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MotoAmerica: Round #2 Day Two Race Report – Atlanta

Date :

April 20, 2015

MotoAmerica: Round #2 Day Two Race Report – Atlanta

Monster Energy/Graves Yamaha‘s Cameron Beaubier had a perfect day in imperfect conditions at Road Atlanta, the Californian having it all his way in the Honda Superbike Challenge of Road Atlanta on a day when his main rivals in the championship faltered.

Beaubier topped his teammate Josh Hayes by 4.699 seconds in the first of two wet races on a day of horrible weather in Georgia. Then he and the rest of the racers had to endure a lengthy wait as the MotoAmerica and Road Atlanta crews were forced to wait out a storm before getting the flooded track race-ready again for what turned out to be a race time of close to 5 p.m.

In race two it was Beaubier again taking victory as he watched both of the men considered to be his fiercest competition for this year’s title – Hayes and Yoshimura Suzuki’s Roger Hayden (with his second race fall of the day) – crash out of the race. With those two out, it left Beaubier to move past fast starter Jake Lewis, on the second Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000, to take victory by 3.789 seconds. Lewis ended up second, pairing that with his first-race third, and giving the 19-year-old Kentuckian the first two podiums of his Superbike career in just his third and fourth Superbike races.

With Lewis finishing third behind the two factory Yamahas in race one, fourth went to Yamaha Blumaz’s Bernat Martinez with the Spaniard bettering his fourth in race one by one spot to earn the first AMA Superbike podium of his career in race two.

But this day was all about Beaubier who earned the fifth and sixth Superbike race wins of his young career.

“I struggled a lot in the wet in the few outings we had last year,” Beaubier said after sweeping the doubleheader for the first time in what is his sophomore season of Superbike racing. “To get two wins in the wet, sketchy conditions today was good for my confidence. In the first race Josh [Hayes] and Roger [Hayden] were riding really good and it was a bummer to see Rog go down. I put my head down and started clicking off laps. I just kept going, kept going. I had a good feel in the wet. I didn’t want to throw it down, but I just kept clicking off laps.

“I was pretty timid in race two in turn one. I didn’t know if there was any standing water or not and then Jake [Lewis] got me. Jake was riding awesome and I saw Rog out front just pounding out laps. I was like, ‘Oh, man, he’s gone.’ I was struggling a little bit with grip. I saw Rog crash, I saw Josh [Hayes] crash. It was a bummer. I want to race those guys to the finish. I just kept trucking along.”

Beaubier leaves Georgia with a 30-point lead over Hayes in the title chase after the first two rounds (four races), 95-65. Lewis is third with 60 points and Martinez is fourth with 51. Elena Myers, by virtue of her two sixth-place finishes today, is fifth in the title chase with 38 points.

The Superstock 1000 class was run with the Superbikes as is the norm and those races wins were split between Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Joshua Day and RoadRace Factory’s Jake Gagne, both armed with Yamaha YZF-R1. Day won race one in his return to U.S. road racing and Gagne, who crashed in race one, bounced back for the win in the second race. Day’s afternoon was a mirror image of Gagne’s as he crashed out of race two after winning race one.

Tyler O’Hara ended up second in both races on the Tyler O’Hara Racing Yamaha R1 with Taylor Knapp riding the FourFour Motorsports R1 to third in both races.

“It was kind of like a last-minute thing,” Day said of getting the ride on the Westby Racing Yamaha. “I was planning on going to Europe again this year and then things kind of fell through with that. I went to COTA for the first round just so I could be there in front of everybody’s face and they could see me in person and know that I was trying to look for something over here. They approached me and told me there might be an opportunity to race here. I ended up here this weekend and exceeded some of our expectations. They kept telling me that there were no expectations at all, but as a racer you always put things in your mind with what you want to do and try to accomplish. For myself, I think I was able to accomplish a little bit more than what I thought I could do.”

Gagne’s race-one crashed followed his crash in the morning practice session so he was pleased to get maximum points in the second race.

“Today was mostly me going down,” Gagne said. “I made a stupid little mistake and clipped the inside paint in warm-up. The paint here in the wet is a no-go. I had a pretty good crash. In the first race I was still feeling good in the wet, but I came out of five and got a little bit too excited again. I was running my dry bike. I just got caught off guard. To come back and race with these guys… it was a fun race and I’m glad to be back up here for sure.”

The second Supersport race of the weekend featured the exact same podium as Saturday’s race, but in a different order. Yamalube/Graves Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff dominated today’s race to become the third different Supersport winner in the three-race old season. Gerloff beat Saturday’s winner Josh Herrin by 8.630 seconds. Gerloff’s teammate JD Beach finished third for the second straight day on his Yamaha R6.

The win was Gerloff’s first in the Supersport class after opening the season with two second-place finishes.

“It’s good to finally get one out of the way,” Gerloff said. “I know I can keep doing it whether it’s wet or dry. The race went really well. As soon as I got a little bit of a gap, I relaxed a lot. That was a big help. I just tried to ride my own race and monitor the gap. It feels awesome.”

Gerloff now leads the championship by eight points, 65-57, over Beach. Herrin moves to third with 54 points.

Wheels In Motion/Meen Motorsports’ Joe Roberts won the Superstock 600 race for the second day in a row in Sunday afternoon’s final event, topping Kyle Wyman Racing’s Travis Wyman by 2.4 seconds. Wyatt Farris was third after finishing fourth in yesterday’s race.

“Yesterday was a tough race because I was pushing hard the whole time,” Roberts said after his perfect weekend. “It was a little hotter yesterday than today, but I think today was where I had the most pressure on me with the situation with the track drying out and us being on rain tires. You really had to keep your focus in that race so I think today was a little tougher than yesterday.”

SUPERBIKE RACE 1:

Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha)

Josh Hayes (Yamaha)

Jake Lewis (Suzuki)

Bernat Martinez (Yamaha)

Chris Ulrich (Suzuki)

Elena Myers (Suzuki)

SUPERBIKE RACE 2:

Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha)

Jake Lewis (Suzuki)

Bernat Martinez (Yamaha)

Chris Ulrich (Suzuki)

Stefano Mesa (Honda)

Elena Myers (Suzuki)

SUPERSTOCK RACE 1:

Joshua Day (Yamaha)

Tyler O’Hara (Yamaha)

Taylor Knapp (Yamaha)

Mark Heckles (Yamaha)

Devon McDonough (Aprilia)

Brad Burns (Suzuki)

Shane Narbonne (Yamaha)

Dustin Dominguez (Aprilia)

Barrett Long (Ducati)

Marcel Irnie (Yamaha)

SUPERSTOCK RACE 2:

Jake Gagne (Yamaha)

Tyler O’Hara (Yamaha)

Taylor Knapp (Yamaha)

Mark Heckles (Yamaha)

Dustin Dominguez (Aprilia)

Shane Narbonne (Yamaha)

Brad Burns (Suzuki)

Devon McDonough (Aprilia)

Marcel Irnie (BMW)

SUPERSPORT RACE 2:

Garrett Gerloff (Yamaha)

Josh Herrin (Yamaha)

JD Beach (Yamaha)

Tomas Puerta (Yamaha)

David Anthony (Suzuki)

Cameron Petersen (Yamaha)

Ben Young (Yamaha)

Kyle Wyman (Yamaha)

Hayden Gillim (MV Agusta)

Javelin Broderick (Kawasaki)

SUPERSTOCK RACE 2:

Joe Roberts (Yamaha)

Travis Wyman (Yamaha)

Wyatt Farris (Yamaha)

Richie Escalante (Yamaha)

Andy DiBrino (Yamaha)

Nick McFadden (Suzuki)

Ryan Jones (Honda)

Bryce Prince (Yamaha)

Michael Gilbert (Yamaha)

 

Gavin Elstad (Yamaha)

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