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Greg - AMCC#2 '04/'05No Hair Racing Race Report Auckland MC Club #2 October 3rd 2004
Auckland Motorcycle Club and Pukekohe weather turned on a great day for racing on Sunday for round 2 of the club champs. Wind was a light North-easterly and air temperature of close to 20°C gave very good conditions and with hardly any crashes or injuries and no oil spills we managed to get in a full four races plus practice for each class.
I was entered in Formula 2 again and after last months problems with a piece of metal on #1 piston, I wasn't too happy when I push started the bike and found a couple of exhaust leaks around the manifolds. Bob had a nice set of socket driven hex keys so we managed to tighten the bolts fully and no more leaks or problems for the rest of the day and the bike ran beautifully except for a bit of clutch problems on starting.
After finishing the Nationals in January on the 400, I was hoping some of my 'finely honed' race skills would translate into a new personal best at Pukekohe. I had managed to do a 68.14 sec lap back in 2000 which was fairly average for what the bike is capable of. Back in 1997 in Thundercat form Dave Cole was consistently lapping in the 61 to 62 sec times, and the following year Chris Wiltshire managed a 63 second lap. The bike weighed 168kg back then and was dynoed at 99hp. I've now got the motor in the all alloy FZR400 3TJ frame and weight is down to 154kg...so I should be able to do better than 68 secs right?
Wrong! I managed lots of low 69 sec laps with just one lap of 68.95 and finished last in every race, so when Jane turned up at trackside later in the day she was surprised to see me in a state of depression. I think my biggest problem is fear of opening the throttle too quickly coming out of corners. The 600 has a lot more power than the 400 and I'm worried about losing the rear wheel. Also, I'm not used to pulling wheelies coming out of the hairpin which is happening now with the lighter weight.
On the positive side my lap times were very consistent (so it means I'm making exactly the same errors each time) and the bike has almost the same top end as the newer 600's out there as I was pulling well into the red in 6th gear so can probably drop another tooth off the rear sprocket which would also reduce the front wheel lifting. Dave Cole watched me destroy the hairpin a few times so at least he would have had some amusement. So, I've got a little bit of work to do on the bike and lots to do inside my head before conquering the 68 second barrier but will have to wait until next year as Pukekohe track is closing for site work at the end of October.
Bob on the other hand had an excellent day, he had entered both F3 and Post Classics Pre-89 Junior classes on his 1988 FZR400 and ended up winning 3 out of the 4 Pre-89 races. Formula 3 proved much more difficult however with quite high entry numbers (24+) having a good start meant the difference of finishing in the top 10 or back 20 due to having to pass a lot of riders in a relatively short space of time. Bob was feeling pretty tired though at the end of the day after finishing 2 practice sessions and 7 races.
A huge thanks again to our sponsors...in particular Adam Inta at Henderson Motorcycles who must be giving away all his profit to us, Haldane Tyres...(those Rennsports are almost done now Chris), and WEBDES.co.nz who sponsors our web site and builds the most competitive priced sites in New Zealand. Also thanks to SSS Lodge, Alex, Corey, Haydn & Carl for pit crew.