Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MIRock Superbike Series
event: Honda-Suzuki of Sanford Spring Bike Open
when: March 17-18, 2012
where: Rockingham Dragway in Rockingham, North Carolina, USA
story and photos by Tim Hailey
Jeremy Teasley burns out the 190 on Ken Edwards’ “No Joke” ‘Busa
Multi-time motorcycle drag racing champion Jeremy Teasley was not having one of his customary easy weekends—not by a longshot. Looking to win his first Orient Express Pro Street championship, the 21 year-old Ohio native Teasley moved into the seat of Kenny Edwards’ “No Joke” Suzuki Hayabusa. Immediately, the bike started running record numbers but destroying tires while it did so. Edwards took the radical step of changing from the class standard 190 tire to an 18 inch tall, 8.5 inch wide wheel shod with a Continental Attack 240 race tire cradled in a new Roaring Toyz swingarm.
BigTire, Big Development Curve: Teasley burns the No Joke’s 240 Continental
The team brought the new combination to the Honda-Suzuki of Sanford Spring Bike Open—the opening round of the 2012 Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MIRock Superbike Series, the biggest championship in motorcycle drag racing. But in Friday night testing, the big tire struggled to handle Rockingham Dragway. By the end of the night, Edwards decided he was switching back to the 190.
Danny Cox and the Hampton Roads Harley-Davidson sponsored, HTP-built nitrous ‘Busa
But the turbocharged Suzuki Hayabusa wasn’t doing much better with the 190. With heavy spring pollen coating everything in sight, the high-powered Pro Street bikes battled for grip. Number one qualifier was taken by the unheralded Danny Cox with a 7.24 at 201 mph, riding the Hampton Roads Harley-Davidson sponsored nitrous ‘Busa built and tuned by HTP Performance’s Cecil Towner. The HTP Performance ‘Busa ridden by Hoosier Ryan Schnitz, the first bike ever to run a 6 second quarter mile on a street legal tire, was stuck in fifth and Teasley in sixth.
Ryan Schnitz’s riding into the sunset and lane choice for the Pro Street final with Teasley
Two time defending DME Real Street champ Teasley posted a very rare redlight in round 1 of his title defense in that class. His weekend seemed to be getting worse by the minute. But Pro Street whittled its way down to Teasley and Schnitz in the final. As bikes spun off the line, Teasley grabbed the track and powered to the finishline for the win while Schnitz spun again and sat up on the bike.
“We spun, spun, spun, and spun some more,” said Teasley. “I think Real Street bikes could have beat the Pro Street bikes this weekend.”
“We will be getting back to the Roaring Toyz 240 swingarm kit and the Continental Attack tire by the next race,” said Edwards. “We need to make a few adjustments to the swingarm pivot to make our setup work better. Reinventing the wheel is a big deal in drag racing, but we learned a lot at The Rock about our setup. So keep posted on upcoming testing at the Manufacturers Cup race. We will run the Michelin 190 tire if needed to win the event, but never doubt the patch the Continental puts down on the track. Its future looks very bright.”
Teasley on Ken Edwards’ B-King in 5.60
That wasn’t the only win for Teasley and bike owner/tuner Edwards, as Jeremy also won FBR Shop 5.60 on Edward’s Suzuki B-King. It’s a hallmark of Teasley’s skill that he’s able to move seamlessly between vastly different kinds of equipment in classes with very different demands. Teasley and the B-King streetbike beat Jason Herron and his GS dragbike on a holeshot in the eighth mile index class.
“It’s nice to have won the last three events with the No Joke Pro Street bike and the last two 5.60 races with the B-King,” said Edwards. “It’s been a long hard expensive road to travel but its finally paying off.
“I want to thank all my sponsors—Roaring Toyz, Exoticycle, Motul Oil and Carrillo Rods, along with Andrew Pierce and Bill Warner for all their support. I would also like to thank my wife Julie and my beautiful girls Savanna and Barbrann for always being there with unselfish love for me and the sport. And Jeremy Teasley for the phenomenal riding skills he has. He is a very humble young man with a bright future ahead of him.”
And Teasley thanked Edwards. “He worked ALL weekend long on the bike. And thanks to Wayne Robertson for putting the 5.60 bike back together. Also my dad (James “Crow” Teasley) for driving all the way. And my brother Brandon finally broke out of retirement and won a race (House of Speed Crazy 8s)”
Here’s something you didn’t see very often: Jeremy Teasley with a redeye in his lane
Teasley’s early Real Street ouster opened the door for Floridian Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin, who doesn’t need much of an opening. Dobrin’s won many Real Street races at Rockingham’s sister track Maryland International Raceway, but Teasley came into the weekend winner of nine out of the last ten at The Rock. Running turbo record numbers (7.777) on his ‘Busa, Dobrin beat Brick City’s Ashon “Capo” Dickerson’s nitrous Suzuki GSXR1000 when Ashon redlit in the final.
Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin out ahead of Ashon “Capo” Dickerson in qualifying
Ronnie Procopio started his Pro Mod title defense with a win at Rockingham
Defending class champion Ronnie Procopio continued his domination of Mickey Thompson Tires Pro Mod, qualifying number one with a 4.14 and taking the final round win over longtime rival Robbie Hunnicutt in the hair raising eighth mile class.
Brandon Teasley keepin’ in it all in the family
Keeping as much of it in the family as possible, Teasley’s older brother Brandon won House of Speed Crazy 8s on his beautiful blue ‘Busa. Brandon beat number one qualifier Chuck Victor in the final.
Boo Brown gettin’ it done
Mike Schulz had a ball doubling up at The Rock
MIRock veteran Boo Brown celebrated his birthday by winning Trac King/APE Top Sportsman, overcoming a .015 by his rival Shayne Proctor in the final. But on Saturday, Brown fell victim to Virginia racer Mike Schulz’s relentless march to two Brock’s Performance Street ET wins. Schulz beat perennial runner-up Terry “T-Bone” Singleton in Sunday’s final. Jerry Turner beat Clay Davies in Saturday’s Nitrous Express Pro ET final, and Clay’s brother Matt fell victim to Michael Herman Sr. in Sunday’s final.
Mike Herman Sr.
Richard Gadson ’bout ready to make “Area 51” scarce
Saturday night’s Afterdark Underground saw passes by some of the most famous and elusive grudge bikes in the land, including the near-mythical “Area 51” and HTP’s “Cobra Commander.”
The Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MIRock Superbike Series returns to action April 28-29 with the Fast by Gast Spring Nationals at Maryland International Raceway.
Schnitz and Teasley in Pro Street final
It wasn’t pretty, but Ryan Schnitz gained lane choice with a 8.49 for the Orient Express Pro Street final coming up against Jeremy Teasley. Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin will face Ashon “Capo” Dickerson in the DME Real Street final, and Ronnie Procopio won Mickey Thompson Pro Mod over Robbie Hunnicutt.
Teasley redeeming himself in Pro Street
Jeremy Teasley ran low ET with a 7.30 in round 2 of Pro Street
After a very rare redlight in DME Real Street, Jeremy Teasley ran low ET with a 7.30 in round 2 of Orient Express Pro Street, taking out #1 qualifier Danny Cox. “That should be enough to win here this weekend, because nobody else can get dow the track,” said Teasley. “I hope…” Teasley faces Joey Gladstone, who’s struggled mightily to beat Teasley over the years in Real Street. Will that curse continue on the big bikes?
Struggling mightily to put together a good lap, Ryan Schnitz has the bye to the final on his HTP Performance nitrous Hayabusa. “We’ve replaced everything on the bike but the motor,” said tuner Cecil Towner, who put a 7.0 bike on the trailer Friday and took a gremlin filled bastard off it on Saturday.
Ashon “Capo” Dickerson has the bye to the DME Real Street final, where he’ll face the winner of the Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin / Mark Billiter semi. Putting the turn signal light on early, Billiter has lane choice.
Teasley Redlights? Are you kidding me?
The big shocker of round 1 at The Rock was Jeremy Teasley’s redlight against Richard Gadson in DME Real Street. When was the last time you saw a redeye in Teasley’s lane? Log in to the Eamyink.com Facebook group and let us know. Expect to see #1 qualifier Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin in the winners circle unless Teasley teammate Mark Billiter keeps stepping up, which so far this weekend he has!
Rodney Williford on his way to a 7.13 in round 1
Orient Express Pro Street champ Rodney Williford’s dialing it in, running 7.136 at 199 in round 1. Sly Eric Hart and Chachi/BNL Racing are one up on Trae Heath, taking the tree and the round win while broke when Caleb Holt no-showed on Trae’s “Wigsplitter.”
Yesterday’s St. Pat’s Day rainbow delivered Ronnie Procopio the pot of gold. His round 1 opponent Craig Allaire broke, and #1 qualifier Procopio already had the earned by to the final if he made it to the semis, which he has. Robbie Hunnicutt has lane choice over Mac McAdams in the other semi.
Danny Cox stays #1
Orient Express Pro Street qualifying finished with unheralded Danny Cox #1 with a 7.24 at 201.64 as the high horsepower street tire class struggled with a green track. Literally green, as pollen is coating everything outside of the groove. His Hampton Roads H-D, HTP Performance built and tuned Hayabusa laid down that number in Q1 and it held. HTP’s other ‘Busa—the 6.90 monster ridden by Ryan Schnitz—moved up to fifth with a 7,55. Caleb Holt is second on Trae Heath’s “Wigsplitter” with a 7.38. Joey Gladstone is third with a 7.40 on the DME Racing ‘Busa and champion Rodney Williford fourth with a 7.44.
DME Real Street is tight, with Johnny “Turbo” locked in at #1 with a 7.809 and champion Jeremy Teasley second at 7.812. Mark Billiter is third with a 7.875, Super Dave Stewart fourth at 7.878, and Ed Murphy fifth with a 7.90.
Ronnie Procopio improved his top Mickey Thompson Pro Mod qualifying spot with a 4.149, Mac McAdams second at 4.24, Robbie Hunnicutt third with a 4.27.
Afterdark Underground cranks up soon, and the crowd is hungry…..
Real Street leading the way
As the big horsepower bikes struggle to find the track, DME Real Street bikes are in midseason form as the MIRock Superbike Series runs it’s first event of 2012. Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin’s familiar turbo ‘Busa leads with a 7.809 at 193. Champion Jeremy Teasley’s nitrous Kawasaki ZX14—just assembled this week by Roger Starrette—is a solid second with a 7.863 at only 180.
Unheralded Danny Cox Jr. holds on to #1 with a 7.24 at 201.64 after two rounds of Orient Express Pro Street. But while Cox may not be a big name, his nitrous ‘Busa is built by the best in the business—Cecil Towner of HTP Performance. Cecil’s other bike—the 6.90 monster ridden by Ryan Schnitz—sits way back in ninth. The last round should really shake up this field.
Ronnie Procoppio leads Mickey Thompson Pro Mod with a 4.22 at 170. Mac McAdams sits second with a 4.28 at 167.
Victor “I’m Free!” Gotay leads Crazy 8s with an 8.888. Charles Cave Jr.’s 5.600 leads FBR Shop 5.60, ahead of Steven Dumas and Jeff Clopton, both with a 5.602.
BIG Night of Testing
Nighttime temps in the 70s brought a huge crowd of bikes clogging Rockingham Dragway’s staging lanes. “That’s either the largest, or ties the largest, Friday night test for a MIRock race that we’ve ever had here,” said track owner Steve Earwood. And while lightning crackled in the distance, Venus and Jupiter shown in the clear sky over the track as bike after bike added rubber to the track and blew a path through the spring pollen.
Laying a BIG path was the 240 shod “No Joke” turbo Hayabusa, owned by Ken Edwards and ridden by Jeremy Teasley. But this is a bi project for a combination that was running 6.90s over the winter on the standard 190. “If it’s not working by bthe middle of the day tomorrow, I’m switching back for the weekend,” Edwards told me when I arrived at the track. But he didn’t wait that long. Two passes later and Edwards was switching swingarms. “We have a championship to win, and this needs testing.”
Even without 240 tires and swingarms, the night was filled with new bikes and new looks. Here’s a rundown:
“Dat’s a ‘Busa in Kawasaki Kolors!” Pro Street champion Rodney Williford’s working hard for the 6s this weekend
Fresh off his qualifying at the Gators and a new alignment with DME, Joey Gladstone showed up at The Rock
with whole new look. But will be enough for him to get pastb his nemesis….
…Jeremy Teasley defends his DME Real Street championship on a ZX14 put together by Roger Starrette in 2
days. When I heard this bike was nitrous Pro Street bike (see below), I was expecting something radical and
lightweight, not this street sleeper. Still, I’m told it makes a full 20 ponies more than the blue bike…
Starrette was also sporting a different look, still wearing his winter coat like your’s truly
The intense stare is the same, the paint is new—Greg Wallace burns it out on Ehren Litten’s ‘Busa
Dystany Spurlock and bike lookin’ good
When the smoke clears, Eric Hart hopes to find the Wigsplitter
VooDoo’s still lookin’ good and Lee Shierts was lappin’ it. Burnout Bruce and Airtime were also in the house
The bike’s the same but the leathers are new and stiff. Mac McAdams breaks ’em in at The Rock
So much more on Satrurday! If you’re not at The Rock, you damn well better be on Eatmyink!
Going BIG at The Rock
story and race photos by Tim Hailey, spy photos courtesy of No Joke Racing and Williford Racing
The biggest series in motorcycle drag racing kicks off it’s 2012 season this coming weekend with the Honda-Suzuki of Sanford Spring Bike Open at Steve Earwood’s legendary Rockingham Dragway in the Sand Hills of North Carolina. The Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MIRock Superbike Series will once again pit its champions against old rivals and young upstarts.
Jeremy Teasley is a little bit of both. A multi-time champion at age 21, Teasley has yet to secure an Orient Express Pro Street championship. This year he’s changing seats in that class to Kenny Edwards’ “No Joke” Suzuki Hayabusa. Edwards won riding the bike himself last time out at The Rock in November, then began testing flyweight rider Teasley on “No Joke” at Edwards’ home track in Bradenton, Florida. Almost immediately, and with the power turned down, Teasley was lapping in the rarefied 6 second zone. But the bike was shredding tires every two or three passes.
Kenny Edwards’ “No Joke” sporting it’s big new booty
Edwards has taken a novel approach to solving his bike’s tire problem. “I’m looking to change the face of Pro Street,” said Edwards. “I’ve literally reinvented the wheel. I’m coming out with a whole new Pro Street bike with a 240 kit on it.”
Standard 190 tire on the left, 240 on the right
For those who don’t know, a 240 tire is one of those ultra wide beasts used on custom sportbike and choppers. No one’s ever taken one down the dragstrip on anything nearly as powerful as Edward’s turbocharged ‘Busa, which previously ran the standard 190 tire. A new Roaring Toyz swingarm cradles an 18 inch tall, 8.5 inch wide wheel shod with Continental Attack race rubber. “It’s phenomenal,” Edwards said about the Roaring Toyz craftsmanship. “We came right from the welding shop right to the track. We made a couple of chassis adjustments, with no power in it, and ran 7.23. Then it rained, so we only got half a day testing on it.”
Don’t stand behind this in the burnout box
“It don’t really feel any different to me,” Teasley said about his few passes on the 240. “Sometimes I didn’t lean it over enough because I forgot about the tire. With that big of a tire you really have to leave it over.”
“I can’t wait to debut this,” finished Edwards. “There’s gonna be some crying and whining and I’m gonna have the top rider in the country (Teasley) on it. It’s gonna be huge for No Joke racing.”
Already huge is the 6 second HTP Performance Hayabusa ridden by Ryan Schnitz, the first bike ever to run a 6 second quarter mile on street legal rubber. HTP builder/tuner Cecil Towner will also be bringing Danny Cox’s Hampton Roads Harley nitrous ‘Busa and possibly debut a brand new turbo bike with Lavar “Lil’ Charlie” Delee in the saddle.
Rodney Williford’s gone pink for 2012!
Of course, Rodney Williford will be aiming for his third straight Pro Street championship. “If the track is there, we will be in the 6s,” promised Williford, who ran 1.19 to the 60′ and 3.11 to 330′ in testing last weekend. Caleb Holt will be back on Trae Heath’s “Wigsplitter,” Greg Wallace on Ehren Litten’s DME Racing ‘Busa, and DME’s own Dimey Eddinger will be turning over his seat to Joey Gladstone.
This bike will be a shorty for Jeremy Teasley in 2012
Gladstone will also be running his turbo GSXR100 against Teasley in DME Real Street, where Jeremy will be shooting for his third straight championship. Teasley will still be racing that class for his familiar Adams Performance/Starrette Motorsports team. But he’s be leaving the seat of his blue bike for the reconfigured, nitrous huffing, lime green Kawasaki ZX14 previously run in Pro Street, and the first nitrous bike to win a Pro Street race in a decade. Richard Gadson will throw his leg over an HTP-prepped ZX14 in Real Street.
Wake Forest homebuilder Ronnie Procopio left nothing on the Mickey Thompson Tires Pro Mod table last November at The Rock, qualifying number 1, taking the win and nailing down his record fifth MIRock championship. He’ll be racing fellow Legion of Doom rider Ronnie Procoppio, Dave Norris, and a host of others in the hair raising eighth mile class.
“Fearsome” Andy Baumbach
“Fearsome” Andy Baumbach won both the House of Speed Crazy 8s and Trac King/APE Top Sportsman championships, only the second racer to win two championships in one season after Ronnie Procopio pulled off the double in 2008. Baumbach will be back, along with his Virginia rival Jimmy Shifflett, the three-time FBR Shop 5.60 champion. Teasley will also be back contesting the sportsman classes on Edward’s Suzuki B-King.
Nitrous Express Pro ET and Brock’s Performance Street ET will showcase the nation’s best bracket racers, and Saturday night’s Afterdark Underground will draw every high power grudge bike and the gamblers who love them from east of the Mississippi. Along with their popular “Cobra Commander,” HTP will debut their brand new “Ghost Rider” grudge ‘Busa.
The event will also host a huge vendor midway on both days full of motorcycle parts, apparel, and accessories, so head to Rockingham Dragway for an exciting weekend of motorcycle action.
Gates Open..…………………..……..…………..… 9am
Private Test & Tune…….…….…………. 10am-6pm
Open Test & Tune………..……………… 6pm-11pm
Gates Open……………….……………………….… 9am
Sportsman Qualifying/Time Runs………………………Starts at 10am
Pro Qualifying…………………….…..1pm, 4pm, 7pm
Afterdark Underground begins after Saturday’s Program
Gates Open……………………………….…..….… 8am
Pro Shakedown……………………………..… 9:30am
Sportsman Last Time Run……..….. 10am-12noon
Adult Admission (Fri)……………….$10
Adult Admission (Sat)……………$20
Adult Admission (Sun)……………..$20
Sat & Sun Adult Admission (2-Day Pass)……$35
Fri – Sun Adult Admission (3-Day Pass)……..$45
Kids 6-11 (PerDay)……………………………….$5
Track Office: 910-582-3400
Track Fax: 910-582-8667
P.O. Box 70
Marston, NC 28363
2153 US Hwy 1 North
Rockingham, NC 28379
For Your GPS:
L.G. Dewitt Road
Marston, NC 28363
Find out more about the Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MIRock Super Bike Series at http://www.mirockracing.com