HeadLine News

Friday, December 17, 2004 - 08:19:40 AM EDT

Dragbike.com

Johnny Mancuso


Breaking records or breaking bones - All in a day's work for Johnny Mancuso

More accustomed to breaking speed records on his Nitro Harley, Johnny Mancuso broke something else entirely during his final qualifying run at the AHDRA Arizona Bike Week Nationals Phoenix Arizona last weekend. "After three qualifying runs, each better than the one before, I was running Tracy Kile when we collided in the shutdown area," Johnny says from his racing shop in Houston, Texas.

A race official was directing Mancuso off the track, putting him into the path of Kile who, experiencing handling problems, could not stop his bike in time. "Tracy was coming up on me fast so I tried to pull the bike back to the right, but it was too late, "adds Johnny. "I was struck on the left side and both bikes went down. Luckily, Tracy was not hurt, but I ended up with a broken left fibula and two broken ribs."

The good news - Team Mancuso is still ranked in the Top 14 and is looking forward to the big show, the inaugural Screamin' Eagle Nitro Harley NHRA event in Bristol. "Even though I went down and Steve Storduer experienced clutch trouble, spinning his tire most of the weekend, we still managed to make things happen as a team!" said Johnny. "In fact, my last run before the crash turned 208 mph at 6.68, still qualifying me fifth out of 32 bikes." The bad news - "Along with the leg and ribs, I screwed up a great new paint job!"

Racing Nitro Harleys at this level is as dangerous as it is exciting, and Johnny Mancuso is a walking, talking testament to this dynamic. "I have raced before with broken ribs after a major engine explosion in October 1998, and I plan to race again in Bristol," Johnny said. "My prognosis this time is complete recovery, but Pros have to be prepared to ride with pain. However, I will not attempt a run if I don't feel safe."

"My thanks to everyone for their calls and support this past week, especially Anne Paluso of Screamin' Eagle who helped me from the track to the hospital. And thanks to my team, who are rebuilding my bike while re-working Steve's so we can both be ready to ride at Bristol."

The Mancuso Racing Team of Steve Stordeur and Johnny Mancuso is sponsored by Arias Pistons, Autolite, Ballistic Bikewear, Barnett, Diamond Cut Jeans, Dynatek, The Gates Rubber Company, Greg Good Race Heads, JIMS, Lincoln Electric, Mickey Thompson Race Tires, The Minute Maid Company, Motion Pro, RC Components, Red Line Oil, Vanson Leathers, Victory Valves, VP Fuels, Weekend Frame Co., YUASA Batteries and Mancuso Harley-Davidson.


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