Posted by: Jessie | July 20, 2010

Superbike Saturday at Mid Ohio

We slept in a little bit Saturday, had breakfast at the hotel, and then took a leisurly ride to Mid Ohio Sports Car Course.  We did not have to wait in line at the track, which I thought that was a little strange.  I remember there being lines before.  There were a few vendors there, unlike years past when there were tons of vendors.  It was not crowded at all, and in the past I remember it being crowded.  This year there were only about half as many people there are usual.

We strolled past the vendors.  Eric was looking for a new pair of boots, but nothing caught his eye.  Nothing caught my eye either.  Track food has really improved over the years.  I had a grilled cheese panini on multi grain bread with a salad for lunch.  Eric had a chicken panini and a salad.  We were both dissappointed in the salads, the lettuce and cucumbers were semi-frozen.  Oh well.  Still better then the greasy fries they used to serve. 

The lack of crowds made it easy to get a good seat for the races.  We found a shady spot in Thunder Valley, set up our chairs and settled in.  The first race was SuperSport.  This is the “intro to professional racing” class.  In order to race in this class you must be between the ages of 16 and 21.  The bikes have 600 cc engines and top speeds are around 160 mph .  Even the youngest riders in this class have around 10 years of racing experience.  Any rider who has finished in the top-10 in any other AMA Pro Road Racing class is also not eligible for SuperSport, regardless of age.  Success in SuperSport also means successful graduation from the class. Any rider that wins a SuperSport season championship is no longer eligible in the class and all riders are no longer eligible after three season of competition in the division. 

Elaina Meyers is 16 years old, and this is her first year racing professionally.  On May 15 this year she became the first woman to win an AMA Pro Racing professional motorcycle road race, at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, California.  She is racing in the SuperSport class.  I moved out of the shade down to the fence to cheer her on.  It was an exciting race.  She was in the middle of the pack, and during the 17 lap race she passed others and then she got passed, she really battled it out and finished 8th.  Damn fine job for a rookie.  I was able to get some pictures.

Elena Myers in action!

The next race was Daytona SportBike.  I tried to take pictures but the racers were just too fast.  By the time I snapped the picture the bikes were gone.  Melissa Paris races in this class.  She did not do very well this race.  By the second lap she was in last place.  We could tell there was something wrong… she wasn’t pushing as hard as she usually does.  After several laps I did not see her anymore.  The good thing is that we did not hear the announcer say anything about her.  If she had wrecked they would have announced it.  I didn’t find out until the next day what happened.  I’m going to keep you in suspense until my next post.

The next race is American Superbike.  This is the premier class.  There are a lot of really good racers in this class and they are well matched.  Every race I’ve seen for this class this year has had some great battles.  Josh Hayes is married to Melissa Paris, and he’s the one I’m cheering for this year.  He finished First on Saturday.

It was so hot at the track I could not wait to get into the air conditioning.  It was 90 degrees in the shade, but I had spent so much time in the sun taking pictures that I was pretty sunburned.  After the races we went to Bucks for dinner.  Eric said that he has seen racers hanging out here after the races.  We did not see any there Saturday night, but the food was pretty good.  The margarita special was pretty good too.  I ate all the salt off the rim and crunched the ice.  I felt much better after salt, ice, air conditioning, and food.  The booze helped too, but I had to be careful since we were riding our bikes back to the hotel.

When we got back to the hotel we cooled off in the pool, relaxed in the hot tub, and went to bed early.


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