We’ve been very fortunate to have the opportunity to test the bikes at the Ford Proving Ground in Romeo, MI, which was arranged for us by Mike Mowett. The team gets to take bikes out on the track during breaks and lunch and dinner times when it is not being used by car people.
Photos with captions marked with asterisks are by Sherry.
When I arrived on Wednesday afternoon, the team was in the midst of gathering aero data on Ace and Vortex. Here they are putting tufts on Vortex. In the background, you can see the wonderful workspace made available to us for the week.
Marc getting ready to run with Vortex.*
Vortex at speed with tufts.*
Vortex on the track.*
Our host, Mike Mowett arrives with Norus in tow.
Also on hand are the Kowaliks. Florian is planning to run at Battle Mountain in a few weeks. Here he is warming up with Calvin.
Calvin and Alan make Calvin’s Mark VII chili.
The team enjoying said chili for dinner.
Today (Thursday) the plan was to get more aero data on Vortex while prepping Bluenose for runs. Here Oleksiy and Sherry prepare a mysterious solution for shear fluid visualization.
During the first run with the shear fluid, Mike was running Norus on the track as well.
Sherry gets ready to shoot Vortex.
The crew shooting Vortex during a brief stop.
Team Mowett/Kowalik after Mike’s run.
Reading the patterns left by shear fluid was initially like looking at tea leaves.
In parallel with all this was the assembly of Bluenose. Here is the new front wheel skirt. No more flesh coloured silicone this year.
Todd checks the sightlines.
Working on the drivetrain.
I missed the first run with Bluenose since I was picking up pizza for dinner, but Todd was very pleased with the handling of the bike.
The team closed out today in true Battle Mountain tradition by painting the bike in the parking lot of the motel.
We’ll see how it goes tomorrow.