Iron Horse BMW's Peris Makes Road America Front Row
NEWS June 7, 2011
Photo by Brian J. Nelson
Back to back rounds of AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike racing left Team Iron Horse BMW/ESP repairing crash damage on Chris Peris’ #8 BMW S1000RR machine from Miller Motorsports Park in their assigned pit at Road America Raceway. With not enough time to head back to Tucson, Arizona to work on the bikes, the team spent the 24 hours of drive-time from Salt Lake City, Utah to Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin brainstorming the perfect plan for racing redemption. With an early arrival and a solid game plan, set-up went smooth, the work on the bikes went as expected and qualifying one left the team in a solid 6th position on the race grid. The rebuilt and improved bike, along with the thoughtfully implemented changes were working well and the team was feeling strong.
After a day of data from solid, productive track time and lots of analysis, Team Iron Horse BMW/ESP fine tuned the suspension set-up and were ready for qualifying two ... very ready! For the first time in over 35 years and the very first time for the S1000RR, the BMW qualified on the front row of an AMA Pro SuperBike race, beating off Martin Cardenas to take their position in line with Josh Hayes, Blake Young and Tommy Hayden. Team Iron Horse BMW/ESP and Chris Peris were on a high as their very hard working, talented and committed privateer efforts paid off in results. That afternoon, as the gates opened to the hot pit and the fans flooded in for a very busy fan walk between final qualifying and race one, there was amazing excitement shared between the team and the fans. Energy and spirits were running high!
With a 4:00pm start time, the team was anxious to race. Being on the front row had a spectacular vantage and the team was proud and confident. As the race was about to begin, a red flag was thrown, leading to an extended screaming, revving grid in danger of overheating, and potentially to the problem that Peris faced not far from the start line. Without even one lap completed, the Iron Horse BMW/ESP S1000RR pulled off the track with the haunting clutch problem leading to an unacceptable and devastating DNF. With heads hung only briefly, and gratefulness for the second round of the doubleheader, the team once again focused on trying to anticipate the data gained by all the other riders that saw the checkered which inevitably would increase the pace of race two.
A new day and a new chance left Sunday optimistic. Practice was steady and found the small improvements desired by the adjustments made. For a second time the team pulled up to the front row and was focused on a solid and exciting race. They got what they wish for as the battle and attention turned to a pack of BMWs along with Ben Bostrom and Roger Hayden. Every lap showed the results of both relentless determination and hopeful drafting as their was never ending changes in positioning. Team Iron Horse BMW/ESP’s rider, Chris Peris rode wide in turn five of lap one and then fought to reclaim their time and position. The end of the race showed the fight and spirit of the team to hang on and finish ahead as the lap times showed Peris getting as fast as high 2:12s at the end of the 13 laps of 4.04 miles per lap.
It was not the weekend all together that Team Iron Horse BMW/ESP wanted in finishes, but it was an amazing weekend of qualifyings and a tremendous amount of settled development and tuning of the S1000RR for the next round at Barber. The support from sponsors and fans elevates this team and keeps them moving forward. Follow them on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/TeamIronHorseBMW and/or contact their Race Manager, Jennifer Cartwright for any information of sponsorship opportunities.
Evan Steel, Crew Chief: "Well we had another roller coaster weekend, starting out with our teams second and the S1000RR's first front row qualifying effort in AMA Superbike, but unfortunately ending in disappointing race results. The highs and lows certainly need to be smoothed out into consistency and that will be our focus moving forward. We are a young as well as underfunded team, both of which leads to inconsistency, but we must overcome that to get the race results we want. We absolutely cannot give up 13 laps at race pace in the proper track conditions to our competition. The first race was much slower than the second one, at least in part due to the other teams learning and making improvements for race two. We didn't give ourselves that opportunity and had a decent but not great race two. At this level of competition any mistakes made are harshly obvious due to the high level of the teams around us. We are proud to be up racing amongst teams like M4 and Jordan Suzuki, but bitterly disappointed as well with our race results from this weekend as a whole.”
Jennifer Cartwright, Race Manager: “As a team, we continue to grow and learn and see very striking signs of our current potential and the results ahead. We are proud of the endless hard work we commit to each other, the sport of Road Racing and to our amazing fans. Our sponsors have made this dream into a possibility, but the budget still makes us struggle to breath freely and focus undistracted on the task at hand. We are always looking for solid sponsors for individual rounds or the remainder of the season. We try hard on the track as well as off of the track to be ambassadors of our Team, BMW, Road Racing and our fantastic sponsors. Because of our ultimate dedication, we are making significant, yet difficult changes to our program that will change our race results from Barber through Fontana. Bring on the racing!”
This would not be possible without the support of all our amazing sponsors: BMW North America, Iron Horse Motorcycles, Peris Riding School, E-MotoTires.com, Ohlins, Kyle Racing, GPR, Driven, Hotbodies, USMegaMax.com, Carrozzeria, TGP Racing, XCEL Trackdays, On The Level (OTL), RunGP, HT Moto, KurveyGirl.com, Speedcell, Topline Printing, Inc, BMW Motorcycle Magazine, Shoei, XpedX
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