Upsets at final RACE Double-Header weekend

The entire landscape of the R.A.C.E. SuperSeries championships changed last weekend at Shannonville Motorsport Park. In one split second, with one tiny mistake, the entire season and the hunt for another #1 plate was lost to Royal Distributing sponsored Michael Leon. While leading the Open Sprint contest earlier in the day, Leon lost an edge and tumbled heavily off track in corner 3, sending the reigning champion to the hospital. While Leon sat in the emergency department, his championship dreams came to an end, as did his chance to race and try to recapture the series Pro Superbike championship.

In Pro Superbike action, Kingston’s Jeff Williams looked to take over the points lead from the absent Leon, with Eli Daccache and Jim Proulx in tow, however, the advantage was short lived when Williams pulled off track, handing the chase to old rivals Daccache and Proulx. Proulx didn’t have much time to enjoy his newfound status of race leader when he lost the front of this Yamaha R1, tumbling heavily into the front wall, almost swallowing up Daccache who had been hard on his rear wheel. Daccache somehow managed to stay upright and shot into the race lead uncontested. With the win, Daccache now held a firm grip on the Pro Superbike title.  Sunday’s finals saw Daccache seal the deal with a second place finish behind Kingston’s “Jammin” Jeff Williams. Williams proudly hoisted the checkered flag in what turns out is his first Pro Feature race win since 1996 but fell to second place in points, making Daccache the Pro Superbike class winner. This would be the first of two number one plates earned on the weekend by the brilliant Newcastle racer.

On Saturday, Eli Daccache left no doubt in the Pro 600 contest, leading from start to finish and virtually locking up the championship, with Sunday’s race final yet to run. Stacey Nesbitt had a great outing, with a hard push from fifth all the way up to second, after a race long battle with Belleville rider Mike Raniowski, who had to settle for the final step of the podium. Sundays final run to the finish was a lonelier affair for Daccache, who led from start to finish, to also sew up the Pro 600 class number one plate. 

Things certainly tightened up in the Amateur Superbike ranks after Saturdays final. Race winner Michael van Ek took the race win but Vivian Mathews held on to finish third in the race and maintain his class lead status. Cameron Walker had a good ride to take the second step of the podium and climb up into third place in the standings before Sundays final. Ivan Babic had an impressive ride finishing in fourth, just ahead of rookie Eros Mukja. On Sunday, Michael van Ek took another race win, dragging along Ivan Babic for second place. Belleville’s Eros Mukja took the final step of the podium. Vivian Mathews rode to a smart fourth place finish with enough points to take the over-all Championship.

In Amateur 600 racing, Hastings rider Leo Foley maintained a tenuous lead in the series, finishing in second place for the day, behind Cameron Walker who upped his game and gained some valuable points with the race win.  Second in points Sean Latta lost a little ground with a fourth place finish with Michael van Ek earning the final step of the podium. Only 10 points separate the top three riders heading into Sunday. Cameron Walker did what he had to do on Sunday with the race win, just ahead of Michael van Ek and Sean Latta, but a brilliant ride for fourth but young Hasting’s racer Leo Foley took the Championship with a fourth place finish.

In the Mopar Express Lane Lightweight Production battle, over 20 riders took to the field for the final race of a very long series. The small bike series continues to heat up to be on full display in next season Mopar CSBK National road race series, as the Amateur Lightweight Sport Bike class. The weekend was a very successful outing for the young racer from Blackstock, ON, Jake Leclair who jumped into the series lead on Saturday with a runaway race win.  For Sunday’s final, LeClair and Connor Campbell  were given a set of Dunlop’s new Sportmax Q3 tires to test out and they both made good use of them. LeClair was first across the finish line with Campbell in tow, giving LeClair the series Championship.

Several other Championship wins were handed out on the weekend as well. Hans van Sluewen took the Lightweight Twins title, just 2 points ahead of race winner Joshua Thomas. Oshawa’s Andy Dickinson took the Lost Era Heavyweight championship, while Kingston’s Jeff Williams earned the Open Sprint title. Hans van Sluewen also won the Lightweight Superbike championship and Eros Mukja won the Rookie Cup in his first season of racing. Leo Foley took his second championship taking the Lost Era Lightweight title while Grant Smith earned the Masters Middleweight Championship.

From a press release
Don Empey, For Shannonville Motorsport Park