First Thoughts on Becoming an Official FastassPosted: February 8, 2010
The 200-MPH Club: What do you mean there are rules?!?
I’m bored at work, it’s Super Bowl Sunday, which I couldn’t care less about and I feel like something new… I’m tired of the same old stuff, I need something fresh on my brain, but it has to be information that will be useful to me at some point in the future… let’s see here… oh, yeah: Land Speed Racing. Let’s grab the rulebook and get comfy, because joining the 200-MPH Club is on my New Year’s Resolutions List. I need to know what’s involved so I can plan my strategy. Not that this is going to happen this year anyway (so much for that resolution), hubby blew all our money getting me a date with Kevin Schwantz as my birthday present this year.
Apparently there is more to joining the 200-MPH Club than finding myself a long stretch of asphalt, rip it open until I get to the required minimum forward velocity, slow my ass back down and slap a sticker on my bike. Dream on, sista! I suppose I could do that, but I want something official; I need a time slip. Then I thought I’d get the entire mile to do it in. Wrong! Your speed is measured and the time slip printed at the ¼-mile mark. Now that small, but important, detail is bound to make things interesting. Here I thought I could take my sweet-ass time to get it “up there”. Not! I see a lot of practice of full-throttle quick starts with impeccably timed upshifts and excessive rear tire usage in my future. Ugh! Not to mention trying to keep that front wheel on the ground. But oh, what fun to be able to rip through the whole sequence without having to worry about the cops bustin’ your chops at the next red light. But I never had to do it ‘as fast as I possibly could’, I just made sure I kept my front end down and was faster than everybody else, which isn’t really all that difficult to do when you’re the only 120-pound chica on a ‘Busa. The weight differential alone gives me an edge. 😉 This changes things also. A whole new level of difficulty… one which I think requires massive amounts of practice on my part. Time to work towards that goal when the rear rubber nears the end of its useful lifespan in a deserted parking lot somewhere. See if I can’t at least practice rippin’ it from a dead stop before I even go to the drag strip. I’m kind of nervous about going there, since I’ve never been and I don’t want to embarrass myself. When you’re a girl on a Hayabusa, you can bet your sweet ass that everybody and their damn dog will be watching your every move, to see if that silly girl’s got what it takes to play with the big dawgs and if she even deserves to own a ‘Busa, let alone ride one. I’m going to be prepared. Because that is how I roll. I rather lose it in a deserted parking lot without an audience other than my hubby, then at grudge racing night at the local drag strip. Do NOT want!
And here I thought going extremely fast in a straight line is boring. Well, I used to think that. I used to say that going fast in a straight line is something any idiot who can manage to get his ass out of first gear (without the bike walking out from under him) can do. The damned thing pretty much rides itself as long as you don’t want to change direction. I have, however, changed my mind on the ‘boring’ part. I’m a speed freak, I love going fast, although I enjoy the dance on curvy roads much more. It’s a different animal. I need my speed/acceleration fix. And the only way I can get that (safely and to the extreme) is in Land Speed Racing. And now that I know there’s actually a healthy amount of riding skill involved it has become a challenge. I like challenges. Where do I sign up?
Joining The Club: A Nightmare In Logistics
I have the bike that’ll do it, pretty much stock with a few tweaks. Now I need to ramp up the safety factor and get the Popo off my tail. Aside from an empty parking lot for some initial practice, I need a place to work on the whole sequence. Not the top-speed issue, but more the technique required getting there. We have a drag strip not too far from here, in Jackson, SC: The House of Hook. They’ve got something going on Thursdays. Hubby works on Thursdays, I work every other Thursday. I don’t want to go by myself, so I’ll either have to get over going alone or find somebody who’s willing to go with me. I can’t really ask Manx to take off every other Thursday just so I can feed my speedy dream of fastass grandeur, besides I’ll need the money he’s hauling in on that day. That turbo charger doesn’t buy itself… j/k =D
It seems to follow that after practice on the ¼-mile drag strip, I’ll reach a point where I’ll have to play in the actual arena, the place where my 200-mph attempt will be made. The closest facility for Speed Trials seems to be the ECTA’s (East Coast Timing Association) Maxton Mile in Maxton, NC; a 424-mile round trip for me. Yeah, this is already looking to be one hell of an expensive proposition and I haven’t even started considering the cost in tires, parts, and whatnots. * sigh * But I suppose that’s why they’re called dreams. If it would be easy, we would never experience that deep satisfaction we derive from beating a challenge and it would mean so much less. Maybe I should just do it my unofficial way, it’d be a lot cheaper (even after bribing the Popo out of the inevitable ticket) if I just show everybody my GPSr while pointing to the ‘Max Speed’ field in the corner.
The Class Of Fast
A precursory scan through the ECTA’s 2008 (the only free one I could get my hands on before having to leave for work) rulebook reveals we have three main classes motorcycles can compete in: Production, Modified, and Altered. Production sounds cheap; that’s the one I’m going to probably go with, since I’ll be spending all my money on tires and traveling. So let’s focus on that.
Upon closer inspection of the rules, my gear meets the standards set for the 175mph+ trials and The Fat Lady is pretty much good to go on all requirements, except:
- I’ll have to run the stock foot rests. Bummer.
- I also need to run the stock windshield, since modification of shape is not allowed in the Production class, which my Double Bubble clearly violates. Further, I’m also not entirely convinced that the Zero Gravity windscreen is actually shatter-resistant (another requirement), chances are it’s not.
- The OEM triple tree clamp has to be put back on, too; which means I would have to run the front at stock height. They don’t mention requirements for the rear, so I do not know if those Brock’s lowering links are in violation or not. However, the rules do mention ground clearance: “OEM Specification for minimum ground clearance must be met.” I need to look into this, too.
The only other modifications required are safety related, such as safety-wiring certain parts, getting a metal chain guard and battery holder, removing the mirrors and passenger pegs, adding an ignition kill-switch lanyard, and disconnecting and taping the headlamp. No biggie, there.
I’m still confused about which CC class I would be running in, they have a 1000CC and 1350CC class listed. The Gen 2 Hayabusa has 1340CCs. I would assume that’s considered part of the 1350CC class, but the rules read ambiguous to me. “Displacement must be greater than the maximum allowable for the next lower class.” Seems that by letter of the law, I’d actually be in the 1000CC class, but that seems unreasonable to me. I need to get confirmation on that from the ECTA, since nowhere in the rules does it state a CC range within a class, which is clearly indicated by that statement. However, it would be sweet to be stuffed into the 1000CC class, since the record there is lower. LOL
I would have to hold off on that Brock’s full exhaust system since that would definitely move me into the Modified Production class, without an easy way to revert to stock; however, I could keep my stinking rearsets and my new top triple tree clamp installed and my suspension setup intact. The record to beat in the Modified Production class (M/G-1350/4) I then would find myself in is 185.490. No way, that can’t be right, can it? Set way back in ’04? The record for the M/F-1350/4 class stands at 203.438, set in June ‘09. The only difference between the two classes would be the fuel used. The G-class uses event gasoline. Well… I have to think on that some. I have more questions to ask the peeps of the ECTA to get the necessary clarification in order to make up my mind in which class to do my Record Trials in. I have all my stock parts, so prepping the bike to stay in one class over another is not a big deal, as it stands now.
The records for the two Production classes, according the ECTA website are as follows:
- P/P-1350/4: 202.465 set by Marc DeLuca in October 2005.
- P/P-1000/4: 190.464 set by Marc DeLuca in October 2007.
The classes are designated by a string of numbers and letters, as such: [Frame Class/Engine Class-Displacement Class/Engine Cycles], the Fat Lady’s class then would be P/P-1350/4 or P/P-1000/4, depending whether they round up or down. Soooo, in either case, Marc DeLuca is the man to beat if I also want to get my name on the books in addition to joining the 200-MPH Club, which in the 1000CC category would happen concurrently. I want to be in THAT class… would make things a lot easier. 😉 Marc, hang on to your testies, because you’re gonna (eventually) get spanked by a girl. =D I now have an outline of a plan and over a year to see it through and work out all the juicy details. I feel the need for ticket-free speed (and for being the fastest girl at the Maxton Mile * giggles *)