All things considered the trials will be called a –disappointing success. Due to mechanical problems that couldn't be overcome, the record remains unbroken by Eagles in Flight and crew - but, there is always next year.
Weather was expected to be the biggest problem this year, but the mechanical problems, as is the case most of the time, ended the trials for Eagles in Flight. When dealing with an effort of this magnitude, one of the biggest problems is you can't test these machines until you get to the flats, where you have the space and distance to ride at a comparable test speed.
Don told me the first run was incomplete due to carburetor tune, so he went about rebuilding and re-jetting, to increase the power. Next, a gear change was needed to get up to speed, with help from other race teams, the next trial attempt was optimistic.
At this point, Don was confident and accelerating through 4th gear at approximately 100 MPH, when his worst nightmare hit – the engine lost power. It sounded odd, so while holding the clutch in, he coasted to a stop. Upon engine disassembly and inspection, it was revealed that one hydraulic lifter had come apart, and none-opening valves aren't good for engine performance. They pulled an all-nighter to replace the bad lifter and rebuild the engine for the next days run. Again, with help from other teams, Don was ready for the next run.
The problem was thought to be solved, but as fate would have it, the almost identical problem happened on the next run, by that time the windows of opportunity were closing fast and time had run out.
I said the future was bright, even though the attempt this year had failed, because of the attitude of those involved with this type of racing. Everyone was there to help each other out.
The next attempt will happen next year. Thanks to everyone that helped this year. With equipment upgrades, and the lessons learned, things will turn out more favorably in 2015.