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Chris Hart wins HD Sportster series

Chris Hart: 2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster Performance Series Champion PICKERINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 23, 2004) -- Chris Hart clinched the Harley-Davidson Sportster Performance Series title with his victory Sunday at Scioto Downs in Columbus, Ohio.

Chris Hart: 2004 Harley-Davidson Sportster Performance Series Champion

PICKERINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 23, 2004) -- Chris Hart clinched the Harley-Davidson Sportster Performance Series title with his victory Sunday at Scioto Downs in Columbus, Ohio. With one round remaining Hart has scored four victories in seven rounds and built an insurmountable lead over 2003 champ Scott Scherb.

This year was Hart's first full season in the Harley-Davidson Series and after he won the first round in Union, Ky., in May he knew he had a shot at the title.

"A big part of winning on the 883 [Sportster] is keeping up with everything on the mechanical side," Hart said. "Dan Daffner, who owns the motorcycle, did a great job going over the bike every week and getting it ready to race. I think that was the biggest key to winning the title this year."

Hart, 27, is from Farmington, N.Y., but recently made the move to live most of the year in California so he can train with his riding buddies year round.

"I decided to make a full-time commitment to racing this year while I still had the chance," Hart explained. "I moved out to California and hang out and ride with guys like Gary Rogers, Shaun Russell and Johnny Murphree. I started working for Gary's dad and I'm still here. It definitely helped me stay sharp by riding all winter and I think the experience riding motocross bikes helped my program. I made three nationals on the 500s this year, one being Peoria, which was real good for me since I'm not a TT guy at all."

The dedication paid off. Hart finished off the podium on the Sportster only one time this year and that was at Springfield where he had mechanical problems with his bike. He still managed to finish the race in ninth.

Hart hopes to wrap up the season with a victory in Du Quoin. "I'd like to make up for Springfield with a win on the mile at Du Quoin this weekend."

Dan Daffner and Gary Stolzenburg, of F&S Racing, built Hart's championship-winning Sportster. His program is backed by Lombardi Harley-Davidson, Schott Harley-Davidson, KK, R&D Machine, Keith Campbell, Arai, Red Line, VP and Ward Performance.

Hart hopes to return to defend his Harley-Davidson Sportster title next season.

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