Riding his BMW Motorrad / Mopar Express Lane BMW S1000RR the Brantford, Ont. rider took the lead on lap 3 of the red-flag shortened 10-lap race and went on to score a 6.477-sec. victory over the Accelerated Technologies / Honda Canada Honda CBR1000RR SP ridden by defending series champion Jodi Christie of Keene, Ont.
Sebastien Tremblay of Longueuil, Que. placed third aboard the MotoNation / CrossFit Laval Kawasaki ZX-10R.
“It’s a great start to the season but it’s a long way from over,” said Szoke after winning his second straight race of the 2015 season and opening up a 20-point lead, 111-91, over Christie in the Superbike standings. “I didn’t really go out to try and win the race. The conditions were tough and I’m in a championship battle with Jodi, so he was my big concern.”
Szoke completed the race distance in nine minutes, 13.660 seconds for an average speed of 124.842 km/h (74.905 mph).
Originally scheduled for 22 laps of the tight and challenging 1.92km (1.2-mile) road course, the Superbike feature was red-flagged after seven laps when Wellington, Ont.’s Reiner Griese crashed his BMW S1000RR on the front straight, without injury.
Beaconsfield, Que.’s Michael Leon was leading at the time on his Royal Distributing / Multi-Tact BMW S1000RR and he took the lead from Tremblay on lap two of the restarted race, with Szoke close behind him. Szoke took the lead from Leon on lap 3 but could not shake his fellow BMW rider, who snatched back the top spot at the start of lap five. But soon after Leon lost the BMW while exiting the dogleg near the end of the lap and crashed. He was unhurt but unable to continue.
“It was Michael’s race,” admitted Szoke, who is trying to capture a 10th Canadian Superbike crown. “He was doing a great job and setting a great pace. When he crashed it was a little tight, I just squeezed between him and his bike. It was a little hard after that because I’d lost my ‘rabbit’.”
Szoke has now won 47 Superbike nationals since making his debut in 1998.
After running as far back as fifth in the early laps Christie worked his way up to second by lap 5 and turned his fastest lap of the race, a 55.155, on the next tour. Szoke, responded, however, with has two fastest laps to open up a cushion over the closing stages of the race. He ended up with the fastest lap of the race, a 54.119.
“I really was just out to finish today,” said Christie, who also finished second to Szoke at the season opener at Calabogie MotorSports Park. “I always want to win, but it really was a matter of survival. I just couldn’t match Jordan’s pace; I tried but he was just too quick today.”
After struggling before the red flag with a fogging visor, Tremblay switched visors during the break and got off to a great launch on the restart, leading the opening lap before dropping behind Leon, Szoke and Christie.
“The new visor was good for the first five laps but then it was tough to see again,” said Tremblay after equaling his finish at St-Eustache last year. “At the end of the race I just tried to be safe and bring it home.”
Kenny Riedmann battled through a painful shoulder injury to claim fourth place on his GE Capital / Sturgess Cycle Triumph 675R. The Belfountain, Ont. rider, who aggravated the injury suffered at Calabogie with a fall in Superbike qualifying on Saturday, was seventh at the end of the opening lap but quickly worked his way up behind Tremblay by lap 4. He was unable, however, to challenge the Kawasaki rider.
Montreal’s Franklyn Dominguez held off Tomas Casas and Kristopher Garvie to finish fifth on the OCM Motor Sports Kawasaki ZX-10R. These three ran together for the second half of the race.
Peterborough, Ont.’s Casas was the top finishing rookie on his Peterborough Cycle Salvage Yamaha YZF-R6 while Garvie rebounded from a poor start in the first race and visor problems of his own to finish seventh on his Mikey Moto / Wall Energy Honda CBR1000RR.
St-Lazare, Que.’s Stacey Nesbitt took eighth on her Statoni Racing / OCM / Honda Canada Honda CBR600RR while Mississauga, Ont. racer Trevor Daley recovered from a fall while running third on lap three to salvage ninth place aboard his OneSpeed Racing / Suzuki Canada / Parts Canada Suzuki GSX-R1000.
In other action at Autodrome St-Eustache, Louie Raffa of Ste-Marthe, Que. scored his first career Pro victory in the Hindle Exhaust Pro Sport Bike race on Sunday. Riding the Centre Hamel-backed Honda CBR600RR, the popular local rider took the lead from the start and pulled clear to finish 1.400 secs. clear of championship leader Christie’s Motovan Honda CBR600RR and the Ruthless Racing Yamaha YZF-R6 of North Vancouver racer Darren James.
Christie moved from fourth to second in the final four laps of the 18-lap race and now leads the championship with 102 points to Raffa’s 81.
Defending class champion Riedmann finished fourth aboard his Triumph 675R and slipped to third in points with 76.
Rookie Pro Casas finished fifth riding his Yamaha YZF-R6.
After a fall while leading the Bell Helmets Amateur Sport Bike race earlier in the day, Martin Cote of Notre Dame de L’ile Perrot, Que. rebounded to take the Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike feature on his Honda CBR600RR.
Cote finished 3.972 secs. clear of the Kawasaki ZX-6R ridden by Brossard, Que.’s Alex Coelho, while St-Isidore-de-Laprairie, Que.’s Samuel Trepanier placed third aboard a BMW S1000RR.
Stephane Chimot of St-Line Laurentides, Que. continues to lead the championship standings after placing fourth on Sunday on his Honda CBR1000RR.
Coelho scored his second straight win in the Amateur Sport Bike class to extend his series lead. Riding his Kawasaki ZX-6R, Coelho held off the Suzuki GSX-R600 of St-Jerome, Que. racer Jean-Francois Aubin by just 0.210 secs. at the line. Fast qualifier Philip Leckie of London, Ont. was third on another Suzuki.
The official Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship website, www.csbk.ca, will have full race video coverage of this weekend’s Mopar Pro Superbike race, as well as the Hindle Pro Sport Bike feature.
The Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship now heads west for its first visit to Castrol Raceway in Edmonton for a doubleheader weekend July 10-12. For ticket information call (780) 461-5801, or visit castrolraceway.tix.com or www.castrolraceway.com.
For additional information please contact:
John Hopkins/ Inside Track Communications
Tel. (613) 968-0166