I have always wanted to write an article covering an NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle rider from start to finish over the course of a race weekend. This weekend I will get the chance to do so as I will get to tag along with Jimmy Underdahl who is coming off two great finish’s.
Jimmy has been racing since he was a kid. His father Greg Underdahl told me he started Jimmy off on dirt bikes at an early age. From there he progressed Jimmy along on Super Comp bikes, then Top Gas and onto the Pro Stock bike. Through all this Jimmy has become a solid rider with the skills to compete on a national level in the NHRA. With all of this experience Greg said that Jimmy has learned the most from his last two finishes which were a semi-finals in Indianapolis and a finals in Brainerd.
NHRA is a completely different experience than the now defunct AMA Dragbike. While AMA Dragbike catered solely to motorcycles, NHRA only has one class devoted to our sport. And this class has spared no expense on it’s machines. Every trailer is a Larry McBride set up. Each bike has been gone over from top to bottom by not only the crews, but also the NHRA tech inspectors. I asked the tech inspector what do they look for the most and he replied, “When it comes to safety…Everything.” (This comment was made while he was going through Jeremy Teasley’s Joe Rocket helmet looking for the Snell sticker.)
What I think makes large events like the NHRA, NASCAR or WERA have an air unlike any other for the racer is not just the size and the money in it, but the public’s presence. Your performance is out there for everyone to see, not only for the spectators in the stands but also the veiwers at home. There is no shortage of lenses pointed at you to record your victories as well as your failures. Composure is key.
Underdahl Racing is in the spotlight this weekend for Dragbike Live.com. and all of you get to watch.
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