National Motorcycle Racer -

Location: Seattle WA
WMRRA Round 1

Events raced - Finish
Formula Ultra - 4th


First of all, I'd like to say thank you to Kirby and Adelle Drawbaugh for taking such good care of me while I was in the Seattle area. Thanks guys - you always make me feel right at home.

Five days ago I got a call from Dan, "You want to race at Seattle this weekend?".... Um, that would be a rhetorical question wouldn't it Dan? It just so happened that Dan had a few days to spare after the Fontana AMA round and instead of taking some much needed rest, he decided he would like to attend Round 1 of the WMRRA series to get me out on a track. (This is Dan's idea of rest and relaxation.) The only glitch to his plan was that we simply didn't have any motorcycles set-up to race because our 600RR was still not ready due to a lack of parts availability. So on to plan B. "I'll just pull out one of the old F-USA ZX9R's and let you rip around on it," Dan said. So with that I headed off to Seattle eager to get my leg over a bike and race on familiar ground.

Notes on practice:
Ah….the Zlock racing Formula USA spec Kawasaki ZX9R's - bikes I have grown to love riding. In only three laps I began to get my rhythm in sync with the ZX9's characteristics and I felt right at home. Cresting the small rise on the back straight; power wheelieing at well over 100mph in my very own Kodak moment. Oh yeah! This is what I call fun! The only thing putting a damper on the high-speed fun was the raindrops accumulating on my visor. Regardless of the mixed weather conditions, however, it felt great to be back on the bike.

Race day:
I awoke at 6:00a.m. to the sound of raindrops pelting my bedroom window. Lucky for me I love riding in the wet! The weather system had come in overnight delivering a lot of moisture with more in the forecast. We mounted up the Pirelli rains on the ZX9 and I set out for practice with a huge smile on my face. We were on the pace and I knew it. If it rained we had a shot at taking the win; something I really wanted. However, the northwest weather was doing its typical springtime "piss rain one minute, brilliant sunshine the next" routine taking us through a roller coaster of decisions about what tires and set-up we would run. It was one of those days when tire choice was going to be the decisive factor. A huge black cloud loomed overhead as they called us to the grid. We had gone for full Pirelli wets and it looked as though we had made the right choice. I got a great start and went from the third row to fourth place by turn two. By turn three I was in the lead and pulling away. On the third lap as I came into turn three, the red flag was waving bringing an end to the race. AARRGG!
They decided to restart us from our original grid positions which meant I would have to do it all over again. Unfortunately by this time the track was drying rapidly effectively taking away any advantage we had. On the restart I hit some VHT (stuff they put on the track for drag racing that only works if it's dry) and just spun the tire for most of second gear. This left me well back in the pack with a lot of work to do. By lap six I was in fifth position making ground on my good buddy Brian Mussleman. I got under him in turn two and put my head down in an effort to catch third. By this time the track was basically dry and I began to worry about how much abuse the Pirelli wets would tolerate in the dry conditions. The front end began to tuck in on turn entries hinting that I was at the limit. Unfortunately I didn't make up the ground and had to settle for fourth. I was disappointed, but all things considered I think things went well.

From here we hope to have the 600 and a Formula extreme ZX9R ready for round 4 and 5 of the AMA Superbike series at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, California on May 2-4. Look for us - we'll be there!

Again, I want to send a huge thank you to Dan Zlock and the Zlock Racing team as well as all the sponsors that make this all possible.


Please click on image to enlarge

Rob Burns - our team painter - NICE HAT DUDE!

Mr. Zlock

Mounting up the Pirelli

Awesome new Joe Rocket suit

Shawn, Dan, Arnie

Steve Stallman

Mike Sullivan

The Zlock ZX9R

Photot: Carlos Hatfield

Photot: Carlos Hatfield

Photot: Carlos Hatfield

Race Reports