Friday, April 27, 2012

Joe Cooks at AMRA Season Opener

It looks as though I had better get this up before it is out of date.

Our favorite V-Rod drag racer, Joe Lieske, made the trip all the way down to Baton Rouge, Louisiana for the AMRA season opener at the beginning of April.  After a disappointing 2011 season plagued by catastrophic (read: expensive) engine failures, Joe and his wife/crew chief Cindy opted to back off on the engine size in search of reliability.  The powerful but troublesome 95 cubic inch engine of previous years has been replaced with a still potent 88 incher.  So far, so good (knock on wood).

Some time between last season and this one, the AMRA decided that V-Rods would no longer be able to run in the Pro Gas class, but would instead be relegated to the V-Mod class.  This actually worked out to Joe's advantage, since, after spending the qualifying rounds tuning the clutch, the bike came out cooking in the first round of eliminations.  Cooking?  Yup, I'd say it was cooking, since he served up a 5.530 second 1/8 mile @ 121.53 mph, along with an 8.832 1/4 mile @ 146.43 mph, all four of which are new National Records!

Unfortunately Joe leaned a little too hard on the lights in the finals, turning on the red by only .012 of a second, costing him the win.

The good news is that Joe reports that he is confident that a little more work with the clutch will bring his 60 foot times back down near his previous 1.15 second mark from the 1.20's he recorded in Louisiana.  Joe's next race is this weekend (April 28-29) at Beechbend Raceway Park, Bowling Green, Kentucky.

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