Damian Cownden Racing arrived in Edmonton Alberta during September ith hopes of a second consecutive CMDRA Top Fuel Championship.  The team rolled their Top Fuel Nitro Harley-Davidson out of the hauler with a slim point lead over Nate Gagnon…..

The hopes a championship quickly started to diminish as they broke the input shaft in the transmission during the first round of qualifying.  The team however managed to replace the part in time to make one qualifying pass, which was good enough to put them at the top of the chart, with a 6.54 second run at 217mph.  Nate Gagnon was second, just 4 one-thousandths of a second back, with a pass of 6.58, at 224mph.  Nate’s mile per hour was fast enough to put him in line to take the Canadian mile per hour record which Damian Cownden secured the previous event in Mission BC, however he would have to back up his run within 1% on Sunday.

Damian Cownden rode his nitro-fueled Harley to a 2nd consecutive Canadian TF Championship

Sunday morning saw issues for the team once again, tracing the problem to the electrical system.  With conditions the opposite of Saturday, with cloudy skies, cold temperatures, and several rain delays, the team was able to get Damian to the starting line for the first round of eliminations, against Jeff Knowles.  Damian was able to move on the semi-finals, taking the victory with a low 7-second run at 204mph.
The team continued to battle electrical issues and were paired up with Edmonton’s Kevin Boyer, who was also suffering from technical problems.  Damian was able to get past Boyer and onto the final round.
The final round could not have been scripted better, with Damian facing off against Nate Gagnon. Going into the final round Damian held a 25 point lead over Gagnon, who would have to win the final round and back-up his record mph run.  This left the entire Damian Cownden Racing team on edge as they were still uncertain as to what the issue with their bike was.  As the green light lit, Nate Gagnon was able to hold the lead until the ¾ mark when his rear tire spun and he was slowed enough to allow Damian Cownden to slip by for the win.
“This was a difficult season, we didn’t start the season like we wanted, but we caught some breaks and were able to turn our season around.  I have to give Nate Gagnon and his team credit, they brought out a brand new bike and were able to bring home the win in the first two events of the season which is virtually unheard of, and from then on they have been a contender for the win at every event.”  Commented Damian Cownden on his season and his strongest competitor.
Cownden went on to discuss his second championship “When I first started drag racing I never thought I would be racing in the top fuel class, let alone be fortunate enough to win two championships, which I never could have done without my dedicated team, and sponsors.  Having such a strong competitor like Nate only pushes us all to bring 110% to every event”
Along with his second consecutive championship and three event wins in 2011, Damian Cownden was also awarded the Rick Davie Memorial Award for Sportsmanship.  The team now has three weeks to prepare for the final event of the AHDRA series in Rockingham North Carolina on October 8th and 9th.   
Damian Cownden Racing is based in Victoria British Columbia Canada.  The team competes in the CMDRA (Canadian Motorcycle Drag Racing Association), NBRA (Nitro Bike Racers Association), NHRA (National Hot Rod Association), IHRA (International Hot Rod Association), and the AHDRA (All Harley Drag Racing Association).
The team won the 2010 CMDRA Top Fuel Nitro Harley-Davidson Championship.   For more information please visit,
The team is supported by a number of sponsors, including Parker Johnston Industries, Steve Drane Harley Davidson Victoria BC, Gasoline Alley Harley Davidson Red Deer Alberta, Tedford Overhead Doors, Nordic Fencing, Doktor Doom, RAP Tech Milling, Canadian Biker Magazine,, Metropol, Airgas, Amsoil, R.E. Cycle, RTR Mechanical, Bulldog Construction, Lordco,, Perfections Paint, and Victoria Plating.
Posted by: Jason Gallaugher