Wednesday, October 24, 2007

8 Incredibly Fun Hours at Daytona

by Nicole Hoffman

We raced the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series finale this weekend – 8 hours of racing around Daytona International Speedway’s 3.56 mile road course on an SV650 with 3 riders (doing 2 or 3 stints each) and only one rear tire change. Endurance racing is so much fun to compete in. I have so much time to get my personal best lap times, while being a part of a big team with 8 other riders and a full pit crew.

We as riders are so dependant upon our crew to get everything together and do flawless pit stops. It truly is teamwork in every sense of the word. We made a stop about every 23 laps or so to re-fuel (and make rider changes). We think we could have gone the whole way on one set of tires, but didn’t want to take that chance.

I wasn’t sure how much I would be racing in the 8-hour event going into it. My team mates Bob Fisher and Chuck Ivey are able to put down more laps than me but with Chuck getting hurt in the second hour, it was left to me, Bob and team owner CJ Czaia. Well, I ended up racing more in one weekend than I have all year! I think I did about 75+ laps all weekend between practice, the 42-lap ASRA Team Challenge (we finished 2nd and I rode all but 10 laps!!) and the 8 Hours at Daytona. I didn’t get back to my fastest times I have done there, but I was happy about how much I raced.

This weekend was a huge accomplishment for me. Even though Mark, Steven and I won this event last year, I really feel like I tackled a huge, new obstacle in a way. After shingles (yep, just got over having shingles!) and not racing since VIR in April, I wasn’t sure what kind of shape I would be in…but I felt better than ever! Oh, and I got to race CJ’s Ducati PS1000LE – what a great bike (this is what we rode in Team Challenge).

Since it was Biketoberfest in Daytona we did a couple of great Kryptonite promotions. We gave away some locks at the Ocean Deck on Wednesday night and then had a show bike at Destination Daytona on Thursday night. I also made an appearance on a local radio station, WHOG 95.7FM. I have been on the Frank and Tracy show for a few years now. They were making appearances all over Daytona Beach this past weekend and were armed with some Kryptonite product! We also appeared in the autograph session before the race, and in a local newspaper article (I am at the bottom).

All-in-all a great and incredibly fun weekend! It was just great to be back on a bike again. I missed it the last few months. I always felt at home at the race track and this weekend just reinforced it even more. I have to thank everyone who supported us this year to help us finish 4th in the ST class of the 2007 SunTrust MOTO-ST Series championship, especially the folks at Kryptonite!

I am ready to do it again next year….as a matter of fact, I am signing off to get my work done for sponsorship for 2008.

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