Dunlop Plans More INVITE Events In 2020 And Beyond
Buffalo, NY: Dunlop Motorcycle Tires made history with the recent inaugural running of The Invite, presented by Dunlop, at Hallett Motor Racing Circuit in Jennings, Oklahoma. The central location of the event drew competitors from a multitude of states across the country, from California to Florida and points in between.
The 2019 iteration of The Invite, presented by Dunlop, aims to be the start of a yearly event which will help revitalize motorcycle road racing in the United States and provide racers from all across the country a new platform to showcase their skills and ultimately enjoy more seat time on track.
“It was a really fun event,” said Dunlop Business Development Manager Chad Geer. “Everyone is saying they enjoyed it. Our goal is to go forward and get other (amateur road racing) organizations to work with us, hold qualifiers, and help develop this concept.”
The idea and the format for the event are unprecedented, but Dunlop and CMRA Race Director Walter Walker and his crew stepped up to the plate, running the event and deploying Airfence soft barriers provided by the Roadracing World Action Fund. Things went off without a hitch over the course of the weekend, creating an atmosphere enjoyed by racers, families, and friends alike.
There was exceptional racing on Saturday and Sunday at Hallett and a few competitors stood head and shoulders above the rest. Track records were broken throughout the weekend thanks to Dunlop rubber and it started with Ryan Max Johnson. The Yamaha YZF-R3 rider came away with the Number One plate in the 300 Expert classification with four out of four wins and also broke the 300cc track record two separate times, with an eventual best time of 1:23.9 beating the previous record by half-a-second.
In the 400cc categories, 2019 MotoAmerica LiquiMoly Junior Cup Champion Rocco Landers, age 14, had a sensational weekend, winning all eight races that he entered and earning Number One plates in the (14-24) 400 Expert, 400 Expert, and 300/400 Shootout categories. In addition to his exceptional race results, Landers also broke the track record in the 400 class and continued to improve on his own time throughout the weekend, eventually clocking a 1:20.04 on the final day of racing.
In the 600cc classes, Texas native JC Camacho came out on top in the majority of the races. Camacho left himself a little bit of work to do off the starts which made for some exceptional battles in the closing laps, but more often than not he fought his way to the front of the pack and ended up coming away with the Number One plate in both the 600 Expert and 600 Shootout classes.
In the Twins and 1000cc divisions, local racer and the outright track record holder Dustin Dominguez dominated the competition. The Oklahoma native looked comfortable on his home track all weekend and never put a tire wrong, winning every race he entered by a healthy margin, with stylish wheelies across the finish line to boot. Dominguez was the winningest rider at the event and came away with a total of four Number One plates at the end of the weekend, taking the top spot in the Twins Expert, Twins Shootout, 1000 Expert, and 1000 Shootout classifications.
California’s Brian Bartlow separated himself from the rest of the field in the 300 & 400 age classes, taking the top spot in 30+ (300 & 400), 40+ (300 & 400), and 50+ (300 & 400).
The last race on the schedule was the Grom and Z125 World Championship. After a six-lap battle, the Number One plate went to Josiah Burleson. The 13-year-old rode a flawless race and celebrated at the finish line by emphatically raising both fists into the air, putting the cap on a fantastic weekend of grassroots motorcycle racing at The Invite, presented by Dunlop.