After leaving Sonoma and having a 41-hour drive home we had a lot of time to plan what was going to happen at MSR for the next couple of weeks. With the schedule change this year we had more time to prepare for the Countdown to the Championship. I am pretty sure that’s going to benefit us when we come down to the last couple of races of the year. I will say that we really missed going to Brainerd this year. That’s always such a fun race because of the awesome fans at the Zoo. Hopefully someday we will make it back up there for a reunion.
Our first thing on the agenda to do when arriving home was to get all these motors apart and order parts. It’s midseason and time to order enough to get through the end of the year. After being on the phone a lot we have finally got all that accomplished and shipments were arriving daily. Matt has also been in the process of designing some new parts for us to use on our Viper S&S-powered Buells. These keys items should be an asset to us when it all starts to count.
We had a test session scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday this past week. With the weather forecast not promising we were unsure of how much we were truly going to get to test. We arrived Wednesday morning early at the track with an 80 percent of rain at 9:00 a.m. Not the forecast you even want to show up at the track for. We had to put our positive spirits on and hope for the best. We were testing four Pro Stock bikes and one Pro Mod bike. So we had a lot to accomplish and we didn’t need rain. After warming all the bikes up Wednesday morning and servicing them we were ready to go up. The boys were getting their suits on and the bottom dropped out of the sky. It basically flooded the track and rained for a couple of hours. The folks at the track finally called it for the day. Not a successful day for us. That meant we had a ton of work to do the next day. Matt chatted with someone who had the track rented on Friday and they said we could test then as well. So I was relieved. Thursday was very successful. Dawn Minturn and Keith Nichols come in so Dawn could test her bike she will be riding in Indianapolis next week. Also John Hall and Bobby Webb made it up as well to test. Matt tested a motor in his bike and Matt rode Tyler’s Pro Mod bike. Needless to say it was extremely busy. Everyone did a great job testing. Matt went 4.16 and 170+ on Tyler’s Pro Mod bike. That was a huge gain. We had been struggling with some issues with the bike but thanks to Steve Nichols and Eric Gash from Haltech they got us all fixed up.
Finally after the dust had settled it was almost time to enjoy some dinner but not before we had a little something go bad. I was changing motors in Matt’s bike when Chad Hester came over from working on Rickie’s car to get me in a panic. I said what’s wrong. He yelled come on something happened to Rickie. I immediately went into my medical mode. Rickie touched the fan on his car and cut his finger COMPLETELY off. Yes I said completely. He was in some major pain. We had to get an ambulance there and get him to the hospital. I was helping Rickie while saying they had to find the other part of the finger. Previously I had to deal with this a couple of years ago with my mother so I knew what to do. We found the portion he cut off and got it on ice so we could send it with him. Needless to say after Rickie got to the hospital they could not put it back on because it wasn’t a clean cut. I will say this. Rickie Smith is one bad man and dedicated is an understatement. He was back at the track that night and tested his car the next day. I don’t know anyone that would do that. I’m just thankful I was there to help and thankful he was ok.
On Friday Matt and I both tested and the results were great for him. We learned some stuff with the motor that was in my bike. Isn’t that what testing is for? Thankfully we will go back to the shop and work extremely hard for the next couple of days until we leave for Indy on Wednesday. I kind of wish Wednesday was here now. A little tidbit about Indy. Colbert Seagraves is so awesome. He got us some new helmets from Simpson and man are they going to be shining bright on Friday. If any of you follow me on Instagram or Twitter I am sure you have already seen some preliminary pictures. I honestly can’t wait to see it in person and to put that baby on my head and take it down the quarter mile. I am excited for Indy. This team is ready to contend for this championship. We are bringing the A game as I always say. WE ARE IN IT TO WIN IT!!! Nothing would be sweeter than to bring Viper Motorcycle Company an NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle Championship on there first full season as being a sponsor. LETS DO THIS BOYS!!