Author Topic: Anybody excited for start of the AMA Road Racing series in a couple of weeks?  (Read 2240 times)

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Offline JohnnyLunchBox

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I can't wait.  Despite the naysayers there has been some phenomenal racing.  And now the reigning sportbike champion, Danny Eslick, has moved up to superbike class.  He'll be piloting an EBR 1190R.  This guy has talent.

This is going to be a good year.
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Offline ChipDoc

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I love watching the road racers on those few occasions where I have the chance.  But that stuff's only available on cable, so I don't get to see them very often.

Offline ARATA

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You are correct that the racing has been awesome. I hate all of the crap that went on though.

I'm a big fan of SBK as well!
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Offline JohnnyLunchBox

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I think they needed to iron out a lot of wrinkles.  It gets better every year. 
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Offline Hogboy

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I'm a naysayer (sorry Johnny:)).

I think I got turned off AMA Superbike when Mladin kept winning everything in sight and was a real A-hole about the whole thing.  Spies was a briliiant comet, but then he came and went.  What's left, IM(very)HO are a bunch of boring bikes and boring riders and dumbed-down races (e.g. Daytona 200) and silly, artificial classes (what is "Supersport" anyways and how is it different from "Sportbike" and how is that different from "Superbike").

The exceptions, for me, are guys like Pegram and Eslick and bikes like the Buell and the Ducati and (dare I say it the HD class).  I am completely sick of identical blue Japanese 4's.

I know it's unfair to compare the series with MotoGP and WSBK but what about a comparison with the AMA glory days of the past?  Just look at the great names, the great bikes and the great classes - wah happened?????

What could revive the whole thing in my book would be the introduction of some new classes and the elimination of the almost-identical 3 listed above.  Yep, the HD series is a great start and shows how you don't need a million bucks to attract a fan base and sell some bikes.  Here's what I would add:

- Unlimited Experimental - yep, anything goes as long as it passes safety.  Put a $50,000 limit on parts and bob's yer uncle.

- Supermotard - same rules as Europe on a shortened track

- Classic Bikes - anything before say, 1980 with a $5,000 cap

- Tiddlers - a formula for teensy 2-strokes and twice-teensy 4 strokes (say 50cc vs. 100cc)

- Stock - right off the showroom floor with your choice of tires - yep, mirrors lights and the whole shebang

- Goldwing Class - ditto - can you imagine the interest in this one?

- Alternate Energy Class - anything goes as long as it's not internal combustion

- Sidecars - bring 'em on!!!

- Special Tests - during the weekend, bikes from each class would mix it up in side-by-side drag/stopping contests.

« Last Edit: March 03, 2012, 01:17:40 pm by Hogboy »
The time has come to travel while the oatmeal-eaters tarry at their fort. To this end, I have chosen a train of stout dogs to pull a toboggan of trade goods. We are eager to proceed and the dogs are baying at their tethers.

Alexander Henry, Cumberland House, Manitoba, 1797

Offline ARATA

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I think what you have now is a result of Yosh and Mladin and Spies somewhat.

The bikes are way more equal, and it definitely makes for closer racing.
I would guess that they are more like superstock bikes than superbikes.

It is more exciting to watch, IMO.
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Offline JohnnyLunchBox

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Mr. Hogboy, I only started following AMA racing since Buell entered in 2008, with the disastrous XBRR entry.  I do not have a any basis to judge the past beyond three seasons or so.  The racing has been close and very exciting.  The TV coverage is dismal however.

I like your ideas about the different  classes, but motorcycling - or moto-racing - is still a fairly marginal sport in the US.  The US used to have a history of racing, but it has changed.  And without viewers/fans, you  don't get sponsorship or TV coverage, and without sponsors or TV coverage you don't gain followers.  It's a bit of a catch 22.  With no money, you get a limited variety of racing classes.
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Offline Centex

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- wah happened?????


IMHO, to a very great extent, "the economy" is what happened at this point in time.

I can agree with what became the boring Mladin run, and DMG made a huge muck-up of things in the first stint under Edmundson after AMA sold the series to try to rejuvinate things.  But race-for-race competition has certainly been fierce the last few seasons (addressing the single-racer domination issue) and the variety of racers in the paddock that are competitive seem(ed) to be looking up.  Based on feedback from the owners/racers there's no question that the competitiors are enjoyign the sport more than they have in years even though struggling mightily for funding.

However, the continued struggles in the US motorcycle sales industry and attendant aftermarket company sales (more accurately, lack thereof) has crippled contingency funding system.  Look at how many regional (road) racing organizations have closed or reduced events in the last 2 years (that is the 'farm system' for AMA racing)!

If you are really a hardcore fan of motorcycle road racing, seek out and attend (support) regional racing events and do what you can to support AMA race events and their advertisers / supporters.  Money has always made it work ... the 'heyday' was loaded with contingency programs that payed racers deep into the finishing order to help defray the very significant costs of racing.  IMHO that's why there were so many different folks involved at all levels.

As for most of the "classes" you describe .... I'll assume that's a facetious description of a moto-sideshow, not a real suggestion for how to return road-racing to the 'heyday'.
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Offline JohnnyLunchBox

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Well said, Mr. Alan in Central Texas.
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Offline Hogboy

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OK, OK, OK, I give :'(

I do recognize that racing is a business and that sponsors with deep pockets can make for better machinery, events and riders. With that said, I still have to (reluctantly) stand by my thoughts that racing in the USA (and Canada) is at an all-time low.

And Johnny, I hope I don't bore you with my memories of the glory days, but seeing guys like Roberts and Springsteen and Carr and DuHamel on road tracks, miles, TTs, etc. just shows what an amazing scene the AMA could revive if it had the tools and, dare I say, the vision.

IMHO I'd far rather see a Supermotard race than yet another long stream of Japanese 4's go round and round like they have been for the last 15 years or so.

Here's hoping!
The time has come to travel while the oatmeal-eaters tarry at their fort. To this end, I have chosen a train of stout dogs to pull a toboggan of trade goods. We are eager to proceed and the dogs are baying at their tethers.

Alexander Henry, Cumberland House, Manitoba, 1797

Offline Pat and Sher in MA

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Check out Speed tv on March 17th starting at 1:30 pm est. They will be showing all
the action from Daytona.  :motonoises:
Pat & Sher in Ma.  04 C10 Dark Angel,  87 Ninja 600RX, 79 KZ1300 (x2)

Offline Centex

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OK, OK, OK, I give :'(

......... my memories of the glory days, but seeing guys like Roberts and Springsteen and Carr and DuHamel on road tracks, miles, TTs, etc. just shows what an amazing scene the AMA could revive if it had the tools and, dare I say, the vision.

IMHO I'd far rather see a Supermotard race than yet another long stream of Japanese 4's go round and round like they have been for the last 15 years or so.

Here's hoping!


No argument from me about how great the heyday was .... I was fortunate to be a privateer team grunt/ pit-stop gas can jockey that rolled the bike to the grid at Daytona through the early/mid '80s during the F-1 to Superbike transition for the 200(Roberts, Spencer, Rainey, etc).  Everything from killer 2 stroke Yamahas to crazy oval-piston Hondas and thundering BOTT races with guzzis and beemers during those weekends.

I'd love to see that again but I simply don't believe that, even if AMA rolled-back the rule book to those days verbatim, we'd see those races as a result.  Just too many other factors 'screwin up the world today' as seen by us olde pharts  :o

Check out this video
about local-boy-done-good Dustin Dominguez ... again riding a British Triple against the Japanese fours in Supersport for 2012.  Dustin is also still racing with the regional club where I hang (CMRA, where Kocinski, Polen, Spencer, Schwantz and Spies all cut their teeth on pavement).  Not sure that Dustin is in that league yet, but he is a fun racer on the track.
Alan in Central Texas
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Offline Hogboy

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Road America!  Wow, brings back memories from 1982 when they had all the AMA big boys there.

My first glimpse of the track was by the start/finish line when Spencer came up from the last corner on the big Honda superbike and wheelied the whole way.  Amazing!

Great racing that weekend - learned what brats & bud meant and camped with a biker gang that were actually pretty nice people.

We were leaving the race in my Rabbit when I saw a gap in track security and out we went for a lap.  It was a great feeling and all the drunks cheered like mad as we squealed around corners.

Good times indeed - thanks for posting.
The time has come to travel while the oatmeal-eaters tarry at their fort. To this end, I have chosen a train of stout dogs to pull a toboggan of trade goods. We are eager to proceed and the dogs are baying at their tethers.

Alexander Henry, Cumberland House, Manitoba, 1797

Offline Centex

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Just saw this entry list for Daytona 200 (Sportbike) on the AMA Pro site.  Gotta admit, nothing too exciting there by the numbers ....

3 Buell + 3 Duc = 12% twins
2 Triumph 675 = 4% triples
39 UJM  = 84% 600cc fours (3 Kaw; 8 Suz; 28 Yam)

Oh well, still gotta root for the 'home-town boys' Dane Westby & Cory West


Alan in Central Texas
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Offline JohnnyLunchBox

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Westby and West are a class act.  They are always on my "to root" list.
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Offline JohnnyLunchBox

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Eslick ballet on the outside pass.  Watch the slo-mo

Eslick Pass
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Offline krumgrinder

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I'm looking forward to it, even if it's not what it used to be- how will it ever get any better without anyone showing any interest???  And dang it, as Johnny's video above showed, there's still some good action and skills to be seen!  :motonoises:
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Offline Centex

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^  There's a road racing fan  ^

 :beerchug:
Alan in Central Texas
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