over an hour grooving for us...it ran extremely well in the wet, Bob had a lot of confidence! So if you need a great 18" wet tyre, give Haldane Motorcycles a call!
My bike was running better than the previous day, but there was still a noticeable 'hole' in the power delivery at 10,000 rpm and above 14,500rpm it was dropping off quickly. Following Bob around showed that his 'properly' set up 400 had more mid range and top end power than mine, so hopefully I'll get mine as good one day...
We had entered both Formula 3 and Formula 2 classes and had a very full day with 2 practice sessions each, and six races. I managed to score points in all the races I entered (missed one due to a flat battery) which was a surprise for me as we were racing on the extended track at Manfeild for my first time. The last corner from the long circuit back onto the short circuit is long and sweeping giving plenty of time to lean the bike way over and find the limits of your confidence...awesome! I managed a lap time of 2:21 which wasn't too bad considering a lot of people were passing me as I waited to get beyond 11,000rpm out of the hairpins, the rest of the time I was keeping it revving between 12,000 to 14,500 which kept out a few of the other riders (maybe I should ride like this on the 600 engine).
Bob got past me in one race along the front straight, but then dropped to too low a gear in the hairpin allowing me to get past. He had an excellent day without any mishaps which I'll let him tell you about.
Needless to say, we both had loads of fun, we got back home at 11:30 that night and were up again at 6:45 to take Alex to Motorcross. We chucked Bob's bike out of the trailer and pushed in Alex's and got to Slater Park MX track at 8am to find the event had been cancelled due to rain. Huntly MC Club had left a message on my cellphone the night before but I had missed it...so we could have stayed in bed!! We went back home and blasted his MX bike and the farm bikes around the back paddock for an hour or so...what a weekend!
Thanks again to our sponsors, Haldane Motorcycles, WEBDES.CO.NZ, and SSSLodge. We're off to MX on June 1st at Slater Park, then road racing again at Manfeild on June 29th so if you see us there, drop by for a chat.
No Hair Racing http://www.nohair.co.nz