The opportunity reportedly came about when Lightening-Barracuda, who normally races the TTX GP’s North American series, decided to enter the September 7-8 round in Le Mans, France but were in need of a rider. With an AMA Pro Racing event being held at New Jersey Motorsports park the same weekend, many of the North American regulars, including Michael Barnes, were not available to attend the Le Mans event.
Enter Motorcycle.com editor-in-chief Kevin Duke, who reportedly put forward Duhamel’s name when Lightening CEO Richard Hatfield explained his situation.
Duhamel, who last competed in 2010, recently tested the Lightening bike at Thunderhill Raceway in North California. It didn’t take the 44-year old long to prove why he is a Canadian road racing legend- after today’s qualifying at Le Mans, Duhamel leads with a time of 1:49:200, ahead of the man to beat in the championship, Matthias Himmelmann, who recorded the second fastest time of the day with a 1:50:834, a full 01.634 off the pace of Duhamel.
Despite being fastest in today’s qualifying, Duhamel still believes he could go faster, the Canadian star had this to say, “I am pretty satisfied with my qualifying but I could have done better. I spent the last three years on my couch and I need to give myself a bit of a shake to get back into a competitive frame of mind. The motorcycle is going well and I am sure I shall be faster tomorrow.”
The joint Le Mans E-power/ TTXGP round takes place at the Le Mans circuit in France this weekend. Keep an eye on those fast Canadians.