Team Ika Hits Portland (Literally)

Tue Jul 2 13:39:47 2002

Team Ika headed to Portland on Sunday to be part of the great Flying Circus composed of Mad Bees/Viscious Cycle racing, Group W Racing and Team Ika. About 12-14 160's were in attendance on race day as well as a Ducati 250 and some vintage 500 class bikes.

Also in attendance was the Spikester with his beautiful 500 Triumph celebrating Triumph days at PIR.

Team Ika took to the track with the ever lovely and patient Lynn Potts as Crew Boss, but without Don Marr, Pit Chief, who had dating responsibilities elsewhere.

Practice was limited to a few laps Sunday morning during which rider Mark Etheridge held back to study the lines and try to figure out the track.

First race was warm and dry, not a great start for Team Ika, but the track was coming together or so it seemed and we were mid pack. Third lap at turn four Mark let the bike go wide and did some grass riding without incident, back on the track and finished with a few passes to make up time including an attempted pass at turn nine and the finish that almost succeeded, or at least looked sweet from the stands.

Second race was also warm and dry. One warm up lap and we were on the grid. Mark was second row of the 160's. Team Ika got it's best start ever and fell in to the melee of the straight. Things sorted out as we approached turn one after the long Portland Straight. Several passes at the entry to one, braking late to take the last guy, all the leaders were in sight.

Team Ika was way fast through the 1-2 combo and took another pass in exit three setting up for four. There was daylight between a slower rider and inside of Turn Four and we had a great drive so tried the pass. The slower rider apexed late and came right across the front of #850's front tire. We hung for a second and then our front tire rode up the shock and swingarm of the other bike, tossing away the front end and then it was all high side for Team Ika. Rider Mark landed on his head and right shoulder before backflopping and sliding out of the turn, as did the bike, faithful little 850.

As our rider said: "Next thing I knew, some corner worker, a really big one, was peering through my visor asking if i was all right. My bell was rung pretty hard, but I got up and found the bike leaning against the tire wall. I wanted to race, but they held me there until the cool down lap and then let me bump and ride in. Don't really remember coming in, but I do remember getting the bike on the stand and then laying down in the trailer for a minute."

Damage to the bike: Tweaked front tubes, easily fixed, small tank dent, not much else.

Damage to the rider: Pending the doctor exam today, not a lot. Very bruised shoulder and collarbone area, but not likely broken. Stiff neck and a helmet that will be replaced. Sore everywhere except my hands. There was some pretty serious concern over the collarbone but mobility and strength is too good for a break, or so it seems.

Gear Damage: Helmet shot. THe leathers (Z-Custom) did an outstanding job of protection is a serious crash. Some scuffing but that just adds character and was bound to happen anyway.

Prognosis: Look for Team Ika on the track and looking for a podium finish on Sunday, July 21st at Pacific Raceway in Seattle, no matter how much adhesive tape it takes.

Next gig, Mission Raceway, Mission BC (Like, in Canada, Man) July 29th and 30th.

Meanwhile, Team Ika is heading to laguna Seca for World Supper Bike (watching, not riding) In addition, Team Ika Stickers will be available soon, as well as the promised T-shirts at a later date.

Go Team Ika!!!