Sunday, December 13, 2009

State Championship at Industry Speedway

Yesterday rolled around with another day of much needed rain here in the desert called Southern California. Los Angeles has a river that flows through it but it is mostly concrete and is suitable for drag racng as seen in the movie Grease. We don't own an umbrella so Saturday morning I went to Target to search for one.

After not finding any while walking around the store filled with Christmas shoppers I asked a clerk in a red shirt and was directed to the negligee section where all I found were panties and bras, no umbrellas. The thought of using a mega super size bra for an umbrella briefly enter my rain soaked brain then left.

With the rain my options to get to Industry were: load the bike on the trailer and get both of us soaked, put the bike in the VW camper where only I would get soaked or stay home and finish reading my book (HOTEL on the CORNER of BITTER and SWEET) and stay dry.

Jeff Immediato doesn't like it when I complain about the traffic getting to his track so yesterday I brought along the book to read while driving out there but it was so dark from the rain I could not see the print. Most of the drivers on the freeway are texting so why not read a book.

Before I could load the bike in the VW I had to take my kayak out of the van. My sit-in kayak is 12 feet long and fits inside the van without any problem but there isn't any room for the JAWA too. The van will hold a couple of surfboards, a bicycle, a kayak and a dog and still have room to sleep in the upsatirs berth. The reason I mention "too" is the rain water was running over the curb here while I was loading up and maybe the kayak would be the proper selection for the day.

After everything was loaded I left early not knowing how the pits would be arranged to keep the riders and equipment out of the foul weather. After a few blocks of driving I passed the high school and a girls football game was going on in the pouring rain so racing under the Grand's roof would be easy and a lot drier. After I got to the track the pit layout was to say it nice: was cozy. Lots of pits had pop-ups and space heaters and I pitted next to Beach Ball right next to the crashwall away from the wind blown rain but not away from the flying dirt. My camera bag, tool box and kit box are now full of dirt.

Last week the track was dry, slick and blue grooved. Last night the track was (to be polite again) let us say sticky. Early on there was more two wheeling than sliding.
Through the middle of the pits there was a chalk lined path to get to the start gate. An additional gate was added for the riders to exit the track. The past two weeks my bike refused to start easily so  during the week I found the source of the problem and was able to start the dam thing by hand on the stand last night as there wasn't much room other than the track to bump off on. If one ventured away from the covering of the roof one could get really stuck in the mud.

The race was billed as the State Championship and followed a different format that the previous two winter nights. There wasn't any first division main event and the winner was determined by point totals for the night. All other classes had a main event. Butch Waymire #363 claims that I am writing a book and one chapter will be just my excuses. So here is my latest. While trying to repair my starting problem I discovered a broken throttle cable and that would take a trip to Cody's shop 22 miles a way so I got out the black electrical tape and made a half ass repair on the cable end. Having zero short term memory I forgot about the cable after the carb start to work correctly.

Then Thursday afternnoon Bill Cody called me to come over and fix his computer printer again. Years ago I sold the printer to him and when it breaks he calls me. So Friday I am at his shop surrounded by throttle cables and leave without getting a new one. During the first race the slide on the carb keeps sticking open because the cable is screwed. Well that bit of information will be included in the chapter on excuses if I can remember.

Since there wasn't any first division main event I didn't take a picture of the start. Ricky Wells had a perfect score for the night by getting every gate.

The races are over at ten and maybe that is when the rain stopped. Not sure when the next speedway race will be but Nate Perkins will be promoting one in February in Nevada. That should give me plenty of time to clean the mud off my bike and get a new throttle cable. Why only three pictures of Santa's Helper ? I guess some speedway shots were necessary.

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