Report by Kirk Walton
Race 5 & 6 at Rocky Mountain Raceway
The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series was back in action this past weekend, September 22-25th, 2016. It was a ‘doubleheader’ with races 5 & 6 scheduled. Sportsman Motorcycle presented by Harley-Davidson was looking for a large field of bikes and snowmobiles. And despite the bad weather forecast for the weekend, we ended up with a good field of 23.
After a beautiful day of testing on Wednesday, with temps in the low 80’s, Thursday’s qualifying for race #1 didn’t look so promising. However, the weather held off to get two of the three scheduled runs.
Here’s how the qualifying went with Tom Medlin, La Mirada, CA leading the way. The last five bikes didn’t make a pass since they weren’t there on Thursday. The NHRA randomly placed them in those positions.
1 771 Tom Medlin, La Mirada CA, ’93 Suzuki Gsxr 0.002 0.002
2 L770 Larry Mota, Orem UT, ’09 Suzuki Gsxr 0.008 0.008
3 62 Cody Cumpton, Vancouver WA, ’95 Suzuki Gsxr 0.028 0.028
4 7001 Pete Miclette Jr., Garberville CA, ’05 Hayabusa 0.031 0.031
5 71 Rick Newport, Bluffdale UT, ’95 Suzuki Gsxr 0.036 0.036
6 736 Bryan Duvall, West Jordan UT, ’08 Arctic CAT 0.037 0.037
7 76 Ron Alves, Colusa CA, ’80 Kawasaki 0.040 0.040
8 7028 Mike Cragun, Sandy UT, ’79 Ninja 0.042 0.042
9 7151 Kirk Walton, Salt Lake City UT, ’12 Kawasaki Zx14 0.046 0.046
10 7010 Jordan Miclette, Garberville CA, ’97 Suzuki Gsxr 0.051 0.051
11 61 Jake Havens, Seattle WA, ’95 Katana 0.051 0.051
12 7052 Doug Schumann, Newberg,OR, ’08 Suzuki Gsxr 0.053 0.053
13 7461 Steve Kaplan, Acton CA, ’04 Hayabusa 0.106 0.106
14 7079 Don Nielsen, West Jordan UT, ’78 Kawasaki 0.107 0.107
15 772 David Wheeler, Murray UT, ’06 Kawasaki Zx14 0.120 0.120
16 7311 Tim Skougard, West Valley City UT, ’04 Suzuki 0.123 0.123
17 777 Jeremy Dennis, West Jordan UT, ’02 Arctic CAT 0.149 0.149
18 706X Eric Jaquith, Queen Creek AZ, ’06 Hayabusa 0.308 0.308
19 606 Craig Jensen, Chubback ID, ’00 Polaris XCR No Time
20 744 Wayne Taylor, Fairfield UT, ’94 Polaris No TIme
21 700K Keith Jensen, West Valley City UT, ’00 Polaris XCR No Time
22 7211 Ryan Kruger, Sandy UT, ’09 Kawasaki Zx14 No Time
23 7439 John Evans, West Valley City UT, ’08 Hayabusa No Time
Friday, September 23rd was supposed to be one more qualifying run and then right into race #1. The storm from Thursday night was worse than predicted and even caused some damage about 40 miles north with funnel clouds touching down! Friday, the rain wouldn’t let up at all and actually had almost 2 inches. Which for you outside the West might not sound like a lot but the annual amount is about 16″!
The NHRA came up with the plan to run race one on Saturday which originally was to be qualifying for race 2 and the “Night of Fire” Jet Car show. But again with all the rain, the track was mostly dry all day except about a 50′ patch in the left lane that had water seeping up all day. So late in the afternoon, it was decided that all classes would get one round of eliminations in and then continue on Sunday morning. With the temperature in the high 50’s and about a 10mph wind, the track conditions were going to be a question. Especially after they put the Sportsman Motorcycle class after the first round of the Jet Cars. But give credit to the NHRA and Rocky Mountain Raceway crew, the track was great. The bonus of the time of the run was the stands were nearly full even despite the cold.
Ron Alves, Colusa, CA defeated Eric Jaquith, Queen Creek, AZ with a better reaction time (.038 vs .249) and ran firstname.lastname@example.org (10.33 dial). Eric ran email@example.com on his 9.88 dial.
Kirk Walton, Salt Lake City, UT won by a redlight start by Wayne Taylor, Fairfield, UT on his snowmobile (-.151). Both were off the dials with Walton running well under at firstname.lastname@example.org (10.41) and Wayne at email@example.com on the 10.78.
I’m not positive but I’m thinking this might be the first time that Garberville, CA rider, Jordan Miclette has ever run a snowmobile. His opponent was local rider Keith Jensen of West Valley City, UT. Keith got the wholeshot (.024 vs .194) and ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.06 dial in. Miclette ran email@example.com on his 9.86 dial.
The next pair were familiar foes with Mike Cragun, Sandy, UT taking on the snowmobile of Craig Jensen, Chubback, ID. Cragun got the better light on the Kawasaki (.008 v .094) and cruised to a firstname.lastname@example.org win on the 10.48 dial. Craig ran email@example.com on the 9.90 dial in time.
Pete Miclette, Jr., Garberville, CA took on local rider in his first D7 race, Dave Wheeler, Murray, UT. “Wheels” was a little too anxious and redlighted with a -.018. Pete ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 9.04 dial. Dave ran email@example.com on the 9.87 dial.
The next pair saw another pair of locals that have been racing each other since high school. Defending D7 Sportsman Motorcycle champion, Rick Newport, Bluffdale, UT won this battle against Tim Skougard, West Valley City, UT with a run of firstname.lastname@example.org (8.74) vs Tim’s email@example.com (8.68) Tim had the advantage at the line, .066 vs .080.
Larry Mota, Orem, UT used a big starting line advantage to advance against Steve Kaplan, Acton, CA (.031 vs .269) to run firstname.lastname@example.org (10.07 dial). Steve ran email@example.com on the 9.41 dial.
In another one determined by the reaction times, Don Nielsen, West Jordan, UT had a .023 vs Cody Cumpton, Vancouver, WA light of .134. Don ran firstname.lastname@example.org (9.31) and Cody ran email@example.com breakout on the 8.88 dial.
The two teammates then had to race each other on the Arctic Cat snowmobiles. Bryan Duvall came out on top beating Jeremy “Tiny” Dennis, both of West Jordan, UT, when “Tiny” brokeout with a firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.95 dial. Bryan ran email@example.com on the 10.07, with the reaction time advantage .096 vs. .146.
Doug Schuman had problems on his dragbike and Cody Cumpton graciously let him use his backup Hayabusa. Doug took advantage of it and beat John Evans, West Valley City, UT (who had top ET/Speed). Doug had a .145 reaction vs John’s .142 but ran closer to the number (10.29) at firstname.lastname@example.org to John at email@example.com (7.70).
Defending Northwest Division champion, Jake Havens, Seattle, WA took on former winner of this race, Ryan Kruger, Sandy, UT. Ryan had problems off the line and Jake ran it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tom Medlin, La Mirada, CA ran the single run out at email@example.com with a .045 reaction on the 8.69 dial
Note, ran Sunday morning, September 25th.
Ron Alves, also on a borrowed bike, won another round, beating #1 qualifier, Tom Medlin. Ron got a nice .010 reaction time to Tom’s .057 and ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.30. Tom ran email@example.com on the 8.61
Bryan Duvall took on Doug Schuman and used a starting line advantage (.073 vs .191) to force Doug to breakout. Doug ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.40, Bryan ran email@example.com on the 10.06.
The battle of the West Coast champs, saw Northwest champ, Jake Havens taking the win over Rick Newport when Rick couldn’t run the number. He had the reaction time advantage with a .029 to a .066 but could only run firstname.lastname@example.org on the 8.67 dial. Jake had a nice run of email@example.com on the 8.39
Keith Jensen took on the other Miclette this round with Pete Miclette, Jr. Keith got the reaction time .046 vs .060 and ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.10, with Pete running a breakout time of email@example.com (8.94).
In another RMR matchup saw Larry Mota getting the .0400 margin of victory over Mike Cragun. He used a nice .011 light (vs .039 for Mike) and ran firstname.lastname@example.org. Mike ran email@example.com on the 10.45 dial.
The final pair saw Kirk Walton taking the win over Don Nielsen with a .052 vs .089 advantage on the tree. Don ran firstname.lastname@example.org on a 9.32 dial to Kirk’s email@example.com on the 10.41.
Round 3 – Quarterfinals
Larry Mota used a .027 reaction time to Jake Havens’.065 to force Jake into a breakout. Jake ran firstname.lastname@example.org on his 8.39. Larry ran email@example.com on the 10.09.
Kirk Walton advanced another round when Bryan Duvall relighted (.-050).
Keith Jensen advanced over Ron Alves when Ron brokeout with a firstname.lastname@example.org on a 10.31, Keith was email@example.com on his 10.10. Reactions were in favor Ron though, .045 vs. .065.
Kirk Walton won again with a redlight from a snowmobile. Keith Jensen went -.054 red and Walton ran it out to a firstname.lastname@example.org (10.29). Keith ran it out to a email@example.com on the 10.10.
Larry Mota used the single to see if he would run quicker like most everyone and did at firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.12.
In the final, both riders must have been afraid of redlighting since both were very late. Walton’s reaction was a .120 vs Mota’s .129. Walton had problems shifting and slowed to a email@example.com on a 10.14 dial. Larry ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 10.07. This was Larry’s first Pacific Divisional win and adds a second Wally to go with the NHRA SportCompact won in Pomona a few years ago.
Sunday afternoon, it was looking like it was going to be tight to get every race in by the 11pm curfew. So everyone got one qualifying pass and then into eliminations. We lost Doug Schuman and Tim Skougard for this race but picked up Cheyanne Price. As you can see with only one hit, a lot of riders when for the perfect light but redlighted! Jake Havens took the #1 spot with a .010.
Here’s the order for race #2:
1 61 Jake Havens, Seattle WA, ’95 Katana 0.010 0.010
2 7028 Mike Cragun, Sandy UT, ’79 Ninja 0.021 0.021
3 62 Cody Cumpton, Vancouver WA, ’95 Suzuki Gsxr 0.031 0.031
4 76 Ron Alves, Colusa CA, ’80 Kawasaki 0.036 0.036
5 7010 Jordan Miclette, Garberville CA, ’97 Suzuki Gsxr 0.043 0.043
6 7079 Don Nielsen, West Jordan UT, ’78 Kawasaki 0.049 0.049
7 700K Keith Jensen, West Valley City UT, ’00 Polaris XCR 0.049 0.049
8 L770 Larry Mota, Orem UT, ’09 Suzuki Gsxr 0.053 0.053
9 736 Bryan Duvall, West Jordan UT, ’08 Arctic CAT 0.066 0.066
10 7439 John Evans, West Valley City UT, ’08 Hayabusa 0.117 0.117
11 7461 Steve Kaplan, Acton CA, ’04 Hayabusa 0.141 0.141
12 706X Eric Jaquith, Queen Creek AZ, ’06 Hayabusa 0.159 0.159
13 744 Wayne Taylor, Fairfield UT, ’94 Polaris 0.162 0.162
14 772 David Wheeler, Murray UT, ’06 Kawasaki Zx14 0.181 0.181
15 700 Cheyanne Price, West Jordan UT, ’02 Arctic CAT 0.192 0.192
16 7001 Pete Miclette Jr., Garberville CA, ’05 Hayabusa -0.003 -0.003
17 71 Rick Newport, Bluffdale UT, ’95 Suzuki Gsxr -0.007 -0.007
18 771 Tom Medlin, La Mirada CA, ’93 Suzuki Gsxr -0.010 -0.010
19 606 Craig Jensen, Chubback ID, ’00 Polaris XCR -0.014 -0.014
20 7151 Kirk Walton, Salt Lake City UT, ’12 Kawasaki Zx14 -0.023 -0.023
21 7211 Ryan Kruger, Sandy UT, ’09 Kawasaki Zx14 -0.105 -0.105
22 777 Jeremy Dennis, West Jordan UT, ’02 Arctic CAT -0.119 -0.119
With the weather improving, and a tailwind, there were a ton of breakouts in the first round.
Jeremy “Tiny” Dennis took the win on his Arctic Cat snowmobile over Steve Kaplan’s Hayabusa in a double breakout. Tiny had the short time advantage with a nice .025 vs Steve’s .125. Dennis ran email@example.com (10.97) against firstname.lastname@example.org (9.31).
In the next pair, it was good to see Cheyanne Price back on her Arctic Cat snowmobile after taking the year off to have her baby! She ended up winning her first round back over Ron Alves. Another double breakout, Ron had the better reaction time (.046 vs. .165) but ran email@example.com on his 10.25 dial to Cheyanne’s firstname.lastname@example.org just -.006 under of 9.94.
Cody Cumpton took out Dave “Wheels” Wheeler running closer to his dial (8.78) at email@example.com to Dave’s firstname.lastname@example.org. Dave had the advantage, .143 vs .208 but couldn’t run the number.
Next pair saw the all-Miclette team. Pete Miclette, Jr. beat Jordan Miclette. Jordan got the better start with a .023 light vs. a .066 but broke out with a email@example.com run on the 9.87. Pete ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 8.93 dial in.
Two of the locals ran, with Rick Newport getting the first perfect light in the Sportsman Motorcycle during the weekend. He ran email@example.com (8.74) vs Don’s firstname.lastname@example.org (9.35) in the double breakout race.
Jake Havens took a .049 to .104 reaction time and ran email@example.com on a 8.34 dial to take the win over Eric Jaquith’s firstname.lastname@example.org on his 9.90.
John Evans ran right on his 7.65 dial with a nice email@example.com vs Ryan Kruger, on a borrowed bike ran firstname.lastname@example.org on a 9.00 dial. Reaction times were .093 for Evans to .146 for Kruger.
Keith Jensen had a good light (.023 vs .058) against Tom Medlin in an another double breakout race. He ran email@example.com on the 9.90 against firstname.lastname@example.org and the 8.59 dial.
Larry Mota ran right on his dial (10.08) with a email@example.com and a .086 reaction after seeing Craig Jensen redlighting by just -.001. Craig ran it out with a firstname.lastname@example.org on the 9.78.
Two more locals raced in the next pair. Wayne Taylor had the headstart but redlighted with a -.095 to give Mike Cragun the win. Mike had a .107 reaction and ran it out right on the dial (10.41) with email@example.com. Wayne ran firstname.lastname@example.org on his 10.86.
In another double breakout, Bryan Duvall took out Kirk Walton with a email@example.com on the 10.00. Walton ran firstname.lastname@example.org on a 10.14 dial. He gave Bryan the reaction time advantage, .142 vs .161.
The first pair in the second round were teammates Bryan Duvall and Cheyanne Price. Cheyanne had her sled die on the line to give Bryan the easy win. email@example.com (.054 light on the 9.96 diai).
Mike Cragun took out Keith Jensen with a .043 vs .158 reaction time and ran firstname.lastname@example.org (10.46) to a email@example.com (9.92).
In another wholeshot win, Rick Newport used his .031 light to defeat Tiny Dennis (.128) and ran firstname.lastname@example.org (8.73) to email@example.com (10.91).
Pete Miclette, Jr. also used a reaction time advantage against John Evans. Pete had a .078 vs .109 and ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 8.92. John had a email@example.com on the 7.64.
Larry Mota took another advantage .062 vs Cody Cumpton at .110 to win with a firstname.lastname@example.org (10.07) to a email@example.com (8.81).
Jake Havens used his #1 qualifying time to get the bye run this round and ran firstname.lastname@example.org on the 8.36.
Third Round – Quarterfinals
The quarterfinals were all determined by reaction times.
In the first pair, Mike Cragun had a .053 to Pete Miclette’ .131 to end up running a email@example.com (10.43). Pete ran firstname.lastname@example.org (8.97)
Bryan Duvall was the last snowmobile left and redlighted (-.085) and Jake Havens had a nice .013 to take the win. The times were email@example.com on the 9.98 for Bryan, firstname.lastname@example.org on the 8.35 for Jake.
Rick Newport had a .009 vs Larry Mota’s .069 to take the win with a email@example.com (8.73) to Mota’s firstname.lastname@example.org (10.06).
In the matchup of the current West Coast NHRA Sportsman Motorcycle champions, Northwest division champ took out the home team Pacific Division champ. Jake Haven used a .037 vs .080 reaction time advantage to win with a email@example.com on the 8.34 to a firstname.lastname@example.org on the 8.73.
Mike Cragun got the bye run to the final and ran it out with a .011 reaction and email@example.com on a 10.44.
The final was a close one with only one thou separating the reaction times. Jake Havens had a .039 to Mike Cragun’s .040. It was determined by a double breakout. Jake was closer to the dial running a firstname.lastname@example.org on his 8.36 dial to Mike Cragun’s email@example.com on the 10.46. The margin of victory was .0086.
With the results of these two races, the NHRA Pacific Division Sportsman Motorcycle presented by Harley-Davidson standings are that Tom Medlin remains in first place, followed by Denny Alves, his Father Ron Alves in third, Rick Newport in fourth and Larry Mota moves into the fifth spot. There is one race left in Las Vegas in November. That’s always a fun race with the biggest turnout of the year. Hopefully, we can get everyone there for a fun race!
Thank again to all the racers, crews and families for making the trip to Utah. The crews from Rocky Mountain Raceway and the NHRA Pacific Division deserve a big thank you for all the extra work this weekend! Also thanks to www.1320go.com for the live timing and www.dragracecentral.com for the updates. Photographer Chris Dake from Creative Resource & Design.