This was a very important weekend for us as it was our only
real chance to properly evaluate the ZX6RR before we race
it at Laguna Seca in just under a month's time. Unfortunately,
just four days before I was scheduled to go down I managed
to pick up a intestinal bug that saw me... quite ill. :o(
I guess the only positive thing that came out of it was that
I was definitely light this past weekend. (The glass must
be half full right?) Thankfully a trip to the doctor the morning
I left proved invaluable with some suggested remedies that
actually took effect immediately. Thank goodness.
I spent all day Friday with Dan in the shop while he played
with the 600 on his dyno experimenting with some new R-TECH
fuels Gary Ricci had supplied us. Happy with what we found,
we were optimistic with the initial performance readings our
ZX6RR was providing with Gary's fuel. Cool!
Notes on practice:
It was really good to be racing with WMRRA at Seattle again.
It's the club and track that I started racing with in 2000
and the people involved in the club as well as the racers
are really good people that I genuinely enjoy being around.
I also realized this is a big part of what I love about racing.
Practice as a whole went quite smoothly with Dan and I working
on the gearing and set-up of our 600. By the end of the day
we had a plan that we felt would see us at the front.
Notes on races:
Race 1 600 Supersport.
I had no disillusions entering this race. I knew I was going
to have to work very hard to get anywhere near the front,
the first hurtle being the start as I was gridded way back
on the 9th row. That would be 8 rows too far back. The first
few corners (or first few laps for that matter) were going
to have to be "crazy". I got a decent start and
was in about 15th going into turn 1. I kept it wide going
into turn two, gambled, and went around the outside of several
riders. One rider in particular saw me coming around the outside,
got on the gas too hard and started to push us both wide as
we came to the exit of two. I gritted my teeth, kept it pinned,
and managed to just get in font of him before the exit. Into
turn three I waited until I saw God, Allah, Buddha (whoever
you believe in) and then went for the brake lever. Thankfully
the ZX6RR stops exceptionally well, (insert shameless sponsor
plug) because we use EBC brakes, and I managed to get in under
several other riders. At this point I had actually made my
way up to 7th and could see what I thought was the first group.
I kept my head down working my way to 5th but was unable to
make up the gap in the remaining laps.
Race 2 - 600 Superbike.
I had a better picture in my mind for this race of what it
was going to take to run with the leaders. Again a aggressive
start and first lap was in order, but the last race had illustrated
our 600's strengths and weaknesses so I knew much more accurately
where, and just how hard, I could push. I got a blinding start
despite being on the 7th row. Without getting into too much
detail I was only about three seconds behind the leaders as
I came out of turn three (Sorry to all the guys I passed rather
aggressively). I put in two really clean laps and was right
on Barry Wressell's rear fender coming out of turn four. Our
group of five riders, Mike Sullivan, Barry, Nathan Hester
and Eli Edwards, were running a very fast pace with the lap
times in the mid to low 28's. As I understand it, Mike set
a new 600 lap record at 28.1. We were flying. Unfortunately
at this pace, I was now discovering new limitations of the
ZX6RR on exits of turn two, seven and nine, and wasn't able
to mount any serious challenge for a win. No excuses though,
I rode my ass off and only made a few mistakes so I was content
with my effort. The Zlock Racing ZX6RR worked better than
any 600 I have ever ridden, and the competition had a little
more than we could handle on this day.
Regardless of the 4th place finish I am ecstatic about the
performance of our new 600 and what that holds for the near
future. With this event essentially being the first time we
have had the bike at a real race track, we couldn't have asked
for much more. Again, it's a testimonial to the tuning abilities
of Dan Zlock. I can't overstress how truly fortunate I am
to be riding for and associated with him and the whole Zlock
Team. I really do have the best people and sponsors behind
From here we start preparing for our trip to Laguna in July.
I'm going to keep up with my training, ride as much SuperMoto
as possible, and go into that weekend the most competitive
and focused I have ever been. As you can most likely tell
by the tone of this report, I'm excited and extremely motivated.
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