Cameron Beaubier and Toni Elias Split MotoAmerica Superbike Wins In Utah
JD Beach Takes Supersport – Bryce Prince Crowned In Superstock 600
Yamaha’s Cameron Beaubier moved out of a tie with 2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden and into sixth on the all-time AMA Superbike win list with his 18th career victory in race one on a sunny Saturday at the Utah Motorsports Campus. A few hours later, however, Yoshimura Suzuki’s Toni Elias turned the tables on his rivals to score the victory, his fifth of the season, in what was the second scintillating Superbike race of the day in Utah.
The margin of victory in both races – combined – was just .291 of a second.
Race one was the normal Superbike thriller with Beaubier’s teammate Hayes surprising even himself with a pace that had him at the front of the pack from the start and a pace that kept him there for the majority of the race. That was until Beaubier upped the pace with a 1:49.776 lap to take over at the front on the 16th lap. From there he was never headed, winning his seventh race of the season by just .171 of a second over Hayes. Yoshimura Suzuki’s Roger Hayden was third, 1.1 seconds behind, with Elias a few tenths behind in fourth and seething with grip issues.
“I felt like I had a couple of areas where I was stronger than Josh (Hayes),” Beaubier said after race one. “But he had a couple of areas where he was stronger than me also. I knew Rog (Hayden) and Toni (Elias) were right there and I didn’t want to wait too long to try and make a move on Josh just because I know it’s just as easy for Toni and Rog to pass me on the brakes as it is for Josh. I wanted to at least lead going into the last lap and see what happens. I thought I threw it all away when I ran wide into five. I thought Josh was going to squirt up the inside of me, but I was able to get it stood up and on the fat part of the tire to squirt out of there.”
With his win and second-place finish on the day, Beaubier extended his championship points lead to 25 points (a race win pays 25 points) over Hayes, 253-228, with second, third and fourth separated by just two points. Elias is third with 227 points and Hayden is fourth with 226.
Fifth place overall went to Bazzaz Superstock 1000 class winner Josh Herrin, the Wheels In Motion/Meen Motorsports rider earning his sixth win of the season and his fifth in a row. Herrin now leads the Superstock 1000 title chase by 42 points over Bobby Fong, 268-226. Claudio Corti is third with 218 points.
Herrin barely bested Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz, the South African racing to sixth overall and second in class in his debut for the team. Those two were just fractions ahead of TOBC Racing’s Danny Eslick, the Oklahoman third in class.
Superbike rider Jake Gagne was eighth on his Broaster Chicken/Roadrace Factory Yamaha R1 with Quicksilver/Latus Motors Racing’s Fong and Aprilia HSBK’s Corti rounding out the top 10 finishers.
A normally cheerful Elias was an irritable Elias even with a three hour cooling-off period as he started the second of two races. He took his anger out on the field, taking over the lead when Hayes ran off the track on the second lap and leading the majority of the way. Hayes would drop back to 16th but would recover to finish fourth by the end of the race.
Though he did most of the leading, Elias was never alone and both Hayden and Beaubier stuck their noses in on multiple occasions. Elias, though, was better when he needed to be and he beat Beaubier to the line by .120 of a second.
“I win, but I am still very angry,” Elias said. “For two hours after the first race I was completely angry because we work well this weekend. The first lap, no grip, the second lap, no grip. I tried my best but it was impossible. I couldn’t do anything and I had to accept finishing fourth.”
For race two, Elias had grip and it made all the difference in the world.
“We put new tires on and the bike was working perfect again,” Elias said of race two. “These guys are riding really strong and were pushing a lot, but we could win this race. But today was a day to reduce the gap of the championship and we lost points. We lost six or seven points. I am happy for the victory and also for my team, but I am not happy.”
Hayden did all he could on the day and ended up a close third in both races.
“The crew made a couple of little changes between races and it was definitely a little better so I have to thank them,” Hayden said. “Toni was stronger than me in a couple of spots and I was better in the last section. I wanted to lead the last lap. I got a good run on him and almost got under him and Cameron got by both of us and I lost the front end a little bit on the brakes. It was just a seesaw on the last lap with everyone just going for it. I would have liked to have done better, but we got third today. We got beat.”
With Hayes knifing his way through the field to finish fourth, fifth place went to Gagne, the Californian showing significant improvement in what was his best result since the New Jersey Motorsports Park round at the end of April.
Herrin was sixth and again on top of the podium in the Bazzaz Superstock 1000 class, the Meen Motorsports rider taking his sixth win in a row and his seventh of the season. Eslick was right with Herrin at the finish to earn seventh overall and second in class with Scholtz putting the Westby bike on the podium for the second time on the day in eighth/third.
Fong and Morais rounded out the top 10 finishers in race two.
Brayden Elliott fought hard in the two races on the Aussie Dave Racing YZF-R1 to card 15th and 13th place finishes.
“I am happy with my consistency and speed during the highly competitive long distance races, also the huge improvements made throughout the whole weekend. I can’t thank my family and Phil Tainton enough for the dedication and commitment to make this happen and overcome every obstacle thats involved with racing internationally. Taking away plenty of positives and continuing to learn with each and every lap. I can’t wait to once again be working with the ADR Motorsports team as we head to Laguna Seca for round eight!”
If the two Superbike races were thrillers, the second Supersport race on Saturday was less so. That’s because JD Beach made the race all his from the get-go – for the second straight day. Beach led off the start, quickly opened up a margin over the field and held on to win by 1.98 seconds over his Y.E.S./Graves Yamaha teammate Garrett Gerloff.
“I really enjoy this track and wanted to get off to a good start and just push,” Beach said. “I wanted to beat Cameron’s (Beaubier) lap time here so bad. On my dash it said I did a 53.3 and he did a 53.2 here. I knew I had to do it at the beginning of the race and I just couldn’t get it, but it helped me push to get a gap on Garrett (Gerloff), Valentin (Debise) and Joe (Roberts) and Cameron (Petersen). We just pushed and maybe I let up a little bit too much when I came up on the lappers and trying to be a bit too nice to them and Garrett closed the gap just a little bit. He’s been riding so well this year and he’s definitely not making it easy on me in these last few races to try and close the points gap. I’m here to win races and we’ll see what happens at the end of the season.”
Gerloff didn’t have things as easy in the fight for second as the two M4 SportbikeTrackGear.com Suzukis of Valentin Debise and Cameron Petersen pressured him for the majority of the race. Debise had a run-in with a lapped rider at the end of the race that allowed Gerloff to gain some ground and the Texan ultimately crossed the finish line 3.5 seconds clear of the Frenchman.
Team H35 Honda’s Benny Solis Jr. finished a lonely fifth on his CBR600RR.
MotoAmerica crowned its first champion of the 2016 season with Riders Discount/Tuned Racing’s Bryce Prince winning the Superstock 600 battle to wrap up the title with three races left (one at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in July and two in New Jersey in September). Prince was sixth overall in the Supersport race ahead of seventh placed Richie Escalante, the HB Racing/Meen Motorsports rider who won Friday’s race one. Jason Aguilar, riding with five broken bones in his foot, filled the Superstock 600 podium with his brave third-place finish.
“I was able to get behind Richie (Escalante) and I just kept pushing him the whole time,” said Prince, who won his seventh race of the season. “Every once in a while I’d see him make a mistake and so I got ahead of him to see if I could lose him, but he latched on and picked the pace back up. He drafted past me with two laps to go and he was riding really good and I wasn’t sure where I could pass him. I was hoping to be as close as I could through the last sector, draft past him and outbrake him into one and that’s exactly what we did. We put down one of our fastest laps of the weekend on the last lap of the race.”
Altus Motorsports’ JC Camacho and HB Racing/Meen Motorsports’ Dakota Mamola rounded out the top 10 overall.
Georgian Ashton Yates won his second KTM RC Cup of the season in the red flag shortened race two on Saturday. Yates was in the mix for the lead with the two others who are always at the front – Brandon Paasch and Anthony Mazziotto III – but he didn’t have to rely on any last-lap strategy as this one was decided by Brazilian Renzo Ferreira’s crash in the final corner.
Yates was ahead at the right time, the completion of lap five, and that earned him his second win. Mazziotto ended up second to gain back four points in the title chase on Paasch, who finished third. Paasch now leads Mazziotto by 15 points, 246-231, with three races remaining in the series.
“No one knows when a red flag will happen, but it’s probably the first time that it’s ever turned my way,” Yates said. “I was feeling good all weekend and it feels really good to get a win. I like this track a lot and I’ll take the points to Laguna.”
SUPERBIKE RACE 1: Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha); 2. Josh Hayes (Yamaha); 3. Roger Hayden (Suzuki); 4. Toni Elias (Suzuki); 5. Josh Herrin (Yamaha); 6. Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha); 7. Danny Eslick (Yamaha); 8. Jake Gagne (Yamaha); 9. Bobby Fong (Kawasaki); 10. Claudio Corti (Aprilia).
SUPERBIKE RACE 2: 1. Toni Elias (Suzuki); 2. Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha); 3. Roger Hayden (Suzuki); 4. Josh Hayes (Yamaha); 5. Jake Gagne (Yamaha); 6. Josh Herrin (Yamaha); 7. Danny Eslick (Yamaha); 8. Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha); 9. Bobby Fong (Kawasaki); 10. Sheridan Morais (Yamaha).
SUPERBIKE CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS: 1. Cameron Beaubier (253/7 wins); 2. Josh Hayes (228/1 win); 3. Toni Elias (227/5 wins); 4. Roger Hayden (226/1 win); 5. Josh Herrin (128); 6. Claudio Corti (116); 7. Bobby Fong (112); 8. Hayden Gillim (84); 9. Danny Eslick (84); 10. Jake Gagne (74).
KTM RACE 2: 1. Ashton Yates; 2. Anthony Mazziotto III; 3. Brandon Paasch; 4. Alejandro Gutierrez; 5. Daniel Costilla; 6. Nolan Lampkin; 7. Josh Serne; 8. Jackson Blackmon; 9. Cory Ventura; 10. Benjamin Smith.
Elias Snags First MotoAmerica Pole In Utah – Superbike Pole To Spaniard, Supersport Win To Beach
TOOELE, UT, JUNE 24 – Yoshimura Suzuki’s Toni Elias called his countryman Carlos Checa prior to his arrival at the Utah Motorsports Campus and got some tips from the World Superbike Champion and five-time race winner at the previously named Miller Motorsports Park. Then he went out on a sunny Friday afternoon and used what he’d learned to perfection, earning his first MotoAmerica Superbike pole position of his debut season after setting a blistering 1:49.613 to lead a tightly knit group at the top heading into Saturday’s two races.
“I spoke with Carlos Checa who won here many times,” Elias said of his fellow Spaniard. “He gave me some advice. He said I would enjoy this track and I am enjoying this track.”
Elias, who has won four MotoAmerica Superbike races thus far in 2016, will start from pole position for the first time on Saturday in the MotoAmerica Superbike Championship of Utah, heading a front row at the 3.048-mile racetrack that includes Superbike Championship points leader Cameron Beaubier and Elias’ Yoshimura Suzuki teammate Roger Hayden. Beaubier was just .021 of a second off Elias’ best with Hayden only .041 of a second behind his teammate in third.
“At this track I feel comfortable immediately,” Elias said. “This is the kind of track I like. I felt good, I felt good with the bike. I think the last race we improve a lot. Also we do many laps with the used tires so I think the set-up is really good and the pace is there. Will be a tough race. I will give my 100 percent, but the race will be very long and hot. We will see.”
Beaubier said he struggled to not make any mistakes with his qualifying tire mounted, but he said he’s comfortable with his race set-up for Saturday.
“It felt like I had a pretty decent lap,” Beaubier said. “I think everyone makes at least one little mistake on their Superpole tire because you have so much more grip. Overall, I feel pretty good with our race setup and which tire (to use). I was able to string a few good lap times in the low 50s in practice this morning and I feel like my bike is working quite a bit better this year than it was last year. These guys (Elias and Hayden) are on rails this weekend so it’s going to make for some tough races tomorrow but it should be fun.”
The Superbike field is tight with the top six separated by just .732 of a second on the fast and flowing track on the outskirts of Salt Lake City.
Beaubier’s Monster Energy/Graves Yamaha teammate Josh Hayes will lead row two for tomorrow’s two races, the four-time Superbike Champion only .120 of a second from pole position. Wheels In Motion/Meen Motorsports Yamaha’s Josh Herrin will join Hayes on the second row, the Georgian leading the Bazzaz Superstock 1000 qualifiers in fifth overall. Jake Gagne will fill the second row on the Superbike-spec Broaster Chicken/Roadrace Factory Yamaha R1, the team returning to action after a one-race hiatus from the Barber Motorsports Park round.
The third row of the grid will consist of TOBC Racing’s Danny Eslick, Aprilia HSBK’s Claudio Corti and Millennium Technologies Kyle Wyman. Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz, in his debut ride for the team, and Team Rabid Transit’s Sheridan Morais round out the top 10 qualifiers.
Y.E.S. Graves Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff and JD Beach came into Utah separated by 33 points after Beach’s doubleheader sweep at Barber Motorsports Park two weeks ago. That gap is now 28 points after the first of two races at Utah Motorsports Campus after Beach’s dominating fourth win of the season and third in succession.
Beach basically won this race on the opening lap, the defending Supersport Champion jumping out to a 1.9-second lead on the first lap and extending that to 3.3 seconds after just two of 16 laps. From there Beach would continue to extend his lead until settling in with a five-second lead he would maintain until celebrating by standing up on his seat across the finish line. The margin of victory was 3.5 seconds.
“That’s my plan each race – to get the best start I can and try to get out front and push,” Beach said. “This track I’ve had a lot of good luck at and some bad luck, but the last few races here have been good for me. Like I said at Barber, I just have to try and keep winning races and the pressure is on Garrett. He’s got the points lead right now and it’s still big, but I just have to keep trying. We’re coming to some good tracks and I just have to keep having fun on the bike and keep pushing.”
Gerloff was second after a near race-long battle with Frenchman Valentin Debise on the M4 SportbikeTrackGear.com Suzuki GSX-R600. Debise, however, crashed right in front of Gerloff, allowing the Texan to cruise to second place, some seven seconds clear of Supersport podium first-timer Benny Solis Jr. on the Team H35 Honda CBR600RR. Debise was able to remount to finish sixth.
“JD got a good start and he’s been riding awesome,” Gerloff said. “Me and Valentin (Debise) were battling and we were holding each other up, but that’s how racing goes sometimes.”
Debise’s teammate Cameron Petersen narrowly missed out on the final podium spot with Solis beating the South African to the flag by just .079 of a second. Wheels In Motion/Meen Motorsports’ Joe Roberts ended up fifth, some seven seconds behind Petersen and 11 ahead of Debise.
The Superstock 600 class victory went to Richie Escalante, the HB Racing/Meen Motorsport rider finishing seventh overall and first in class after a dominating performance. Runaway championship leader Bryce Prince was second on the Riders Discount/Tuned Racing Yamaha R6, over 15 seconds behind.
“I’m very happy. My feeling with the bike is much better. Today I am happy and the feeling with the bike is perfect. I try to win the rest of the races and finish second or third in the championship. Maybe is the best race of my life, the rhythm. We will see tomorrow. The bike is perfect.”
Third place went to Millennium/Kyle Wyman Racing’s Travis Wyman, the Las Vegas resident doing enough to stop Prince from wrapping up the championship, though that will likely happen in tomorrow’s race two. Prince has a 99-point lead over Wyman and a 100-point lead over Dakota Mamola, fourth on Friday, with only 100 points available from the remaining rounds. If Wyman scores a point on Saturday he will be crowned as the 2016 MotoAmerica Superstock 600 Champion.
AXcess Racing’s Brandon Paasch made his MotoAmerica KTM RC Cup debut last year in Utah and made an instant name for himself with a podium finish. This year the youngster is leading the championship and he extended that lead on Friday with a victory in the first of two KTM races. Paasch beat Yates Racing’s Asthon Yates by just .300 of a second with Anthony Mazziotto III finishing third on his Jimmy Winters Motorsports RC 390.
Paasch now leads Mazziotto by 19 points in the RC Cup Championship, 230-211. Yates is third with 160 points.
“I was pushing the whole time and trying to stay in the front one or two and it wasn’t working for awhile,” Paasch said. “I kinda just put my head down and did a couple of quick laps and caught back up. The last lap I made some passes that I saw last year. They worked apparently because I got beat by getting passed like that last year.”
MCNEWS.COM.AU is a specialist on-line resource that provides motorcycle news for motorcyclists. MCNews covers all areas of interest for the motorcycling public including news, reviews and comprehensive racing coverage.