story by Tim Hailey, photos by Genie Muldoon and Terrence Belton of T&G Photos,
It wasn’t just the thermometer and humidity that were sky-high at Maryland International Raceway’s Fast By Gast WPGC Bike Fest, it was also the level of competition and heavy dose of good times. The annual sportbike culture party that marks the mid point of the Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MiRock Superbike Series was run at the climax of 2011’s great American heatwave, but the hard working MIR staff, the greatest motorcycle drag racers in the world, and the finest bikini models on the Eastern Seaboard refused to wilt.
No Orient Express Pro Street racer thrives in the heat better than defending champ Rodney Williford. His tuning skills have been honed at humid Budd’s Creek and blistering Rockingham and he put them all to work at the Bike Fest. While the number 1 qualifying HTP Performance nitrous Hayabusa of Ryan Schnitz boiled the tire just past the 330, Williford’s turbo ‘Busa calmly streaked away to a 7.23 at 197 mph for the win.
South African Pro Street racer Brad Anassis came all the way to the Western hemisphere just for this event. He teamed up with Motor City tuner Ronnie Mitchell and laid down his quickest, fastest pass ever before his fuel pump crapped out at the starting line against Schnitz in round 2.
Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin
Number 1 DME Real Street qualifier Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin took his second straight win, this time with a 7.86 over superstar Rickey Gadson’s nitrous Kawasaki. Defending class champion Jeremy Teasley had to enter his own Kawasaki ZX14 streetbike this time around, but carried it to the semis where he lost to Gadson.
Mickey Thompson Pro Mod champ Ronnie Procopio qualified third in an ultra competitive field. Number 1 qualifier Casey Stemper toasted a motor in the right lane in the semi, then Arabian Drag Racing League season points champion Terry Schweigert nearly spun his bike over in that lane the very next pass. The left lane was clearly the place to be for big power bikes, and that’s where Procopio was in the final against Richard Gadson (Rickey’s nephew) when he ran his fourth teen of the day (a 4.17 in the eighth mile class) for the win.
“Fearsome” Andy Baumbach
“Fearsome” Andy Baumbach took another House of Speed Crazy 8s win on his relentless march to add another sportsman championship to his amazing resume. He beat Rickey Gadson—hard working Rickey’s second runner-up of the day.
Willie Warren Jr.
Ken George beat Jimmy Murphy in the FBR Shop Top Sportsman final. Mac McAdams and Willie Warren Jr. continued their great summers with Fast By Gast Pro ET wins. Boo Brown and Clay Davies are no strangers to the MIR winners circle and posed with their Schnitz Racing Street ET trophies there this time around. And Whitney Grant took the special “Paint the Quarter Pink” breast cancer awareness race.
Mac McAdams and Boo Brown
Finally, what would a MIRock race be without a wild Afterdark Underground grudge session? Jeremy Teasley on “Jeezy” won when the “Cobra Commander” failed to shift with Lavar “Lil’ Charlie” Delee onboard. Richard Gadson drove around legendary Keith “Shine” Dennis in a mountain motor, stock wheelbase ‘Busa race. But the crowd had to wait ‘til Sunday for the most hyped race of the weekend—Billy Vose on “Ellamean” vs. Delee on JDAM. Vose left first and JDAM spun out of the groove, ending a tough weekend for “Lil’ Charlie.”
The Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MIRock Superbike Series races next at the Schnitz Racing “Summer Sizzler” August 13-14, 2011 at Rockingham Dragway, NC
Competition Off the Hook at MIR
Competition and good times are thriving in the heat at the Fast By Gast WPGC Bike Fest, the mid point of the Mickey Thompson Performance Tires MiRock Superbike Series and the annual sportbike culture party at Maryland International Raceway. Every class is raging and the large crowd is loaded with beauties of every size, shape and color—and the bikini contest hasn’t even started.
Ryan Schnitz had low ET of Orient Express Pro Street round 2 with a 7.17 on the Cecil Towner-tuned HTP Performance nitrous ‘Busa and faces Ken “No Joke” Edwards in the semi. Class champ Rodney Williford will have lane choice over John Flood in the other semi.
Number 1 qualifier Johnny “Turbo” Dobrin ran low ET of DME Real Street round 2 with a turbo record 7.84 on the Exoticycle Suzuki Hayabusa over Del “Gumby” Flores. Dobrin has Sherrell Blake in the semi, whil Jeremy Teasley has lane choice of Rickey Gadson in the other semi.
Defending Mickey Thompson Pro Mod champ Ronnie Procopio ran low ET of round 2 with a 4.164 against Billy Vose and has lane choice on Arabian Drag Racing League season points champion Terry Schweigert in the semi. Casey Stemper has lane choice over Richard Gadson in the other semi.
Find out more about the MiRock Superbike series at http://www.mirockracing.com