SZOKE ON POLE FOR MOSPORT RACES
BOWMANVILLE, Ont. (July 9) - Jordan Szoke of Brantford, Ont. will try to add to his Parts Canada Superbike Championship points lead from the head of the pack at Mosport International Raceway this weekend.
The 31-year-old four-time defending series champion took his third Inside Motorcycles Pole Position Award of the season despite seeing the Pirelli SuperPole session cancelled on Friday.
Thursday afternoon's practice times will instead set the line-up for the fourth and fifth rounds of the series, and Szoke was fastest in that session with a time of one minute, 20.829 seconds on his Waznie Racing / BMC Ciclo Werks / DeWildt Honda Powerhouse Honda CBR1000RR.
His time was under the track lap record of 1:21.061 set by Brett McCormick last year but does not count as a new mark since it was not recorded during an official qualifying session.
"Our race set-up is good, we know we can run the times we did yesterday," Szoke said. "I think we could have run mid to low 20s in the cooler conditions today, but what can you do?"
The top 10 runners from Thursday's practice were lined up and ready to go in the Pirelli SuperPole session when reports of rain around the track forced the session to be scrubbed at the last minute.
"It's too bad for the fans that there's no SuperPole," Szoke said, who has won all three rounds of the series so far this year. "But you can't do anything stupid. The track is not 100 per cent and it's a little dangerous in those circumstances."
While Szoke does get credited with pole position he doesn't pick up the four points that normally go along with setting the fastest time. He heads into this weekend's races with a 54-point lead, 164-110, over Francis Martin in the Parts Canada Superbike Championship standings.
Martin will start this weekend's races second on the radX HD / BMW Motorrad Canada BMW S1000RR after turning a lap at 1:22.209 on Thursday.
"It's too bad we didn't have a day to improve the bike at all, but it's the same situation for everybody," said the Sherbrooke, Que. rider, who is coming off a runner-up finish in the most recent round of the Parts Canada Superbike Championship at Calgary's Race City Motorsport Park. "We'll try some different things before the race tomorrow and see how it works."
Frank Trombino of Kleinburg, Ont. will line up third on his ProStar Motorsports / Sturgess Cycle Honda CBR1000RR with a time of 1:22.327 from Thursday and Kars, Ont.'s Andrew Nelson completes the front row on the Orion Motorsports / BMW Motorrad Canada BMW S1000RR after turning a practice lap at 1:23.161.
"I'm happy with where we're at," said Trombino, a two-time Superbike race winner at Mosport. "Third place is good. I think we'll leave things the way they are and see how it goes."
Michael Ferreira of Mississauga, Ont. leads off the second row of the grid for this weekend's races on the second of the radX HD / BMW Motorrad Canada entries. Next up is Uxbridge, Ont.'s Alex Welsh on the Competition Systems Kawasaki Race Team Kawasaki ZX-10R with Matt McBride starting seventh aboard the Budds' Motorrad / Riders Choice BMW S1000RR in his first appearance of the season.
Keene, Ont.'s Jodi Christie (Jodi Christie Racing / Durham Honda Powersports Honda CBR600RR), Cody Matechuk of Cochrane, Alta. (Acceleration Racing Suzuki GSX-R1000) and Montreal racer Marie-Josee Boucher (Excel Moto Honda CBR1000RR) complete the top 10 starters for this weekend's races.
Boucher would have been the first woman to participate in Pirelli SuperPole had the session taken place on Friday.
Practice times were also used to set the grids for this weekend's four other national class races at Mosport.
Szoke will start on pole position for the pair of Pro Sport Bike races after the four-time defending class champion turned a lap at 1:23.664 in Thursday afternoon practice aboard his Honda CBR600RR.
Christie will line up second on the grid on his Honda CBR600RR thanks to his time of 1:24.119 on Thursday. Szoke leads Christie by 32 points, 164-132 in the Pro Sport Bike standings. The front row is completed by Trombino (Honda CBR600RR) and Jean- Francois Cyr of Ste-Adele, Que. (CyRacing Suzuki GSX-R600).
Series leader Raphael Archambault of St-Colomban, Que. gets pole position in the Amateur Sport Bike class thanks to his 1:27.215 practice time on Thursday. The Archambault Racing / Centre Hamel Honda-backed rider has won all three races in the series so far this year.
Burlington, Ont.'s Jody Greening (Suzuki GSX-R600), Marcel Irnie of Kelowna, B.C. (IrnieRacing / Amsoil Kawasaki ZX-6R) and Hamilton, Ont. racer Steven Nickerson (STN Racing / DeWildt Honda Powerhouse Honda CBR600RR) complete the front row.
The points leader in the K&N Filters Sport Twins class, Rob Busby of Brantford, Ont. will go from pole position in this weekend's two races on his Buell XB12, and Ryan McCormick of St-Lazare, Que. earned his first pole in the Honda CBR125R Challenge.
Qualifying was held for the Canadian debut of the TTXGP eGRAND PRIX electric motorcycle series. Michael Barnes of Boca Raton, Fla. was fastest with a time of 1:39.289 on his Lightning entry for an average speed of 143.472 km/h (89.158 mph).
Newbury Park, Calif. racer Thad Wolff was second with a 1:48.579 on his Norton Electra and Santarose, Calif. racer Michael Hannas was third fastest at 1:54.398 riding an Electric Race Bike entry.
Feature races in all national classes will go Saturday and Sunday. On- track action on Saturday begins with practice at 9:00 a.m. with the first race set to go at 1:30 p.m.
Weekend Super Tickets can be purchased for $60 at the gate. Single day passes are also available. For ticket information call 1-800-866-1072 or go to www.mosport.com.