SZOKE QUICKEST AT CALABOGIE
CALABOGIE, Ont. -- Two-time defending Parts Canada Superbike Champion Jordan Szoke opened the defense of his title by setting the quickest time in practice for the 2008 season opener at Calabogie Motorsports Park on Friday.
Riding the Canadian Kawasaki Motors Kawasaki ZX-10R the Brantford, Ont. racer turned a lap at one minute, 9.114 seconds around the 2.81km Calabogie Stadium Track.
His teammate Brett McCormick of Saskatoon was second quickest with a 1:09.444 on his Kawasaki ZX-10R and Kevin Lacombe of Granby, Que. was third fastest at 1:09.600 on the Team Toyota Yamaha / Fast Company Yamaha YZF-R1.
"We made some changes after this morning's session and the bike felt better, it felt more consistent," Szoke said. "The track is beautiful. It's a little tight and there's not a lot of passing room. But it's a lot of fun, definitely a rider's track."
McCormick used a softer rear tire near the end of the afternoon practice session to set his quickest time.
"I was pushing the front end a lot," said the 16-year-old, who was the 2007 HJC Pro Rookie of the Year. "Out of the two sweepers I had some crazy chatter, so we need to get rid of the chatter issues."
Calgary's Chris Peris and Mississauga, Ont. racer Matt McBride were fourth and fifth fastest, respectively on the Team Suzuki / Blackfoot / Picotte Racing Suzuki GSX-R1000s. Peris turned a lap of 1:09.730 while McBride's best was a 1:09.891.
In other action at Calabogie, Peris was fastest in practice for the Yoshimura Pro 600 Sport Bike Championship with a time of 1:09.984 aboard his Suzuki GSX-R600. Szoke placed second with a 1:10.188 on his Kawasaki ZX-6R and McCormick was third with a 1:10.691.
Valter Bartolini of Bologna, Italy led practice for the Canadian Thunder competitors with a time of 1:11.856 on his NCR Ducati 848. His teammate Andrew Nelson of Kars, Ont. was second fastest at 1:12.972.
Mississauga, Ont.'s Laurent Feuiltault paced the Canadian Sport Twins competitors with a 1:16.224 on his Kawasaki 650R.
Jodi Christie of Keene, Ont. led the way in practice for the Armour Bodies Amateur 600 Sport Bike class with a time of 1:13.510 on his Yamaha YZF-R6 and Burlington, Ont.'s Simon Blue led the Suzuki SV650 National Cup class with a time of 1:16.152.
Jordan Cardozo of Newmarket, Ont. was fastest in practice for the Honda CBR125R Challenge with a lap at 1:36.600.
Qualifying for all national categories will be held Saturday, including the Pirelli SUPERPOLE for the Parts Canada Superbike class. Races are scheduled to go Sunday.
This weekend's event, sponsored by Waste Management of Canada and the Ottawa Citizen will be shown on TSN and TSN-HD on Tuesday, Sept. 9 from 1:00-2:00 p.m. and again on Saturday, Sept. 13 from 4:00-5:00 a.m. All times are Eastern.