Another Successful Weekend for Slednecks Racing Teams' Josh Galster and Misti Hurst, Despite Stormy Weather, Schedule Changes, and Limited Trackside Support June 10, 2008 Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin -- Slednecks rider's Josh Galster and Misti Hurst...
Another Successful Weekend for Slednecks Racing Teams' Josh Galster and Misti Hurst, Despite Stormy Weather, Schedule Changes, and Limited Trackside Support
June 10, 2008 Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin -- Slednecks rider's Josh Galster and Misti Hurst enjoyed another successful weekend, finishing 19th and 26th in the wet/dry AMA Supersport Race this stormy Sunday.
Arriving for their first time at Road America in Elkhart Lake, after a 25 hour drive in a Ford Cargo Van with three passengers, complete with a Wallmart chair acting as the center seat, Galster and Hurst faced extremely difficult weather conditions while trying to learn the new track.
Thursday's promoter practice was socked in with extreme fog and rain. During the last session Hurst, tailing teammate Galster, found a patch of slippery sealer in the last corner and crashed. Unhurt she returned the bike to the pits and with the help of Jason Farrell and his support crew, got her bike fixed and ready for practice the following morning.
Privateer racers with limited funding, the two California Superbike School coaches were running the team solo this weekend with no trackside support and no mechanic and had to rely on the folks from the Speed Tech Motorsports pit to help.
"Jason, Jaegar, Keith, Steve, Rebecca and crew were so awesome this weekend. We had an amazing time and thank them immensely for sharing their pits with us!" said Hurst.
Friday's practice session was dry and Galster and Hurst worked hard to get up to speed on the extremely fast track. Josh was going good by the end of the day with a time of 2:28.7 while Hurst was still struggling and 8 seconds off the estimated qualifying time.
After a brief Saturday morning practice on a dry track, the afternoon qualifying session also took place in the dry, with black clouds hovering in the distance. Because of the extra events at this round including Moto ST and the Red Bull Rookies Cup, the entire group of AMA Supersport riders had just 20 minutes allotted in order to qualify.
15 minutes into the session a red flag was flown due to a motorcycle lying in the middle of the track. Looking on the timing and scoring screen, both Galster and Hurst were happy to see that they had made the grid.
"I was so happy that we had both made it!" said Hurst, "First time at the track and we were both in the race, ya!"
However, the AMA officials decided to cancel the remainder of the session and after some deliberation, disregarded the session entirely and decided that Sunday morning's practice would instead be used as qualifying.
"I was pretty upset when I heard this," explained Hurst. "I worked my butt off running my fastest laps ever right off the bat. I qualified, and then they tell us we have to do it all over again, it didn't really count? It's unfair to us privateer riders that don't really have the budget to suddenly have to spring for another set of tires for a "new" qualifying session
Sunday morning, the pair arrived at a soggy and stormy Road America and the morning's practice-turned --qualifying-session took place in heavy pouring rain. Both Galster and Hurst came into the pits only to find out that neither of them had made the 110% cut off time. In fact, nearly 15 riders didn't make the required qualifying times.
"That sucks." said a soggy Josh as the two stood dejected under their dripping canopy. As they prepared to pack up and leave for the day, they found out that the AMA was actually going to allow everyone to race.
"It was so confusing and on-again-off again, that we just threw up our hands and said "whatever." said Hurst "You qualified. Nope, just kidding you didn't really. Try again tomorrow. Oh, you didn't qualify. Just kidding, you actually did, you can race today."
The Supersport race took place at 2:00pm on a wet but rapidly drying track and was started in two waves. Galster in 28th position and Hurst in 31st were in the second wave. Both riders on Kawasaki ZX6's got rocketing good starts, but after two laps the race was red flagged due to a back straight crash and the race was restarted with new grid spots.
Without crew to help the riders change tires, make suspension changes or add gas, Galster and Hurst went back out on the drying track on full rains with their wet race set-ups. Galster, last on the grid now for the first wave of riders got a good start and moved his way up through the pack as high as 15th place and was within close proximity to the likes of Harrin, Gobert, Barnes and Beck. He persisted and was aiming for his first top 15 finish when his fuel light came on early and he had to try to conserve. On the final lap the bike began sputtering and bogging and barely made it up the final hill across start finish. 4 riders got by him right at the end and he finished with another top 20 in 19th place.
"I was bummed out for sure, but what can you do. Next time we won't make that same mistake." said Galster
Hurst, grabbing the holeshot from the second wave led that group of riders all the way to turn 9 even after a violent slide out of turn 5. Hanging with a few riders from the first wave and only passed by two from the second, Hurst ran a fairly uneventful race and happily crossed the line in 26th position. "A great way to end a crazy weekend," she commented. "It was fun!"
Slednecks Racing would like to thank their outstanding sponsors and fans. Stay tuned at www.mistihurst.com or www.slednecks.com and watch for them at Laguna Seca in July.