European vacation has Stoffer refreshed and refocused on GEICO Suzuki - 6/28/2012
Rob Geiger - Geiger Media

JOLIET, Ill. (June 27) – GEICO Suzuki rider Karen Stoffer heads to the O'Reilly Auto Parts Route 66 NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway refreshed from a 12-day vacation to Scandinavia.

Stoffer and crew chief/husband Gary Stoffer traveled to Sweden to help rider Fredrik Fredlund at a race on the European Drag Racing Series, and then spent time vacationing in Sweden and Finland.

Stoffer last raced in Englishtown, N.J., almost a month ago, where she fell in the first round due to transmission troubles.

"We had some definite struggles in Englishtown," Stoffer said. "We had a good motor in the bike, but for some reason the transmission wasn't working right. It wasn't going into high gear, which is definitely an inconvenience."

But Stoffer, sixth in the Pro Stock Motorcycle points standings, is refreshed and ready after her vacation.

"I'm definitely ready to go to Chicago," Stoffer said. "It's always a fun place to go, and it'll be nice to get back on the bike. Hopefully, we'll hit all six gears and have a fast motor."

The Stoffers flew to Sweden on June 12, helping Fredlund in a race in Tierp, Sweden. Fredlund raced at Pomona in an NHRA event last year, with Gary Stoffer offering tuning advice. Fredlund then asked the Stoffers to come to Scandinavia for a little European racing and a lot of vacation.

"He has a lovely house in Finland, in the Aland Islands," Karen said. "He has a guest house right on the Baltic Sea, and he asked us if we wanted to spend some vacation time there, so that ended up being my vacation."

Instead of a "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" type of travel, Stoffer said it was a vacation of planes, buses, boats, trains and automobiles. They rode in Fredlund's "bus" – like the motorhomes of the United States – then rode a ferry across the Baltic Sea to Fredlund's house.

"You put your vehicle on the ship down below, and you go upstairs, and there's dining and dancing and gambling and shopping and everything you can think of," Karen said. "It was a two-and-a-half hour cruise across the Baltic Sea to get to Finland.

"There, we drove around in automobiles and toured the island. There's a lot of history on the island. It's strategically placed, and there were a lot of battles fought there. It was a coveted island to have because of its' location. We went and saw the ruins of a castle, as well as a battlefield. It was very, very interesting."

Finally, Stoffer took a train while touring parts of Sweden.

"It was a busy trip," Stoffer said. "We had some wonderful food. Fredrick really treated us well. We toured the whole island and ate at some of the "A" restaurants on the island and definitely enjoyed the wining and dining and drinking and sunshine of the Finnish island."

Stoffer went on to extend special thanks to all of the 2012 sponsors and supporters.
Geico Powersports 1-800-442-9253, Suzuki Extended Protetion, Bates Leathers, KYMCOUSA, NGK, Airtech, Red Line Oil, American Racing Products, Mechanix Wear Gloves, and TKO Graphics.