Reigning Mopar CSBK National Canadian National Superbike Champion Jordan Szoke of Lynden, ON, set the pace in the opening day of practice for the second round of the 2016 National tour at Autodrome St-Eustache, Quebec. Aboard his 2016 Express Lane Motovan BMW S1000RR, Szoke turned a best lap of 45.4 sec around the eight turn, 1.93 km long road course at the Autodrome north west of Montreal, QC.
“I started off riding last year’s bike,” explained Szoke. “Then we switched to the new bike, and got an engine code right away. It was a wiring issue, something minor unplugged, but I was ticked off, so we got up to speed really quickly!”
“I caught up with Bodie Edie, and I wasn’t planning to pass him” continued Szoke, referring to 20-year-old returning star Edie of Warman, SK. “I wanted to see how he was doing, and I already had around 14 laps on the tire. But that was when we set the best time, and I really didn’t expect that.”
“I think the race will be really exciting, and the key will be to stay out of trouble,” continued Szoke. The class fastest BMW 1000cc of Szoke completed unofficial tech inspection with a run at 188 horsepower on the official Dynojet Dyno, safely under the permitted 200 horsepower maximum allowed.
Second best on the afternoon was Kevin Lacombe of St-Cesaire, QC aboard a Yamaha in his second outing after returning to the series following a three-year layoff. Working through detail changes with his new Motosport Ct-Cesaire Yamaha YZF-R1S, Lacombe earned the second best lap prior to tomorrow morning Qualifying session, at 45.98 seconds.
“Our bike is way better, we don’t have a lot of options, but the bike is working well,” confirmed Lacombe. “We changed springs, all the settings, and I am just getting comfortable. The track is good, getting better, but if it gets as hot as they say I think the track will get slippery. The key will be to try to get away at the start of tomorrow afternoon’s first race.”
Third overall was Kenny Riedmann of Belfountain, ON aboard a Sturgess Cycle Liqui Moly Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R. Runner up to Szoke at the opening race at Shannonville, ON, a month ago, Riedmann is looking for his first National Superbike win in his second year in the top class.
“I’m happy with the bike, and we’ll be even happier with the little adjustments we’re going to make before Qualifying,” stated Riedmann. “I feel good; I just need to step it up a bit to get up there with Jordan. I think in the race everyone will be together, no one will get clear and you will need to think of the tires.”
Edie netted fourth best overall time on his Trip-Dub Racing Z1 Tuning Yamaha YZF-R1M, setting a best time of 46.615 seconds.
“We’re getting up there, it’s getting better session, and every lap with a new bike really helps,” smiled Edie. “We’ve made some big changes since the opener, and we are certainly working in the right direction. We’ve been messing with the electronics, changing the Traction Control, the Slide Control, changing the power up a bit. We’re getting ready for how hot it is supposed to be for the two race days, Saturday and Sunday.”
Fifth quickest in his first-ever trip to St-Eustache was Ben Young of Collingwood, ON, aboard his Tim Horton’s-Scot Build BMW S1000RR, turning a lap at 46.9 sec. Running lots of laps to get acclimatized to the track, Young was surprised by his first experience at the Autodrome.
“Yeah, this track in not what I expected,” explained Young. “It really is better than I thought it would be! Honestly, I like the whole track. It’s going to be hard to find time, and hard to make time in a race situation. We have the soft Dunlop slick option working well, I think I did around 38 laps on the same tire. But you’re going to have to be bike-fit in the race, this will be a tough one.”
Sixth overall belonged to local ace Sebastien Tremblay, on the podium last year behind Szoke and Jodi Christie of Keene, ON. Aboard a new Laval Moto Kawasaki ZX-10R Ninja, Mirabel, QC-based Tremblay set a lap at 46.982.
Michael Leon of Beaconsfield, QC was seventh fasted on the Royal BMW S1000RR, followed by eight best Trevor Daley of Mississauga, ON, who missed the morning session trouble-shooting a minor electrical issue with his One Speed Yamaha YZF-R1M. Top rookie Pro was Samuel Trepanier of St-Isidore-de-Laprairie, QC in ninth aboard a BMW S1000RR, with veteran two-time Canadian Champ Michael Taylor of Toronto, ON, tenth best, and fasted middleweight, with his GP Cycles Triumph Daytona 675.
In support class action for the Liqui Moly Pro Sport Bike category, Riedmann was quickest with his Kawasaki ZX-6R Ninja with a lap at 47.672 seconds. Last year’s winner Louie Raffa, Honda CBR600RR mounted from nearby Ste-Marthe, QC was second at 47.925, followed by third quickest Taylor with a tour at 48.070.
In Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike competition, the best lap of 48.931 was set by Ernest Bernhard of Ste-Brigide, QC on a Yamaha YZF-R1, with middleweight ace Christ Brent of Ottawa, ON second on a Honda CBR600RR at 49.070, Mathieu Tremblay of St-Bruno, QC third overall on a Suzuki GSX-R1000 at 49.285.
The Shoei Premium Helmets Amateur Sport Bike division was headed by Alexandre Guay of Levis, QC aboard a Yamaha YZF-R6. Second best middleweight time belonged to Brent at 49.506, with Samuel Desmarais third best aboard another Honda at 49.659.
In practice for the fifth and sixth rounds of the Kawasaki Ninja 300 series for identical, spec twins, Eric Quintin from Ile Perrot, QC set the pace at time of 56.472, followed by Brandon Pemberton of Windsor, NS at 58.055 sec. and third best Stanley Moran of Gatineau, QC.
Qualifying session for all classes take place Saturday, June 25, with Round 2 race one of the Feature Mopar CSBK class in the National Championship scheduled for Saturday afternoon, race two on Sunday.