Strong Results for Chili Pepper Racing at Daytona in AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series
NEWS March 19, 2014
Photo by Brian J Nelson
Courtesy of Chili Pepper Racing:
March 19, 2014 - Chili Pepper Racing had a successful start to the 2014 AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XR1200 series with primary riders Ricky Parker and Hayden Schultz, joined by guest riders Shelina Moreda and 2012 series champion Michael Barnes. All four riders placed well in the seven-lap race at the World Center of Racing.
Chili Pepper Racing team owner Chris Richardson is proud of the effort that everyone involved with the team put in over the weekend. “Chili Pepper racing has really reached the next level,” said Chris. “Having the two guest riders this weekend really did add to the team, but it didn’t take away our focus on our two main riders, Ricky Parker and Hayden Schultz. Hayden went really well today, and absolutely exceeded our expectations. We’re still developing Ricky’s bike. He’s a year behind on the XR1200. We think we’ve found a good handling package, and we’d like to thank Lenny Albin with Nitron USA. We’ve got some engine work to do and we’ll have that buttoned up for the next round.”
While the results are not what he wanted, Ricky Parker worked through mechanical issues in the practice and qualifying sessions leading up to the race, and ended the race in 19th place. “The race went pretty good,” said Ricky. “We finally found a good setup in the race. We had a few issues with the engine, but we’ll figure out what to do for the next round. Unfortunately, I got into turn one a little too hot at the start, and got pushed out wide. I lost the faster group and lost the draft. I learned a lot this weekend, and definitely got the setup closer to where I want it. I had a great time and I’m ready for the next one.”
Hayden Schultz was a Daytona rookie on his Harley XR1200 coming into this event, and he learned quickly how critical the draft was going to be for a good lap time and a good result in the race. After qualifying 13th in the 24-rider field, a hectic pre-race situation almost spelled disaster for the sixteen-year-old. “I thought I was going to have to start the race from the back of the grid because I missed the parade lap, but I ended up starting from my original position. I got an okay start, but I was a little behind the lead pack of guys. I eventually ran them down on the last lap. I ended up in the big cluster of guys at the front and finished eighth. I’m happy to know that I can run with those guys, and that I had a shot at the podium. I’m really excited for the next rounds at real road courses where I can show my skills in the corners,” Hayden said.
For Shelina Moreda, the third time was the charm at Daytona. Shelina worked with the Chili Pepper team to race to her best results ever at the high speed track. “I love Daytona!,” an excited Shelina said after the race. “I’m really excited that I got to work with Chili Pepper this weekend. We meshed really well. It’s a really great team and atmosphere. I’m looking forward to seeing if we can work together in the future. We changed up the suspension several different ways and several different times this weekend, and finally got it going the right direction right before the race. The bike and I decided we were going to work together. She and I made a deal that she was going to get me through the race, and I learned a lot. I had a few ‘aha!’ moments in the race, and this is my best finish here at Daytona. I battled with some guys I haven’t been able to run with before. I love racing on the high banks of Daytona!”
Last but certainly not least, veteran rider Michael Barnes arguably has more experience and more race wins at Daytona than anyone in the field, and was a legitimate threat to win the race. “Barney’ led the race and was in the right place in the lead group on the last lap, but finished ninth at the checkered flag. “I led for a while, and I felt like I was in a good position on the last lap, but this goes to show you how things can go at Daytona,” said Barnes. “I’ve won a lot of races here, and there are so many things that can happen in the last half of the last lap before the finish line. I got blocked on the run to the flag, but I had a great time riding with friends. I’ve got to thank Chili Pepper, Paul Diener, Elvis Johns and Brett Singer for all their help this weekend.”
ChiliPepper Racing is a not-for-profit organization raising awareness for ACCO.org and VETMotorsports. The team takes a unique "per event" approach to sponsorship that includes promotion, hospitality and pit credential opportunities for your business or organization. Visit ChiliPepperRacing.com to get involved in their inclusive and exciting program.
For 2014, Chili Pepper Racing has technical support from Indian Motorcycles of Lafayette (IN), VETMotorsports.org and Lenny Albin/Nitron USA.
Hayden is proud to receive support from Chili Pepper Racing, Arai, AXO, Racer Gloves, TCX Boots, Silkolene, Leatt, Leo Vince, Speedmob, Moto Skiveez, Spy Optic, Lenny Albin/Nitron USA and Anthony & Joanne Cardarelli.
Ricky’s sponsors include Arai Helmets, DesotoMotorSportPark.com and MotoNation.
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