Count Down To FIM e-Power At Leguna Seca


Image Credit: AsphaltAndRubber.com

This weekend is e-Power at Laguna Seca and I am going to do my best to break down the field and give a rough guess at how the teams stack up. This is no easy task but I’m feeling brave.

There are a few new names and many of the usual suspects on the grid which should make for some great racing throughout the field. Each electric race bike has it’s own strengths and weaknesses resulting from the level of funding the team has and techniques used to put down power and get the most out of the little energy stored in the heavy batteries on board. The clear favorite to win is Michael Czysz riding the e1pc D1g1tal Superbike he designed and built. As you work your way down the field the riders experience is also vastly different from team to team making picking the ranks very difficult. Some are new to racing electric and some are veterans with 2 years under their belt.

Lightning Motors A Contender for the podium

One glaring omission to the e-Power grid is Team Agni, winners of the 2009 TTXGP are not scheduled to race. The 2010 Agni bikes are most likely in the UK for this weekends TTXGP UK race. However, the 2009 bike was last seen in the United States at Elkhart Lake in Wisconsin. After the race it was wheeled onto a Zero Motorcycle pickup truck that I can only assume was headed to San Jose which is a stones throw from Laguna Seca. Agni missed the race in Canada due to “logistical problems”. Is it safe to assume Zero did not want to drive out to Canada? Zoe Rem, rode the bike at Elkhart Lake and will be at Laguna Seca. I’ll stop speculating now and wait to hear back from Team Agni PR on the real story.

The second glaring omission is Lightning Motors, current points leaders of the TTXGP North American Series. Rumor has it they got their papers in late and with FIM shelling out cash to get teams on the grid I doubt hey will turn their nose up at one of the stronger challengers to the MotoCzysz team.

Update: Lightning Motors was seen at the track. Thanks Julie!

Lightning Motors and pilot Michael Barnes have become very comfortable walking away from the field with the huge acceleration of their EV-1 powered bike. If they do show I really want to know how long Barney can hang with MotoCzysz. Czysz’s Intimate knowledge of the bike and Laguna Seca will be a great advantage to team MotoCzysz and he most likely has more energy on board. The first lap of the race should be awesome and I can’t wait to see hear (doh) how the rest of the show down unfolds.

Update: The Brammo Empulse RR suffered a mechanical failure that can not be fixed in time for the race.

AMA Pro Aaron Gobert on the new Brammo Empulse RR should put up a great fight over the length of the course. The bike’s light weight will make up ground where its acceleration comes up sort of Czysz and Lightning machines. Brammo is definitely a podium contender and 3rd place should be the most interesting fight during the race.

FIM e-Power series leaders Thijs De Ridder on the Crystalite-Europe.com Racing bike and Betti Moto (Thomas Betti) may also be in the fight for a podium spot. Both teams have a win under their belts but I am having trouble tracking down lap times to shed more light on speed. Christian Amendt will be on the grid with an improved Epo-Bike.de electric race bike thanks to new battery sponsors. Münch Racing Team is running a bike based on the 2009 TTXGP second place XXL Racing machine. They finished ahead of Brammo on the Isle Of Man, can they do it on the shorter, tighter Mazda Raceway?

Look for strong showings from ElectricRaceBikes.com and Mike Hannas who have show consistent performance in the TTXGP NA series including a 3rd place podium at Infineon. Zero Motorcycles is backing K Squared Racing and Kenyon Kluge. Kluge is running a modified Zero S. He added batteries and upped the voltage for Infineon but he ran out of juice after the final turn. If he can find some tricks to increase the kWh on board or conserve energy he should have a solid race.

Ely Schless the Pro Moto Racing team is new to the grid but anything but new to electric motorcycles. Schless invented the Electric Moto Blade with is one of the first electric production dirtbikes. He is also an inventor and must be a bit of a showman considering he built the Snuggle Fabric Softener bear. How can you not love that annoying but cuddly robot mascot?

Zoe Rem will be back on the Pril Motors bike she rode at Infineon. Pril does not make the power of the rest of the bikes but the bike can go the distance.

If you’re out at the races please take pictures and post them up on the web. I can’t be there but will be scanning the net and monitoring twitter and facebook for any view into the action I can get. Be sure to get a test ride on the Zero Motorcycles bikes and check out the unveiling of the beautifully naked electric Brammo Empulse.

If you see Brammo Fan congratulate him on winning the Brammo Enertia. If you see Jenson Beeler from Asphalt And Rubber smile and hold up your “PlugBike Rocks” sign, he has been posting shots on the website since Thursday and will be covering the e-Power action. But whatever you do stay clear of the guys from Hell For Leather. They will probably be partying and doing bathroom dyno runs on the latest electric offerings which can’t be good for your lungs. Like I said, be sure to take pictures! :D The fans are critical to getting the word out about electric racing until the mainstream media deems it worthy.

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Posted on July 23, 2010 at 12:13 pm by John Adamo · Permalink
In: e-Power, Racing · Tagged with: , , , , ,

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  1. […] out this video of the e-Power grid at Laguna Seca. There is some great footage of the bikes before, during and after the race. The coolest part is […]

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