A phenomenal weekend of racing that's left me feeling quite good in several aspects. We got lucky, had some decent success. We survived the heat - It was HOT!!. And we just had a great time with lots of laughs around our racing family! Honestly, can't imagine much better.
Let me begin with the thanks, and a BIG Congratulations!
Thanks to Dan, Dale and the team. The weekend was a struggle but you guys were, as always, amazing!
Congratulations to Kevin & Aarin Pinkstaff on the news of Aarin's pregnancy! - Can't wait to meet your daughter!
Also, you'll note no photos from the round. Instead I focused on video taking you through what happens over the weekend for me. It's more about the people than the racing as the actual racing is such a small part of the weekend. But so much goes into getting us there!
Did I mention it was hot? Well, it has been a while since I raced in conditions like this folks. Mid to high 90's and a track temperature you could fry an egg on made for difficult conditions. I did well off the start but struggled with front end feel throughout the race. It just turned out we were outside the range for the front Pirelli we choose and it let me know, albeit predictably, that we did. Luckily the first few laps gave me a small lead that I was able to maintain till the finish.
With conditions slightly more favorable (read cooler) I set out to see what we could do. Pirelli had delivered their latest rear tire and I have to say it is AMAZING! Despite the still high (for optimal) temperatures the tire enabled me, with some slight line modifications, to almost beat my class lap record. I missed it by, get this, four hundredths of a second... LOL - Imagine... Regardless, I came away impressed with the tires performance and, more importantly, how we might be able to exploit that in the future. Bodes well!
Anyway, I'll keep this short as I'm off for the next week with my kids to the lake to capitalize on the gorgeous BC Summer we are having! Relax, eat, ski, eat, tube, eat, fish, repeat... Can't wait! Then I'm off to Bonneville to support the team in their quest for a few land speed records..
What a lap looks like - Part four - Turn seven & eight.
Approaching turn seven I'm in a full tuck, chin on the tank, with the bike approaching top speed. (see previous report) I line up the wall on my right so that I run parallel to it ensuring that I have a good visual of the brake markers. (Usually 4 feet from the wall) My focus on entry is to brake and downshift smoothly so that I don't upset the chassis. With the front tire loaded I tip it in for turn seven looking to keep the wheels just inches off the curbing to the left. Now, my focus quickly shifts to the most critical aspect of tuns seven and eight, the exit of eight. Once past the apex of seven I transition the bike from left to right using as much lower body positioning as possible. Again, my goal is to coax the bike into this transition without upsetting the chassis. I intently focus on keeping the bike's front and rear tires evenly loaded to maximize my speed and cornering ability through this part of the turns. Yet again, I aim to put the wheels just inches off the curbing, now on the right. At full lean, in turn eight, with my knee on the curbing and the inside peg weighted I load the rear tire and start to apply as much throttle as possible to maximize the run to turn nine. I stay quite "still" in this moment to "feel" every bit of feedback from the bike as possible. When I get the timing/transition/traction right and maximize the package of tires/chassis I'll get a very predicable acceleration slide that takes me out to the left edge of the track. At full pace this will even take me slightly of the track onto a small access road that I sometimes use to line up the entry of turn nine... Which I'll cover in my last report of the year in September!