Tucker Lancaster Round 1 WERA West

This weekend my family attended the opening round of the WERA West road racing series. It was at California Speedway in Fontana California. It was my first race on the 600cc bike. My first time on the track on that bike was on Saturday during practice. In my first practice session I was a little stiff on the bike. I wasn’t used to that much speed going into turn one. Going into the infield off of the banking is kind of weird. It is such a fast turn I knew I just needed to relax through it. They added a little chicane going down the back straight away so that was also kind of weird. I started out the day just trying to figure things out with the bike and my body positioning through some of the corners where I wasn’t too comfortable. At the beginning of the day I was doing about a 1:40 lap time and by the end of the day I shaved off three seconds and got down to a low 1:37. I was pretty happy at the end of the day and I felt like I was ready to race. I was pretty nervous but I felt like I could do good.Tucker Lancaster

On Sunday morning we woke up and the wind was blowing hard! It made me even more nervous but when I got out on the track with the guys in my class for the first time I felt a lot better. On Sunday I felt way better on the bike. I was more relaxed on the bike even though the wind was really bad. The wind was really mixing a lot of people up. In some turns it made you go wide or it made you wheelie out of some while you were still leaned over so it was pretty sketchy. Coming down the front straight away there was a strong head wind so that slowed it down going into turn one and made it easier to get the bike turned in.  At the end of the morning practice I was doing a 1:39 lap time. I felt pretty good about that considering how much the wind slowed me down.

My first race was the 600 super stock novice race. I was starting on the inside of the fourth row.  I got a really good start and found myself in first place going into the first turn. I was kind of surprised it was so easy because I was sure there was one guy in there that I was battling with in practice. Throughout the whole race I could hear him back there so I just kept pushing. I couldn’t believe it when I looked back at the end of the race and no one was there. I won my first race on the 600 by 25 seconds! I was super pumped! I did my fastest lap time of the weekend so far which was a 1:36.361.

First Across the Finish

My next race was the 750cc super stock novice race. This race had experts and novices combined and had a 2 wave start. I started on the third row of novices on the inside which was the 15th row over all. I got another pretty good start and was in fourth going into the first turn. I passed one rider and got up to third. Going into the chicane at the end of the back straight away I tried to pass the second place rider on the inside but I blew the turn. I got back on the track in fourth. I got around both of the riders in front of me within the next lap. By this time though, the first place rider had already made a big lead.(first place was the one I was battling with in practice) I was starting to real in first place. We started catch the back of the expert class. It really helped me catch up to first but I was still probably 3 to 5 seconds behind him on the last lap. We had passed about 5 expert riders. I wasn’t close enough on the last lap to make any attempts to pass him and I had to settle for second place.

My last race of the day was the 600 superbike novice race. I started on the inside of the third row. I got another good start and got the hole shot. I knew that in that race I was going to have some competition, and I did. The same guy I was battling with all day was right on my butt the whole race. I could hear him there the whole time and he pushed me to go faster and faster. I made a few little mistakes that allowed him to stay right there with me. I was able to hold the lead for the whole race. On the last lap I made a pretty big mistake by running wide in one of the turns but I think he kind of followed me into the same mistake and fortunately he didn’t get by me. I was really happy with my finish, and I was even happier when I found out that I did my fastest lap of the weekend with a 1:35.160. Every time I got on the bike I kept on improving which was great and I’m really excited for the rest of the season!

I had a great weekend with two wins and a second place finish! I am really excited to be racing again and I would like to thank everyone for making it possible.

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