Tuesday, June 14, 2016

2016 Road America AHRMA

We had great company all weekend even without a sign, this one left over Sunday late afternoon from the night before at our nearby neighbors.  I sometimes do have trouble making friends and will have to try this next time.  Our cooler did have some beer.....but we had more water and even better than that, enough shade.

First things first though, Friday morning.  I was in line at the gate just a few minutes after 6AM, anxious to be at or very near the front for the Opening Of Gates at 7:00.  Jim's 2 rigs were there before me and he should have been first in but then they routed us through the center gate; Jim too close to get over there without the rest of us making room.

Eric was right on time, always is.  He said 7 and he was there early.

There was fog along with the recent rain.

Steve was only a few minutes later and then it was discovered that Eric had left his armband in his packet of registration info so it was off to Registration to get a replacement.

As the sun began to burn the fog off, we headed up to the pits for our first of many walk-thru's.

My favorite NY racer......and a pretty cool chair.

 Canada Corner, corner 12 and something new.  A path providing access to the entire inside of Corner 11 through Corner 12 and most of the way up to Corner 13.

Last weekend at the Hiawatha BMW Rally I mentioned to our GS ride leader Curt that I'd see him at the track this weekend and a request was made to save his group a trackside campsite.  It was done.

Curt, Bill, Joel and George arrived mid-afternoon.  Bill on his Guzzi, the other guys on BMW's.  Jeff and Mike arrived not that much later, Mike on his Enfield/Cozy rig and Jeff on his new CR250.  It was a big day for those two, all the way from the Twin Cities.

We rode to Dundee for dinner Friday evening and it was busy.

There was wood for a Friday evening fire but the weather didn't cooperate and it wasn't just the weather.  Even before the radar showed the huge globs of red and yellow, the camp hostess was warning everyone that there had been a fire at a local transformer...."no power over the entire complex, take a flashlight to the restroom."  Seeing the radar (and the nasty black clouds coming at us from the west, I started picking things up and lowered the canopy to the extent that I could (should have done more than that....).

It wasn't all that long before we saw the few security lights flicker back on around the Carousel area and over at the restrooms.  I would have gone over there but decided that with the approaching weather, the PortaJohns would have to do.  Only just comfortably seated, I heard and felt the first blast of wind.  My small little building actually rocked and then rocked again, the message becoming clear that I was in a bad place.  A nearby security nightlight left a shadow of PortaJohn 2 of 4 on my opaque wall and that's when I saw the next door 'John tip forward 15 degrees or so and then flop back to vertical.

Things were getting serious and I wasn't being nearly quick enough.  As I walked out the door, John 3 and 4 went boom as they hit the pavement.  Before I was 10 feet away, John 2 not only went down but started to chase me.

This is what it looked like early Saturday morning skyward......

This is what it looked like Saturday morning looking over......

Banks of 'Johns all over the grounds, mine the ONLY freestanding one still vertical.

When I got back to our campsite, the guys were all frantically trying to save my canopy shelter.  Had I been through this before (or been paying attention), I'd have removed the fabric from the frame.  Many others did.... too many others suffered a lot more damage than mine did.  There were spider webs of hinging aluminum tubing in many garbage cans.  Saturday morning I was able to patch my tubing together with some duct tape supplied courtesy of Doug.

Friday afternoon, I somehow managed to hear my phone receive a text message.  I'd just sent Eric off for a test ride on the Morphous and even without expanding the photo, I knew exactly what and why he'd sent me the text.  Too soon done with his test ride, he came back and my question was, "where is it?"

I've been paying a great deal of attention to the CSC RX-3 thread on ADV and though I'd not seen any of the 250 machines in person, I was familiar enough to easily recognize the image that Eric had sent.  We've spoken at length about the bikes and he knew I'd be excited.  He described the guy, pointed to the general area and learned a few facts about both bike and rider.  It didn't take long when I realized where it was (Rob's usual camping spot) that I knew who the rider was that Eric had been describing.  This trip not on his Guzzi, Rob is the very proud owner of an orange RX-3.  It wasn't until late Saturday evening that I finally had a chance to really see the bike and get a chance to talk.

Through Corner 13 and on to 14

Dave Roper's Guzzi 500 single Bologna Slicer.  Engine missing here at the end of the race but it had been running race-ready.

The rule is "street legal only" on the grounds.....

These 2 Honda's were exceptional

Part of the Carousel village.....

The Memorial seems to get more extravagant  every year....

Big screens at various locations around the track are a very nice addition.

At the Bike Show/Rockerbox area.

A Burgman with an extra wheel....

Not everyone visiting our shade was old.....Joe, Valerie, Adam, glad you guys stopped by!

Doug was there on his Norton.....

Richard was there on his Triumph......

We rode to Kiel for dinner Saturday evening...

"Best breasts and butts in Kiel....."  (That's what their T-shirts said, I just report)

Doug was on some sort of mission.....

I visited the Gift Shop, Lauren needed a T-shirt.

More Pit walking.....

Almost time to pack up....

Even with the crazy weather Friday night, conditions were good and better than had been predicted.  Warm and sticky gave way to almost too cool and hazy.

Our GPS Tracks around the track....

Upon teardown, I realized that one of our group (we now know who) left their undapants on my trailer......guys, I've just been kidding about only having two pair, I'm fine, really.  

I stayed through Race 11 and was home a bit after 9PM.  Can't wait for next year!!


  1. Bikes, friendship and fun. Sounds like a perfect outing to me. Ok, the underwear donation and porta-loo incident was a tad bit irritating, no wait, I found it hilarious ;-)

    1. A great trip Sonja, we had a really fun time. The outhouse incident was a bit scary, but I was lucky enough to have fun with it.

  2. What a wild weekend, between the weather and finding underwear in your trailer, lol. At least they weren't women's.

    I am curious to know your take on the CSC, we've been intrigued but hem as potential addition to the stable.

    Thanks for sharing all the pictures.

    1. Brandy, I'd buy one of the bikes in a heartbeat. Well made, customer service beyond the pale and the bike is right up my alley in every way. I'm enthusiastic about the lack of dealer network and very use to not using or needing that sort of help. Rob let me sit on his, big bike ergo's, light(er) weight and all the power I've come to need these days. Larger luggage, a centerstand, better seat, power outlets, LED lighting were the options that he had installed in CA. For the first time in a long time, I'm tempted to thin my herd to make room for a brand new one.

      Rob had a warranty issue, a dealer down the block would not have been as responsive or as quick as CSC was.

      (Rob is just one more Guzzi/CSC owner)

  3. I'm also curious about the CSC RX-3. The price is attractive and the lack of a dealer network doesn't really bother me (apparently). I've only heard about them on the Internet.

    1. Richard, I follow the RX-3 thread on ADV almost every day via Tapatalk. I've come close twice now to just pulling out the credit card and making the call.

  4. Doug, that was too damn close to a very, very shitty experience. I'm very impressed that you took your time and didn't scamper out like a potato sack racer with your pants down around your ankles. Quel sang froid!

    1. David, the fun part for me was a bit later when I walked past the two guys with the tents nearest the potty station. They were playing Civil Engineers, examining topography, geology, sensing that one of few slops away from the downfallen Johns was right towards their tents. We didn't have a transit but I found myself in agreement based on how things looked from my vantage point.

      Listening and watching, I heard the one guy tell the other, "get down and smell it, see if it smells like rain water or if it smells "clean".

      The look on the other guy's face was one of those 'you had to be there' events. I'm still chuckling about it.

  5. Great photos, thanks for the share.

  6. .. it would have made a interest'n obit in the local paper... " Frontenac man dies in storm related incident ". :)