Wendover Utah, experienced some over night rain with showers that extended into the first part of the morning here. The track was closed till about 1:00 when the teams were allowed to return to the pit area. The Salt flats are very resilient and after several hours of Sun the track had dried out sufficiently to allow the resumption of Racing.
The Norton Team took the opportunity to use the shortened day as preparation for several more runs tommorrow in an attempt extend the record.
As the sun rose over the Bonneville salt flats this morning there stands a new record holder.
The old 1000 PPP record owned by Buell has been claimed with authority by the 961 Commanado.
Coming into today there were high hopes for the New Commando, the record in it’s class (1000 PPP) was set in 2009 by Cory, E. at 126.398 on a Buell. The were some ominous signs the night prior as the Commando sat on the salt.
After the rider meeting and scrutineering, Alan Cathcart took the Bike out on it first competitive run in the U.S. in many a year. The first run was clocked at 124.952 with a 10 mph wind coming from the SE, an encouraging start. Sir Alan being slightly more familiar with the bike and getting his feet wet again after a year way from the Salt clocked a second run for a record breaking pass of 129.003. At Bonneville two passes are required , one in each direction and the average of the two passes is then the number of record.
At 14:34 local time with a 7 mph wind coming from the ESE, the Commando thundered down the International long course and flew through the traps at 129.380 for an average speed of 129.191, effectively breaking the record and putting Norton in the record books yet once again, adding to a long illustrious racing heritage.
When asked for his thoughts on the day, Sir Alan replied “It’s Nice to Put Norton back in the record books for the first time in so many years, the fact that we did it with a box stock bike exactly as delivered to any Norton customer makes it all the sweeter”
Tomorrow we get back to work an another record in the PPG class.
Day one of the “Bub Speed Trials” at the Bonneville Salt Flats, is an “admin” and set up day, it allows the teams to get situated, registered and documented, as well as a little time to check out the competition. The weather today was in the high 80′s with some pretty good wind gusts from mid to late afternoon.
The registration line is always a smogasbord if you pay attention and today was no exception bringing together Fritz Egli (Swiss distributor) with Matt Capri (US distributor) and Alan Cathcart, what ensued was an impromptu discussion about the exciting developments and future concerning the Marque.
Team Norton, from left to right, Jerry Augusto, Matt Capri, Alan Cathcart and Roger Allen Russell
Tomorrows rider meeting starts at 7:00 a.m. The Commando will go through tech inspection and the real work will begin…..