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Old 04-29-2009, 01:06 PM   #1
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Kevin Cameron Is Always A Good Read

I've been entertained by Kevin Cameron for years. Not long ago I read his article in Cycle World entitled "The Last Superbike", which basically tells the story of the 2009 AMA superbike rules package juxtaposed against Ben Spies's 2008 Yoshimura superbike as built and maintained by Tom Houseworth. Good stuff.

In the article, Cameron talks about parts failure as a way of life for superbikes when the rules permitted some modifications and failure abatement methods versus the new rules. When speaking of connecting rod failures, he states, "Direct strain measurement is illegal, now, Houseworth commented, because it's a modification to the con-rod. Where does that leave them? Snug the bolts to 11 foot-pounds, then swing the wrench 70 degrees. If everything is right, if the surfaces are smooth, if the parts weren't made at the end of the production tool's life, it may be okay." Funny stuff.

On the usage of stock parts to somehow acheive parity in the field, Cameron muses, "If you believe that there are really great riders back in the pack - thier skill invisible - who would challenge Mladin & Co. if only they rode bikes as good as thiers, you might very well support mandatory stock parts as a way to set thier talent free." Hehe. Don't have to guess what Cameron thinks.

In speaking of TBF (time before failures), and speaking specifically about wheels (2009 stock versus 2008 and before after-market), Cameron writes, "I asked Houseworth about wheels. 'We have a time limit,' he said. 'Two seaons, - 20 races a season. On my crew, I have one guy that does nothing but wheels.' Will the mandated stock wheels be reliable under racing stress? Will teams have to Zyglo-inspect them for cracks? If so, how frequently?" Hmmm. Probably better safe than sorry, but those teams have budget like the club racer doesn't, of course.
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Old 04-29-2009, 01:49 PM   #2
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As soon as the dmg set in the ama was over, I dont even know any of my freinds who have watched a race this season. I wont and ask othes not to, the dmg needs to know that we liked the ama before all the silly rules were put in place. period.
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Old 04-29-2009, 02:06 PM   #3
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I enjoy Cameron as well. Brilliant stuff.
I usually have to read his stuff 3 or 4 times though before I can comprehend what he's saying though.
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Old 04-29-2009, 11:00 PM   #4
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that was a good article. at the end of the day those teams who have the money or resources will continue to use them to gain an advantage. The irony is that it takes more effort and expense to inspect and find the best of the stock parts vs everyone having the same improved stuff. Sparts are probably pretty close in performance to racing parts of not that long ago. So it will all washout and those who were the fast teams before will still be the ones to beat. even with Buell biased rules.
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