Alex Dumas was mathematically eliminated from contention for the KTM RC Cup Championship after a wild opening race of the final 2017 MotoAmerica weekend at Barber Motorsport Park in Alabama. Aboard his JP43 Junior Team KTM single, Dumas started sixth and worked his way up to battle for the lead, only to crash mid-race in turn two. Dumas was uninured, and will race in tomorrow’s final MotoAmerica series event.
The crash meant that Dumas’ four race win streak was at an end, and he can not win the overall Championship for young guns aboard identical KTM motorcycles. He still holds third in the rankings, and the top three riders in the final American series standings will be invited to attend the KTM World Final in Jerez, Spain, next month.
Cory Ventura won the race to take over the KTM points lead, Sean Ungvarsky second from Benjamin Smith in a great six rider battle for the win. Smith is second in the standings behind Ventura, 249-240.
Canadian Kawasaki Ninja 300 spec Series Champion Xavier Paradis made his American debut in the same KTM race. The Canuk spec series title holder worked his way up to a solid 11th overall after crashing in Qualifying and starting at the back of the grid. Paradis earned the chance to compete as a wild card on a media bike entered by “Roadracing World” Magazine.
Reigning Liqui Moly Pro Sport Bike Canadian National Champion Tomas Casas had a busy morning, qualifying for the Supersport/Superstock 600 race but getting DQed following his morning session. Casas had an illegal inlet option in the air box of his Yamaha R6, a modification allowed in the Canadian Championships.
So Casas started from the back of the “Last Chance Qualifier,” needing a top placing to make the main event. He blasted into the lead and pulled away to win by 15 seconds and earn a spot at the back of the grid (29th overall!) in this afternoon’s race. Casas will need to win tomorrow’s LCQ race as well if he wishes to race in Sunday’s main event for 600cc middleweight machinery.
“Yeah, that was a bit of extra work,” smiled Casas on an overcast but very humid day at the beautiful barber facility. “That will be the biggest grid I’ve been on in a while. We’re working away at getting faster, making changes, and we’re making progress, bit by bit. If I can get going early in the race, I should improve some more.”
In Motul Superbike/Bazzaz Superstock SuperPole final qualifying, Roger Hayden continued his hot streak to earn pole for Yoshimura-Suzuki and the new-for-2017 GSX-R1000. Using the special Dunlop yellow-sidewall rear slick, Hayden turned a best lap at 1:24.091 in the final 15-minute session, hisx seventh Pole of 2017. Hayden was also fastest in the sessions leading into SuperPole, with a tour of the 16-turn venue at 1:25.97.
Newly crowned Superstock Champ Mathew Scholtz was second quickest on his Westby Yamaha R1 with a best lap of 1:24.19, Josh Herrin third on the works Yamaha superbike at 1:24.86, followed by newly crowned overall Champion Toni Elias of Spain on the second Yosh Suzuki with a best of 1:25.0.
This afternoon’s schedule includes the penultimate races for both the Supersport/Superstock class (2:25 PM local time) and the featured Motul Superbike/Bazzaz Superstock 1000cc divisions (3:30 PM).