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The Machine


With A Little Luck We Can Make It Up

That song is the new theme for the Stotz Racing-Honda Drag Race Team. The year started out so promising. At the first race we had a new bike, rider, and class to compete in, and ran the 3rd quickest runs of the weekend. From there on Murphy’s Law took over.

In qualifying we didn’t run fast yet. The fast 7.99 came in the first elimination round, and then we were paired against the number one qualifier (bad luck).

Still, running a 7.96 on a 7.93 record we went home from the first race eager to go to the second and kick butt.

Back home on the dyno we tried to find out why we were down on horsepower (403 HP before the first race, 348 HP after). After 2 weeks of diagnostic checks, engine and parts swapping, we were down to 259 HP. We worked right up until 6 PM Saturday night of the 2nd race in Atlanta (knowing the race was on rain delay) and the bike just would not pull past 8 lbs of boost with out breaking up badly, yet nothing showed any signs of error or failure. (bad luck)

With only 3 weeks between the 2nd and 3rd race, Brian at Win Racing in Naperville IL, (our newest sponsor) cleared his schedule and said he would continue helping to find the problem so we would not miss another race. We replaced every part twice (one at a time) until the only thing we have not replaced was the stock wiring harness on this brand new bike. A new harness went on and the HP went to 413 cleanly. Contact at the ECU plug was just loose enough that as the boost came up past 8 lbs the vibration and current requirement made the loose connection rear its ugly head but was fine at stock or lower boost levels. (bad luck)

The 3rd race was in Memphis. A great crowd of motorcycle racing fans was on hand. We ran a couple great 5.30’s in testing to the 1/8 mile. The bike slowed down in qualifying and broke a valve. It is very rare to have valve failure with stock cams, stock valves, and the stock rev limiter. (bad luck)

The 4th race was in Bristol, TN. Again, the first test pass 8.15 at 174 was great for low boost. We turned up the boost and went 183, good MPH. Then Murphy’s Law struck again. The CBR1000RR had a perfect record of never missing a shift; until qualifying started. We replaced the trans and air shifter system to no avail. Finally we found a bad shift detent late Saturday night but with no testing we were only able to win one round Sunday. Out of frustration, I asked racers at the track when was the last time they had a shift detent go bad and the only ones they could remember were the old KZ900 trannys. (bad luck)

I used to tell people “The Harder I worked the Luckier I got”. I still believe this is true and our work ethic is second to none, but sometimes when it rains it pours. We are still encouraged that when we get complete passes down the track, the CBR1000RR has posted record setting times. Chin up, full speed ahead, with a little luck (or at least no bad luck) we are going to win at Indy.

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