Well, I made it down to Nashville in time to hit the drag strip on Friday night. Unknown to me, Darrin had borrowed a Honda CBR600rr rice rocket from a buddy for me to ride for the weekend. It’s almost the exact same bike as D’s except it’s been lowered some. They both have Power commander chips, performance pipes, etc etc..

Well, I get to Darrin’s at about 11pm and we grab some gear, hop on the biks and head for the drag strip. This is the first time I’ve been on a bike since I sold my R6 two years ago. With the bike being lowered it handled nothing like my R6, the balance was way off from what I was used to, but I started to get the feel for it by the time we hit the track.

The track was a 1/8th mile drag strip with timers, lights, traps, the whole nine yards. We roll up and we’re the only bikes there that night. We watch the cars for a bit then gear up again, (helmet, gloves, armored jacket, and jeans. )  One nice thing was that we didn’t have to wait in line since we’re so quick the just put us next whenever we lined up.

Here’s what it was like.

We rolled up to the line on almost identical black honda’s, D on the left, me on the right. The track monitor flashes his head lights and we roll up to the starting point, inching forward til the top light lights, then a hair more for the second light. Hearts pounding in my chest. I bring the RPM’s up to about 6k and let the clutch out just enough for it to start to grab. D hits the second light and suddenly the lights start going. I roll back on the throttle and start feathering the clutch to accelerate and keep the rpms up. My feet leave the ground and I lean forward as the front of the bike starts to rise. I’m off the starter box and clutch is all the way out. Front wheel is about a foot off the ground as the rpms climb through 10k. Ding, first second is gone.

Somehow my feet are on the pegs and I’m crouched down with my wheight forward on the tank. Bikes starting to sound like an aircraft engine as the rpms climb towards 15k. Suddenly I catch the redline light and drop 1/4 throttle, feather the clutch and hit second gear just as I felt the bike stutter from the rev limiter, good shift! Front wheel had dropped back to the ground during the shift, but as the rpm’s scream back up and the front wheel comes up also, I twist the throttle in time to the front wheel to keep it from coming up to high to quick, I don’t think about this, I just do it. Barrier on my right seems to be getting close, not sure when that happened, I lean a little left and the bike responds by changing my line down the track. Things are looking good, I catch D on my left, a little ahead but I’m gaining, must have had a better launch. RPM’s are climbing to the moon again, I catch the shift light just as I feel the bike stutter from the rev limiter hitting at 15 1/2 thousand rpms. I grab the clutch, twitch the throttle and hit third, front wheel is back on the ground again, didn’t even feel it drop this time. I bury the throttle and tuck down tight just as I realize, boom, I’m past the lights and the race is over. I back down and start easing on the brakes. Not sure of total speed, but I’m at 110 when I back off the throttle.

My hearts pounding in my chest, my visor is  fogged so bad I can barely see. I’m breathing like I ran the 1/8th mile and I can’t get the grin off my face for nothin! I look over at D, we we’re so close we have no idea who won and don’t really care. We give each other a thumbs up, all good, get our speed down into the normal range again, turn and hit the side alley back towards the starting area. Do a couple of wheelies enroute for grins. It’s gonna be a good night.

We did about 12 runs that night. I won about half and D won about half. It was perfect. His best time before the night was 7.65 seconds to run 1/8 from a dead stop. That night, we both ran 7.50 seconds on different runs. It was some of the most fun I’ve had in years. My heart still races just thinking about it. 

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