The final day of the 2023 Bridgestone Canadian Superbike Championship season saw plenty of success for its teenage amateur stars, as a pair of crowns were decided and a new winner emerged on Sunday at Shannonville Motorsport Park.
Philip Degama-Blanchet took a maiden national victory in race two of the AIM Insurance Amateur Superbike class, dominating from start-to-finish as he jumps from fifth to second in the final championship order.
The 15-year-old phenom admittedly had less opposition than usual after champion Mavrick Cyr decided to turn pro ahead of schedule along with Mack Weil, but regardless it was an impressive performance for the Alberta native as he flashed legitimate pro pace in his amateur send-off.
Bryce DeBoer would come out on top of the rest of the pack, claiming second-place and a third amateur podium of the season albeit a distant five seconds off the lead. That would come at the expense of Matt Vanderhorst, who completed the podium and did just enough to finish third in the championship as he also eyes pro status for 2024.
Cyr did cap off his amateur career with another victory in the Scorpion EXO Amateur Sport Bike class, fending off fellow teenagers Weil and Degama-Blanchet for a fourth win on the campaign.
Cyr already clinched both amateur championships on Saturday but made one last appearance in the intermediate ranks before turning pro, a decision that only helped his resumé as he concludes the year with seven wins in 12 amateur races.
The battle for second was an instant classic, however, as DeGama-Blanchet paced Weil for majority of the contest while each of the three riders traded new lap records.
Cyr would ultimately shatter the previous mark by almost a full-second on the final lap, but Weil would steal the spotlight as he launched a daring pass up the inside of Degama-Blanchet in the penultimate corner to steal second at the line.
That initially looked to be crucial for Degama-Blanchet’s future as Weil relegated him to fourth in the championship, with only the top three forced to turn pro at the end of each season, though Degama-Blanchet changed that with his later Superbike performance.
Vincent Lalande continued the impressive day for teenage talents as the 15-year-old officially wrapped up the Super Sonic Race School Amateur Lightweight Sport Bike championship.
Lalande needed only to finish in the top-ten but made things dramatic en route to claiming the title, earning the final podium spot after a thrilling late battle with Ryan Beattie.
Championship rival Vincent Wilson did his part with a runaway victory, his fifth win of the season, but it didn’t matter as Lalande’s podium gave him the junior category trophy by 12 points.
Splitting the two was Zaim Laflamme, who’s late-season breakout continued with a strong second-place finish between the two championship contenders.
Wilson would get his revenge later in the day, though, winning another outright EBC Brakes Lightweight Pro/Am race after a hectic four-rider battle at the front.
The Amateur division champion endured another sensational battle with Pro points leader Stacey Nesbitt and her main title rival Ryan Vanderputten as well as Laflamme, but the latter three duked it out enough in the late stages to allow Wilson to escape with another on-track win.
Vanderputten would get the better of Nesbitt at the line to finish second overall and earn the pro victory, but it wasn’t enough to deny her then Pro championship as Nesbitt finished third on-track and second in her split to take home the trophy.
Wilson’s victory would give him the outright bragging rights, though, as he managed to squeak past Nesbitt on a tiebreaker for the most overall points between the two riders.
That was just one of a few things Wilson took home on the day, as he also clinched the inaugural Surron Canada Electric Rider Award. The New Brunswick native recorded five fastest laps in eight races of the Pro/Am Lightweight class, 63% of the max available and enough to earn him an electric Light Bee machine from Surron.
Full results from the final day of amateur racing can be found on the series’ official website at CSBK.ca.