The following is from Westby Racing…
After two rounds of the 2020 MotoAmerica Championship at Road America in Wisconsin, Westby Racing was ready to race this weekend at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta, which is a home track for the team’s Superbike rider Mathew Scholtz, team manager Chuck Giacchetto, and crew chief Ed Sullivan, who all live in the Atlanta area.
For Mathew, the “home cooking” was just what he needed as he qualified second in Saturday morning’s Superpole session, and then he crossed the finish line in third in the afternoon’s Superbike race one.
Mathew commented, “After the first lap, I settled into fourth place behind Toni (Elias), and I could see immediately that Jake (Gagne) and Cameron (Beaubier) were pulling a massive gap, even after only just five or six corners. Toni’s bike is quick, and he brakes late so I couldn’t really pass him. I was planning on something going into turn 10, but coming onto the back of the straight, (Kyle) Wyman passed us. Then his bike was leaking fluid. It was spraying all over the front of my bike and my helmet visor. So, I was just trying to stay off his race line, and that really slowed me down. Then I maybe got about a second off of Toni and Kyle, and I think Kyle’s bike stopped in turn 10. I caught up to Toni and passed him. Toni was right behind me for a couple of laps after that, but once I began dipping to the mid- to upper-25s, he started dropping off. So, I just kind of rode my own race from there. It was a little bit boring towards the end. I could see Jake pretty far ahead of me, but I couldn’t see Cameron at all, so I was in no-man’s land. I’m hoping in the tomorrow’s race that we can pick up the pace and hold onto Jake and Cam.”
Sunday’s Superbike Race 2 is at 3 PM Eastern and will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) and Eurosport, as well as streamed on MotoAmerica Live+.
In Junior Cup, Cody Wyman’s reunion with Road Atlanta, after a five-year hiatus from a track that he really likes, netted him a third-row starting position and an eighth-place finish in Saturday’s race one. Cody was less than thrilled with the results, but he has his chin up and is determined to get a higher finish in Sunday’s race two.
“We made some changes to the front-end of the bike, and they made the handling better, but it was still a tough race for me,” Cody said. “I got a decent start and did my best to roll with the leaders, but I lost the draft and got stuck in a big battle for fifth place. It was very hot today, and the track was pretty greasy as a result, so I definitely had some moments. We all swapped positions, and I put myself in a really good spot on the final lap, with a couple bikes ahead of me that I could draft. But, turn 10a and 12 were a bit of a mess for me, and I ended up crossing the line in eighth. Thank you to my team for the support. Tomorrow morning, we’re going to try out a small change on the bike and then, we’ll see how it goes for race two.’”
Junior Cup Race 2 is at 2 PM Eastern and will be broadcast via tape-delay on FS2 (check your local listings for FS2 airtimes), in addition to being live-streamed on MotoAmerica Live+.
For more updates about Westby Racing, including news, photos, and videos, visit http://www.WestbyRacing.com
The following is from M4 ECSTAR Suzuki…
M4 ECSTAR Suzuki continued its winning ways as the 2020 MotoAmerica AMA/FIM North American Road Racing season resumed for Round 3 in blistering hot conditions at Road Atlanta.
The action on track was even hotter than the sweltering conditions in Saturday’s MotoAmerica Supersport showdown. At the conclusion of 17 laps of repeated draft passes and braking duels, M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s class title hopeful Sean Dylan Kelly stood atop the podium thanks to a breathtaking final-corner overtake.
Throughout the contest, a confident Kelly routinely put the M4 ECSTAR Suzuki GSX-R600 wherever he wanted, utilizing a variety of lines and late-brake heroics to keep himself in contention for the victory on the final lap.
As the battle for the win closed on the checkered flag, Kelly somehow navigated around a pair of slower riders and then dove up the inside of his chief rival in the race’s last corner to earn his first victory of the season by 0.052 seconds.
The win was the 18-year-old’s third in just over one season of MotoAmerica competition.
Afterward, he said, “Wow! That was a really good race. It definitely was a hard one. Getting our first win of the season feels so good. We started off the season in a difficult way but we fought through and we’re here. I want to thank the whole M4 ECSTAR Suzuki team — they’ve worked so hard. I’m really happy to get this win for everyone and we’re going to do it again tomorrow.”
The day also proved fruitful for Kelly’s teenaged teammate Alex Dumas. The French Canadian notched up another milestone in his meteoric rise, scoring his first career podium finish in the Stock 1000 class aboard the M4 ECSTAR Suzuki GSX-R1000.
Dumas, who raced into the 2020 season on the strength of dominating back-to-back championships in the Junior Cup (2018) and Twins Cup (2019), has instantly proven to be a quick learner — and flat-out quick — on a big-bore racebike as well.
Dumas has climbed up the order in each of his three Stock 1000 races to date, backing up his seventh-place debut with a fourth-place finish in his second attempt. Dumas went one better on Saturday at Road Atlanta, finishing in third position just 0.051 seconds out of second place.
Dumas said, “I feel really good this weekend. I’ve been pretty quick this weekend in practice and qualifying, so I was really looking forward to the race. Unfortunately, I made a small little mistake at the beginning and lost some time, but I kept pushing. It’s great to get my first podium of the year. I’m really happy, and I’ve got to thank everyone at Team Hammer and everyone who supports the team.”
M4 ECSTAR Suzuki MotoAmerica Superbike duo of Toni Elias and Bobby Fong added a double top-five to the team’s list of accomplishments on Saturday.
Toni Elias (2017 MotoAmerica Superbike Champion and 2010 Moto2 World Champion) ran third early on and pressured for that position mid-race before accepting a lonely fourth.
He was followed home by Bobby Fong, who came to Road Atlanta fresh off his maiden premier-class victory. Fong’s hopes of backing that performance up with a second consecutive win took a big hit earlier in the day when he crashed his GSX-R1000 at high speed.
The bruised and battered Fong soldiered on to fifth-place points to keep his championship hopes alive.
Lucas Silva continued his perfect season’s run of top-tens with another strong Supersport outing. The native Brazilian initially battled inside the top five before ultimately taking the checkered flag in sixth.
Roadracing World Young Guns/Sportbiketrackgear.com’s Rocco Landers made a spectacular save in the final corner of the Twins Cup race to salvage a podium finish following a race-long battle for victory.
Despite feeling under the weather, Landers pulled an early advantage before settling into second. Landers attempted to position his Suzuki SV650 to make a late strike for the win, but his plan was effectively foiled when he got hung up on lappers on the last lap. Landers still did what he could to claw back the advantage in hopes of snaring an unlikely victory, but ran off course in the last corner as a result.
He somehow managed to keep it upright through the gravel and returned to the track in time to cross the stripe in third position.
Team Hammer will have another opportunity to add to its trophy haul on Sunday at Road Atlanta.
The following is from Yamaha…
Cameron Beaubier was back on top at Road Atlanta with another stellar performance to score his fourth MotoAmerica Superbike win of the season. His Monster Energy Attack Performance Yamaha Racing teammate Jake Gagne crossed the line comfortably in second on a hot August Saturday in Braselton, Georgia.
Beaubier kept his 2020 Superpole streak alive and once again started from pole. He rocketed off the line, but Gagne also got off to a flying start from the second row of the grid and slipped past him to take the lead in turn one. The pair quickly put a gap on the rest of the competition with the defending champ right on Gagne’s heels. Beaubier didn’t wait too long to make his move, passing his teammate on the second lap going into turn eight. He put his head down and knocked down some consistent fast laps to return to the top step of the podium and expand his points lead in the championship to 14 points.
Gagne tried to stay on the back of Beaubier in the hot, greasy conditions, but the Superbike veteran was able to build a gap. He kept his fellow Californian honest throughout the 19-lap race and finished second to secure his fourth podium this season with the new team.
After another impressive double podium for the Monster Energy Attack Performance Yamaha Racing team on Saturday, they head into tomorrow’s race two looking for another top result.
Richard Stanboli – Monster Energy Attack Performance Yamaha Racing Team Manager
“The team is in a good place at the moment. Our riders and crew are continuing to gel with the equipment and each other. There are very few challenges that they cannot overcome. Today was another example of that. After a technical issue in morning warmup, the team came together and gave the riders a couple of great Yamaha R1s that they could win on. Without a doubt Cameron and Jake rode as champions should, darting away from the rest of the field. I am very proud of how the season is going.”
Cameron Beaubier – Monster Energy Attack Performance Yamaha Racing
“It was a tough race, demanding physically and on the bikes! It was hot and greasy out there today. My bike worked great and I was happy with how I rode. Jake rode really good today as well, putting the pressure on me and it’s always nice to have three Yamahas up on the podium. I’ve got to keep my head down tomorrow!”
Jake Gagne – Monster Energy Attack Performance Yamaha Racing
“We got off to a great start and it was nice to lead a few laps. Cam came by me and I tried everything I could to hang on to him, but his pace was just a bit better. Once he pulled that gap, it was a hot, lonely race but the Dunlop’s held up really well. Hats off to the crew because we’ve had to deal with a few little issues this weekend and haven’t had the laps on track that we’d like, but they are always working hard. I’m happy with how our R1 felt and we are improving the feel for me every time we go out. We’ll try to improve on a few areas for tomorrow’s race and get off to another good start!”