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Sunday, July 10, 2011

McCormick wins fourth Superbike race

By John Hopkins
Photo courtesy

ST-EUSTACHE, QC – Brett McCormick claimed his fourth consecutive win of the Canadian Superbike Championship by Parts Canada season at Autodrome St-Eustache on Sunday to remain unbeaten through 2011.

Riding the radX / BMW Motorrad Canada BMW S1000RR the Saskatoon racer grabbed the lead halfway around the first lap and held off a late charge by Jordan Szoke to win by 1.390 seconds.

McCormick completed the 24 laps around the 1.77km (1.062-mile) St-Eustache circuit in 18 minutes, 13.102 seconds for an average speed of 139.903km/h (83.942 mph).

Brantford, Ont.’s Szoke claimed his third straight runner-up finish on the Competition Systems Kawasaki Race Team Kawasaki ZX-10R Ninja and Alex Welsh of Uxbridge, Ont. finished third riding the Z1 CycleTech / Kenwood Suzuki GSX-R1000.

“If I told everybody that one was easy I’d be lying,” the 19-year-old McCormick said. “It was a tough race and a hot day. This was one of the toughest weekends I’ve had. It’s been very challenging both mentally and physically. We struggled with the set-up all weekend and were chasing our tails around a bit. But I've got to take my hat off to [crew chief] Patrice [Goyette]. He made some good changes this morning and made some good tire choices for the race."

McCormick started second on the grid after being edged to pole position by Szoke and was beaten into the first turn by Welsh. He got around the Suzuki rider in the Carousel on the opening lap and immediately started to pull clear, setting a new lap record of 45.012 seconds on his second lap.

The lead was up to two seconds on Szoke, who passed Welsh on lap six, before lapped traffic allowed the Kawasaki rider to close back in and the two were nose to tail with four laps to go. McCormick upped the pace again, however, to secure the win.

“Everybody knew lapped traffic was going to play into the strategy of the race,” McCormick said. “I was super aggressive on that first lap because I wanted to be in the lead right away and have a bit of a cushion to work with in case traffic came into play.”

McCormick now leads Szoke by 46 points in the Canadian Superbike Championship by Parts Canada standings with three races remaining in the season. A race win is worth 50 points.

Szoke had ended McCormick’s perfect qualifying record by taking the Kawasaki S4-R Competition Lubricants Pole Award on Saturday but was unable to stop the BMW rider’s winning streak on Sunday.

“My start was not good enough and I got stuck behind Alex,” explained the seven-time Canadian Superbike champion, who has won the last five titles. “Alex was riding well but Brett was getting away all the time. I used up my rear tire when I was stuck behind Alex and when I caught up to Brett I had nothing left.

"I'm so disappointed because I had such a great motorcycle. But racing doesn't always go as planned. We're right there and Brett knows it."

Welsh faded back to a lonely third place to claim his second straight podium finish this season.

“I got a good start and I was able to hang in there for a few laps,” he said. “Once we started coming up on lapped traffic I found it mentally draining.

"We've got the bike working much better but we need to work on the grip for late in the race. This is the first time I've had any success on a Superbike so I'm learning and I need to adjust my riding style too."

A three-rider battle for fourth was resolved in favor of Michael Ferreira on the second of the radX / BMW Motorrad Canada BMW S1000RR entries. The Mississauga, Ont. rider finished just ahead of the Nelson Racing / GymMax / Monette Sports BMW S1000RR of Kars, Ont.’s Andrew Nelson and Keene, Ont. rider Jodi Christie’s Jodi Christie Racing / Cameron Cycle / Blue Streak Racing Honda CBR600RR.

Nelson started fourth and worked his way up to fourth on two occasions only to have off-course moments drop him back down to sixth. The last came with five laps to go and moved Ferreira up to fourth place.

"Consistency gets results and I think this was one of my most consistent races," Ferreira said. "Andy tried me on the last lap, going on the outside into the bowl, but I went in as deep as I could and got on the power hard out of the last turn."

A subdued Nelson was frustrated with fifth.

"The result should have been better," he said grimly. "Francis [Martin] held me up the first few laps and when I got by him I worked too hard to catch the next group. I was deserving of a podium in that race and I feel kind of robbed."

Nelson remains third in the Canadian Superbike Championship by Parts Canada standings with 140 points while Ferreira sits fourth with 128 and Welsh has moved ahead of Christie into fifth with 109.

Martin was the last finisher on the lead lap in seventh on the Couturier Racing / ProPulsion BMW S1000RR. After holding down fourth for the first two laps he gradually slipped down the order.

Race Results
1. Brett McCormick, Saskatoon, Sask. (BMW S1000RR) 24 Laps
2. Jordan Szoke, Brantford, Ont. (Kawasaki ZX-10R) 24
3. Alex Welsh, Uxbridge, Ont. (Suzuki GSX-R1000) 24
4. Michael Ferreira, Mississauga, Ont. (BMW S1000RR) 24
5. Andrew Nelson, Kars, Ont. (BMW S1000RR) 24
6. Jodi Christie, Keene, Ont. (Honda CBR600RR) 24
7. Francis Martin, Sherbrooke, Que. (BMW S1000RR) 24
8. Franklyn Dominguez, Hudson, Que. (Kawasaki ZX-10R) 23
9. Sebastien Tremblay, Sherbrooke, Que. (Honda CBR1000RR) 23
10. Steve Walker, Carleton Place, Ont. (BMW S1000RR) 23
11. Sylvain Dery, St-Colomban, Que. (Yamaha YZF-R6) 23
12. Rob Busby, Brantford, Ont. (BMW S1000RR) 23
13. Marie-Josee Boucher, Montreal, Que. (Honda CBR600RR) 23*
Did Not Finish
Francois Dumas, St-Raymond, Que. (BMW S1000RR) 1
Martin Ricard, Montreal, Que. (Kawasaki ZX-10R) 0
Did Not Start
Jean Francois Cyr, Mascouche, Que. (Suzuki GSX-R1000)
Jeremie Hade Precourt, Granby, Que. (Suzuki GSX-R600)
Raphael Archambault, Terrebonne, Que. (Suzuki GSX-R600)
Bodhi Edie, Warman, Sask. (Honda CBR600RR)
Frank Trombino, Woodbridge, Ont. (Suzuki GSX-R600)
Time of Race: 18:13.102 (139.903 km/h)
Margin of Victory: 1.390 secs.
Fastest Lap: 45.012 seconds by Brett McCormick on lap 2
Lap Leaders: Brett McCormick 1-20
*--Position revision for run-off infraction

Point Standings
1.Brett McCormick, 219
2. Jordan Szoke, 173
3. Andrew Nelson, 140
4. Michael Ferreira, 128
5. Alex Welsh, 109
6. Jodi Christie, 104
7. Franklyn Dominguez, 72
8. Francis Martin, 71
9. Rob Busby, 69
10. Marie Josee-Boucher, 68
11. Steve Walker, 64
12. Frank Trombino, 52
13. Matt McBride, 50
14. Sebastien Tremblay, 40
15. Sylvain Dery, 38
16. Jean-Francois Cyr, 25
17. Ross Millson, 10
18. Sean Huffman, 8
19. Billy Shields, 6


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