2021 SHNC QuaTTro Round 1: Laguna Seca

Jun 18th 2021

Written by Nathon Verdugo

As we put to bed the shit box of a season the 2020 SHNC turned out to be, we had our work cut out for ourselves trying to put together a 2021 race schedule that was A.) Doable B.) Worth doing and C.) F@&King exciting! When looking toward the future, it's often best to consider your past. In 1954 the AMA Grand National Championship series was introduced featuring four different types of competitions: three of the rounds (Mile, Half-mile, TT) were held on dirt tracks, while the fourth was held on an asphalt paved course. A page from history lead to the modern-day 2021 Super Hooligan National Championship QuaTTro! This new four-race format doesn't deviate from the core Hooligan rules too much; Street legal frame, Twin Cylinder, 750cc and above with a minimum weight rule. 17’s for the asphalt and 19’s for the dirt. Racers are encouraged to use the same motorcycle for every race but allowed riders to use a different bike for the street course; however, they would incur a 10-point penalty against their cumulative season championship points total.

To keep things interesting, Roland decided to kick off the new format with the asphalt race first. And not just an asphalt race, but an asphalt race in conjunction with the premiere asphalt racing league in America, Moto America. And not just in conjunction with the premiere asphalt racing league in America, but at the world-famous and legendary Laguna Seca! Yes! Super Hooligans would be taking the same stage as MotoGP on the exact same track Nicky Hayden won his first Grand Prix in 2005.

It's funny the difference in terminology between various racing entities. For instance, in most dirt and off-road racing, they refer to the area where the teams and riders set up as the “Pits.” In road racing, they refer to this area as the “Paddock,” and as you can imagine, the scene in the pits, especially a Super Hooligan pit, is vastly different than that of a professional Road Race paddock. Road Racers and their teams take their craft very seriously, so it was going to be interesting to see how miscible these two vastly different ecosystems would interact. In typical Hooligan fashion, unbothered by what anyone else thought, the Super Hooligans made themselves right at home and created a pit party atmosphere in the middle of the Road Race paddock, which attracted most of the attention from fans all weekend.

As relaxed as the atmosphere was in the pits, the Hooligans were all business as they rolled out for free practice and qualifying. The diversity of bikes were incredible, everything from a couple of factory prepped KTM 890’s to Ducati Hypermotard's, Indian FTR 1200s, a slew of air-cooled big-bore HD’s and even a couple of electric Livewires. Riders' backgrounds we just as diverse. Everything from part-time hooligan racers, some of which this would only be their second time racing on asphalt, to ex AMA Superbike champs.

Current Super Hooligan champion and Moto America Superstock racer Andy DiBrino sat on top of the leaderboard through all the free practice, and qualifying sessions, followed by DiBrino’s now boss, Pikes Peak record holder and current Factory KTM AFT singles team manager Chris Fillmore. Right behind Fillmore, the “Truligan” Frankie Garcia, who was pulling double duty also competing in the King of the Bagger class, was consistently in a close third.

With practice and qualifying out of the way, arguably the most anticipated race of the weekend roared through the paddock setting a new record for the most neck tattoos on a Road Race grid in history. As the green flag dropped, pole rider Andy DiBrino led the pack up, over turn one and around the double apex of turn two. If you're not sure what a double apex is, don’t worry; a lot of the guys out there racing didn’t either until recently. Surprisingly turn three saw the only carnage of the race with Alan Contreras low siding his Harley and almost collecting Stace Richmond, but Stace implemented his Super Hooligan flat track skills through the gravel trap, back on the pavement, and quickly gave chase to catch the rest of the field.

At the halfway point, the leaders started getting into lapped traffic, causing a shake-up in the running order. Fillmore was able to use Aaron Guardado on the Livewire as a moving chicane on top of the already challenging static Corkscrew chicane and got by DiBrino for the lead. At the same time, the very young and talented David Kohlstaedt snuck by Frankie Garcia, as Garcia missed a shift exiting turn 11 down the long front straight, which also allowed SHNC newcomer Patricia Fernandez on a virtually stock Indian FTR 1200 to pull within striking distance of the International Playboy Garcia. Behind Fernandez was an exciting battle between Fernandez’s fiancé Cory West on an Aprilia and their mutual friend Corey Jones on a Hypermotard. Unfortunately, Corey didn’t have quite enough to hang with wifey to be Fernandez, so he adopted the honey-do of doing his best to keep Jones in the friend zone at a comfortable 4th.

With only a couple of laps left, Andy was able to eek his way back around Fillmore, while Anthony Sollima on the #1 Harley Davison was applying pressure to the top 7 running 8th and the first air-cooled twin, behind him asphalt newbie but SHNC Vet AJ Kirkpatrick held down 9th. Up until Laguna Seca, Kirkpatrick had never stepped foot on a road racecourse, but as soon as he learned of the new format, he started working with a road race coach and really made an effort to sharpen his two-wheeled skills. Kirkpatrick’s offseason efforts definitely paid off as he remained calm and relaxed, even with AMA Supersport champion Eric Bostrom breathing down his neck. Bostrom aboard the RSD Indian Chief was consistently putting in the seconded fastest laps of the air-cooled fleet.

With only a couple of turns left, Fillmore demonstrated his seasoned racecraft, never allowing DiBrino to pull too far away; Fillmore set himself up on the inside of DiBrino heading into the last corner, and in dramatic form, broke traction on his sticky Dunlop racing slicks, backing it in, foot off the peg, Hooligan dirt track style right underneath the 62 of DiBrino. Fillmore maintained his drive off the corner down the straight, clenching a photo-finish victory in his first ever SHNC race a mere .45 of a second over current Super Hooligan champ DiBrino. Kohlstaedt was able to hang on to his capitalized mistake by Garcia for third, with Garcia and Fernandez rounding out the top 5.

As the top three made their way to the podium, Fernandez and Garcia hustled back to their pit to jump on their respective baggers for the KOB race, which immediately followed the Super Hooligan race. As the cameras focused on where the champagne was being popped at the podium celebration, there was a secondary celebration brewing within the Super Hooligan pits. The volumes were cranked on stereos. Dunlop racing slicks got melted off rear wheels, and beers of choice were cracked and passed. See, the true essence of Super Hooligan racing isn’t just how you finish; it’s in the attempt. A lot of people look at what Super Hooligans do and think to themselves or, in some cases, say out loud, “Ah hell, I could do that!” Well, the difference is they did do that, and that’s what's worth celebrating.

The SHNC would like to give a HUUUGE thank you to the folks at MotoAmerica. Wayne Rainey, Richard Varner, Chuck Aksland, Terry Karges, Jordan Miller, Tige Daane, and the rest, thanks for believing and trusting us to put on a good show and clean up after the party.

Now we look forward to Round 2 of 4 in the QuaTTro series, the Wild Ones TT in Castle Rock, WA. Will we see Fillmore defend his victory and try his hand at Dirt Track? Will the Guardado’s throw 19’s on those Livewires and get sideways? Is the youngster Kohlstaedt the truth? Will DiBrino bring his emotional support pet Zebra? I guess we will have to wait till 8/14 -15 to find out.

Registration is up on Moto American website for the July 9- 11th Laguna Seca Super Hooligan Road Race. Time is running out to get signed up as the racing kicks off Friday July 9th

Click below to create an account and get registered for the Laguna Seca Race today:

Please note: All bikes must have transponders before they will be allowed on the Weathertech Raceway in Laguna Seca. If you have a transponder please bring it, if you do not, a transponder will be available for a three day rental fee of $75.00.

For additional information on SHNC Eligibility, Bike Rules, Specific Information for Round 1 Road Race and a link to the complete 2021 SHNC Rule Book, click below!

 Friday 

8:00 am Track Inspection 

8:30 am - 8:45 am Roland Sands Super Hooligans Practice 1 (15 min) 

8:55 am - 9:25 am SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Practice 1 (30 min) 

9:35 am - 10:05 am Twins Cup Practice 1 (30 min) 

10:15 am - 10:45 am Supersport Practice 1 (40 min) 

10:50 am - 11:35 am HONOS Superbike Practice 1 (45 min) 

11:45 am - 12:15 pm Stock 1000 Practice 1 (30 min) 

12:25 pm - 12:40 pm Mission Foods King of the Baggers Qualifying Practice 1 (15 min) 

1:00 pm - 1:30 pm SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Qualifying 1 (30 min) 

1:40 pm - 2:15 pm Supersport Qualifying 1 (35 min) 

2:25 pm - 3:10 pm HONOS Superbike Qualifying 1(45 min) 

3:20 pm - 3:50 pm Stock 1000 Qualifying 1 (30 min) 

4:00 pm - 4:30 pm Twins Cup Qualifying 1 (30 min) 

4:40 pm - 5:05 pm Mission Foods King of the Baggers Practice 2 (15 min) 

5:15 pm – 5:30 pm Roland Sands Super Hooligans Practice 2 (15 min) 

 

Saturday 

8:00 am Track Inspection 

8:30 am - 8:50 am Roland Sands Super Hooligans Qualifying (20 min) 

9:00 am - 9:30 am SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Qualifying 2 (30 min) 

9:40 am - 10:50 am Stock 1000 Free Practice 3 (30 min) 

11:00 am - 11:30 am HONOS Superbike Qualifying 2 (30 min) 

11:40 am - 12:10 am Supersport Qualifying 2 (30 min) 

12:20 pm - 12:50 pm Twins Cup Qualifying 2 (30 min) 

1:00 pm - 1:20 pm Mission Foods King of the Baggers qualifying (20 min) 

1:40 pm Stock 1000 Race (14 laps) 

2:40 pm Supersport Race 1 (19 laps) 

3:40 pm HONOS Superbike Race 1 (20 laps) 

4:40 pm SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Race 1 (13 laps) 

 

Sunday 

7:30 am Track Inspection 

8:00 am - 8:15 am Roland Sands Super Hooligans Warm Up 

8:30 am - 8:45 am Twins Cup Warm Up (15 min) 

8:55 am - 9:10 am Mission Foods King of the Baggers Warm Up (15 min) 

9:20 am - 9:35 am Supersport Warm Up (15 min) 

9:45am - 10:00 am SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Warm Up 

10:10 am - 10:30 am HONOS Superbike Warm Up (15 min) 

11:00 am Mission Foods King of the Baggers Race 

11:40 am Roland Sands Super Hooligans Race 

12:10 am SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Race 2 (13 laps)

1:10 pm Supersport Race 2 (19 laps) 

2:10 pm HONOS Superbike Race 2 (20 laps) 

3:10 pm Twins Cup Race (13 laps) 

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