Troy Herfoss takes Saturday spoils in a day that had everything
Swann Australasian FX Superbike Championship 2015
Ipone Superbike Round Five – Wakefield Park – Saturday, 26 September
Competitors awoke to a very wet morning at Wakefield Park today and were forced to use the morning warm-up (there wasn’t much warming up happening in the cold and wet conditions), sessions for a quick shakedown of their wet set-ups.
The machines with traction control and a mappable ECU, as standard, also saw most teams adjust the power delivery of their engines and traction control parameters tightened up for the slippery 2.2km surface. And, of course, super sticky Dunlop wet weather tyres fitted at both ends of the bikes for the ‘declared wet’ opening race.
Team Honda are the only front running competitors without traction control, and with the very tight production level rules enforced in the Swann Series, only the standard ECU is allowed. Thus Honda are unable to even take some ignition advance out of the machines or ‘easily’ change the power delivery of their Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP machines. In the heat of battle would that turn in to a hindrance? Or a help?
The track surface was absolutely drenched overnight and with intermittent light rain falling all morning the start for the opening Superbike race was always going to be wet. A sliver of sunlight broke through the clouds here and there in the lead up to the 12-lap race opener, and while no rain was actually falling as the riders took to the grid, track conditions were still dreadful. With a fair bit of overbanding in some of the braking areas, it was also going to be somewhat of a game of luck attached to this test of supreme riding skill.
The first one to fail that test was Sean Condon. The Bikebiz Ipone Kawasaki rider went down on the warm up lap!Causing the start to be delayed and riders returned to pitlane as the ZX-10R was retrieved. Condon’s fall did not look too heavy but it is feared the Sydneysider has sustained a shoulder injury and was taken to hospital for further investigation.
Wayne Maxwell capitalised on his record breaking pole position to scorch off the line perfectly. As the field negotiated turn one it was Troy Herfoss that emerged behind Wayne Maxwell, the local star then set about chasing down the reigning Swann Australasian FX Superbike Champion.
Cru Halliday went down on the opening lap in a terrible start to the Camden rider’s race weekend. He was up, unhurt, but, understandably, very unhappy.
Glenn Allerton staked his claim for victory on lap two, forcing his way past Herfoss, before then capitalising on a mistake from Maxwell, who ran wide at turn eight, allowing his teammate through to the race lead.
Maxwell took the lead back at turn three the next time around, then Herfoss pushed Allerton back to third place a few corners later. Jamie Stauffer was running in a distant, and lonely, fourth position.
Mike Jones went down with eight laps to run but managed to get the Cube Racing ZX-10R up and going again to salvage some points.
Up front the race leaders had started to negotiate lapped traffic just as the rain and wind started to pick up again and make conditions even more treacherous, just as the race broached half distance.Maxwell remained the race leader with 8-tenths over Troy Herfoss, with another 1.4-seconds back to Glenn Allerton at this mid-stage of the 12-lap race.
With two laps to go the gap between Maxwell and Herfoss had narrowed to only half-a-second. At the last lap board the gap was down to just under three-tenths of a second. Game on.
Troy Herfoss left his attack until the entry to the final double right-hander, when he slotted the Team Honda Racing Fireblade up the inside of Wayne Maxwell’s YZF-R1, Herfoss then held his line for the run through the corner before picking it up onto the fat part of the Dunlop wet weather tyre to drive down the straight to victory.
So in the first battle, it seemed analogue had won over digital….
Well that was the case for about 15 minutes.. Then after the interviews and parc ferme presentation was complete officials handed Troy Herfoss a written decision that he was deemed to have passed a rider, Glenn Allerton, under a yellow flag in the middle of the race, thus the series leader was demoted a position.
Needless to say Troy Herfoss expressed his frustration at the decision but the end result stands, demoted to second place, and Wayne Maxwell declared the race winner.
Ipone Superbike Race One Results
Wayne Maxwell – Yamaha – 0.288s behind Herfoss but awarded win after Herfoss passing under yellow penalty applied
Troy Herfoss – Honda
Glenn Allerton – Yamaha – 2.306
Jamie Stauffer – Honda – 15.173
Matthew Walters – Kawasaki – 30.220
Linden Magee – Honda – 44.121
William Davidson – Yamaha – 44.339
Ben Burke – Kawasaki – 68.465
Mike Jones – Kawasaki – 1 lap
Evan Byles – Kawasaki – 1 lap
Ipone Superbike Race Two Report
Sun and wind had effectively dried the Wakefield Park circuit before the running of a delayed race two. All riders started on slicks and it was Team Honda’s Troy Herfoss that took the early race lead and this time around it was Glenn Allerton showing that he was going to be the series leader’s prime combatant.
Allerton stayed with Herfoss throughout the opening laps as the duo steadily pulled away from third placed Wayne Maxwell.
Jamie Stauffer had been running with Maxwell and tussing over third place before retiring due to some sort of, presumably, mechanical issue with four laps still remaining. Stauffer’s misfortune promoted Matt Walters into fourth place.
Up front it was still Herfoss from Allerton, but across the final laps Herfoss managed to pull away from the YRT rider, eventually taking the chequered flag 1.9-seconds ahead of Allerton. Maxwell rounded out the podium a further 6-seconds behind.
Matt Walters took a well deserved fourth place finish ahead of Mikes Jones while Cru Halliday took sixth place after starting from the back of the grid following his race one DNF.
The third and final Saturday Superbike encounter at Wakefield Park got underway at 1600 this afternoon.
Wayne Maxwell led Glenn Allerton and Matt Walters away on the opening lap as Troy Herfoss gave chase.
On lap two Troy Herfoss ran into the back of Matt Walters through turn nine, presumably the traction control on Walters’ Kawasaki slowing the bike while Herfoss had the hammer down hard on an almost perfectly dry track. Both riders stayed upright but it could have been very ugly indeed.
On lap two Cru Halliday went down along with Ben Burke, bikes tumbling through the air and stricken in dangerous places. Predictably the red flag was produced and officials made the decision to stage a full re-start for a nine lap race. Cru hopped away to the tyre wall, looking to have possibly sustained some sort of lower leg injury. The two bikes effectively got locked together when the pair touched and they were but passengers from thereon.
To add further consternation for officials when Superbike competitors went out for their warm-up lap in preparation for the re-start, rain again started falling across the circuit. Bringing out another red flag to cancel the re-start and allow riders to return to pitlane as officials gauged the situation as to whether to let the shower pass, or to declare a wet race.
Due to the numerous delays caused by incident after incident because of the wet and changing conditions that plagued the day officials then chose to reduce the race further, to a distance of only six laps.
Wayne Maxwell led Herfoss throughout the opening lap as they negotiated the damp track while Glenn Allerton gave chase. Allerton was closing on lap two before having a huge slide through turn six, the YRT machine must have been on the lock stops for 20 metres or more, which he saved, just, then ran on to the grass, got sideways again, saved it again, and managed to successfully rejoin the circuit upright. That mistake of course allowed Jamie Stauffer to climb all over the back of him, while Wayne Maxwell and Troy Herfoss were left alone up front to fight for the win.
Maxwell had nearly a full second on Herfoss with a lap to run but on the final lap Herfoss clawed all that ground back to mount a last lap attack for the major points. The Honda man was successful, taking the win by 0.359 of a second over Maxwell.
Glenn Allerton managed to stave off the advances of Jamie Stauffer to claim the final step on the rostrum.
A disastrous weekend for Cru Halliday’s 2015 campaign. He will be out to redeem himself tomorrow, in what are expected to be much finer conditions, although his competitiveness could well be decided by the extent of the injuries sustained to his knee in the incident with Ben Burke. Likewise a shock for Sean Condon, who failed to take any points today who failed to even start a race after crashing on the warm-up lap for race one this morning.
So at the end of the day it was analogue over digital here at Wakefield Park. Troy Herfoss taking three wins, but losing one of those in the stewards room. Still, the series leader extended his buffer over defending champion Wayne Maxwell out to 16-points. Still not a clear lead by any stretch, but as clear as it has got all season in what has been an incredibly close contest across the five rounds held thus far. Tomorrow is the main game though, the Swann Australasian Superbike Championship, and in that Sunday series only three points separate Herfoss and Maxwell at the top of the table.
Troy Herfoss – “With the exception of the yellow flag penalty, I had a very successful day today. I am really happy to have taken the Round win and increased my lead over Wayne. I felt good out on track despite the conditions. Tomorrow I have to defend the Swann Series title and I am looking to increase the points lead there as much as possible too so with the weather looking better for racing I am pretty keen to get back out there.”
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