Shannonville: Series spotlight on title chase

TITLE TO BE SETTLED AT SHANNONVILLE TORONTO, Ont. (August 26) -- Brantford, Ont.'s Jordan Szoke and Clint McBain of Cochrane, Alta. will take their duel for the 2008 Parts Canada Superbike Championship down to this weekend's final race at ...

TITLE TO BE SETTLED AT SHANNONVILLE

TORONTO, Ont. (August 26) -- Brantford, Ont.'s Jordan Szoke and Clint McBain of Cochrane, Alta. will take their duel for the 2008 Parts Canada Superbike Championship down to this weekend's final race at Shannonville Motorsport Park.

Szoke comes into the seventh and deciding round of the championship leading McBain by 42 points in the national standings, 287-245, with a maximum of 56 points available this weekend.

The Canadian Kawasaki Motors factory rider is trying to win a third straight Parts Canada Superbike title and his fifth national championship in 11 years. No one has claimed three Canadian Superbike crowns since Steve Crevier triumphed in 1991, '92 and '93 and only Crevier, with six titles, has more than Szoke.

Szoke and McBain have split this season's previous six races between them. The 29-year-old Szoke rode his Kawasaki ZX-10R to victories at Calabogie Motorsport Park, Mosport International Raceway and Nova Scotia's Atlantic Motorsport Park.

McBain, from Cochrane, Alta., took the checkered flag on home turf at Calgary's Race City Motorsports Park, as well as Mosport and AMP. The 35- year-old Acceleration Racing Suzuki rider has enjoyed a career year after missing the season opener with a separated shoulder.

While the title fight comes down to Szoke and McBain, a strong field of contenders will aim to mix it up at the front on Shannonville's 2.45km (1.53-mile), 11-turn 'Pro Track' in a bid to end their season on a winning note.

Kevin Lacombe of Granby, Que. saw his title hopes end with a broken wrist in the previous event at AMP, but the 25-year-old has been a frontrunner all year on the Team Toyota Yamaha / Fast Company Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 and is still third in the Parts Canada Superbike standings.

Team Suzuki / Blackfoot / Picotte Racing teammates Chris Peris of Calgary and Sherbrooke, Que.'s Francis Martin are locked in a battle for fourth in the final standings, separated by just eight points.

The third member of the team, Mississauga, Ont.'s Matt McBride always runs well at Shannonville. He started on the front row last year and claimed pole position for the season finale in 2006.

Szoke's Canadian Kawasaki Motors teammate Brett McCormick is coming off his best weekend of the season at AMP in early August. The Saskatoon native, just turned 17, earned his first career Inside Motorcycles Pole Position Award and finished second in one of the two Superbike features.

And a fan favorite will be Maple Ridge, B.C.'s Crevier aboard the Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada / Ruthless Racing Buell 1125R. Nobody has won more Superbike nationals at Shannonville than the 42-year-old Crevier, who has 11 to his credit.

Title battles will also be settled in the Canadian Thunder, Armour Bodies Amateur 600 Sport Bike and Suzuki SV650 National Cup classes.

In Thunder, Bologna, Italy's Valter Bartolini comes to Shannonville with a 47-point lead over his NCR-Ducati teammate Andrew Nelson of Kars, Ont.

Keene, Ont.'s Jodi Christie, riding a Yamaha YZF-R6, leads the Amateur 600 Sport Bike battle by 43 points from Calgary Suzuki GSX-R600 rider Patrick Marques.

The Suzuki SV650 Cup fight is the closest of the four crowns to be resolved, with Burlington, Ont.-based New Zealander John Jarvie nursing a two-point advantage over 15-year-old Alberta upstart Cody Matechuk.

This weekend's action will also see races for the Yoshimura Pro 600 Sport Bike, Canadian Sport Twins and Honda CBR125R Challenge national support divisions.

Szoke has already clinched his third straight Pro 600 Sport Bike title for Kawasaki, but there is a good battle for runner-up honors between Yamaha riders Lacombe and Nelson and Peris on his Suzuki.

Ottawa's Jim Proulx has locked up the Sport Twins championship on his Buell, but fellow Buell rider Olivier Spilborghs of Surrey, B.C. and Bowmanville, Ont.'s A.J. Simiana on a Ducati have both beaten him this season.

In the Honda CBR125R Challenge, inaugural series champion Raphael Archambault of St-Colomban, Que. will try to complete a perfect season at Shannonville.

Practice for this weekend's season finale opens on Friday with qualifying, including the Pirelli SuperPole for the Parts Canada Superbike class set for Saturday.

Races in all seven national classes will go Sunday afternoon.

For ticket information go to www.shannonville.com or call 1-800-959- 8955 or 613-966-7223.

All Time Shannonville Motorsport Park Superbike Wins

Steve Crevier (Maple Ridge, B.C.) 11; Michel Mercier (Thetford Mines, Que.) 5; Pascal Picotte (Granby, Que.) 4; Rueben McMurter (London, Ont.) 3; Francis Martin (Rock Forest, Que.) 3; Miguel Duhamel (Repentigny, Que.) 2; Jeff Gaynor (Toronto, Ont.) 2; Michael Taylor (Toronto, Ont.) 2; Don Munroe (Halifax, N.S.) 2; Jordan Szoke (Brantford, Ont.) 2; Kevin Lacombe (Granby, Que.) 2

Shannonville Motorsport Park Fast Facts

--This is the fourth straight year, and the fifth time in the last six years, that the Parts Canada Superbike Championship points battle has come down to the final race of the season at Shannonville Motorsport Park.

--Only once in the past five season finales at Shannonville has the series champion also been victorious in the last round. That was in 2004 when Pascal Picotte won the race after clinching the title at the previous event.

--Jordan Szoke and Steve Crevier come to Shannonville tied for the lead in career national Superbike wins with 26 each.

--Of Crevier's all-time leading 26 national Superbike wins, he has scored more at Shannonville, 11, than at any other venue. His next most successful tracks are Atlantic Motorsport Park, where he has won seven times, and Autodrome St-Eustache, where he scored three victories.

--Szoke's happy hunting ground is Calgary's Race City Motorsports Park, where he has claimed nine of his 26 Superbike victories. He has won five times at Mosport International Raceway, and on three occasions at AMP, Le Circuit Mont-Tremblant and Autodrome St-Felicien.

-credit: www.cdnsuperbike.com

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series CSBK
Drivers Miguel Duhamel , Jordan Szoke , Pascal Picotte , Andrew Nelson , Chris Peris , Clint McBain , Kevin Lacombe , Francis Martin , Steve Crevier , Brett McCormick