Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1990's

Cycle News 1990 05 09

Cycle News is a weekly magazine that covers all aspects of motorcycling including Supercross, Motocross and MotoGP as well as new motorcycles

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~ IN THE WIND By Papa Wealey ~ Am erican Billy Liles (Kaw) wo n h is second consec utive GP with a 4-1 mot o pe rfor ma nce in round tw o o f th e World Ch ampionship 500cc MX Series in Payern e, Switzer la nd, April 29. Kurt Ni coll (KT M) finished second overa ll and J eff Leisk (Hon) cla ime d third. Lil es holds a 24-point lead in th e sta nd ings over Belgian Dirk Geukens, 73-49. Itali an Alessandro Puzar (Suz) also used 4-1 fin ish es to win ro u nd two o f th e World Champ io nshi p 250cc MX Seri es o n April 29 in Maggi ora, Ital y. America n Trampas Parker (KT M) was the runner-up with a 1-5 score a nd H ollan d 's J ohn' van den Berk (Suz) completgd th e to p th ree wi th a 6-2 score. Raymond Roche (Due) was th e to p point 'scorer in the thi rd round o f the World Cham p ionship Supe rbike Series a t the Hungar oring in Hungary on April 29. Roch e ended th e day wi th a 2-1 tally, finishing second in th e first leg of th e race behind defending World Cham pion Fred Merkel (Hon), and winning the seco nd leg. Au strali an Malcolm Campbell (Hon) fini sh ed second in th e second leg with Stephane Mertens (Hon) third, Merkel fin ish ed sixth in th e second leg after winning th e first. Roch e lead s th e cham pion sh ip point standings over Merk el, 11197. Mertens is third with 76 po ints: Kurt Hough (Kaw) was th e overa ll , a nd 250cc class win ner in round two of th e AMA Na tional Cha m pio ns hip Rel iabil ity End uro Ser ies a t Sand Springs, Okl ah om a , Ap r il 28-30 . H ou gh topped Kevin Hines (KT M) by 153 points, 5222-5375. Rounding ou t th e top five were Czech oslo vakian Bohumil Posledni (Suz), defendin g AMA Na tional Enduro Champion ' Randy H awkins (Suz) and J eff Fredette, ( Ka w). O th er cl a ss winn er s were Jimmy L ewis (KT M), Dave Bertram (Suz), Drew Smith (Suz) a nd four-time National H are &: H ound Cham pion Dan Smith (KT M). Expert Steve Morehead (H- D) won th e a n n ua l Ohio d irt track season open er , th e Sp ringfield H alf Mil e, April 29. Geo rge Roeder (H -D) finished seco nd a nd Dan In gram (H on) was third. Jess R o e d e r (H -D) won th e Junior main, whi le 49-year- old Jack Warren (H- D) m arked hi s return to professional dirt track rac ing with a win in th e P ro-Am fin al: Californian Scott Gray (Su z) won th e ope ni ng ro u nd of th e WERA Formula USA Na tional Cham pionship at Willow Spri ngs Interna tio nal Raceway on April 29. G ray topped Daytona 200 winner Dave Sado wski (Yam) a n d T ho mas Stevens (Yam) by so me five seconds. T he WERA Na tio nal Endurance Ser ies roa d race wh ich was run on th e sa me d ay as the Form u la USA opene r a t Willow Sprin gs was won by Team Suzuki Endurance (Suz) over MidSou th Racing (Suz) an d th e H uman Race T eam (Yam) ; T he fin al round of th e World Championship Road Race Series scheduled for Sep tember 29 in Brazil has been ca nce led. Rep o rtedl y, th e new Sao Paul o fa cil ity d id n ot m eet FIM standa rds within the specified time frame. T he series will now co ncl ud e on September 16 in Aus tra lia . Ca li fo rnia 's Santa Cruz County su pervisors have in stru cted th e county counsel 't o prepa re a n ord ina nce th at will ban dirt b ikes and o ther off-roa d recreati on al vehicles from resid entialuse areas in th e co u nty . The move was a n no u nced a t a n April 23 public hearin g th at drew more th an a dozen resid ents wh o ex pre ssed a nger over th e no ise mad e by th e OHVs, one ca lli ng the riders " mecha nica l cowboys" a nd their use of the vehicles " barba ric ac tio ns. " According to local newspaper rep orts, no o ne spo ke in favor of OHV ri di ng in the areas in questio n. T he issue is one th e su pervisors of th e co u nty, which is locat ed so u thwest of Sa n J ose, have dea lt with for nearl y a year. T hey originally had so ug h t to a nswe r com p laints by empowering th e co unty p la n ning director to ac t as a no ise co ntrol o ffice r in enforci ng a lready existi ng no ise limi ts. But resid ents said th a t hadn 't wo rked a nd th at after th ey had com plai ne d to th e sher iff's dep artment or spoken o u t a t su per visoria l meet in gs, th ey had been su bjected to o rgani zed ha ra ssm ent ca m paig ns by th e bi ke rid ers, and o ne resid ent co m plained o f having received physical th reat s. T he p roposed ord inan ce will a llow riding on co m merci al a nd industrial propert y, but on ly with a use permit. Da ytona International Speedway's Bill France Jr. suffered fract ures o f , both ankles in a boat ing acci den t o n Thursd a y, Ap ril 26. According to Dayt ona's Jim Foster , " Bill a nd Jimmy (bro ther, Jim France) had tak en a 3 1foot fishing boat out on a pr e-purch ase tri al run and were running dir ectly into th e waves. A lar ge swe ll left Bill Johnson undergoes hand surgery _ u lt i-time Supercross a nd Nat ional MX Ch ampi on Ri ck J ohn son und erw ent surgery in Florida o n April 30 to repair the bone in hi s rig h t ha nd that was broken a t th e Da ytona Supercross in Mar ch . J ohnson in dicat ed th a t th ere was pain in the hand foll owin g the Ap ril 21-22 Pontiac Supe rcross, hi s first race since the bo ne was b ro ken , and th e hand th en becam e very sore following a tire testin g session on Ap ril 26 in Florid a. X-rays showed tha t J oh nson 's metaca rpal bon e was n 't completely heal ed , so J ohnson underwent surgery wh ere doctors grafted bo ne fro m h is hip to the bac k of h is ha nd. J oh nson is expected to be o ut of ac tion for eig h t weeks. " It 's not good to sit out, bu t I have to be 100% or th e fans will lose face," J ohnson said at th e Tampa Supercross, two days before undergoing th e surgery. " It will be six weeks before I ca n work o u t and lo ng after tha t before I ca n ride. I have to th ink of everything . It br ea ks my hea rt not to be o u t there ton ight. My target was th a t I was on ly 30 points down (in the 250cc Na tional s). No w I'll wai t for th e 500cc Na tional s to start in J u ly. I' m going to shoot for (a return at ) Unadilla on July 15." M 2 Roberts pulls his team from AMA racing A ccord in g to three-time World Champion Kenny Rob erts, he will no longer field his Marlboro-backed team in th e AMA National Ch am pi onship R oad .Race Series in 1990. Citing th e new AMA rule which req uires riders to display AMA Pro Racing decals o n mot orcycles and AMA Pro Racing patches o n leathers as unacceptable, Rob erts will ins tead en ter his 250cc team of Ri ch Ol iver a nd new recruit Robbie Petersen in th e WERA Formula USA Seri es. " We' re pulling ou t o f AMA racing," Roberts said in a phone con versatio n on Monday, April 30. " We ca n' t co m ply to th eir (AMA) rulea.and th ey have said th ey will stick to th eir rules. Our sponsors signages were sold prior to wh en th e rule was ado p ted in December , and it's not ri gh t for us to just give a wa y space. We are go in g to put o ur effort s tow ard WERA. We don't want any Team owner Kenny Roberts spectators showing up a t AMA races and not understanding why we're not th ere. " In my op inio n we're not going ba ckw ards by doing WERA. I was a t th e Willo w Springs ro u nd of the series yesterday (Ap ril 30) and I'm very pl eased with the . pr ogram. I'm happy and our sponsors are happy." Oliver, wh o won th e open ing round of th e AMA 250cc Championship at Dayton a in Mar ch, finished seventh in a field of su perbikes on h is under-powered Yamaha TZ250 a t Willow Sprin gs on April 30, but Rob erts said th e team will get Oliver a nd Petersen more horsepower for the upcoming rounds. Roberts also said that by th e end of the season the team will be using 500cc GP bikes. "Ultima tely we will have 500s," Roberts said. " In the meantime, we ar e che cking into var ious options o f making the 250s bigger. We wa nt to get 500s back to Ameri ca and this looks like th e way to do i t." Reach ed at hi s Westerville, Ohio, office, th e AMA' s vice presid ent of professional co mpe titio n , Ron Zimmerman' said: " It's interesting th at he (Robert s) advised you befor e he advised u s. If th ey'v e chosen not to com p ly with the rules, th ere's nothing we can do ab out that. " T he origina l rule regarding the AMA Pro Racing patches and decals speci fied th a t the patch es be worn on th e left shou lder of th e rid ers' leathers. According to Zimmerman the rule h as been modified to any ar ea o n th e lef t side of th e leathers ab ove th e wai st. There ar e no sp ecifics on th e loca tions of th e stickers, except th at th ey must appear on both sid es o f the mot orcycle. In a letter to Rob erts dated April 27, Zimmerman wrote: " It is not th e AMA's intention to p lace hardship upon teams or riders, but rather to en ha nce th e name recognition a nd marketability of th e AMA National Championship Road Ra ce Series to th e benefi t of all wh o have business interests in th e series." In closing, Rob erts sa id: " I think it a ll comes from (Ron) Zimmerman being from th e SCCA (Sport s Car Club of America ). They use the patches in th eir ra cing, but it's different. The guys that race sports cars ar e ri ch and th ey do it for fun . Motorcycle ra cers at this level are trying to make a living from ra cing. The spo rts car guys ar e th e only ones dumb enough to do something lik e this. " sus pe nded in th e air a nd wh en he came back down, he fra ctured the a n kles, th e rig h t o ne severely." Jim France a nd two crew members were not injured in th e inci den t which happened o ff Daytona Beach 's shore. Accord ing to Kenny Rob erts, Robbie P e t e r s e n will team with Rich Oliver at th e rem aining WERA Formula USA Series even ts as th e secorid rid er o n th e Marlboro-backed Yam ahas. Petersen tak es the place o f Ireland' s G ary Co wa n, wh o su ffered paralysis a t th e opening round o f th e AMA cham p io nsh ip series a t Da yton a; Petersen finish ed third at Da ytona. Roberts also rep orts that a seco nd Marlboro Yam aha 500cc Grand Prix rider will not be hired as a replacem ent fo r th e injured Ed die Lawson. Rob ert s said th at he hopes Law son is fit to return to ac tio n for th e Italian G P on Ma y 20. The four- time World Cham p io n su ffered a brok en righ t heel d ur ing a p ractice cras h pr ior to the U.S. GP o n Ap rilS, Team G ree n o ff-roa d aces Larry Roeseler a nd Ted Hunnicut will be o n hand a t a' specia l Kaw asaki Open H ouse at Mich ael's Su zu ki/ Kawasa ki in Ca rson City, Ne vada, May II, to sig n a u tograp hs and ben ch race with race fans' prior to th e 20th Annual Virg inia City Grand Prix tha t tak es p lace May 12-13. Yamaha is in th e midst of a realignment program within th e com pa n y and th e in itia l newsmaking move was th e eli m ina tio n of th e co m pa ny's support crews th at a tte nd maj or MX even ts to provide tech assistan ce to Yamaha rid ers. According to Yamaha 's Willie Am ar adio , " T he efforts of the su p po rt cre ws wer e d irected towards YZ rid ers and sales of those unit s have not amou nted to enough to merit th e full- time a ttentio n o f the crews. We hope to have th em back at th e races, but with an em p hasis on a ll typ es of racing - MX , road racin g, o ff-road, etc." L arry Griffis, who managed the su p po rt crew p ro gram, is still with th e co m pan y but th e thr ee technicians ar e not. "We've had cu tb acks," sa id Amarad i o, " b u t I wouldn 't ca ll th em sweep ing cu tbac ks. Several longtime em ployees retir ed p ri or to wh en th e reali gnment began ." An initia l study co nduc ted by the Los Angeles County,Dep artment of Parks, and Recreation o n th e proposed Whitney Canyon Off- H ig h w a y Vehicle P ark , loca ted near Santa Cl a rita , California, has determined that a n en viro n me ntal im pact report will be requ ired before the project ca n mov e a ny further. If developed , th e park will have two mot ocro ss tracks (o ne lighted for nigh t racing) a nd eigh t mil es of trail s. T he p ro posed park has drawn op pos i tio n in th e past from mo tio n pi cture studios tha t film in the area due to fear th at noise gene ra ted from th e park would inter fere with movi e filming. Junior class speedway racing,

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