Sunday, August 18, 2013

Turpin wins eRoadRacing Indianapolis - Kluge wins in eSuperStock category

Shane Turpin - from Facebook
Shane Turpin (Brammo Empulse RR) won overall in today's eRoadRacing World Cup race at Indianapolis Speedway, with Kenyon Kluge (Zero S) winning the eSuperStock category.  This was the first electric vehicle race held at the Indianapolis Speedway, a track that has the nickname "Gasoline Alley", making it a historic occasion.  May there be so many electric vehicles racing there in the future that they have to think up a new nickname, but let's not get too far ahead of ourselves.

Eric Bostron - from Facebook
It's of course not a surprise that Shane Turpin and Eric Bostrom took 1st and 2nd, they have no real competition other than between themselves.  Turpin had a total time of 15:18.967, and Bostrom came in 14 seconds behind him at 15:32.700.  Both improved their best lap times by about a second.  In both cases their lap times slowed during the course of the race - Turpin started with 1:53.412 lap time and ended with 1:56.584 lap time, for example, and Bostrom did about the same.

The real racing action was between Kenyon Kluge, Jeremiah Johnson, Shelina Moreda and Ted Rich.  All four had very similar lap times throughout the race.  Because Kluge was not lapped by Turpin and Bostrom, while the other three were, he ran for an extra lap and had a total race time of 17:30.962, while taking 3rd place overall and 2:08.228 best lap time.

In 4th place overall was Jeremiah Johnson, 15:21.611 total time and 2:09.698 best lap time.  In 5th place overall was Shelina Moreda, 15:24.708 total time and 2:10.326 best lap time.  In 6th place overall was Ted Rich, 15:25.143 total time and 2:09.275 best lap time.

Of those four, Kluge, Johnson and Rich were riding 2013 Zero S's while Shelina Moreda was riding a Brammo Empulse TTX.  If the Zero S's are still configured as they were at Laguna Seca, all but Ted Rich's have been upgraded to a SEVCON Gen 4 Size 6 controller giving a higher overall power.  Another modification is added ducting for cooling.  At Laguna Seca, Ted Rich had a box surrounding the controller into which he put ice to cool it before the race.

The Zero S's and Empulse TTX's are racing in an unofficial division called eSuperStock.  There is some discussion around whether the modifications render the bike unfit for what can rightfully be called eSuperStock, or not.  I'm just documenting what I know and am trying to not pass judgement.  However as we see in the quotes below, Kenyon Kluge makes an excellent point.

Namely, with the 2013 model year it's now possible to buy a bike from the factory, make a few modifications that add up to about $1000 expenditure, and have a race-worthy bike.   The results show it's possible not just with Zero but Brammo's Empulse TTX as well.  This is a big step forward for electric motorcycles.

SHANE TURPIN (No. 14 Icon Brammo Brammo Empulse RR, winner): “I got a little bit of a lead, and all I could think about was, ”Man, just keep it, maintain and keep it steady,’ and I kept looking over my shoulder to see where (runner-up Eric Bostrom) was. I just wanted to finish this time. Laguna Seca kind of bit me, and the bike shut off. We maintained a good lead and brought it home. It was very exciting. I was hammer down. All of us are like that. We just want to win. The bottom line with the Brammo team is incredible. Anything I ask them to do – bike, setup. anything – they fix it. We have just been jelling very well, and obviously it shows.”

ERIC BOSTROM (No. 32 Icon Brammo Brammo Empulse RR, second): “Shane (Turpin) showed up fast, and neither of us had a real lot of laps around this track. The bike was really fast, 160-plus (mph) on the front straight. I got through the turns well, but I wasn’t able to get comfortable here. We took a little gamble in our setup for the race. Shane had us beat from the time we hit the asphalt. The team did a fantastic job; we didn’t have a hiccup all week long.” (About historical impact of race): “This is the place that bears the name Gasoline Alley, so it’s kind of ironic that we’re running around on batteries. It’s an incredible place for this team to be here at such a famous circuit and perform in front of the same crowd that they have for MotoGP and race cars here. It was incredible. My first lap down the front straight, I was just filled with emotion: Wow! I’m racing in the king’s quarters.”

KENYON KLUGE (No. 96 K Squared Racing Zero S, third): “I was third place overall but first place in the eSuperStock division. All the other bikes (except first and second place) out here were stock bikes with minimal changes, just bodywork, throw $1,000 into it after taking it off the showroom floor. We think it is really historic to be able to race a bike that the average buyer could go out and buy and do the same times we’re doing. This was my first time here at the course, so I had to learn it. It was a little tricky, some of the tight switchbacks combined with the long straightaway. I think I got into the flow of it in the race.”

Shane Turpin taking the win - Facebook eRoadRacing

The line-up before the race
from Facebook

Elaine Carpenter - from Facebook

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