motorcycle memo's w/Tom McCarthy

Sportsman Racers to the Lanes Please!

Photos by Tom McCarthy

Dustin Lee


With the summer season at end, the most intense part of the racing season begins. This is the time of the year for the push to accumulate championship points and set records, before this racing season comes to an end. As the next eight weeks unfold, racers in all classes will push their machines to the max, to wrap up 2017 as best they can.


As of this writing in the first week of October, there are important motorcycle drag races still to be run with the AMRA, IDBL, and of course, the Man Cup motorcycle drag racing sanction. NHDRO has wrapped up their season and there were some stellar performances by sportsman racers that are certainly worthy of note.


In looking at the class champions from the 2017 season for the NHRDO (No Hatin’ Drag Racing Organization), the winner of the RPM Manufacturing Crazy 8’s class was Dustin Lee. I indicate this because the Millennium Trailers Super Comp class was also won by Dustin Lee. And this is important because the Kevin Dennis Insurance Agency-sponsored Street ET class was also won by -- you guessed it – Dustin Lee. A hat trick for Mr. Dustin Lee, in winning three sportsman class championships with one sanction in one season, not a feat easily accomplished.


Now when you stop to consider that Dustin Lee of Mohawk, TN, is No. 2 in points in MPS Pro ET, No. 2 in points in Wiseco Street Fighter, leading in points in the World Wide Bearings Crazy 8’s class, and leading the points in MTC Super Comp class with the Man Cup motorcycle drag racing sanction, AND he’s leading in three more sportsman classes within the IDBL sanction, the picture of Dustin Lee comes clearer into focus: he’s a sportsman motorcycle drag racer of the highest order.


I’ve not seen a motorcycle drag racer of this caliber since Mike Konopacki of the AMA/PROSTAR days. And incidentally, Konopacki is being inducted into the Canadian Drag Racing Hall of Fame in November, speaking of the Canadian Assassin.


Now back to Mr. Roboto – Dustin Lee. When asked of how he felt about winning his first three championships of 2017 Dustin replied, “It’s unbelievable! I went into the weekend race with some close points battles in two classes; I figured I had Street ET pretty much locked up. But to leave the final race of the season with NHDRO with three titles in one series is something I’ve never done before – I’ll take it!”


Lee is justifiably proud of his accomplishments thus far. And to think he’s in championship points contention in two other sanctions in no less than three classes in each sanction: that’s an unprecedented achievement in sportsman motorcycle drag racing. Nearing the end of the 2017 racing season, Lee is a top-three points man in no less than nine classes spread out over three sanctions. He’s already locked down three championships and of the remaining six or more he is still contesting, no telling how many of them will result in No. 1 plates. One thing is for certain: Dustin Lee is one hell of a motorcycle drag racer. Larry McBride should thank his lucky stars Dustin Lee does not race in Top Fuel motorcycle.


Another great accomplishment achieved by a sportsman racer at the end of the NHDRO season is the G&G Metal Spinners Top Gas championship won by Jeremy Teasley. For those not familiar with the class, Top Gas is run on the 8.20 Index and it’s a great stepping-stone class for NHRA Pro Stock bike racers. These motorcycles typically have 250 to 300HP motors in drag racing only chassis sporting 10” wide rear tires and wheelie bars. The drag pilots generally get the bike up on the rev-limiter, stage carefully, hold the throttle wide open and chop the tree hard, every pass. That’s your typical T/G bike.


Teasley won Top Gas with the NHDRO on a modified street bike. Yes, folks, he did it with a no-bar bike! That’s the first time I know of that a no-bar bike has scored a championship against the ten-inch-tire, wheelie bar crowd. Jeremy defeated big names like John “Spooky” Markham, Ben Knight and what’s his name – Dustin Lee – to win that championship. Teasley’s skills as a no-bars racer are becoming very advanced.


Teasley is No. 1 in points in the 5.60 index class with IDBL, with two races remaining in the season. He’s also seventh in Crazy 8’s with them and No. 2 in points in Pro/Street racing. Teasley’s championship in T/G with the NHRDO is quite the accomplishment.


To salute all the class winners in NHDRO racing, hats off to: Justin Doucet in Pro Street, Chase Morris in Pro Ultra, Chris Cutsinger in Pro Open, Dustin Lee/Crazy 8’s/Super Comp and Street ET, Jeremy Teasley in Top Gas, John Spooky Markham in Street Fighter, Eric Cooper in Pro ET. A big thank you to Brian Welch, who is the point-man for NHDRO, for giving these deserving racers a great sanction to race with.


With the season winding down for the Man Cup sanction, the points leaders listed as of the end of September were: In Grothus Dragbike 4.60 racing, George Babor, in Star Racing Top Gas, Pete Chongris, in MTC Super Comp, Dustin Lee, In World Wide Bearings Crazy 8’s, Dustin Lee, in Wiseco Street Fighter, Chris Roelse leads the way (followed by Dustin Lee).

In the Vance & Hines sponsored V-Twin class, Vance Houdyshell has it pretty much locked up.


In C&S Custom Street ET, Pablo Gonzalez is leading the way. And in MPS Pro ET – Ted Harvey was leading in points at the end of September (with Dustin Lee not far behind).


Hats off to ALL the sportsman racers in ALL the sanctions! Without you, there would be no motorcycle drag racing, except for the local race tracks class action. Thank you each and every one of you. 


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