Zero Dollars Racing pulled into Summit Point anticipating a great weekend of racing, a forecast of cool and clear weather in our sails. As we prepared for morning practice on Saturday I heard George Mood’s voice on the PA – and new we were in trouble. Those not familiar with George, when he ran WERA races he was known, and not entirely affectionately, as the Rain Director, for his supernatural ability to summon precipitation to a racetrack. Sure enough, it was soon raining gently. No worries – there is always second practice. At which time it was raining less gently. Having never found riding in the rain great deal of fun I scooched further under the canopy and waited for it to stop. By the time my first race rolled around, V6 Lightweight, the rain had stopped and a dry line was developing. Scott McKee, my V6 nemesis, and I conferred and decided we would each do the sighting lap and if it looked like crap we would act like the mature (read old) gentlemen we are and pull off. The track was damp but the only standing water was a small puddle at the turn in point for turn 10. So off we went. Now, you may remember that in the last couple of years Scott has added horsepower and modern suspension and dropped weight off of his FZR 400. It now pumps out HP in the 90s, sports an R6 front end and has light weight wheels. My trusty but tired old Hawk is heavier and about 30 HP down on power – so this has not been quite as close a year of racing as in years past. As in he usually smokes me. Kind of like my taking a piece of cooked pasta to a gunfight. Anyhoo, the start was the usual – I get the holeshot, the FZR gets on the pipe and blows by me into Turn 1 and off we go. Scott pulled out a few seconds on the first couple of laps and we cruised around going slow (27s/28s) reflecting the conditions. On the last few laps for fun I dropped into the 26s and thought about sticking a wheel under him in 10 for grins, but thought better of it and we finished 1-2. The next day dawned a bit nicer, but cool. Cruising around the pits I came upon a disturbing sight. Ben Vest, who has been gamely campaigning an Aprilia RS 250 the last few years had decided to step up, and holy crap has he done so. He showed up with an Aprilia 550 V Twin supermoto very trickly converted to a roadracer, with custom triples, GSXR front end, custom shock linkage and shock, Marchesini wheels and other goodies. It weighs 280 pounds and makes HP in the 70s. When I asked him how it handles he said “like a video game”. Yikes. So I gridded up for the D Superbike race, gridded with Lightweight Twins, with some trepidation. That went from “some” to “lots” when Bob Robbins appeared next to me on the grid on a Ducati 750. Now, I have been racing with Bob a long time, and when he shows up with a new bike it is sure to be well developed and stout. Sure enough, after I got the holeshot first Scott and then Bob stormed by me in turn 1. Me no likey, so when we got to turn 5 and the pack backed up behind the LW twins class I ducked to the inside, passing Bob, Scott and about half the SV pack into turn 5. Schweet. Scott came by shortly after on the front straight but I managed to hold Bob off. Scott and I ran 24s and 25s, Bob ran 25s. I finished 6th of 15 bikes on the combined grid (always fun to beat SVs on the Hawk) and second in D Superbike. Ben was clearly in the figuring the bike out stage, running laps that ranged from 24s to 28s, finished behind Bob, the pair of them in 9th and 10th. Next up was D Superstock, gridded with LW twins Superbike. Disturbingly there was Ben again. Fortunately Bob was gridded with the twins. Off we went. Bob clearly was getting his Duc sorted as he ran into the 23s and finished 5th overall. I ran 25s and finished first in class 5 seconds in front of Ben who was also coming to terms with the Aprilia, running 25s-26s. I did not care for this trend. Last race of the day was Clubman, gridded behind the 125s. I knew it was on with Ben at this point. He helped out by jumping the start – launching with the 125s in the first wave (he obviously wanted to bring in this race). That earned him a stop and go. I was probably a bit too incautious – I ran a comfortable pace of 26s and 27s, which had me finish first overall and in my class. However, Ben was running 25s and 26s and by the end of the race was closing. So as we wind down another fun event. Thanks to all my buds at the track – Scott, Dr. Mike, Tom Cutter, Brian Summers – all y’all. A special thanks to Quentin for always hooking me up with tires and anything else I need. Thanks to Continental for giving me winning rubber. Of course, thanks to Robin for letting me do this silliness. So a good time, but it is also clear we are going to have a good go at it next year with a couple of competitors stepping up the technology challenge. Bring it on!