Friday, July 6, 2012
Szoke Beats the Heat in St-Eustache Superbike Action
ST-EUSTACHE, Que. -- Seven-time national Superbike champion Jordan Szoke survived hot and humid conditions at Autodrome St-Eustache to set the fastest time in practice for the second round of the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship on Friday.
Riding his Waznie Racing / Parts Canada / BMW Motorrad Canada BMW S1000RR the Brantford, Ont. native turned a lap at 45.575 seconds around the 1.93km (1.2-mile) 10-turn circuit for an average speed of 152.452 km/h (91.471 mph).
Series points leader Andrew Nelson was second quickest at 45.879 secs. on the Nelson Racing / Endras Motorrad / mcn.tv BMW S1000RR and Alex Welsh placed third aboard the AW7R / Kenwood Electronics Canada Suzuki GSX-R1000 with a time of 45.944. These were the only three riders to get below the 46-second mark.
Temperatures had been expected to reach a high of 31 degrees Celsius (87.8 degrees Fahrenheit) on Friday, with the humidity making it feel more like 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit).
“It’s hot out there. The heat makes it harder to carry speed through the corners,” said Szoke, who finished third in the opening round of the Mopar Canadian Superbike season at Shannonville Motorsport Park last month. “We made some change in this [afternoon] session and the bike was better. We’re behind on the electronics. We just aren’t experienced with that stuff but we’re getting better.”
Coming off his first career national Superbike win at Shannonville, Nelson turned in a burst of fast laps late in the afternoon session to move up to second in the order.
“We figured a lot of stuff out today,” the Kars, Ont. racer said. “We’ll make a couple more changes for qualifying tomorrow to try and stabilize the bike but we’re not far off.”
Welsh is fourth in Superbike points after a heroic ride from 12th to fourth at Shannonville.
“We’re going in the right direction,” said the Uxbridge, Ont. rider. “It’s fast for a lap but we’re trying to make it more rideable. We did a long stint at the end to see how the tires would hold up.”
Jodi Christie of Keene, Ont. made a late surge to grab fourth in practice with a time of 46.062 on the Jodi Christie Racing / Accelerated Technologies Honda CBR600RR and St-Cesaire, Que.’s Kevin Lacombe was fifth fastest at 46.138 riding the Team Couturier Racing BMW S1000RR.
In other action at Autodrome St-Eustache, Christie was fastest in practice for this weekend’s K&N Performance Filters Pro Sport Bike round. The defending class champion recorded a time of 46.535 secs.
Terrebonne, Que.’s Raphael Archambault was second fastest with a 46.667 on the Team Archambault Racing / Picotte Motorsports / G Suspension Suzuki GSX-R600 and points leader Frank Trombino of Kleinburg, Ont. set the third best time of 47.514 on his 725 Sports / Acme Slate Suzuki GSX-R600.
Defending champion Steve Crevier of Maple Ridge, B.C. led practice for the Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada XR1200 Cup with a time of 50.204 secs. on his MotoSport Plus entry.
Stephan Houle of Gatineau, Que. paced practice for the Bazzaz Amateur Superbike class with a time of 48.066 on his 613 Motorsports / Jim Keay Ford Lincoln Suzuki GSX-R1000, while opening round winner Philippe Masse of St-Hyacinthe, Que. set the fastest time in practice for the Inside Motorcycles Amateur Sport Bike class with a time of 49.000 secs. on the Racingphil.com / Pete’s Superbike Kawasaki ZX-6R.
Peterborough, Ont.’s Tomas Casas led Honda CBR250R National Race Series practice at 59.215 secs.
Action at St-Eustache continues Saturday with qualifying for all six national classes, including the battle for Pirelli SuperPole in the Mopar Pro Superbike division. The first of two Honda CBR250R National Race Series rounds goes Saturday afternoon, with feature races in all classes set for Sunday.
For ticket information call 450-472-6222 or 514-591-4388. Or go to www.autodrome.ca.