MotoAmerica: Barber Motorsports Park Recap
Round 2 of the MotoAmerica Championship has concluded at Barber Motorsports Park. The event was packed with action the whole weekend. Round 2 also marked the introduction of the new Supersport extended race format. The Medallia Superbike Championship, Steel Commander Stock 1000, Supersport, REV’IT Twin Cup and Junior Cup. Below are the results from the race weekend
Jake Gagne (Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha) started the weekend off strong with a win in Race 1. Track temperatures were a bit lower during race 1 and there were concerns from multiple riders on the grid about tire performance. Despite the concerns Gagne and teammate Cameron Peterson secured a 1-2 finish with Mathew Scholtz (Westby Racing) rounding out the podium. Cameron Beaubier (Tytlers Cycle Racing) who was involved in a back and forth battle with Gagne, Scholtz, and Josh Herrin (Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati) was not able to keep pace with the Yamaha despite the rumored power advantage. Beaubier finished P4 ahead of Tytlers Cycle Racing teammate PJ Jacobsen in Race 1.
Race 2 was all Gagne. After pulling away early in the race no one could muster a response as the damage had already been done. Teammate Cameron Peterson had an unfortunate Race 2. He had an early crash marking his second DNF on the season. Later in the race Gagne had a moment on track where he almost crashed after running through the grass at turn 3 but he was able to save the bike and cruised to finished 2.6s ahead of Mat Scholtz. Beaubier was able to improve on his results from race 1 and secured a podium.
Jake Gagne Spoke to the Media
When speaking to the MotoAmerica media after race 2 Gagne stated, “I got off to another good start. There was some chaos on the grid. I pulled up to the grid last and I got off to a sweet start, luckily. I heard Cam (Petersen) went down in five. I was surprised on my gap. Even on the first lap I think I had a half second on my board, or something. So, I think that kind of gave me that little bit of a separation in the beginning. ”
He continued, “Good weekend. This is obviously a track that really, really suits the Yamaha. So, I wanted to come in here and take advantage of that. Next up, Road America. I think all these boys are going to be in the hunt. It’s not going to be easy to get a win there, but we’ll just keep doing our job. Again, hats off to the team. I’m glad we got two dry races in here, because the weather was looking kind of gnarly. Good weekend.”
Will Beaubier Bounce Back at Road America?
Barber Motorsports park is a technical track. In contrast we saw Beaubier excel at Road Atlanta where there isn’t a lot of technicality required to excel. Road Atlanta also has multiple top speed zone and that played into the success of the Tytlers Racing BMW. Round 3 of MotoAmerica will take place at Road America which is one of the high speed tracks on the calendar. We expect the BMW of Beaubier’s to be more competitive at that race where top speed will have more of an impact. Road America also has a shortened lap count in comparison to some of the other road courses so mistakes will be more costly. Gagne took maximum points on the weekend and extends his champion lead over Cameron Beaubier by 26 points.
In Stock 1000 Hayden Gillim (Disrupt Racing) had a commanding performance. Gilllim won both race 1 and 2 in commanding fashion without ever really being threatened. In race 1 GIllim’s gap to second was 4.5 seconds. The race ended under a red flag after a late crash. The podium was completed by Orange Cat Racing riders Ezra Beaubier and Kaleb De Keyrel. The three riders shared the podium in both races with the two Orange Cat riders swapping places in race 2. Gillim’s Suzuki GSXR1000 proved to be the better bike this weekend outperforming both BMWs again in race 2. Ezra beabuier still leads the championship after a commanding double win in Atlanta and two podiums here at Barber Motorsports Park.
The first ever Supersport extended race took place this weekend at Barber Motorsports park. The race originally scheduled for 37 laps only race through 22 laps. The format would also require one mandatory pit stop. The race was full of on track drama. There were multiple red flags in the race due to many riders falling victim to fast changing track conditions. The forecast had seemingly left the race in the clear but come race time the dark clouds loomed above. Tyler Scott (Team Hammer) had a great launch and led the race for the first two laps before Xavi Fores (Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati) made a late dive on the inside into Charlotte’s Web on lap three. Fores started to take off at this point in the race but rain started to fall in some areas of the track.
The race continued until it was red flagged on lap 7. Multiple riders crashed due to lack of grip on track as the rain started to pour more heavily in the last turn before the front straight. The riders were all on racing slicks at the time. The race restart order reset to how the riders finished lap 6. Race control allowed tire changes against normal red flag protocol due to the nature of the race.
After Red Flag 1
The race restarted and many riders opted to change to the rains. It is important to note that the stop under the red flag did not count as a pit stop. Race control reduced the race distance to 22 laps. All pit stops were to be completed by lap 18. On the sighting lap Jaret Nassaney lost the rear on rain tires and had to retire from the race. CJ LaRoche [On Slick Tires] and Jordan Tropkoff [On Rain Tires] slide out on the restart lap and had to retire from the race. Cory Ventura had a serious incident as he headed towards the back straight. Ventura was transported to be evaluated at the local hospital. The red flag came out again to clear the incident.
Cory provided a statement on the incident, “I crashed on the first lap of the restart in the extended supersport race. I had started to lose the front coming out of the first set of the esses which quickly turned into losing the rear and the front tire gained traction and sent me into a highside. I ended up compound fracturing my left tib-fib and broke some bones in my left foot. I had surgery Sunday morning in Birmingham. I don’t know how long we will be out, Disrupt Racing and I don’t want to rush the process, we will be back as soon as I am back to 100%.”
The Extended Race Continued
At the second restart many riders opted to come back out on slicks and refuel. With pit stops still pending and the track drying rapidly it was seemingly the correct call to go out on slicks. Tyler Scott (Team hammer) was the first to come in with a great pit stop. Josh Hayes followed and had a minor issue with the front end of the bike but was able to get out of the pits in time to remain competitive in the race.
After pits stops Xavi Fores came out in the lead. Stefano Mesa (Tytlers Cycle Racing) made some late challenges for the lead but Fores was able to pull away in the end as the tires started to fall off and secure the double points win. Fores has won all 3 races in 2023 and tops the table 27 points ahead of Stefano Mesa. Anthony Mazziotto (North East Cycle Outlet Racing) finished thirds in the race.
REV-IT Twins Cup
Rocco Landers (Rodio Racing – Powered By Robem Engineering) secure the double on the weekend marking his third straight win after having to retire from race 1 in Atlanta. Teammate Gus Rodio had the lead with 8 laps to go. A brief period of rain caused track conditions to change rapidly. Rodio crashed just before the red flag came out. After some controversy race control determined that Gus Rodio was not able to restart the race despite riding his bike back to the pits. The crew was able to get the bike race ready.
MotoAmerica ruled that Rodio was not actively competing when the red flag came out. Rodio was visibly and verbally displeased with the call from the stewards. Due to the race 1 incident and a DNF Rodio walked away with zero points on the weekend. Kayla Yaakov (The WagBar MP13 Racing) finished with two podiums on the weekend after missing the season opening rounds due to injury. Blake Davis took the championship lead by 2 points due to incidents with Rodio.
Luckily Junior Cup was able to avoid the rain in both races. Avery Dreher (Bad Boy Racing) continued his good form with a win in race 1 ahead of Max VanDenBrouck (SportbikeTrackGear.com) and Yandel Medina (Yandel Racing). It was Medinas first podium in Junior Cup. In race 2 Levi Badie (Badie Racing) took the win denying Dreher a double win. Hayden Bicknese (Bicknese Racing) who finished P5 in Race 1 improved to P2 in Race 2. Dreher had to settle for P3 but will be happy with a double podium.
For complete coverage on the events from Round 2 of the MotoAmerica Championship at Barber Motorsports Park check out MotoAmerica Live Plus.