|Posted on Monday, December 10, 2012 - 02:46 pm: ||
When The Dream Team Becomes A Nightmare -
Like Rossi On The Ducati, Scott Russell Was Left Humbled On The Harley
I found this aspect pretty interesting:
".....There are similarities if you compare the seasons Valentino Rossi spent at Ducati to the two seasons Russell put in at Harley. Both riders left those teams basically shell-shocked, out-shined by their teammates. And very, very rich. "At the time the money I was being paid by Harley didn't matter to me," Russell says. "At the time, all that mattered was that I was riding a bike that I knew that if it didn't rain that I had no shot at winning on. That's all I thought about. I was overwhelmed by it. I never thought about the money." Russell was the highest paid rider in the AMA Superbike paddock in that era.
"Now? Now it makes me smile," Russell says. "I am still getting paid by Harley-Davidson, and will continue to get paid for two more years. I sit on my porch and look at my land and my things and my life and I am very happy I rode for Harley. I am very fortunate."
Asked to sum up his two seasons at Harley-Davidson, Russell says: "Humbling. Isolating. Difficult....."
|Posted on Monday, December 10, 2012 - 04:01 pm: ||
Good story. I have a Diecast model of the VR1000 that Duhamel rode in 94. I also have two race posters. One signed by Russel and the other by piccote.
|Posted on Monday, December 10, 2012 - 08:31 pm: ||
I have a Diecast model of the VR1000 that Duhamel rode in 94.
I have that same Diecast model.
It's prominently displayed in a very apropos location.
It's on top of the tank of my toilet.
You can draw your own conclusions as I've already drawn mine,
|Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - 08:53 am: ||
1313 since you regard it so low, i'll buy it from you
While the VR1000 was a flop, I still think its a cool bike and get excited when i see one in person.
Shame it didnt work out, for HD or Russell
|Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - 10:16 am: ||
VERY interesting backstory on that bike in Court and Dave's book if you haven't read it already. Not entirely unexpected when Harley's vaunted "engineers" ignored the input of one who actually understood race bikes.
|Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - 10:53 pm: ||
actually, jaimec, funny you say that
I picked that book up to flip through today for a few minutes and read fully the VR part
|Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2012 - 11:16 am: ||
Just a side note...I chatted with Russell's mechanics at Sears Point in 2000, they said his bikes didn't like him....
|Posted on Tuesday, April 01, 2014 - 02:25 pm: ||
here's one available - pricey!!
assuming it'll disappear before you read this, here's the text:
This Harley VR1000 and the collection of spares that goes with it is not for everyone or someone wanting to collect a Harley Superbike for their static collection. It is about the possibilities it presents to participate in Vintage Racing with an incredibly rare Factory Road Race Motorcycle, one built in limited quantities with no source other then the parts included with the bike to maintain and support many seasons of a unobtainium experience, of riding one of few Harley Factory Superbikes. If you are of a mind to understand what is being offered in the description and images and want to have the opportunity to race at any level a factory Superbike without reinventing the wheel, read on. This is not just a bike for sale, it is an experience very few will ever have to place yourself in the middle of a piece of history.
The story of Harley entered into the world of AMA Superbike racing is one of a two headed chicken attempting to go in one direction and being of two differing minds, fell on it's self. In 1988, Mark Tuttle, VP of Engineering at Harley, started the ball rolling by assigning engineer Mark Miller to design the engine. After getting the bottom end completed, the project was taken to Roush Racing in 1999 to complete the first running engine. From that point, Harley brought the project back to the factory to complete the program. Harley-Davidson parts and sourcing used what they could internally and outside parts suppliers, some that had no experience in racing as opposed to method Honda used earlier when it entered world class racing by hiring the best designers, best tuners, best managers and best riders no matter where they worked or for whom. Honda committed to wanting to win what ever it took, Harley never really wandered far from its normal suppliers or domestic sources during the initial gestation. Possible politics, possible mismanagement, possibility a gamble that back fired, the results were to be a failure before the Harley finally pulled the plug.
But before that, Steve Scheibe was hired from Roush in the early 90's to manage
the development of the bike inside of Harley. Scheibe had worked on the heads
and the machine's fuel injection system and was as familiar with the design as
anyone at the time. Scheibe was behind the eight ball from the get go. The bike
had been commissioned in 1988 and it was now 1993 before they had a running
motorcycle. The original brief the bike was based upon what was currently state
of the art Superbikes in 1988. It would seem today unreasonable to think that
other factories would have remained stagnate in their development for five
years, but the lack of experience shown by Harley did not take the lengthy
development period of getting the bike to a finished state. By the mid-nineties,
most Super Sport prepared motorcycles would give the VR1000 fits at the track
much less Superbikes in their current state of tune. The performance goal line
had not changed, it had moved into another state. It's first races were in fact in
1994 with Miguel DuHamel and Fritz Kling. DuHamel could ride a wheel barrow
faster then most riders of the day could ride a Superbike and it was his supreme
effort that led to great qualifying at Mid-Ohio and actually leading the race until a
mechanical failure stop the run, this after grenading at Daytona part way
through the race. The bike was not ready to race, it was dramatically
underpowered and the results showed. Harley management fought a divided
war on whether to scrap the project or continue, the result being unpredictable
funding each year, lack of direction and corporate back room back biting that
even included Eric Buell.
A long story made short, the bike became a rolling test bed of developing parts
and new solutions to track demonstrated issues. Harley encouraged several
private teams to campaign the bike including Tilley's and the bikes for sale here,
owned by Mike Canepa's 10-K Racing, run out of San Jose Harley-Davidson.
The best finish for the VR1000 was by Tommy Wilson at Mid-Ohio in 1996 who would have finished the race in 1st place, but because a red flag had been thrown earlier in the lap, positions reverted back to the previous lap and the win was vapor. 1996 was the best year for the VR1000 with Carr and Wilson placing well and having a shot at podiums at Sears when another red flag was thrown and they suffered mechanical failures at the restart (Carr's bike is the roller chassis included with the sale).
Disaster after disaster chased the factory team, the worse was Tommy Wilson's crash at Loudon that ended his career. The powers to be finally pulled the purse strings close that year and the bikes were sold off to the private team owners or others wanting to seize a part of history. Rumor is that the engine was the basis for the V-Rod engine, another Harley miscue that has left heads scratching.
The selling price is $127,495 which includes the $1000 worth of accessories added to the bike. . See at Automania, 895 SE Gladiola Drive, Grants Pass, OR 97526. http://www.automaniagp.com 541 479 8888 Oregon Dealer DA1287
|Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 11:52 am: ||
I might have to stop by there and see it!
|Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 11:54 am: ||
When you get there tell them that 94.6% of that article is patently inaccurate.
Not sure it'll impact the price . . . but, hey . . . .
|Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 09:50 pm: ||
I went, I saw, couldn't bring myself to say anything... To be honest, the bike looks like it's been sitting in a barn, or in the weather, for many years. Rust, dirt, thrashed tires, etc.