Always Follow your Instincts: Central Mass Powersports Round 4 at Loudon Road Race Series

Chris Dove at Loudon Road Race Series Round 4

Friday practice –

Great day of practice. Clutch on the KTM needs to be replaced, but it’s not shot yet. GSXR needs fresh tires, we’ll sort that out Friday night. KTM tires are going off but should be fine for a race or two on Saturday, we’ll sort that one out Saturday night.

Saturday, race 4 – Super Singles – KTM (7th) (1:22.0)

My only goal this race was to warm up the rider and bike. I planned on taking it easy and getting my focus for the weekend dialed in. Halfway through the race, I started to push a bit and exiting t2 I had a massive rear slide. The rear stepped out to full lock and I found myself pointed at t2’s wall. Stayed on the throttle and it snapped back. We wiggled our way back onto the race line and kept on keeping on. Dialed it back a bit and brought it home in 7th. Biggest slide I’ve saved to date.

Continue reading Always Follow your Instincts: Central Mass Powersports Round 4 at Loudon Road Race Series


The Polar Plunge: Central Mass Powersports Round 1 at Loudon Road Race Series

Chris Dove at the Loudon Road Race Series

I rolled in late Wednesday stoked to be back home at the racetrack! Duncan Wood (CMP #910) and I (Chris Dove #123) were the very first over excited racers on the scene at Loudon Raceway.

Thursday practice –
My first time on a race motorcycle since the last round of racing in October, 2014. Here’s where it gets sketchy. The weather was poor. Cold, windy and no sunshine. I did some in depth weather investigation for the weekend (weatherbug) and concluded this situation would not improve. I made the decision to focus my practice time on the smallest, easiest to handle bike I had with me so that I’d give myself the best chance for success over the weekend. Practice went great, bike and rider both shook off the cobwebs. I figured while everyone else was struggling with big hp and no traction, I’d just roll on around them with 60hp. I was wrong…

Saturday, race 3 – EX Super Singles – KTM did not start (DNS)
Head out for the sighting lap and realize halfway through the lap, my engine is losing compression. This is bad, really bad. The bike worked great all practice on Thursday. At the very last turn before the front straight (starting grids) I went left instead of right. Left goes back to the pits and means your race is done. Making that decision stinks, no way around it. Hopefully you never have to.

Saturday, race 6 – EX Motard – KTM (DNS)
Failboat, bike is dead – no hope in sight.

Continue reading The Polar Plunge: Central Mass Powersports Round 1 at Loudon Road Race Series

Back to the Races: Round 1 of the Loudon Road Race Series

Duncan Wood in Turn 6 on Race Day

What a weekend! Getting the bike ready came down to the wire and I ended up opting out of installing my new bodywork. #123 Chris Dove and I packed up his box truck and my trailer on Tuesday night and headed up to NHMS on Wednesday afternoon, we were joined at the track by #112 Clayson Baker. The original plan was to do Thursday and Friday practice to shake the dust off. I got on the bike Thursday for the afternoon session and promptly threw it down in 1A. No damage really other than replacing a foot peg and lever guard.  I felt horrible on the bike. Absolutely terrible. Super heavy on the bars, not engaging my legs, drastically exaggerating body position – none of these are good things. I decided to skip Friday practice, save the $150, as the conditions were basically the same as the day before. CMP also had 2 riders in Basic school so Chris, Clay, and I spent the day assisting them and watching them on track.

Two new CMP riders, GM Gary Pescatore and mechanic Jimmy Alessandrini, had a great day in Basic Rider School. It’s a chore for any new racer; seven 20 minute track sessions with all of your off track time occupied in the classroom. It’s a grind. There’s a lot of new information, a lot of stress, but it’s an awful lot of fun. The boys did awesome, both of them making it through the difficult conditions and passing rider school. The CMP garage pulled together and kept their bikes prepped for their track sessions and hopefully helped with good advice and positive words.

Saturday practice 1 for Group 1 was cold, I went out and just tried to work on engaging my legs and ease up on the bars. Ran a 1:39 in practice, probably should have used an hour glass for timing instead of a transponder. Not much changed in practice 2, but I started feeling a bit more comfortable.

Continue reading Back to the Races: Round 1 of the Loudon Road Race Series

The Million Dollar Ducati?

Ducati Daytona Superbike Winner

Ducati Daytona Superbike WinnerKnown as the California Hot Rod, this Cycle Magazine Ducati 750SS, a Daytona winner built by Phil Schilling and Cook Neilson, is now up for sale on eBay. Yours for $1 million!

It’s certainly the most important Ducati in America and, really, might be the most important Ducati of all (behind only perhaps Paul Smart’s ’72 Imola winner), since it was the V-twin, this very bike, that really put the Italian company on the map in the US and helped establish the worldwide performance reputation still enjoyed by the company.

And you can own it if you’re willing to hit the Buy It Now button on eBay, provided you’re approved to spend $1 million. All the better if you don’t need any approval. Bidding pushed past $100,000 on the first day, and, as of this writing, it was knocking on $130K.

Is the bike worth it? Well, there is no other Ducati, perhaps no other motorcycle, that was both so successfully campaigned and so thoroughly and expertly developed while also being nearly molecularly documented publicly in the immortal pages of Cycle magazine. How “original” does this bike remain, and what exactly does “original” mean on a racer like this?

Continue reading The Million Dollar Ducati?