June 18, 2018
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Land speed racing returns to Loring this weekend for The Harvest Event

By Tom Hale, Special to the BDN

LIMESTONE, Maine — Land Speed Racers will converge on Loring Commerce Center this weekend for The Harvest Event.

It will be the first racing at the facility since the death of record holder Bill Warner of Florida, who was killed July 14 in a motorcycle crash at the Maine Event.

Event director Tim Kelly of Bath said this about the post-Bill Warner era, “He (Warner) took Land Speed Racing up 50 miles per hour when he made his 311 mph run in 2011. Most racers work hard to raise the record by a couple of miles per hour. He raised it by 50 mph. His record will not be broken in our life.”

Kelly, formerly of Presque Isle, expects to see several division speed records broken by some of the racers making the trek north. The Gustafson Racing team from the Augusta area has been running speeds just below the 200 mph mark.

He also mentioned that local racer Bob Kilcollins from Fort Fairfield will be at the Harvest Event and can be expected to set some fast times with his Shelby GT500 Mustang.

The Discovery Channel Bikers Build Off Champion, Dave Perewitz of Bridgewater, Mass., is expected to compete with the Perewitz Cycle Fabrication motorcycle driven by Perewitz’s daughter Jody Perewitz.

Jody Perewitz, 30, is the manager of marketing at her father’s famous motorcycle shop. She claims the title, “Fastest Woman on An American V-Twin Motorcycle.” Her Facebook page states that she went 208 mph at the Bonneville Salt Flats during the BUB Motorcycle Speed Trials that end August 29. Her prior record was 203 mph.

Perewitz Cycle Fabrication has produced custom motorcycles for several celebrities including NASCAR driver/owner Tony Stewart and crew chief Greg Zipadelli.

Caribou native Jason Theriault also is expected to make an effort to boost his record speed of 207.203 mph in his 1,300-horsepower 1994 Nissan Pickup.

“My goal will be reach 200 mph in the one-mile and 225 mph in the 1.5-mile. I have turned up the boost and turned up the timing to accomplish this goal.”

One person who will not be at Loring is Bangor’s Dave Sleeper, who in 2012 joined the exclusive 200 Mile Per Hour Club. The 76-year-old plans to end his land speed racing career.

When asked what he was going to pursue next, the Bangor realtor replied, “Drag racing is next. I went to Epping Dragway in New Hampshire this summer and earned my NHRA motorcycle racing license. I needed to turn a sub-10-second quarter-mile time to get the license. I did a 9.4 second run at 153 mph.”

Caribou’s Jesse Michaud also has temporarily set aside his attempt at becoming the “Fastest Dirt Bike Rider” in the world on his Yamaha 250. Instead, he will race his Suzuki GSXR 1000 in the MPS 1000 4-stroke class.

The record in that division is 208 mph. Michaud will use the Harvest Event to get used to the bike and obtain his “B” license, which will allow him to go up to 200 mph.

“I won’t be setting any records in September but something is really pushing me,” Michaud said recently. “After July I didn’t know when I would race again. Now it seems I am in deeper than ever. Maybe it’s redemption for Bill … maybe.”

Adrian Tauer of Caribou plans to improve his record speed of 143 mph in his economy car, a Toyota Yaris. Typically known to deliver mileage in the high 30s, the Tauer machine will be sporting 200 turbocharged horsepower.

“I am going to be shooting for my Class C license and break 150 mph,” Tauer said. “I am pushing 200 horsepower right now in my land speed tune. My aggressive tune was at 220 horsepower but not as safe.

“Last fall, in comparison, I was running 165 horsepower when I made the records at 134 mph in the mile and 143 mph in the 1.5-mile.”

Racing runs Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday’s action starts at 8 a.m. and goes until 4 p.m. Admission is $10 per day or a weekend pass may be purchased for $15.

For more information checkout the Loring Timing Association’s website www.lta-lsr.com.

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