SDBA T.T. Jones Memorial Race at Huntsville Dragway
The SDBA T.T. Jones Memorial Race at Huntsville Dragway was a great event for our team, but more importantly a tribute race to the late T.T. Jones. We had a great time as always with the SDBA crew, and enjoyed some great racing at a track we had never been to.
With this event being our first time at the track, we did some Friday night testing to make sure we were locked and loaded for the busy Saturday which included qualifying and the race. Our first pass out was a 4.64 due to a sluggish 60 ft. Luckily for us, the race track was tight and the bike just needed a little more power to get up on the tire. The second test pass we felt right at home with a 4.59 and with a few minor adjustments we were ready for race day.
Saturday morning we kicked off round one of qualifying with a 4.623, which put us in a good spot in the field. The weather started off hot and didn't show signs of letting up throughout the day, so we knew some changes were going to have to be made. Luckily, being comfortable with our first run and in the top half of the field, we could be a little bit more aggressive with Q2 and try and lay a run down we would be comfortable with when eliminations rolled around. In Q2, we ran a 4.591 which didn't help our qualifying position, but puts us right in the ballpark and in a comfortable position going into eliminations.
Round one of eliminations we went face to face with the always tough Mantez Thompson on his home turf. Unfortunately, Thompson had shifting issues and was forced to abort the run early. We laid down a good run with a .006 reaction time and coasting to a 4.67 with the front half numbers showing promise going into round two. Second round we were up against Dan McCarten who has been running extremely well since the start of the season. We got off the line well with a .001 light and despite shaking the tire hard at the 60 ft cone and running a 4.635, we were able to pull of the holeshot win to McCarten's 4.597. It was a fun side by side race that had me surprised to see the win light knowing I probably wasn't going to be able to cover at the big end due to the tire shake. In the quarter finals, we were paired up with Chase Morris who has also been having a fantastic year decorated with a couple wins. Chase and I were close on the tree with my .020 to his .018, but ultimately we would go on to win with a 4.613 to Chase's 4.619 and a razor thin finish margin.
Unfortunately, mother nature had different plans for the SDBA forcing the race to be canceled at three bikes. Chad Otts had the bye into the final due to being the higher qualified motorcycle, and we were set to face Jamar Watkins in the semi-finals. The three of us split the pay and settled the trophy with rock paper scissors where Otts ultimately won.
All in all, it's a great feeling to leave a racetrack on a round win and we had a blast. Special thank you to Sonny Vick and Brian Dale at SDBA and the entire Huntsville Dragway crew.
Thank you to the following who help make this possible!