SZOKE AIMS FOR NINTH CALGARY WIN CALGARY, Alta. (June 23) - Jordan Szoke may not own Race City Motorsport Park, but he certainly feels at home there. The Brantford, Ont. racer comes into this weekend's second and third rounds of the Parts...
SZOKE AIMS FOR NINTH CALGARY WIN
CALGARY, Alta. (June 23) - Jordan Szoke may not own Race City Motorsport Park, but he certainly feels at home there.
The Brantford, Ont. racer comes into this weekend's second and third rounds of the Parts Canada Superbike Championship, presented by Rocky Mountain Honda Powerhouse, bidding for his ninth, and perhaps even his 10th career national Superbike victories at the Calgary track.
The 3.2km (2.0-mile) circuit was the scene of Szoke's first career victory in 1998 and he has turned success at Race City into a habit. His triumphs in Calgary include doubleheader sweeps in 2000, 2002 and 2007.
The 31-year-old six-time Canadian Superbike champion enters the weekend in a familiar position at the head of the Parts Canada Superbike point standings. He enjoyed a perfect outing at Circuit ICAR, near Montreal, last month where he qualified fastest and led every lap on the Waznie Racing / BMC Ciclo Werks / DeWildt Honda CBR1000RR for his 30th career Canadian Superbike victory.
Szoke didn't have things all his own way in Quebec, however, and his challengers have had almost a month to prepare to mount a challenge on the four-time defending Parts Canada Superbike champion.
Jodi Christie of Keene, Ont. was a revelation at the opening round, harrying Szoke throughout the race to claim his first career podium finish on the Jodi Christie Racing / Durham Honda-backed Honda CBR600RR. The 17- year-old was last year's HJC Pro Rookie of the Year and finds himself second in points coming to Calgary.
Fellow Honda rider Frank Trombino of Kleinburg, Ont. should also be a threat this weekend after he placed fourth at Circuit ICAR on the ProStar Motorsports / Sturgess Cycle CBR1000RR.
The Rush HD / BMW Motorrad Canada team enjoyed a strong debut at Circuit ICAR with its brand new S1000RR. Two-time Canadian Superbike champ Francis Martin of Sherbrooke, Que. qualified on the front row and finished sixth in the race, just behind teammate Michael Ferreira of Mississauga, Ont., who took a superb fifth in his first national Superbike start.
The BMW ranks are bolstered by Andrew Nelson of Kars, Ont., who also qualified on the front row in Quebec on the Orion Motorsports / BMW Motorrad Canada entry.
Not to be discounted this weekend will be the lone Competition Systems Kawasaki Race Team-prepared Kawasaki ZX-10R of Uxbridge, Ont.'s Alex Welsh, who placed an uncharacteristic seventh at round one of the season. Also Kawasaki-mounted will be Calgary's Dave Stokowski riding the Blackfoot Motosports / Canadian Kawasaki Motors / Pro-Power Engines ZX-10R.
SPEED TV personality Greg White is entered on the Kahuna Powersports Kawasaki ZX-6R in place of the injured Vicki Schouten.
Kevin Lacombe leads the Suzuki ranks on his Lacombe Racing GSX-R1000 after finishing an excellent third in the first race of the year.
Another to watch will be 2009 national Amateur Sport Bike champion Cody Matechuk of Cochrane, Alta., who will race either a GSX-R1000 or GSX- R600 for the Acceleration Racing team. Matechuk is leading the HJC Pro Rookie of the Year race.
This weekend also sees the second and third rounds of the Pro Sport Bike Championship, where Szoke is trying to claim a fifth crown on his Honda CBR600RR. He should come under fire from fellow Honda riders Christie, Trombino and Sebastien Tremblay of Longueuil, Que. on a second ProStar Motorsports / Sturgess Cycle entry.
Jean-Francois Cyr is third in points on his CyRacing Suzuki GSX-R600 and Matechuk should be a frontrunner on his home track aboard another GSX- R600.
Another impressive rookie is Kenny Riedmann of Belfountain, Ont. riding the Compulsion Racing / Pro 6 Cycle Triumph 675.
The Pro Sport Bike class will also feature the Deeley Harley- Davidson / Ruthless Racing Buell 1125Rs with Dave Estok of New Smyrna Beach, Fla. leading the charge while teammate Darren James races in England.
White will also run Pro Sport Bike on Schouten's Kawasaki.
There are also doubleheaders this weekend for the Amateur Sport Bike, K&N Filters' Sport Twins and Honda CBR125R Challenge classes. Raphael Archambault of St-Colomban, Que. leads the Amateur Sport Bike standings after a win at Circuit ICAR, Mississauga, Ont.'s Rob Busby is tops in Sport Twins on a Buell and Ryan Appenrodt of Quesnel, B.C. has not been beaten yet in the Honda CBR125R class.
The CBR125R Challenge competitors will also race Monday at the adjacent Varsity Chrysler Speed Park.
Practice and qualifying for this weekend's races will take place Friday. Qualifying will include the Pirelli SuperPole for the Inside Motorcycles Pole Position Award in the Parts Canada Superbike class. Races in all national classes will go Saturday and Sunday.
Tickets are $50 for a weekend pass and $30 for a single day. For ticket information call (403) 975-2849 or go to www.amra.ca.
-source: cdn superbike