In only the second race of the season for the ADRL 10 race tour, Casey and the Stemper family have already scored their second final round appearance, doing so at last weekend’s Spring Drags III at Bristol Dragway.
The young Pro Extreme Motorcycle star began the weekend by qualifying number two with an impressive 4.124 at 170 miles per hour. In round one Stemper put Mike Thyen on the trailer with a .018, 4.122 package, knocking off Dave Norris with a 4.098. The semifinals saw Stemper slow slightly, but he still had more than enough as Eric McKinney encountered engine troubles.
No one could tell that the Stemper family had been battling their own mechanical issues throughout the day. Casey knew heading into the finals that his bike wasnâ€™t at 100% and he would have to cut a stellar light to have a chance at his second win of the season. He did just that with a .011 reaction to Japel Heardâ€™s .027. However, it wasnâ€™t quite enough as Heardâ€™s 4.160 bested Stemperâ€™s 4.189 by a slight .013 margin of victory.
â€œWeâ€™re definitely excited to start the year off this way,â€ told Stemper. â€œWe went to Bristol with only one motor and a new one at that. We had no data for it and expected at best to get in some good testing. We knew that the facility would be great and that the Traction Twins would provide the best track conditions possible, so we thought we could get some good info to build on for future races. Making it to the finals was a surprise for us. We couldn’t be more thrilled with the outcome.
“Despite working with a brand new engine and having some mechanical issues along the way, the entire crew pulled together to make it happen. William and my dad, Terry’s, tuning expertise got our program in line quickly with the new motor. My mom, Karne, worked very hard to get the bike serviced between rounds, and we had great turnaround times. Every race out is an awesome experience and I love to be out here doing this with my family.â€
Caseyâ€™s own talents certainly played a major role in getting the team to the final round and he remains just as impressed with the bike.
â€œWe all work together to make this a success. We are very pleased with the potential of this new motor. We really feel that our 1640-cc combination is a winner and hope to be in that winner circle again very soon. Thereâ€™s no doubt we are looking forward to the next ADRL event (at Maple Grove Raceway). We will have our mechanical issues resolved which will give our new motor its full potential without having to baby it any.”
After the first two events, Stemper has gained an early points lead and clearly hopes to retain that lead as the season continues.
â€œWe want to keep our momentum going, shooting for our goal of becoming the 2012 ADRL World Champion. I know this team has the potential to do it, so weâ€™re going after it hard. And, who knows, after looking at our data from Bristol, we may see a 3-second pass en route to that Championship.â€
(Photos by ADRL/Richards)