October 15, 2007 - KELSEY SHINES AT SUZUKI CUP FINALS
Georgetown, Texas rider Danny Kelsey traveled to Road Atlanta for the first time and came away with big money from the Suzuki Cup finals while learning the historic Braselton, Ga. circuit. Kelsey competed on his GSXR-600 as well as the GSXR-750 that Sam's Cycle Salvage had loaned to him for the AMA Sports Horizon Award event at Mid-Ohio a month earlier...with the team having repaired the clutch that caused catastrophe during that event.
Qualifying/Practice - For all riders, learning the 12 turn undulating and high speed circuit is intimidating at best...doing it while trying to compete with some of the best riders in the country is intense. Kelsey found the Suzuki GSXR 600 and 750 worked well along the long back straight...until it was time for more fuel. A change in the fuel offered by the a local fuel vendor nearly destroyed the weekend for the team as the "NEW" U4.2 was dramatically different despite the vendor insisting differently...and when the team went to hunt down the VP Vendor to get answers...it was not pleasant to say the least.
The result was the team was forced to send their bikes off-site to have them dyno'ed and re-mapped which caused considerable logistical problems. Although both Suzuki's seemed to pull "cleanly", the dyno runs from the Official Suzuki Cup Dynojet Dyno showed the 600 was 16hp down on the class limit and the 750 was approximately 19hp down on the class limit. Danny would be entering a gunfight with a knife...because VP suddenly stopped providing what the team (and many other teams for that matter) had been running all season. Danny fought through this distraction and worked on stretching the throttle cables. The result was two very solid qualifying runs for the 600 and 750 cup finals.
Suzuki 600 Cup Qualifying Results
Suzuki 750 Cup Qualifying Results
Suzuki Cup Finals - Suzuki continued with the great hospitality and experience that has made the Grand National Finals a race to make sure you compete at...regardless of the results. WERA and Suzuki team up for an unforgettable week of racing that racers always want to come back to.
Suzuki GSXR 600 Cup Final - The race started well for Kelsey. Although he was still improving his knowledge of the circuit prior to the drop of the green flag, he had learned enough to immediately put his Suzuki 600 well into the ltop 10. With James Rispoli, John Chance III, Randy Sherman, and Skip Salenius battling for the first 8 laps, Kelsey was in a street brawl with all the competitors saving their best punches for the final laps. Kelsey put the hammer down the last two laps to secure 8th spot and cutting almost a second off his qualifying time. He was happy with the result, but realized he was still "learning the track" and looked for stronger results in the 750 cup final.
Suzuki GSXR 600 Cup Final Results
Suzuki GSXR 750 Cup Final - It was apparent that Kelsey final had finally figured out the Road Atlanta circuit and was now ready to make an aggressive assault for the last race of the weekend for #34. At the drop of the green flag, Danny rocketed into the top 10. With a his GSXR-750 chassis optimized for the circuit, Kelsey was on a tear and ready to move up in the top-5. After 10 laps, the Georgetown, Texas rider found himself in 7th place and ready for the Suzuki cash that is provided for a great finish.
Suzuki GSXR-750 Cup Final Results
The weekend would have to be counted as a resounding success, although this would be the 2nd National in a row that Danny found himself a victim of an ill-running racebike. At Mid-Ohio it was a clutch and a Power Commander problem...this time it was the fact that he had given up too much horsepower with the "new and improved" race fuel.