Pearson’s Special Ducati at Atlanta International Raceway

We came across this shot from the WERA weekend at Atlanta International Raceway (now called Atlanta Motor Speedway) sometime in the late 1970s.. At first we weren’t sure who the Ducati rider was, but on Facebook Pat Farrell replied that No. 145 is Phill Pearson. That’s Dirk James right behind him. Dirk was one of the driving forces behind the WERA Terre Haute road racing in the city park. Pat had a great back story on Pearson and his Ducati.

“That is a 750 or 900 Ducati NCR “production” bike. AMA didn’t check, but WERA thought it perhaps had too many NCR race-specific parts, like the reversed cone megaphone exhaust pipes, to be street legal production class.

“I first ran into Phil and his Duc in March 77, Amateur day racing at Daytona. It was my first race ever on a very production AMA/WERA RD350. I pretty much had no idea what I was doing. The AMA started the 750/open production class as the first wave, and the 410 production class as the second wave. I was going as fast as humanly possible, racing along up the infield straight to the left-hand kink. No one could go around that faster. Phil passed me on the outside of that turn, probably 20 mph faster than I was going. I had a lot to learn.”

Thanks for giving us the more of the story Pat.

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