Szoke wins dramatic Superbike battle at AMP
SHUBENACADIE, N.S. (July 17, 2016) – Jordan Szoke took his Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship winning streak to 12 races with a dramatic victory in the fifth race of the 2016 season at Atlantic Motorsport Park on Sunday, sponsored by Honda Canada and Pro Cycle.
Riding his Mopar Express Lane / Motovan / BMW Motorrad BMW S1000RR the Lynden, Ont. racer took the lead from Kenny Riedmann on lap 19 of the 22-lap race and edged clear to complete a sweep of the weekend doubleheader and claim his ninth career Canadian Superbike triumph at the 2.56km (1.6-mile), 11-turn venue north of Halifax.
On Saturday Szoke had become the all-time leading Canadian Superbike race winner at AMP, breaking a tie with Steve Crevier at seven wins.
The top three positions were identical to Saturday’s opening race of the doubleheader weekend.
Riedmann settled for his fifth straight runner-up finish of the season, 3.770 secs. behind Szoke, aboard the Sturgess Cycle / Liqui Moly / Joe Rocket Kawasaki ZX-10R Ninja while for the second straight day Ben Young completed the podium riding his Tim Horton’s / Scot-Build Developments / BMW Motorrad BMW S1000RR.
In a race enlivened by sprinkles of rain that produced slightly slick conditions, Szoke made his pass for the lead as the frontrunners encountered slower traffic in turn 2.
“Coming out of turn 2 I went to the inside of the backmarker and Kenny went to the outside,” Szoke said. “That put me on the outside for turn 3 and Kenny on the inside, but in the slippery conditions it might have worked to my advantage and I was able to just roll around the outside of Kenny.”
Szoke completed the race in 25 minutes, 19.407 seconds, averaging 133.775km/h (80.265 mph).
With his fifth win of the season, Szoke extended his lead in the Mopar CSBK standings to 51 points over Riedmann, 268-217, with just the season-ending doubleheader at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park August 19-21 remaining. A race win is worth 50 points.
Starting from the Dalton Timmis Pole Position, Szoke grabbed the lead on the opening lap but Riedmann got in front at the start of lap 2. Riedmann stayed in front despite numerous attempts by Szoke to get by, particularly at the end of the backstraight ‘Roller Coaster’.
“I was getting a little bit better drive coming onto the backstraight,” said Szoke after scoring his all-time leading 57th career Canadian Superbike win. “But to make a pass you have to go off line and it’s a little bumpy there, so I had a few tank-slappers. I thought maybe I could ride one of those out and get ahead but it never worked out.”
Both Szoke and Riedmann set their fastest laps of the race on the fifth tour, Szoke managing a 1:08.892 and Riedmann a slightly slower 1:08.927, but the Belfountain, Ont. racer admitted to using up his rear tire early in his efforts to keep Szoke behind him.
“I pushed hard off the bat and I figured if I was out front I could ride a bit more defensively,” explained the 24-year-old Riedmann, who continues to look for his first Canadian Superbike triumph. “But I used the tire up too early and then we had a little bad luck with the lapper. Once Jordan got ahead he really put in a charge.
“I’ve been so close [to winning] quite a few times. I know it’s going to happen one of these days.”
Young was part of the lead battle before he also ran into tire troubles and started to lose ground as the race entered its second half.
“We ran some different tire pressures and that might have explained why we started to lose rear grip,” said the 23-year-old from Collingwood, Ont., who maintained his third place in the point standings with 186 heading to CTMP. “But the guys nailed the set-up and we made it through the weekend clean.”
Young also extended his lead in the Brooklin Cycle Racing Pro Rookie of the Year point standings.
Trevor Daley finished fourth on his OneSpeed Yamaha YZF-R1 after chasing down and passing Michael Leon on lap 15. Despite starting seventh on the grid the Mississauga, Ont. rider managed to get a better start than on Saturday and was fifth by the end of the opening lap.
Leon backed up a fourth place finish on Saturday with fifth on Sunday aboard the Royal Distributing Race Team / BMW Motorrad / Pro 6 Cycle BMW S1000RR, the Beaconsfield, Que. racer admitting to being uncomfortable in the mixed wet/dry race conditions.
Sebastien Tremblay scored his second straight sixth place finish riding the MotoNation / Laval Moto Kawasaki ZX-10R Ninja. The racer from Mirabel, Que. battled with Daley until the midway point of the race, when the pair encountered lapped traffic and Tremblay lost ground to the Yamaha rider.
Toronto’s Michael Taylor moved up from 11th on the grid to place seventh in the race with the Triumph Canada / GP Bikes / Goderich Toyota Triumph 675.
The last three places in the top 10 were the subject of a hectic battle that went right to the line, with Montreal’s Franklyn Dominguez claiming eighth aboard his Excel Moto / Seamont Kawasaki / Canadian Kawasaki Kawasaki ZX-10R, less than half a second in front of rookie Pros Samuel Trepanier of St-Isidore-de-Laprairie, Que. on the Blysk Racing / Elle Skin BMW S1000RR and Derrick Whyte of Oshawa, Ont. riding the Snow City / Canadian Kawasaki / Lucas Oil Kawasaki ZX-10R Ninja.
In other action at AMP, Riedmann continued his perfect season in the Liqui Moly Pro Sport Bike class by scoring a 4.136-sec. victory over Taylor on Sunday. Riding his Kawasaki ZX-6R, Riedmann was challenged relentlessly by Tomas Casas on the Peterborough Cycle Salvage / Parts Canada Yamaha YZF-R6 for the first 12 laps of the 18-lap race before the Peterborough, Ont. racer fell in turn 11. Casas was unhurt in the incident.
For the second day in a row, Beaver Bank, N.S.’s Ron Munroe completed the podium on his Freedom Cycle / Canadian Kawasaki / GNS Renovations Kawasaki ZX-6R after pressuring Taylor for most of the race.
Mississauga, Ont.’s Doug Lawrence made a spectacular debut in the Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike class, the Canadian Flat Track champion taking the lead on the final lap to score a stunning victory on his Kawasaki ZX-10R Ninja.
Top qualifier Ernest Bernhard of Ste-Brigide, Que. finished second on his Yamaha YZF-R1, just 0.414 secs. behind Lawrence, while Montreal’s Jean-Marc Bilger completed the podium riding a BMW S1000RR.
Bidding for a third straight Pro Sport Bike title, Riedmann heads to the CTMP doubleheader with a 98-point lead over Alex Coelho, 220-122, with Taylor another point back in third. Brossard, Que.’s Coelho finished sixth on Sunday riding the Black Sheep Racing Kawasaki ZX-6R.
Local star Jacob Shaw-O’Leary celebrated his 17th birthday in style by completing a sweep of Amateur national events at AMP on Sunday.
Riding his Honda CBR600RR the Falmouth, N.S. racer chased down and passed the BMW S1000RR of Jean-Marc Bilger to win the Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike race by 1.218 secs. over the Montreal racer. Steve McGregor of Sarnia, Ont. was third aboard another BMW S1000RR.
Bilger leads the Amateur Superbike standings by 33 points over Chris Brent, 175-142, while Shaw-O’Leary is now third with 121 points.
Ottawa’s Brent battled gearshift issues to finish fourth on Sunday on his Honda CBR600RR.
In similar style, Shaw-O’Leary passed Brent two laps from the end of the Shoei Premium Helmets Amateur Sport Bike race and went on to win by 6.205 secs., with Bilger third riding a Kawasaki ZX-6R.
Brent takes a 41-point lead over Shaw-O’Leary, 188-139, into the final doubleheader weekend.
Brandon Pemberton took the lead on the opening lap of the Kawasaki Ninja 300 Spec Series race and went on to complete a sweep of the weekend doubleheader at AMP, setting up an exciting finale at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park next month.
Windsor, N.S.’s Pemberton beat Eric Quintin by 9.703 secs., meaning the Ile Perrot, Que. racer carries a one-point lead, 369-368, over Pemberton heading into the final two rounds of the season. Patrick Pelletier of Dartmouth, N.S. completed the podium in Sunday’s race.
The Society of the Atlantic Roadracing League, which handles regional racing at AMP, presented a pair of events in addition to the national schedule. Dartmouth, N.S.’s Matt Covey won the Pro Cycle / ARL Sportsman Invitational on his Honda CBR600RR while Richard Thompson of Milford, N.S. claimed the Canadian Kawasaki / ARL Lightweight Supersport Invitational for the second day in a row on his Yamaha YZF-R3.
Both of this weekend’s Superbike feature races will be shown on TSN4, presented by Dalton Timmis Insurance. Saturday’s race is due to premiere on August 9 at 12:00 a.m. eastern with Sunday’s round slated for an August 10 premiere, also at 12:00 a.m. eastern. Check www.csbk.ca or local listings for any changes as well as rebroadcast dates and times.
Video coverage of the both Liqui Moly Pro Sport Bike Championship races will be available at www.csbk.ca Saturday’s event is now online while Sunday’s race will be up on Monday morning.
The Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship concludes with its traditional doubleheader at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park August 19-21. Ticket information and other event details are available by visiting www.canadiantiremotorsportpark.com or www.csbk.ca, or by calling 1-800-866-1072 or 905-983-9141.
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