Cycle News - Archive Issues - 2000's

Cycle News 2002 09 18

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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o o\XI o [b) CJ GiliCB Defending 800cc National Champion Walter "Tiger" Strank Jr. (Yam) scored his third straight win in round nine of the 2002 AMA National Championship Hillclimb Series at Freemansburg, Pennsylvania, on September 8. Strank clicked off the day's fastest ride, covering the Bushkill Valley Motorcycle Club's 500-foot hill in 8.327 seconds to edge Chad Disbennett (TriJ by .071 of a second. Points leader Dave Watson (Hon) finished third. Disbennetl ITri) celebrated his birthday with his third win of the year in the 540cc class. Watson (Hon) also leads the 540cc points chase and finished second, with Greg Williams (Kaw) rounding out the top three. o o r o o o o ~o Paul Carpenter (Hon) won the opening round of the Eastern Four-Stroke MX Nationals by Yamaha at Budds Creek MX Park in Budds Creek, Maryland, on September 8. Carpenter went 2- 1 On the day, while Kevin Crine (Hon) took runner-up honors with a 4-2. Defending champ Kelly Smith (Yam) rounded out the top three with 3-4. The opening round of the AMA Fall Classic Series L; also got under way, with Jacob Saylor (Yam) taking the win in the 250cc A w class, and Josh Summey taking top f\ honors in the 125cc A class. o 8 n " U With promoters of the U.S. round already dropping out. now comes word that the round of the SuperMoto World Championship scheduled for Palmerston North, New Zealand, on November 17, has been canceled. With the Kiwis backing out, the Australian round will now be held on November 17 instead of November 12. With two rounds completed, the series schedule is as follows: September 22 - ToulouseMuret, France: October 13 - Karntenring, Austria; October 20 Cuneo, Italy: November 3 - Athens, Greece; November 17 - Broadford, Australia. 8 8 o o o o o 8 Multi-time AMA 250cc Grand Prix Champion Rich Oliver yvill make his Formula USA Dirt Track debut at the Sacramento Mile on a Yamaha YZ426F on September 14. The ride was put together by Bob Hill and Mearl Barnett, who currently race in Pro Singles and wanted to help Oliver get involved in the growing Formula USA series, according to a release issued by Oliver. Mike Kidd, from Clear Channel Entertainment. was also very helpful and supportive of Oliver's desire to add to his Grand Prix road racing skills by entering into the dirt track racing discipline. "Mike Kidd has been just great: he has welcomed me into the series and has really made me feel that I can find a home there," Oliver said. "It's a nice change from what I'm used to dealing with. It's going to be very exciting to be out on the mile track and to try my hand at something new. I've flat tracked mini bikes for years. I 8 o o o 8 o o o 8 2 SEPTEMBER 18, 2002' cue Walt Mahony, one of motorsports' most prolific photojournalists, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Sunday morning, September 1. Mahony had been an active photographer for more than five decades, shooting over a quarter million photos, beginning in 1951 at Carrell Speedway in Los Angeles. Along the way, he had time to be a charter member of the Califomia Roadster Assodation (later to become the "CRA" sprint car group), as well as serving on their board of directors for seven years. He also owned the car in which future Indy 500 veteran Dempsey Wilson won the famous "500 Lapper" at Carroll Speedway. He personally set several class records at drag strips around Southern California in the late forties, and was a regular competitor in the SCTA "dry lakes" time trials. In 1956, Mahony put all of his energy into the design and building of Los Angeles Speedway, later known worldwide as Ascot Park. He served as the track pbotographer there, as well as to the Agajanian family, until the track closed in the early '90s. Over the years, he had a few "straight jobs," including work in the photographic departments of Universal Studios, Paramount Studios, and the Los Angeles HaroldExpress. Walt also appeared in several feature films and was very proud of his SAG card. Mahony managed Trackmaster Racing Frames for Ray Hensley for a time, then bought the famed motorcycle chassis company in 1971. The "squashed backbone" mile track frames for British twins and triples were Walt's design, as well as many other innovations that keep Trackmaster frames in demand still today among "vintage" racers. During that time, be owned Ascot-winning Triumphs and Yamahas for riders like John Hateley and Ron Moore. When Ascot closed, the native Califomian "retired" to Missouri, where he was the track photographer at Airport Speedway in Springfield until this past July, when he grew too ill with cancer to continue. A memorial race in his honor will be held there soon. In August, Walt was inducted into the Motorcycle Dirt Track Hall of Fame for his contributions to, and his zeal for, the sport. On October 19, he wili be inducted into the AMA Hall of Fame in Ohio. Walt Mahony was 76 years old, and leaves behind a son and daughter-in-law, Dan and Vickie, both motorsports photographers, and a daughter and son-ifl-Iaw, Kimberly and Joe Mahan, and granddaughters Bridget and Cassidy, all living in Missouri. In lieu of flowers, Mahony said you should buy a six-pack of Cbrona, a Sinatra tape, and enjoy life for a while. was taught by Kenny Roberts when I rode for his U.S. team, but this is no mini bike or mini-bike track! I really want to thank Mearl for loaning me his bike, and Bob for all the help and advice. I just want to do the best I can and learn as much. as possible, I don't have too many unrealistic expectations at thiS point, but if it goes well I'd sure like to race more of these Pro Singles events next season. I can't wait to try a TT race: I'll feel more at home when I get to use the front brake and turn right." Clear Channel Entertainment's motor sports division recently announced the television dates and times on ESPN2 for the recently publicized international supercross events that make up the first two rounds of the 2002-2003 FIM World Supercross GP. sponsored by Thor and Parts Unlimited. The one and two-hour programs will feature 250cc racing from the first two events of the season, bringing eight hours of the December international events to ESPN2. Round one will be held in Geneva, SWitzerland, at the Palexpo, and round two will be held in Arnhem, Hoiland, at the Gelredome. "The addition of these international broadcast dates to our ESPN2 package is part of our continued efforts to help brand riders on a global level." said Ken Hudgens, vice n e _ s I e president of marketing, Clear Channel Entertainment - Motor Sports, in a Clear Channel press release. "These two events set the tone for the series before they return to the Unites States and chase down the World Supercross GP title." "This continues to hold the door open on a global level for expanded television exposure and sponsorship opportunities for the riders and teams of supercross, expOSing the American sport to a worldwide audience, while bringing the international events coverage home to USA viewers," said Charlie Mancuso, president, Clear Channel Entertainment - Motor Sports. Rob Simmelkjaer, director of programming for ESPN, added. "Hosting the first two international FIM World Supercross GP events on our networ-k is a tremendous opportunity. The sport is enjoying unprecedented worldwide attention, and we are thrilled to be involved at thiS pinnacle in supercross' growth." So far, 548 riders have signed up for this year's 77th running of the International Six Days Enduro in Jablonec nad Nisou, Czech Republic, September 24-29, and over 30 countries will be represented, including Belarus, Israel and Latvia: The three teams with the most riders are the United States, Great Britain and Holland. This year's U.S. Trophy team is made up of ISDE veteran Fred Hoess. David Pearson, Tim Taber, Ron Schmelzle, Greg Gillian and Brian Sperle, and the Jr. World team is made up of Morgan Crawford, Wallace Palmer, Jonathan Seehorn, and Bill Radecky. Nick Pearson had originally qualified to ride on the U.S. Trophy team. but he was seriously injured a few weeks ago and will be forced to miss this year's event. Pearson was practicing on a motocross track when he mistimed a double jump and slammed his jaw onto the handlebars, possibly making contact with his bike's steering damper, as well. Pearson' s jaw was badly broken and some of his teeth were knocked out. Cycle News will be on hand at this year's ISDE and, if all goes well. will be posting daily updates on our website throughout the event. Chaparral Motorsports in San Bernardino, California, will host its 16th annual Monster Block Sale on Saturday, September 28 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 50 vendors are slated to attend. For more information, call 909/889-2761. No Limit Motor Sports has announced that they have reached an agreement with Honda Racing to race as a Honda support team for the 2003

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