Red hot Szoke scorches to Edmonton Superbike win
Red hot Szoke scorches to Edmonton Superbike win
PHOTO: Jordan Szoke (c) beat Jodi Christie (l) and Kenny Riedmann (r) to win the opening event of Castrol Raceway's Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship doubleheader on Saturday
EDMONTON, Alta. (July 11, 2015) – Jordan Szoke maintained his unbeaten 2015 Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship win record with an impressive victory in the third round of the series, presented by Parts Canada, at Castrol Raceway on Saturday.
Riding his Mopar Express Lane / BMW Motorrad BMW S1000RR, the Brantford, Ont. rider took the lead from Jodi Christie’s Accelerated Technologies / Honda Canada Honda CBR1000RR on lap 4 of the 16-lap race and pulled clear to beat the defending class champion by 10.094 secs.
Kenny Riedmann finished third aboard the GE Capital / Sturgess Cycle Kawasaki ZX-10R.
Szoke completed the 16 laps around the 2.7km (1.69-mile) 14-turn Castrol Raceway road course in 21 minutes, 10.076 seconds for an average speed of 122.449km/h (73.469 mph).
“I didn’t think it would be a runaway,” said Szoke after receiving his trophy from the weekend’s Grand Marshall and first Canadian Superbike champion George Morin. “But this is the first weekend we’ve had our data package working and we have the electronics working beautifully. It’s a great win for sure.”
The 36-year-old Szoke extended his lead in the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship standings to 31 points over Christie, 167-136, with another 16-lap race scheduled for Sunday. A race win is worth 50 points.
The victory was Szoke’s 48th career Canadian Superbike win, an all-time record.
With temperatures at Castrol Raceway reaching the 30-degree Celsius mark (around 90 degrees Fahrenheit) for the third day in a row, Christie snatched the lead at the start of the race with Szoke, who had qualified on pole, slotting into second. The Keene, Ont. racer led the first three laps before Szoke made his move and quickly pulled away, setting the race’s fastest lap, a 1:17.999, on his fifth tour.
“I knew Jodi would want to control the pace from the front and I wanted to get by before Kenny stuffed me,” Szoke said. “I tried Jodi a few times in a row off the back straight. I had to hang back a little and then just get a good run at him.”
Szoke’s lead was up to three seconds after six laps and five seconds by half distance. Despite running with a soft rear Dunlop tire in the hot conditions the BMW rider experienced no challenges the rest of the way.
“I think that tire likes the heat,” Szoke explained. “And this new bike is one of my favourite chassis I’ve ever ridden. The swingarm in particular has been changed and that has improved tire wear.”
Christie ran a steady race in second place and took his third straight runner-up finish behind Szoke this season. The 22-year-old was coming back from a heavy testing crash on Thursday that badly damaged one of his CBR1000RRs but left him uninjured.
“I didn’t have the pace today so we’ll do our homework tonight and try to find some speed overnight and have a better race pace tomorrow,” Christie admitted. “I need to have a bit more confidence.”
Riedmann was fourth off the start behind Christie, Szoke and the Royal Distributing / Multi-Tact BMW S1000RR of Michael Leon, but got up into third before the end of the first lap and stayed there the rest of the way. The Belfountain, Ont. racer is coming back from a serious shoulder injury suffered at the season opener at Calabogie MotorSports Park in mid-June.
“I feel like we should have been up here from the beginning of the year so it’s nice to start making some progress,” Riedmann said. “This bike was a stock motorcycle until a week ago and my crew managed to convert it to a race bike and put it on a truck and get it here, so I really have to dedicate this result to my team.”
His best finish of the season pushes Riedmann up to fourth in the Mopar Pro Superbike point standings with 98, just five behind Sebastien Tremblay, who finished sixth on Saturday.
Beaconsfield, Que.’s Leon briefly held onto Riedmann before settling into a solitary fourth, although he admitted he didn’t have the race pace of some of his rivals and was being caught in the closing laps by Trevor Daley’s Parts Canada / Suzuki Canada Suzuki GSX-R1000.
Daley settled for fifth, the Mississauga, Ont. rider battling an electronics problem in the second half of the race that caused his bike to stutter intermittently coming onto the straights.
After running as far back as 10th in the early laps, Mirabel, Que. racer Tremblay methodically worked his way up to sixth at the finish on the Laval Moto / MotoNation Kawasaki ZX-10R. He was catching both Daley and Leon as the laps wound down.
Calgary’s Michael Zottmann finished seventh on the Bow Cycle / Vortex Kawasaki ZX-10R, just ahead of the Echo Cycle / Dunlop Kawasaki ZX-10R of Edmonton’s Justin Knapik.
Hamilton, Ont. veteran Ross Millson placed ninth with his Motovan Suzuki GSX-R1000, and the top 10 was rounded out by the highest placed rookie finisher, Edmonton’s Shane Caravan on his Yamaha YZF-R1.
In other action at Castrol Raceway, Riedmann became the third different winner in the Hindle Exhaust Pro Sport Bike Championship this season with a dramatic victory in the 14-lap race.
Riding his Triumph 675, the defending Pro Sport Bike champion had to withstand a furious challenge from class points leader Christie over the final lap. The pair traded the lead before Christie crashed his Honda CBR600RR in the final turn. Riedmann crossed the line 18.204 secs. clear of the Ruthless Racing / Trev Deeley Yamaha YZF-R6 ridden by Deep Cove, B.C.’s Darren James, while Christie was able to remount and cross the line in third place.
With his win Riedmann moves into second place in the Pro Sport Bike standings with 131 points to the 143 of Christie while Ste-Marthe, Que.’s Louie Raffa is now third in the standings with 114 points after finishing fourth on Saturday aboard his Centre Hamel Honda CBR600RR.
The top five was completed by Strathmore, Alta.’s Mike Yurko on his Redline Motorsports / Dunlop Yamaha YZF-R6.
Samuel Trepanier of St-Isidore-de-Laprairie, Que. won the Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike race on his BMW S1000RR, finishing 5.421 secs. ahead of the Kawasaki ZX-10R ridden by Oshawa, Ont.’s Derrick Whyte.
Alex Coelho of Brossard, Que. took third on his Kawasaki ZX-6R and closed to within three points of series leader Stephane Chimot of St-Lin Laurentides, Que., who placed seventh on Saturday aboard his Honda CBR1000RR but still leads the class standings with 119 points to Coelho’s 116.
Coelho extended his lead in the Bell Helmets Amateur Sport Bike standings with his third straight win aboard his Kawasaki ZX-6R. Coelho took the lead from the Suzuki GSX-R600 of Philip Leckie four laps from the end of the 12-lap race and finished 1.357 secs. clear of the London, Ont. rider.
Cody Conrad of Calgary finished third on his Kawasaki ZX-6R.
Coelho has 163 points to Leckie’s 117 in the Amateur Sport Bike standings heading into Sunday’s race.
James Melanson and his Edmonton-based Triumph 675 team picked up the Ipone Professionalism and Presentation Award in the Amateur Sport Bike class and Honda CBR600RR rider Ryan Appenrodt of Blackfalds, Alta. received the Oxford Prize Pack.
Coelho also won the Edmonton Motorcycle Roadracing Association Senior Open race while Edmonton’s Allan Gannon took the EMRA Novice Open event aboard a Yamaha YZF-R6.
Action at Castrol Raceway concludes Sunday with another round of feature races for all four national classes, plus the two EMRA regional categories. Practice begins at 9:00 a.m. with the first race, the EMRA Novice Open event, set to launch at 11:30 a.m.
The official Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship website, www.csbk.ca, will have full race video coverage of both of this weekend’s Mopar Pro Superbike races, as well as Sunday’s Hindle Pro Sport Bike round.
For additional information please contact:
Inside Track Communications
Tel. (613) 968-0166