Swann Superbikes 2016 Finale – Friday Report

By Trevor Hedge – Images Keith Muir

Qualifying

Eastern Creek resembled something more akin to Eastern River as Superbike competitors hit the track during qualifying on Friday at the Sydney venue. Josh Brookes, in a one-off guest ride for the BCperformance Team, as a stand-in rider for the injured Ben Burke, took pole position in the wet conditions by a clear 1.7-seconds over Michael Blair.

Josh Brookes
Josh Brookes

The final day of competition runs on Saturday from with the first race scheduled for 0945 but the Superbike competitors do not race until 1415, when they will hit the track for the first of three seven-lap bouts, the second of which is scheduled for 1620 and the final stanza set down for 1845. In a stark contrast to Friday’s wet weather Saturday is forecast to be a sunny and very warm 32-degrees.

Continue below for an all-classes wrap from Friday’s AFX Superbike action at Sydney Motorsports Park.

Superbike Race One

Brookes, now back on home turf after a trying year in World Superbike, only a year after basking in the glory from his British Superbike Championship win in 2015, converted his qualifying form into a clear race win.

Brookes crossed the line on a still very wet, but slightly drying track, 5.7-seconds clear of Bugden after the seven-lap duration.

Josh Brookes leads Robbie Bugden
Josh Brookes leads Robbie Bugden

Beau Beaton had started strongly but tyre issues eventually forced the Ducati man out of the race.

Josh Brookes, Robbie Bugden, Beau Beaton
Josh Brookes, Robbie Bugden, Beau Beaton

Michael Blair started poorly but quickly made his way forward to third position in what ended up being a lonely ride for the Ipone Yamaha rider in the closing laps after passing Matt Walters he pulled away from the Cessnock Kawasaki man and by the chequered flag had more than 12-seconds on Walters.

Matt Walters, Michael Blair
Matt Walters, Michael Blair
Robbie Bugde, Josh Brookes, Beau Beaton
Robbie Bugde, Josh Brookes, Beau Beaton
Superbike Race One Results
  1. Josh Brookes / Kawasaki
  2. Robbie Bugden / Kawasaki +5.746
  3. Michael Blair / Yamaha +16.520
  4. Matt Walters / Kawasaki +28.045
  5. Brad Swallow / Kawasaki +34.770
  6. Brendan McIntyre / Suzuki +35.016
  7. Dominic De Leon / Kawasaki +45.062
  8. Beau Beaton / Ducati DNF
Superbike Race Two

Michael Blair got a much better start in the second bout and used that to good effect to build an almost two-second lead over Robbie Bugden by the end of the opening lap. Brookes was a further 1.5-seconds behind the Yamaha man and had his work cut out for him in trying to chase down that 3.5-seconds to the race leader in only seven laps on what was a mainly dry, but still patchy in places, Eastern Creek circuit.

Michael Blair
Michael Blair

That top trio all put in 1m35s laps on their second time around the classic 3.93km Eastern Creek layout, thus the gaps remained equidistant with five laps still to run.

It was lap three when Brookes really started to hit his stride on the BCperformance ZX-10R.  After starting the race on full slicks it, had taken Brookes a couple of laps to feel his way around the circuit, but he showed he was starting to get comfortable when he pulled a full second out of Blair on lap three. At the front of the field however, Blair was not thinking about Brookes, as he had Robbie Bugden now climbing all over him, piling the pressure on with four laps still to run.

Robbie Bugden leads Michael Blair
Robbie Bugden leads Michael Blair

As Bugden hit the lead Brookes pulled yet another second out of the leading duo. As the race passed the halfway marker Brookes had narrowed the gap down to just over a second and had dipped into the 1m33s, game on!

Brookes backed that 1m33.94 up with a 1m34.025 to squeeze past Michael Blair for second place, and then locked his sights on teammate Robbie Bugden.

Robbie Bugden and Josh Brookes tussle at Sydney Motorsports Park
Robbie Bugden and Josh Brookes tussle at Sydney Motorsports Park

At the last lap board Bugden still held sway by just over three-tenths of a second, the Queenslander had responded to Brookes’ challenge and upped the pace himself.  The two tussled on the final lap and it was Brookes that came off the worse for wear, running off the circuit. Adding insult to injury for the BCperformance squad that scrap also allowed Blair to come from a long way back to mug Bugden on the line and take the race victory!

With that second place though it was still Bugden crowned AFX Superbike Champion with an overall tally of 400 points for the season besting Blair’s tally of 339 and Walters’ 318.

Superbike Race Two Results
  1. Michael Blair
  2. Robbie Bugden +0.025
  3. Matt Walters +10.565
  4. Josh Brookes +13.542
  5. Brad Swallow +23.985
  6. Brendan McIntyre +24.380
  7. Dominic De Leon +24.989
AFX Superbike Final Championship Points
  1. Robbie Bugden 400
  2. Michael Blair 339
  3. Matt Walters 318
  4. Ben Burke 245
  5. Brad Swallow 202
  6. Liam Wilkinson 183
  7. Brendan McIntyre 181
  8. Beau Beaton 179
  9. Paul Byrne 94
  10. Craig McMartin 91
AFX Superbike Championship Rostrum
AFX Superbike Championship Rostrum
Supersport Race One

Proworx Racing’s Sam Muldoon won a tight tussle with fellow Kawasaki rider Kyle Buckley for victory in the opening Supersport bout, only 0.123 of a second separating the pair at the line with the nod for the win going to Muldoon. Giuseppe Scarcella rounded out the podium on a Honda CBR600RR ahead of Mark Chiodo on the Triumph 675.

Sam Muldoon, Giuseppe Scarcella and Kyle Buckley
Sam Muldoon, Giuseppe Scarcella and Kyle Buckley
Supersport Race One Results
  1. Sam Muldoon / Kawasaki
  2. Kyle Buckley / Kawasaki +0.123
  3. Giuseppe Scarcella / Honda +6.932
  4. Mark Chiodo / Triumph +25.976
  5. Mitch Levy / Yamaha +33.080
  6. Hayden Spinks / Kawasaki +33.373
  7. Jordan Carlsson / Yamaha +42.497
  8. Matthew Shipp / Yamaha +44.810
  9. Adam Hend / Triumph +45.024
  10. Robbie Tesoriero / Yamaha +47.365
Supersport Race Two

It was Sam Muldoon and Kyle Buckley that broke away again the second bout on what was a much drier track than Supersport competitors experienced earlier in the afternoon.

Kyle Buckley, Sam Muldoon and Mark Chiodo
Kyle Buckley, Sam Muldoon and Mark Chiodo

This time around Muldoon came home particularly strongly and took victory over Buckley by a much clearer 2.5-seconds while Mark Chiodo pipped Scarcella for the final step on the rostrum by one-thousandth of a second!

Giuseppe Scarcella and Mitch Levy
Giuseppe Scarcella and Mitch Levy
Supersport Race Two Results
  1. Sam Muldoon
  2. Kyle Buckley +2.477
  3. Mark Chiodo +3.473
  4. Giuseppe Scarcella +5.774
  5. Mitch Levy +6.356
  6. Jordan Carlsson +24.917
  7. Grant Davis +33.726
  8. Matthew Shipp +35.925
  9. Jason Wiblin +59.654
  10. Rodney Whitey +72.138
AFX Supersport Championship

Buckley’s second place in the final scrap though was good enough to give the BCperformance youngster, who will step up to Superbike on a ZX-10R within the same team in 2017, the AFX Supersport Championship gong ahead of Mitch Levy and Jordan Carlsson.

AFX Supersport Championship Final Points
  1. Kyle Buckley 366
  2. Mitch Levy 362
  3. Jordan Carlsson 279
  4. Sam Muldoon 242
  5. Keith Feely 182
  6. Hayden Spinks 172
  7. Ryan Masri 138
  8. Greg Thearle 114
  9. Mark Chiodo 109
  10. Giuseppe Scarcella 109
AM-Sport

In the newly minted Am-Sport sub-category Matthew Shipp took the overall day honours ahead of Robbie Tesoriero and Rodney Whitey. The move towards this category joining the regular Supersport grid a good one with twice the amount of Am-Sport eligible bikes fronting the grid than contemporary Supersport machines, suggesting that O’Neill is on to a winner with this format.

Matthew Shipp
Matthew Shipp
AFX AM-Sport Friday Points
  1. Matthew Shipp 47
  2. Robbie Tesoriero 36
  3. Rodney Whitey 31
  4. Adrian Pelegrin 31
  5. Bobbie Ashman 29
  6. Craig McLoy 26
  7. Grant Davis 25
  8. Adam Hend 22
  9. Fernando Peres 21
  10. Andrew Fitzpatrick 21
Ninja 300

Jack Dawes took first blood in the Ninja 300 category ahead of Sam Condon and Lewis Wright.

Jack Dawes and Sam Condon
Jack Dawes and Sam Condon

Tom Toparis was victorious in race two over Yannis Shaw, Sam Condon and Broc Pearson.

Sam Condon took out the overall championship win with 367 points to Broadbent’s 290 while Jack Dawes took third on 283 points ahead of Yanni Shaw and Tom Toparis.

Jimmy Broadbent and Yanni Shaw
Jimmy Broadbent and Yanni Shaw
AFX Superbike Ninja 300 Cup Championship Points Standings
  1. Sam Condon 367
  2. Jimmy Broadbent 290
  3. Jack Dawes 283
  4. Yanni Shaw 259
  5. Tom Toparis 237
  6. Pat Condon 221
  7. Broc Pearson 205
  8. Lewis Wright 191
  9. Hunter Ford 182
  10. Ryan Sellen 169
Ninja 300 Cup
Ninja 300 Cup Overall – 1. Sam Condon 367
2. Jimmy Broadbent 290
3. Jack Dawes 283
AFX Superbike Ninja 300 Cup Under 20 Championship Points Standings
  1. Sam Condon 375
  2. Jimmy Broadbent 310
  3. Jack Dawes 293
  4. Tom Toparis 247
  5. Keegan Pickering 239
AFX Superbike Ninja 300 Cup FOB Championship Points Standings
  1. Mark Rogers 418
  2. Peter Avery 344
  3. Brett Sellen 259
AFX Superbike Ninja 300 Cup Ladies Championship Points Standings
  1. Keegan Pickering 391
  2. Julie Klinker 351
  3. Laura Brown 269
Pro Twins

Heath Griffin took two-from-two race victories today on the Ducati Panigale while Paul Roe had to settle for second place in both contests aboard the McMillan Criminal Law Aprilia RSV4.  James Bulloch and Peter Brighton took a third place apiece from the two contests.

Heath Griffin
Heath Griffin
FX Superbike Pro Twins Championship Points Standings
  1. Michael McMillan 285
  2. Heath Griffin 267
  3. Beau Beaton 184
  4. Darren Sagar 179
  5. Aaron Breese 126
  6. Paul Roe 88
  7. James Bulloch 80
  8. Craig McMartin 75
  9. Michael O’Keefe 58
  10. Grant Barratt-Thompson 42
FX Superbike Pro Twins F2 Championship Points Standings
  1. Mick Johnston 100
FX Superbike Pro Twins F3 Championship Points Standings
  1. Matt Edwards 150
Formula Oz
Sam Lambert, Simon Galloway
Sam Lambert, Simon Galloway

Sam Lambert took the opening victory in the Formula Oz category onboard a BMW S 1000 RR but the Northern Territorian could only manage fifth in the second stanza while Brett Kitchin took race two honours ahead of Evan Byles.

Brett Kitchin
Brett Kitchin
2016 AFX Superbike Formula Oz Championship Points Standings
  1. Simon Galloway – 393
  2. Evan Byles – 312
  3. Lucas Vitale – 259
  4. Stuart Fripp – 246
  5. Brett Kitchin – 229
  6. Damian Sutton – 166
  7. Kieran Hurrel – 151
  8. Albie Wheeler – 132
  9. Andy Fisher – 106
  10. Sam Lambert – 82
Simon Galloway, Sam Lambert and Stuart Fripp
Simon Galloway, Sam Lambert and Stuart Fripp