On Monday 8 February 2021 Elliott Motorcycles completed a track test at Sydney Dragway of our LSR1 MKII race bike. All going well, our LSR1 MKII race bike would become the first Harley-Davidson® motorcycle in the world to run an Emtron engine management system.
Our first aim was to complete a few controlled test passes so that I could get the feel for the new setup of the bike. Secondly, we needed to make sure our onboard sensors/systems were working as we expected. Then, we needed to check that data was being recorded properly and to make minor adjustments if required.
We had the sole use of the track for four hours. That might seem like a lot. However, it’s a very tight window when you’re testing a specially engineered machine for the first time. Good thing we did test the bike because we found a few gremlins we needed to sort before setting off for DLRA Speed Week 2021.
No time to mess around
I was keen to make the most of the opportunity. We arrived at the track early and quickly got to work preparing the bike in the staging area. At this point I had only tested the bike on the dyno. So we didn’t fit the new fairings at first. I wanted to make sure the upgrades and the new Emtron engine management system was working properly and safely. Anything could happen. If something did go wrong, I wanted to be able to quickly access all of the systems on the bike. I was as prepared as I could be. Dan Lesnock (Harley-Davidson ANZ Technical Lead) was there to help as well.
The First Pass
We started the bike as soon as our pit was setup and got it ready to go. I was excited. All going well, I’d be another step closer to achieve our goal of setting a new land speed record. I jumped on the bike and made my way through the tower to the start line. Then paused momentarily to get my bike lined up and to let my team get in position. As soon as I was set, I got on the throttle.
The power of the bike felt great, the bike just wanted to go. I used the opportunity to get a feel for the new riding position. It also gave me an opportunity to test the sensitivity of the new air shifter I had installed. The riding position was so different. It was more horizontal and more tucked in than the bike I had raced in 2018.
Sydney Dragway had just laid down a new track surface. A side benefit of this track test was being able to get a feel for it. It was so much better than the old surface and it got me excited about the upcoming drag racing season. But I needed to stay focused on the task in hand.
Enjoying the Moment
The first run was a success despite discovering a few minor things which needed adjustment. So, we fitted the fairings and I went for another pass. Tucked in behind the new fairing this time the sound of the wind was gone. I could hear the bike so much more clearly. It was sounding great!
A few more checks and adjustments and a few more passes later we had done all that could be done. Time permitting, I could have kept going there all day. Unfortunately, reality set in and we had to get back to work. All in all it was a successful day. So I was very happy that we did a track test at Sydney Dragway before heading to the salt.