Jake Gagne Riding The Waves Of Motorsport

Jake Gagne makes his return to VIR in memorable fashion! Being a surfer, he is certainly used to the ebb and flow of progress, the crests and troughs as he reads the ocean waiting for just the right one. As his performance this past weekend would show, he can take a bad breaker, rebound and ride the perfect wave to victory. His crew likewise would show to the entire paddock, yet again, that they are the best in the business.

The Superstock schedule provides the riders with three free practice sessions in which to nail down their set-ups and Jake and his crew are not ones to waste any time. Jake was struggling through a few sections where he was fast, but not sustainable over a race distance. With the help of team manager and coach Danny Walker, he sat down with Scott Jensen and discussed the lines and how the bike is feeling through those sections. With the help of Penske, the crew got the bike dialed in and Jake was able to make full use of his Superstock machine. As Superpole approached, Jake was confident that he could place his machine on the top spot and maybe even grab another front row start. He was on pace to do just that as another all Yamaha front row was within his sight, but a blistering last lap by Roger Hayden relegated Jake to 4th overall but still 1st in his class.

Race one on Sunday was set amongst the beautiful backdrop that is VIR. The riders on the grid were excited to get racing under such ideal conditions having battled rain in the previous two rounds. As the lights went out and the field rushed to Turn 1, Jake was well placed in the top five. He wasn’t allowing the Superbikes to get away without a fight. As he entered the up-hill right turn 7 a few laps later, he tucked the front end and went off into the grass. He would get the bike restarted and get it back to the pits. This is where the nation got to see what team work is really all about. Before the bike had even stopped, Scotty and Danny (Anderson) were over the wall assessing the damage. The entire RoadRace Factory crew was on hand to assist and everyone performed a flawless ballet to get the bike and Jake back up and running before the restart.

Jake would restart and make massive strides back towards the front of the pack again. He was back up into P1 (Superstock) when the real damage from the crash surfaced. A damaged clutch would bring his race to an end one lap before the checkers.

Race two was a few hours later in the day and that gave the team to make all the needed repairs. When Jake lined back up on the grid his bike was in mint condition. Jake is something of a rarity. He doesn’t get bothered by what happened earlier or by pressure from points chases. He’s just out there to ride the bike as fast as he can and he genuinely has fun doing it. So as race two got under way, Jake was once again right there up front and giving fits to Superbikes. This time, the race would contain no real drama for the crew as Jake put on a masterclass of riding to capture his fourth victory in six races.

Jake Gagne, 1st in series points: “I hadn’t been to VIR since 2008 in the Red Bull Rookies Cup, so I was really excited to get back. It’s a fun and challenging track to get around fast. Practice and qualifying went well as Scotty, Danny, and Penske had the bike working great. I was bummed about my little mistake crashing out in race 1, but it was amazing to see the entire team come together to get the bike ready to go for the restart. Unfortunately, we had a clutch problem and couldn’t bring it home. But to rebound in race 2 with a win was perfect. One of my favorite tracks is up next so I’m ready to roll into Wisconsin next week!”

Danny Walker, Team Manager: “Jake is nothing if not fun to watch! I was out on track watching his lines and just kept saying, ‘How is he doing that?!’ But I was also able to see some areas where he could take a different line and improve. We sat down with Scotty and talked about it and next thing we know, he’s flying around this track.

“He’s liked it here since the Red Bull Rookies Cup and we knew he’d play a major role in the mixed class races. He qualified up front again and was looking to take it to the Superbikes. But sometimes in racing things go sideways. He recovered and brought the bike back to the pits where we all saw just how great this team works together! I cannot say enough how impressed I was to see every man over the wall working together to get Jake’s bike back out there for the restart. That shows me that I have the best crew in the paddock for sure! Kinda sucks that there was damage to the clutch that we couldn’t diagnose before the restart and he wasn’t able to finish race one. That’s two DNF’s so, race two had to be perfect.

“It was! Jake has the ability to shake things off quickly and man, once the lights went out, he was off! He took that race win in a dominate fashion. We head now to Road America which is one of Jake’s best tracks. I’m dying to see how he does on this big bike around that circuit. Should be entertaining!”

Jake Gagne makes his return to VIR in memorable fashion! Being a surfer, he is certainly used to the ebb and flow of progress, the crests and troughs as he reads the ocean waiting for just the right one. As his performance this past weekend would show, he can take a bad breaker, rebound and ride the perfect wave to victory. His crew likewise would show to the entire paddock, yet again, that they are the best in the business.

The Superstock schedule provides the riders with three free practice sessions in which to nail down their set-ups and Jake and his crew are not ones to waste any time. Jake was struggling through a few sections where he was fast, but not sustainable over a race distance. With the help of team manager and coach Danny Walker, he sat down with Scott Jensen and discussed the lines and how the bike is feeling through those sections. With the help of Penske, the crew got the bike dialed in and Jake was able to make full use of his Superstock machine. As Superpole approached, Jake was confident that he could place his machine on the top spot and maybe even grab another front row start. He was on pace to do just that as another all Yamaha front row was within his sight, but a blistering last lap by Roger Hayden relegated Jake to 4th overall but still 1st in his class.

Race one on Sunday was set amongst the beautiful backdrop that is VIR. The riders on the grid were excited to get racing under such ideal conditions having battled rain in the previous two rounds. As the lights went out and the field rushed to Turn 1, Jake was well placed in the top five. He wasn’t allowing the Superbikes to get away without a fight. As he entered the up-hill right turn 7 a few laps later, he tucked the front end and went off into the grass. He would get the bike restarted and get it back to the pits. This is where the nation got to see what team work is really all about. Before the bike had even stopped, Scotty and Danny (Anderson) were over the wall assessing the damage. The entire RoadRace Factory crew was on hand to assist and everyone performed a flawless ballet to get the bike and Jake back up and running before the restart.

Jake would restart and make massive strides back towards the front of the pack again. He was back up into P1 (Superstock) when the real damage from the crash surfaced. A damaged clutch would bring his race to an end one lap before the checkers.

Race two was a few hours later in the day and that gave the team to make all the needed repairs. When Jake lined back up on the grid his bike was in mint condition. Jake is something of a rarity. He doesn’t get bothered by what happened earlier or by pressure from points chases. He’s just out there to ride the bike as fast as he can and he genuinely has fun doing it. So as race two got under way, Jake was once again right there up front and giving fits to Superbikes. This time, the race would contain no real drama for the crew as Jake put on a masterclass of riding to capture his fourth victory in six races.

Jake Gagne, 1st in series points: “I hadn’t been to VIR since 2008 in the Red Bull Rookies Cup, so I was really excited to get back. It’s a fun and challenging track to get around fast. Practice and qualifying went well as Scotty, Danny, and Penske had the bike working great. I was bummed about my little mistake crashing out in race 1, but it was amazing to see the entire team come together to get the bike ready to go for the restart. Unfortunately, we had a clutch problem and couldn’t bring it home. But to rebound in race 2 with a win was perfect. One of my favorite tracks is up next so I’m ready to roll into Wisconsin next week!”

Danny Walker, Team Manager: “Jake is nothing if not fun to watch! I was out on track watching his lines and just kept saying, ‘How is he doing that?!’ But I was also able to see some areas where he could take a different line and improve. We sat down with Scotty and talked about it and next thing we know, he’s flying around this track.

“He’s liked it here since the Red Bull Rookies Cup and we knew he’d play a major role in the mixed class races. He qualified up front again and was looking to take it to the Superbikes. But sometimes in racing things go sideways. He recovered and brought the bike back to the pits where we all saw just how great this team works together! I cannot say enough how impressed I was to see every man over the wall working together to get Jake’s bike back out there for the restart. That shows me that I have the best crew in the paddock for sure! Kinda sucks that there was damage to the clutch that we couldn’t diagnose before the restart and he wasn’t able to finish race one. That’s two DNF’s so, race two had to be perfect.

“It was! Jake has the ability to shake things off quickly and man, once the lights went out, he was off! He took that race win in a dominate fashion. We head now to Road America which is one of Jake’s best tracks. I’m dying to see how he does on this big bike around that circuit. Should be entertaining!”