Wednesday, June 20, 2012

"Because It's There"

In March 1923 British Mountain Climber George Leigh Mallory was asked why he wanted to climb Mount Everest. To Mallory it was a dumb question. His simple reply, “Because it’s there” .

Why would a successful 52 year old British businessman want to risk all at the highest level in the AMA Super Sport race at Daytona? If you know Pat Mooney you would not have to ask—but if you did, his answer would probably be the same as Mallory’s- “Because it’s there”.

Veteran privateer Pat Mooney challenges the young guns of AMA Super Sport at Daytona 2013

Money #41 races with Jason DeSalvo # 40
March 4, 2013: This afternoon I caught up with Pat Mooney at Pat’s Auto Sales in Sorrento, FL. He is preparing the #54 Buell 1125R for Daytona.

Pat will run in the highly competitive AMA Pro Motorcycle-Super Store Super Sport Class. He is one of 60 entrants. He will also probably be the oldest guy in the race at 52; most of the competitors will be less than half his age. Qualifying is set for Thursday March 14 at 4:45 PM. The two races are scheduled for Friday 3/15 at 3 PM and Saturday morning 3/16 at 10 AM.

Pat told me the story behind his 2013 assault on the high banks and twisting infield of Daytona. “The 200 was a bucket list and I’ve run it 2 years in a row with good results. Then the 200 entry had become very expensive. $200 per person just for crew credentials. With the 200 I would have $1200 just for my 6 over the wall crew for tire changes and fuel.

The twin Super Sport 10 lap sprint races seemed the way to go. In the 200 I was on the track with seasoned veterans. Here I’ll race with many of the fearless young guns of AMA Road Racing. It will be a real challenge. I’m hoping for a top 20 finish, but that could be tough to achieve with 60  hard charging young guns. My Buell 1125 cc twin will be the most powerful bike in the race. Also the heaviest with terrible aero dynamics. I’ll have to make the most of the draft and make up ground through the road course. The competition is mostly 600 cc Japanese bikes, the Yamaha YZF R6, Suzuki GSX-R600, Kawasaki ZX-6R, and HondaCBR600RR. Others will include Triumph Daytona 675, and Ducati 848.

In the 200 last year I was 9 MPHslower than the top runners when drafting and 20 MPHslower on my own.

I have another English chap from Palm Bay, Paul Brown, a good mechanic as my crew chief. My long time friend and crew chief John Cronshaw had trouble with flight scheduling from the UK. He actually arrives Sunday after the race and we’re headed for New Orleans for AHRMA racing the next week end. I’m excited and ready to go. I am proud to carry the Union Jack at Daytona on the Eric Buell designed American motorcycle. Thanks to all my fans, supporters and sponsors Pats Auto Sales, Arai Helmets, Vanson Leathers, Dunlop,, Works Performance, R.C. Barker Engineering, L.P. Racing.”
photo Michael Rovnyak - www.MJRPHOTO.NET

SuperSport Facts
Engine Displacement: 600cc-675cc-848cc-1000cc-1125cc  -   Horsepower 110 hp to 130 hp
Minimum Weights: 4 cyl-335 lbs; 3 cyl-360 lbs; 2 cyl-375 lbs  -  Top Speed: 165 MPH  -  0-60 MPH: 3 seconds
1/4 Mile Acceleration: 10 seconds  -  Tires: Dunlop SportMax GPA Front (120/70R-17) Rear (190/55ZR-17)

Eligible Bikes: Aprilia RSV1000R/RSV1000R Factory; Buell 1125R; Ducati 848; Honda CBR 600RR ABS;
Kawasaki ZX-6R; KTM 990 SuperDuke; Suzuki GSX-R600; Triumph Daytona 675/675R; Yamaha YZF-R6


FRIDAY March 15 - 10 AM: Mooney runs with the leaders, qualifies 7th fastest of 60 entrants.

Thomas Puerta put his Yamah YZF-R6 on the pole with at time of 1:54.097-Pats time of 1:55:910 puts him in the 7th position on the starting grid. Look out Daytona, here comes Mr. Mooney!

FINAL RESULTS: AMA Super Sport at Daytona 2013

Pat can be proud of a great performance against all odds. When it came to race time some bad luck plagued Pat in the two races. On Friday he missed the sighting lap and rather than start at the rear of the 60 rider pack he did not run. Then in race 2 on Saturday he was running 4th when an oil pressure problem forced an early withdrawal.
In Pat's own words: "On Saturday at the start of the race, just before the lights went out for the start of the race I looked at the temp gauge to check engine temp, which was good BUT I saw the oil pressure light was on solid! Got through the first two turns and it was back on again...... So I had no choice but to pull off the track.
A weekend racing that had some big up's a down's I'm afraid. It was nice to see I could run with and ahead of some of the factory teams though."

Learn more about Pat Money racing at this site:    

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