Team Half Fast at the AMRA Spring Nationals

April 9-10, 2011.  Maus was unable to attend this event with Chip, but once again she was there in spirit as Chip represented the team in person.  With the rising fuel costs, THF did not think it would get to this event this year, but an opportunity came up to travel with good friend and fellow racer Erik Nelson with Shoestring Racing.  THANK YOU so much for that opportunity, Erik!

Saturday morning, it was already 77 degrees, so we knew it was going to be completely different than what we encountered in Bowling Green just two weeks prior.

Saturday—Time Trials:  Our first run out of the gate was an 11.457; a little tweaking, and our second run was a stellar 11.502—if we can repeat that in Qualifying, we’ll be sitting sharp!  Our next two time trials were to test out our 10.90 combination for the PE class.  We ran an 11.348 and 11.209.  Not bad considering by now it was already 80 degrees.  Our last time trial for the day was an 11.507.  We’re ready to qualify well!

Qualifying:  We put one in the bucket, as they say, with our first run for the 11.50 SE class and ran an impressive 11.550.  Next qualifying run was for PE, and we ran an 11.239.

The second round of qualifying didn’t see an improvement over our first round numbers.  Our third round, however, got us an 11.521 for the SE class—excellent.  We qualified #3 in SE with that 11.521 in a field of 18.  In PE, we qualified #10 in a field of 14, which isn’t bad considering our bike does not run as fast in the heat as it does in the cooler temperatures.  It got to 90 degrees that afternoon.

All tolled, there were 131 bikes qualified to compete.  There were a total of 33 bikes in “E” class.

Sunday morning—it was already nearly 75 degrees at 9:30 am!  There was time enough for three Time Trial runs, and every singe run we ran faster than we wanted to.  Our first pass of eliminations was going to be in “E”.  We chose the “middle” number from our three passes in the morning for our dial-in and dialed an 11.47.  Our opponent popped the red-eye and Chip came away with the win—breaking out by 5 hundredths of a second.

An hour later, when the temperature had climbed up to 86 degrees, was our run for PE—the 10.90 class.  Chip knew we didn’t have the power to run fast enough in this heat, so he really pushed the tree and this time it was our turn to pop the red-eye.  You’re not trying hard enough if you don’t pop it once in a while!

Unfortunately, the red-eye followed Chip to our next round of eliminations in SE (11.50) class.

Our second round of eliminations in “E” was only ten minutes later.  It was a double-breakout by both riders, but Chip managed to break out less, so he got the win light.  We’re going to the 3rd round!

Alas, the red-eye demon reared its bright red head once again, and Chip was eliminated in the 3rd round of “E”.

After this second AMRA national event, Chip stands #10 in PE, tied for #7 in E, and a stellar #2 in SE.  Way to go, Chip!!!

See you at the track!