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Discussion in 'Racing' started by nobrakes, Apr 25, 2010.
300 pound motorcycle racers?!
Nope. I hadn't planned on it, but the fact that I seem to be having a carb venting or some kind of problem on the 450 is factoring into it. When I tip the bike even slightly to the left, like one might do to spin a 180 to turn around, the engine wants to stall. Feels like it is flooding. But only to the left, does not do it to the right. Same thing happens when I go over a jump or something - starts to burble and sounds like it's going to stall. If it does stall, it takes a good bit to get it started again - like it was flooded. I made sure the vent hoses were not pinched, so maybe its internal. It's not the gas cap venting because I replaced that with a new one already.
The carb is probably due for a good cleaning, so I wonder if some little passage or something in there got a piece of dirt in and got clogged? Seemed to only notice this after the Devil's Ridge mud race mid-March.
I've been wanting to try the 200 in a race anyway. I just haven't had much seat time on it, so it I'm not sure it's a good idea in that respect. I'd be learning a lot about how it handles on the climbs and rough stuff on the fly.
If I can't figure out what's wrong tomorrow, I may switch for this race and see how it goes.
uh, yeah - not many but I live in the Fat Person Capital of the World. One would be surprised at how many people are 250+.
I spent all day working on the bike, I tore down and cleaned the carb real good, cleaned all the jets, flushed out all the passages with high pressure carb cleaner, and replaced all the vent tubing. I have been unable to reproduce the problem I was having yesterday. Not sure if I've solved it or not, though, as it seems to be intermittent.
Anyway, I'm going to run the 450 tomorrow. I've never run the Brushy race before, so I don't know how the course is, but I've ridden the trails at Brushy Mtn several times and they are pretty gnarly up hills, rocky, rooty, pretty tough terrain. So I'm gonna stick with the bike I know best and have already set up. If I was still seeing the carb problem I was having yesterday, I'd ride the 200 2t. But the 450 seems to be running well after tearing down and cleaning the carb.
I will try the 200 at some point this season, though. It's such a light and fun bike, I think that bike is purpose built for hare scrambles in the woods. I'll give it a shot, but just not this race.
Leaving bright and early in the morning ... riding with a buddy this time, so the 3 hour drive might go a little faster. We'll be pitting together, too, so that should be more fun than going it alone like the last race, though I don't mind that, it's fun too but in a different way.
I just got in from the race - I'm pretty beat. It was a great day, got to hang out with friends, had a surprise and welcome visitor from the VIU make the long trip out for support, and the course was pretty EPIC by most standards. Some of the climbs and course sections were Gnarly with a capital "G." There were severe bottle necks in some places where normally sane people somehow lose all rational thought, and some places had many good riders floundering like it was their first time on a bike. It was pretty tough.
I'll post more later, but I did pretty decent by my standards - I got a 10th place finish out of 21 riders. I was working pretty hard to do that, and it paid off with a trophy. Sweet! And it wasn't even a mud race - even better!
thats a great finish!!
Good for you. There is something to be said about staying calm and rational going into those bad uphills. Some guys just don't get it and turn a snotty section into an impossible mess for everyone behind them.
As I mentioned before the race, pre-race practice did not go well. In hindsight, I think it was due to being tired. What I may have neglected to say when I said I rode like crap was that I spent the first two hours clearing the trail of briars and overgrowth before I ever got on the bike. I was making heavy use of a gas powered hedger to do that, and lifting it head height and more for the better part of two hours must have done my arms in. So my practice ride left a little bit to be desired. Unfortunately, it had me doubting myself and questioning my bike set-up. That was Friday evening, race was Sunday.
But the bike running poorly was very real, and I spent Saturday, the day before the race, removing the carburetor and giving it a good cleaning. I removed the top and the needle, removed the float bowl and all the jets, and removed all the vent tubing. I cleaned out the body and all the passages with high pressure cleaner, inspected and cleaned all the jets, replaced all the vent tubing with new, and generally did everything I could to eliminate any trouble spots. I then took several short test rides, which resulted in a needle clip adjustment and several fuel screw adjustments before I was satisfied. Have I mentioned I am soooo ready for fuel injection?
After all that, I then had all the regular prep to do like making sure my gear bag was packed, got ice, fruit, and drinks from the store, camel back filled and packed into the cooler, sandwiches made, cooler packed, tools packed up, truck and bike gassed up, and all the gear loaded. So it was a busy pre-race day for me.
And I didn't sleep all that great that night. So I was a little apprehensive going into this one. All this just as I was thinking I was starting to get the hang of the racing routine ...
Picked up my buddy ... and then there were two.
It was great having someone to go with. The drive is long and boring. My buddy Jeff is not new to bikes, but is new to off-road and new to racing also.
We get to Brushy Mountain and the place is packed. We can't even get to the main parking lot due to it already being full of RV's and toy haulers. The lady at the gate directed us into the camp ground a few hundred hards away were we set up shop:
We end up pitting beside some acquaintances we met at the Devil's Ridge race. Even after only having done about 5 races total, I'm already making lots of friends and recognizing a lot of the folks there. It's a pretty small community where it seems everyone knows everyone else. Turns out there would be about 180 riders in our afternoon race and nearly that many in the morning Pro/AA race. That's a lot of people, and most seem like great people and would do anything for you if you needed a part or something, many would just give it to you without asking anything in return.
The rest of the day up until the race start was pretty uneventful. We got signed in, got our punch card, etc, walked about a mile of the track to check it out, and watched the pro race start. The main thing that had me worried was the narrow chute of the start. All the bikes lined in in rows, each row being flagged off at 1 minute intervals. So as many as 20+ riders all careening to the tree-line where they all had to funnel in between two big trees just 2 or 3 bikes wides was pretty harrowing. To make matters worse, going from the bright sunlight of the field into the darkness of the woods, there were even more trees just beyond the tree line in the middle of the trail you had to avoid, and just beyond those a slick mud hole to navigate - of course, all this while in a pack of 20+ riders, all of whom are trying to be in front.
So I had that to think about for several hours before my race started. :eek1
you gotta fit between those trees there in the middle?!?
did anyone actually think this through??
Yep, the two big ones. The guy on the bull horn said DO NOT go through the tape, that if it was too tight, you could shoot the small gap to the right of the big tree on the right. But it get's worse - just beyond are more trees right in the middle of the trail.
A guy in the pro race at noon crashed pretty hard, there, took a while to clear the bike and make sure he was OK to move before continuing the row launches. I thought it was pretty dangerous, and it had me a little worried. I was prepared to just hang back and be last if necessary vs getting busted up in a heap.
would it be that bad to leave in two's and do time trials instead of straight racing...?
That's not the hare scramble format.
After having been through it, it turned out it was pretty navigable. Aside from a few incidents, most folks made it through OK, though I think someone did actually break their toe in that "gauntlet."
I really wish I could continue the report, but work is calling and I need to attend to that before I can post up the rest of the repot. Don't go away, though, I've got snapshots from the helmet cam coming up, as well as the whole first lap of the course on helmet cam as well. And I was not entirely successful in avoiding the trees as you will see at the end of Lap 1. Of course, this particular tree had course markers all over it, so that makes it even worse that I hit that one - it's lit up like a Christmas tree, you can see it from a mile away - yet that's the one I smack right into. And ... to make matters worse, since it was near the end of the lap just before scoring, I had my little snafu right in front of about a thousand spectators. Noooooo, it couldn't happen miles back in the woods where if a dirt biker hits a tree and no one is around to see it does it make a sound? Nope, it happened where LOTS of people saw it, one nearby girl even screamed a little.
More later ...
you know they cover target fixation in the motorcycle safety course.... right?
Haha, true, but it wasn't exactly that. The call from the booth is that it was the inadvertent wheelie out of the rutted turn just prior and my inability to straiten it out that caused it. The play stands as called.
speaking of dumb crashes - I just finished bending my handguards back so that they dont shut off the motor whenever I turn to the right.....
Lets hear it for noob racing!
Hip - hip!
All the veterans are probably reading about our floundering around in these threads and making all kinds of fun of us when we aren't looking.
ahhhh who cares - it makes life worth living!
Right on brother!