Blue Ridge Performance Sponsored Riders and Track Day Performers
Bio: Chris "Jack" Knauf
Chris "Jack" Knauf was always forbidden by his parents to own a motorcycle, so he did what any teenager in the same situation would naturally do...secretly buy a 1990 Honda CBR600F "Hurricane" and keep it at his brother's house. That began the life-long love affair with sportbikes that brought him to road racing in 2009.
When the 2008 Ninja 250 was released Chris knew this was his path to racing. Being a product of the Texas public school system made it necessary for him to start slow. He picked one up and converted it to a track bike, taking it to Brainerd Interational Raceway initially for a track day and then to the Central Roadracing Association's (CRA) New Rider School in late summer 2009 to earn his road racing license. This is where the addiction really began.
A few months at the back of the Ultralight pack made him yearn for a more competitive ride, and the answer was a crashed 2007 Ninja 650R from a salvage auction. The 2009 season ended before Chris could race the 650, but a winter of testing at JenningsGP prepared him for the 2010 season. When he heard that any two-cylinder motorcycle could compete in the American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association's (AHRMA) Battle of the Twins, Chris applied for membership and began making plans to race on the high banks of Daytona. Despite a wet and windy weekend, Chris fought his way from the third row each day to 6th and 3rd place finishes in a field of 21.
Although Daytona was a good start to the 2010 pre-season, the real goal was to return to Brainerd and see how the 650 would do against the other Lightweights in the CRA. Another exciting development for 2010 was the CRA's addition of a Ninja 250 Spec Class similar to Willow Springs' Ninja Cup. This is a race where the best line and highest corner speed win.
Chris hopes for a productive 2010 season and thanks Gary at Blue Ridge Performance who seems to know everything about the Ninja 650 and supports the 250 as well. Thanks also go out to MomentumPhoto.net for their excellent photography.