Jun 20, 2013
© 2013, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.
by David Swarts
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GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing: Chris Ulrich leaves the pits to give newspaper reporter Solomon Crenshaw, Jr. a ride on his GEICO Honda CBR1000RR two-seat Superbike at Barber Motorsports Park.
AMA Pro Superbike racer Chris Ulrich made a big impression on members of the Birmingham, Alabama media Thursday by giving them 125-mph, multi-lap rides on his GEICO Honda CBR1000RR two-seat Superbike around Barber Motorsports Park.
“Wow! That was incredible,” said Lauren Sisler, sports anchor/reporter for CBS42 TV news. “Just the adrenaline. I’ve never done anything like this, and it’s something I would definitely do again. The adrenaline, my heart’s still beating. I’ve been off the bike for five minutes, and the adrenaline is still racing.
“This is something that I’ve not been around a whole lot, so to be able to come out here and experience it firsthand was certainly a great experience, a great learning experience to better understand this sport and how it works. Just getting out here on the track and feeling it for yourself definitely gives [me] a great introduction to the sport of motorcycle road racing.”
“I think these people are crazy to do this for a living!” Kyle Burger, sports anchor/reporter for NBC 13 TV news, said while laughing. “We were going so fast and I was just that far from my knee touching the pavement in the turns. It was one of the scariest thing I’ve ever done.
“I think it’s [motorcycle road racing] going to come off as a hit because this is something a normal person would not be able to do this. But to watch this in person and see the guys that are brave enough to do this is a true spectacle and definitely entertaining to see.”
“This is fantastic!” said Bryant Somerville, a reporter with ABC 33/40 TV news. “Motorcycle racing, Indy Car racing tend to be under-appreciated here in Alabama, and what you guys are doing here, allowing us to come out and ride around, ride around this track, ride around with Chris is just incredible. I think this is going to do phenomenal things for the sport.”
Others who rode with Ulrich Thursday included: Patrick Claybon, a reporter also with CBS 42 TV news; Solomon Crenshaw, Jr., a sports reporter with AL.com, the online presence of the Birmingham News daily newspaper; and Scott Griffin, Fox 6 TV sports anchor/reporter and co-host of the Smashmouth Radio Network show on 97.3 FM ESPN Radio.
Every TV news station located in Birmingham sent a reporter to ride with Ulrich at Barber Motorsports Park.
Ulrich and his team have offered rides on two-seat racebikes to local reporters to help promote AMA Pro Superbike events and motorcycle road racing in general for over 10 years, and Ulrich has given nearly 600 two-seat racebike rides since 2003.