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Wow, that sucks. Give him our best.

I'll say it again..there's no reason in a country our size, with our money that any motorcycle racers should have to worry about hitting a fixed object on a race course, or close enough to the race course to present a danger.
JohnnyB
 

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just some thoughts. t17 is a mind fuck. its a really fast corner, and weird. the tire wall in t17 isnt just feet from the track. its actually more like hundreds of feet from the track. unless he ran off on the inside. actually hundreds is an exaggeration, but its pretty far. far enough that you have time to either make it, or dump the bike way before you hit it. i did see eric woods slide almost to is when he crashed a few years ago, but he dropped the bike in the grass after trying to hang onto it. whats interesting is it becomes downhill. like you start at the top of a hill, and then it starts to go down. but t1 is the same way but there is almost a golfcourse there. but here is almost a football field next to the front straight. id say t-4, and the esses are way more dangerous there. saw a guy get killed in the esses a few years ago. a gravel trap would be nice in t17, but i think alot of cars run off there, so theyd have to be picking cars out of it all of the time.
 

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Yeah Joe I kept trying to figure out which tire wall he was talking about. It is pretty far way, as I remember . . . at least 150 feet. I have the course map inside the house, I'll take a look.
 

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150ft. at over 100mph. comes up pretty quick. Even more so on wet grass.

No sense making it inconvenient for the cars when it's just a few motorcyclists getting hurt by the walls.

Craig
 

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I'm doing a cut and paste from the USCRA email list this morning:

i sent for some more (WELL USED) so that they are really SOFT modified tires. {from 2 sources this time}. the ones that came in the fall were great, but so few that they are diluted in the great need that we have. it drives me nuts when i see them protecting the turn 1 flag bunker on the pit road and the scorers area. i do love these guys & spend time in these locations myself; BUT, in the greater scheme of things THEY ARE LOW RISK compared to where i wished for them to be T1 & T3. some are the "slow down" tires in T3 but at the last LRRS event ,.,.,.. actually mcallister track day-- i found the soft ones way back near the concrete instead of near the front. granted, the tires all kind of look the same -- black, round, etc,,, but the NEW HOOSIERS that we just got --are much softer -- still easy to pop the shape back, have BIG holes drilled in them. scotty james helped me finish moving the softer ones to the front. i will try to keep on top of that little item.
sandy

My concern with all of this is if Sandy is someone in charge at NHIS and she really thinks that having SOFT tires in a crash area is a valid solution in providing then we are really in trouble. I'm posting this here instead of the USCRA line since we've heard that we need to be sensitive with regard to the NHIS management but come on, this is idiotic. The amount of man hrs spent drilling holes in tires could have bought some air fence which would have been a much better solution.

Craig
 

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I wasn't thinking exactly the same thing all night, but this seems strange . . . who is in charge of "safety" here? Should we all gather a posse and go around the track and fix safety issues (moving tires to where we think they should go?) and move airfence? Is management listening to the people in the field? Craig, I do not think it is clear who is drilling the holes in tires, though.
 

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evil,

My point is that tires shouldn't be used as a main safety feature. If a racer can end up with a broken back from hitting these things they shouldn't be on a track to begin with. They are intended to stop cars. Not flesh and bone.

If we can move air fence to the turn three area I'm all for that. Seems like there was a lot more air fence being used when we raced at the old Frontier track than is being used at the main track. Where is that stuff? And why isn't it being used now? We raced at the Frontier track one time there was LRRS stuff going on on the main track and they had air fence for both tracks then. Why not use all of it on the main track now that there's no Frontier track?

Craig
 

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Yeah, I think its odd that they don't use ALL of it ALL the time. Who "owns" the airfence? LRRS or the track?
That could be a reason why we never see it. Also, it could be that track staff don't have time/people/direction to set up the airfence for us.

Which leads back to other "management" issues... <bites tongue>

Have you been reading the hoopla between the AMA and the pro riders about Mid-Ohio? DMG certified MidOhio to be safe in the rain, but no track changes were made. Gotta keep the advertisers and TV happy... screw the riders.

And then there's these:
http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2008/Jun/080611h9a.htm
http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2008/Jun/080612res.htm
http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2008/Jun/080624d.htm
http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2008/Jun/080626bombshell.htm
 

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That Mid-Ohio thing is kind of interesting. DMG has certified it to be safe but so far they have no signed contract with the AMA that gives them any say in the matter. And they've said they've had no contact with the riders as to what they think is safe. And all of this is a moot point if it doesn't rain.

Now the MIC is looking to start their own series. If DMG doesn't start handling things better than they have so far they may have spent a lot of money to buy a race series that has no riders in it.

But back on topic. Isn't the LRRS owned by NHMS? If so doesn't that mean that the track would be responsible for the air fence? Anybody know if the USCRA contract with NHMS allows for requests for placement of air fence? Does the USCRA get to specify where and how much? Or does it specify if more air fence is requested it costs more money? I know air fence is a pain to get set up but it seems it's time to come up with a better solution than the tire walls in turn three.

I can understand NHMS's management's feelings in all of this. They are a business, and the goal of any business is to maximize profits. If they can sell every day on that track for the least amount of money they should. Motorcycles require more effort. Which means less profit - or more costs to the motorcyclists. We should be prepaired to pay more for a safer track.

Craig
 

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Jerry Wood owns LRRS, as far as I know. I don't know who owns the air fence, but it would make sense for the track to "own" it. Champ would know...
 

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ah yeah, the car ruts from the mud etc.....those suck. just ask dirty pete about his experience sliding across them. i wasnt saying it was impossible to get hurt there, i was just saying ive seen guys go off there really really fast, and still miss the tires, and that there are other places at vir that i would consider waaay more dangerous. i think the run off there is adequate for 99% of the "crashes". and you have to remember, it is the fastest corner on the track after a big downhill section, and its not really a corner where you would really "t-bone" the wall.i think the reason its there is to keep cars from going off into the woods. i think if it was a proven issues, theyd have plenty of room to move it back. although no one should get hurt from hitting anything, there is only so much room to allow for run off in anycase.


heres the only pic i have of that tire wall. as you can see, its not feet from the track. its not a mile, but its not close enough to be a real hazard in most crashes there, in my opinion. if thats what anyone would call close, then holy shit, stay away from louden or summit! hehe.


 

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its great that there is that much of an effort going into it. the pics cannoli cost you any donation to the aff. which is really cool. anyway, nice article. thanks.

jc
 
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