TORONTO, Ont. – The Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship reaches a critical point at this weekend’s doubleheader at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
Just 16 points separate championship leader Jordan Szoke from challenger Jodi Christie and with two points paying races on the table this weekend, the fourth and fifth rounds of the six-race series, one of these two racers could take a decisive step toward clinching the national number one plate.
Szoke is trying to lock up his ninth Superbike title, and opened the year in style by winning the first two rounds at Shannonville Motorsport Park and Autodrome St-Eustache on his Waznie Racing / BMW Motorrad Canada / Parts Canada BMW S1000RR.
The Brantford, Ont. veteran also boasts a tremendous track record at CTMP, having won eight of the last 14 Canadian Superbike rounds on the legendary 3.9km (2.459-mile) track near Bowmanville, Ont.
Christie, however, is enjoying a tremendous surge in momentum following his dramatic win over Szoke in round three of the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship at Atlantic Motorsport Park two weeks ago. The up-and-comer from nearby Keene, Ont. had led both of the opening two rounds on his Jodi Christie Racing / Honda Canada / Accelerated Technologies Honda CBR1000RR before picking up his breakthrough debut national Superbike triumph at AMP.
While much of this weekend’s attention will focus on Szoke and Christie, there are a number of other potential challengers who could get into the mix.
Chief among these is Alex Welsh, who is third in the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship standings, 41 points behind Szoke’s leading total of 159. The Uxbridge, Ont. racer has finished third in each of the first three races of the season, and led the AMP round before a problem with his quick-shifter slowed him.
The rider of the AW7R / Kenwood Electronics Canada / Parts Canada Suzuki GSX-R1000 scored his first career national Superbike win at CTMP last year, and with 50 points available for a race victory, a couple of triumphs for Welsh could set up a dramatic climax to the title battle at Le Circuit Mont-Tremblant August 23-25.
After missing the AMP round, Frank Trombino will be back this weekend with his Trombino Racing / Royal Plumbing / FDS Racing Aprilia RSV4 Factory. The Kleinburg, Ont. ace won back-to-back Superbike nationals at CTMP in 2000 and 2001.
This weekend’s event also sees the return to national competition of Warman, Sask.’s Bodhi Edie. The 2011 Pro Rookie of the Year will be aboard his Ffun Motorsports / Motovan / JDS Decals BMW S1000RR.
Action at CTMP includes doubleheaders for Hindle Exhaust Pro Sport Bike, Harley-Davidson Canada XR1200 Cup, Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike, Bazzaz / Inside Motorcycles Amateur Sport Bike and the Honda CBR250R National Race Series.
Christie will try to maintain his perfect win record aboard the Honda CBR600RR as he bids for a third straight Pro Sport Bike class title. He enjoys a 42-point lead, 165-123 over Calgary’s John Ross MacRae on the Riedmann Racing / Castrol / Blackfoot Triumph 675, while Austin Shaw-O’Leary of Falmouth, N.S. is a further 24 points behind riding the O’Leary Bros. / Pro Cycle / GoLo Racing Yamaha YZF-R6.
The XR1200 Cup features a tight three-way title battle with North Vancouver’s Darren James, riding for the Ruthless Racing squad, enjoying an eight-point lead, 122-114 over two-time defending champ Steve Crevier of Maple Ridge, B.C. The MotoSport Plus-backed rider is only 12 points clear of Toronto’s Michael Taylor on the Mackie Harley-Davidson entry after Taylor won the third round of the series at AMP.
Toronto’s Riley Dawe will try to maintain top spot in both the Amateur Superbike and Amateur Sport Bike classes this weekend. The Riley Dawe Racing / Adrenaline X / Pete’s Superbike BMW S1000RR rider is 25 points clear of the Honda CBR600RR of Ripley, Ont.’s Mitch Card in the Superbike class. Aboard a Yamaha YZF-R6 in Sport Bike, Dawe is 12 points ahead of Suzuki GSX-R600 rider Marco Sousa of Schomberg, Ont.
Peterborough, Ont.’s Tomas Casas is in a position to clinch the CBR250R National Race Series this weekend, having won four of the first six races on his Peterborough Cycle Salvage-backed entry.
Action at CTMP opens Friday with qualifying for all six national classes, including the Magneti Marelli SuperPole in the Pro Superbike division. A full slate of feature races is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are available by calling 1-800-866-1072 or (905) 983-9141, or by emailing email@example.com. Fans can also visit the website at www.canadiantiremotorsportpark.com.
Video coverage of the Mopar Pro Superbike, Harley-Davidson Canada XR1200 Cup and Saturday’s Honda CBR250R National will be available on www.csbk.ca, as well as highlights from the Hindle Exhaust Pro Sport Bike race.
–From Frontline CSBK