Airdrie motorcycle racer inks deal with AMA Pro Racing team
Airdrie’s Chad Swain turned an opportunity to test the bikes of the Triple Crown Industries American Motorcyclist Association racing team into a full season contract to contest the 2013 AMA Supersport Championship.
Swain, who decided to further his racing career in 2010 by heading to Miller Motorsport Park in Utah from Calgary, was offered a position on the team that won the 2010 AMA Supersport Championship after winning four championships at the Utah racetrack in 2012.
Swain tested the Yamaha YZF 600 race bike at Infineon Raceway in California Nov. 12, and after figuring out the fast and difficult track, was able to run lap times that impressed the team owner enough to offer the ride for 2013.
“I showed up on the Monday morning, and there were two bikes there waiting for me. I went out and did alright in the morning session. I was sliding the front and rear a lot. I talked to the mechanics and they worked it out,” said Swain.
“At the end of the day, I turned some pretty competitive times compared to the AMA races there earlier this year.”
One of the biggest challenges for Swain was learning the track, which he had never run before.
“That track is hard to learn,” said Swain.
“It is very physical, you don’t get a break at all. There is not chance to think.”
Despite taking some time to learn the track, Swain did find that a very long left-handed carousel, turn 7, that drops nearly two stories was his favourite corner on the course.
“You are working so hard through that corner, you run it at full throttle and have to believe the track is around the corner,” said Swain.
Heading into the test, Swain was nervous but had a lot of support from friends and his manager who told him he needs to get on the bike and do what he does best.
“(People) were telling me to go out and do my thing and go ride the bike,” said Swain. “All the (team) engineers are looking at the data, there are spotters around the track watching you. I just blocked it all out of my mind.”
Once the test was over, the attitude of the engineers and mechanics gave Swain confidence and they quickly approached him about riding their bike in 2013.
After a long winter of testing in California, Swain will kick off his AMA racing career at the high-banked Daytona International Raceway in Florida.
Swain was originally set to test with the team before the Infineon track day, but that was cancelled, making the season opener a challenge for Swain.He is hoping to be able to pull out as many top-five finishes, and end up on the podium as much as he can in 2013, but says his best chance at the first win will be back at Miller Motorsports Park in August, as he considers that his home track.
“I know that track really well, I want to win that race,” said Swain. “There is going to be a lot more pressure on me to perform there.”