Press releases from the World Superbike teams ahead of this weekend's US round at Laguna Seca:
#USAWorldSBK: Fight for your ride!
Laguna Seca awaits WorldSBK title scrap! Two riders going head-to-head for supremacy: what have you got for us Geico U.S. Round?
After an action-packed Donington Park, the 2019 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship moves on with great pace to the Land of the Free: the USA and Laguna Seca are up next. One of the shorter circuits on the calendar but just as technical, the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California will see riders try and carry momentum into the Summer break. If one thing is predictable about WorldSBK in recent rounds, it is that it is completely unpredictable.
Having come off the back of his first hat-trick in WorldSBK, Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) has overturned a 61-point deficit after the Tissot Superpole Race at Jerez into a fruitful, 24-point lead after his home round, arriving in the USA as Championship leader. Rea’s record at Laguna Seca isn’t staggering but it is far from poor, as he has been victorious in three of the last four races there, although on his charge to title number two, he was rudely welcomed to the USA with his first retirement of the year.
With a season of extreme highs and pivotal lows, nothing is nailed-on in the USA. However, Rea will look to show WorldSBK rookie Alvaro Bautista (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) the ropes and if his teammate Leon Haslam can help him, then even better. Haslam himself has a steady record at Laguna Seca, with numerous top ten finishes but not one single podium. Will Haslam and Rea cause Ducati problems in Monterey?
It is a new challenge for Bautista this weekend, a new perspective. No longer is he the hunted, but he is now the hunter – a position that Jonathan Rea himself has said he would rather be in. Bautista must strike back before going into the Summer break, as he can’t afford to give more points away to Rea before the season arrives at circuits like Magny-Cours and Circuito San Juan Villicum.
The 34-year-old Spaniard has relative experience from his MotoGP™ days, with a fourth place and less than a tenth of a second away from a podium in 2013 being his highlight. Going into the ninth round of the Championship, it is a timely reminder that winning distances don’t count for more points, but consistency does.
Consistency really is key in 2019 and one rider who, against the odds, made it to the top ten at Donington Park was Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team). Third place in the championship may not be too safe from his teammate Alex Lowes but despite his comeback weekend, the Dutchman maintained the bronze-medal position and now heads to the USA – a track where he has never been outside of the top ten, with his best result for Yamaha coming last year in Race 2. Yamaha haven’t won at the famous Californian venue since 2000 with Noriyuki Haga, so can their current stars earn their stripes this year?
Brits do have a bit of a winning habit at the USA, just ask Tom Sykes. After giving BMW their second ever pole position last time out at Donington Park, he will be hoping that he can remount the podium for a third round in succession and, if possible, take a fourth win in the USA – his last one coming in Race 2, 2016. BMW as a manufacturer have two podiums in America, both coming in 2013 with Davies and Melandri – something Tom Sykes will be keen to change.
Watch out, there’s a Laguna Seca enigma about – Toprak Razgatlioglu by name, but top job by nature. Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) is in rich form, with five podiums from the last four rounds – including his first ever double podium coming at Donington Park. But who knows what Toprak can do at Laguna Seca after he suffered a huge accident there in 2018, forcing him out of action for Race 2. The 22-year-old Turkish rider has given the crowd an underdog story in 2019, with Laguna Seca looking to be the place where his hopes of WorldSBK victory come true. Time for some California Dreamin’, Toprak.
One star who will certainly need a result is Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati), as he’s looked off the boil since his Imola podiums. A struggle at Donington Park and Misano and bad luck at Jerez means that the Welshman – three times a winner at Laguna Seca, including a double in 2015 – must steady the tide as soon as possible. Will Chaz Davies right the ship and become Captain America again?
Michael Ruben Rinaldi (BARNI Racing Team) will be one rider who is tackling one of the most iconic racing venues in the USA for the first time. The 23-year-old Italian will be a debutant at the circuit, whilst contrastingly, 36-year-old veteran Ryuichi Kiyonari (Moriwaki Althea Honda Team) will also venture to Monterey for the first time. Fellow Honda rider, Alessandro Delbianco (Althea Mie Racing Team), is another rider looking to make a strong first impression with the American venue, whilst reigning WorldSSP Champion, Sandro Cortese (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK) will also ride Laguna Seca for the first time.
Braking data from Brembo:
Laguna’s Hillsides Await Rea And Haslam
KRT duo Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam both left their home round at Donington with trophies to show for their efforts and at the next round at Laguna Seca, held between 12 and 14 July, they will be hunting for more big prizes.
Rea’s sensational first career triple race win at Donington lifted him 24 points ahead of the previous long-time championship leader Alvaro Bautista, after a nearly perfect weekend of team-work and execution in changeable conditions.
Four-time champion Rea has an enviable record at Laguna in the most recent seasons, scoring four wins in all since 2016 - including the most recent three in succession at the 3.610km long Californian circuit, located between Monterey and Salinas.
Jonathan’s recent run of form has reversed the early season trend of domination by Alvaro Bautista as Rea took the championship lead for the first time at Donington, extending it throughout the weekend.
The Laguna Seca round, possibly more than any this year so far, will be the focus of great global attention after all the thrills, and occasional spills, that characterised an electrifying Donington Park round.
With seven race wins to his credit now in 2019 Rea will have three more chances to score full points at Laguna, due to the new weekend format in WorldSBK this year.
Haslam, the 2018 BSB champion, has not raced at Laguna since the 2015 season. His two podium performances at Donington have rejuvenated his current campaign and he aims to score his first ever top-three finishes at Laguna in just a few days time.
The lone American round of the championship is always a popular race weekend on the WorldSBK calendar, especially in the California sunshine. Once again it will be the final round before the start of the now traditional summer break, which will last until early September. Before then Rea, Haslam and Razgatlioglu will join forces as the Kawasaki Racing Team Suzuka 8 Hours entry for the prestigious Endurance race in Japan on Sunday 28 July.
In the championship standings, after eight rounds, Rea has 376 points, Alvaro Bautista 352, while Haslam is fifth overall with 187.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “Weekends like Donington do not come along very often but enjoyed it and now we are going to Laguna, which is another great track with great support. I cannot wait, and the people love Superbike there. It is a very iconic track, with The Corkscrew and Turn One as well. I had a really good weekend there last year and I enjoyed it. You get to ride your motorbike in the sun, so it is pretty cool. It is very important to stay healthy and arrive there in good shape because there is a long summer break after. We have to make it count.”
Leon Haslam, stated: “Laguna is the only circuit I have never had a podium at. I have managed to get a podium at every other current circuit in WorldSBK except there, so I am looking forward to trying to rectify that. That is my first aim of the weekend. The Kawasaki goes well there but I think the Ducatis may be strong too, more than they were at Donington – we will see. The last time I raced there was in 2015.”
Top independent rider Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) strengthened his sixth place behind Haslam in the championship with two second places at Donington. He had a big fall at Laguna Seca last year but is heading to the USA full of determination to continue a podium-scoring streak that has run from Imola to Jerez, Misano and now twice at Donington.
Jordi Torres (Team Pedercini Racing Kawasaki) had an up and down Donington experience but is ready for the undulations and complexities of Laguna, especially as it precedes the long summer break. He is ranked 12th overall. Leandro Mercado (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) sparkled in the rain at Donington, with a career-best sixth place on Saturday, and he hopes for more top ten finishes in the USA this weekend to move on from his current 15th position.
Álvaro Bautista and Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) arrive in California for the US Round of the Superbike World Championship at the Laguna Seca circuit
Just a few days after the UK’s Superbike World round at Donington Park on Sunday, the Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team is on the move once again, this time for the ninth round of the championship, which will take place this weekend in the USA, at the spectacular Laguna Seca circuit in California.
After heading the table since the start of the season, at Donington the Spanish rider lost the top slot to his Kawasaki rival, Jonathan Rea, and now he is forced to chase the four-time world champion from Northern Ireland in the battle for the title. Bautista has raced four times at the challenging Monterey peninsula circuit in the MotoGP category, the last time in 2013 when he finished in fourth place, but this weekend he will tackle Laguna Seca for the first time on board a Superbike.
Instead his team-mate Chaz Davies, who during the weekend in California will notch up his 200th championship start in the production-based series, can consider himself to be a ‘veteran’ of Laguna Seca; the Welsh rider in fact has taken part in eleven races there, winning three and finishing runner-up three times.
World Superbike returns to action at a track where, out of 32 races held so far, Ducati riders have won a total of 13 times, the last occasion in 2017 with Davies. On just two occasions (in 2001 with Ben Bostrom and in 2015 with Davies) Ducati has scored a double win.
The Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team will be out on track on Friday at 10:30 local time (19:30 CET) for the first free practice session, while the weekend schedule sees Race 1 take place at 14:00 (23:00 CET) on Saturday, the Superpole Race at 11:00 (20:00 CET) on Sunday, followed by Race 2 at 23:00 (15:00 CET).
Álvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #19) – 2nd (352 points)
“Unfortunately because of my crashes we are now in second place in the standings, which might be interesting for the championship but not so much for me! If I look at the layout of Laguna Seca, for sure I can say that it’s not one of the best tracks for us, because when we have bumps, and uphill and downhill sections, we could struggle, but like I have been saying all year I have no expectations. I prefer to go there, see what happens, start to work hard with my team and get the maximum from the weekend.”
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7) – 8th (130 points)
“The last couple of races have been really tough for me, especially last weekend at Donington, where I still had problems in getting the best feeling with the bike. So I’m looking forward to going straight to Laguna Seca before the summer break. It’s always been a decent track for me and I’ve had some wins there in the past, so it’s a good opportunity to try and improve our results before the break. We need it because we are simply not competitive enough at the moment.”
The Laguna Seca circuit
WorldSBK has a long history of racing in the USA, with Miller Motorsports Park (Utah) and Brainerd International Raceway (Minnesota) having hosted races, in addition to Laguna Seca in California, which was the venue for the championship from 1995 to 2004 and which returned to the calendar in 2013 to remain to the present day. Laguna Seca’s spectacular layout around the hillsides of Salinas on the Monterey Peninsula includes the thrilling Corkscrew section. The US boasts a wonderful motorcycle racing heritage with great champions such as Kenny Roberts, Freddie Spencer, Eddie Lawson, Wayne Rainey, Kevin Schwantz and Nicky Hayden in Grand Prix racing and Fred Merkel, Doug Polen, Scott Russell, John Kocinski, Colin Edwards and Ben Spies in WorldSBK, all of whom won the title.
Yamaha Riders Revved up for Laguna Seca Showdown
The iconic Laguna Seca circuit in California plays host to Round 9 of the FIM Superbike World Championship this weekend. With the annual summer break following immediately afterwards, the Pata Yamaha WorldSBK pairing of Alex Lowes and Michael van der Mark arrive in the United States determined to finish the first part of the season by adding to their points and podium tallies. The same is true of the two GRT Yamaha Supported WorldSBK riders, Marco Melandri and Sandro Cortese, who are also looking to round out the first part of the season with a strong showing in America this weekend.
Lowes heads into the Laguna Seca weekend with his confidence high, after a successful home round at Donington Park just one week ago. The 28-year-old Briton only narrowly missed out on a podium finish in front of his home crowd, but two top five finishes saw him close the gap to his Pata Yamaha teammate in the championship standings. Lowes has the podium firmly in his sights this weekend at Laguna, a track at which he also finished on the podium twelve months ago.
Donington Park saw van der Mark return to action just ten days after undergoing surgery following a heavy practice crash in Misano. It was an incredible performance from the Pata Yamaha rider, who raced to three top-ten finishes in Great Britain to pick up vital championship points. Van der Mark heads into the Laguna Seca round confident that his injured wrist will not adversely affect his performance, as he targets the top five in America.
GRT Yamaha's Marco Melandri heads to the United States for his first race weekend since announcing that he will retire at the end of the 2019 season. The veteran Italian, who has racked up 75 podium finishes and 22 race wins since making his WorldSBK debut with Yamaha in 2011, is aiming to end his final season on a high, starting this weekend at Laguna Seca.
Once again Cortese will be facing a steep learning curve this weekend, as it will be his first at Laguna Seca, where only the MotoGP class raced when the reigning Supersport World Champion was racing in Moto3 and Moto2. A strong start in free practice on Friday will be critical if Cortese is to achieve his goal of adding to his tally of top ten finishes in California.
The iconic WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca was originally built in 1957 and is located in Monterey County, Central California. Hosting its first WorldSBK race in 1995, it was a permanent fixture on the calendar until 2004, before making its return in 2013 and being ever-present since. It is 3.610km long, has 11 corners, four right and seven left-handed, breathtaking elevation changes of over 55m and, of course, features the infamous Corkscrew. It is only the WorldSBK class that races at Laguna Seca and the on-track action kicks off for the Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team on Friday at 10.30 local time for FP1, with both races taking place at 14.00 on Saturday and Sunday.
Pata Yamaha WorldSBK
"Laguna Seca is an iconic circuit and one that is quite tight and technical but a lot of fun to ride. It has lots of changes of elevation, with the biggest coming as you drop down the infamous Corkscrew, which Is always a buzz when you get it right! The goal is to fight for the podium once again this weekend, to go into the summer break on a high note."
Michael van der Mark
Pata Yamaha WorldSBK
"it's great to be back in the USA, especially when we got to race at such a fantastic circuit as Laguna Seca. My wrist has improved a lot even in the week since Donington and, while it's still not back to full fitness, I'm looking forward to racing again this weekend. In Race 2 at Donington I felt that I could have fought for a top five finish if I'd had the grip, so that's the goal here at Laguna Seca."
GRT Yamaha Supported WorldSBK
"Laguna is one of the most beautiful tracks in the world and something different to the other tracks we race at during the season. I've had a lot of fun here and some nice races in the past, both in MotoGP and WorldSBK, so it's; good to return here. I think the track could well suit our R1, even if I am a bit worried for the bumps, but we will see tomorrow. I think it won't be an easy weekend, but we will do our best as always."
GRT Yamaha Supported WorldSBK
"This will be the first time ever I've had the chance to race at Laguna Seca, and I'm quite excited about it. I got my first look at the track yesterday and it's impressive. The television really doesn't do it justice; when you actually stand at the top of the corkscrew and look down it's very special. The first day tomorrow will be a learning day to understand the track and then I will just try to enjoy the whole weekend."
BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team ready for the US round at Laguna Seca.
Californian circuit to host round nine of the 2019 FIM Superbike World Championship.
Tom Sykes sets sights on more top finishes with the new BMW S 1000 RR.
First time at Laguna Seca for Markus Reiterberger: “I am really looking forward to it”.
Munich. The action follows thick and fast in the FIM Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK). Just one week after the races at Donington Park (GBR), the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team and riders Tom Sykes (GBR) and Markus Reiterberger (GER) head to the USA and Laguna Seca. The circuit, in the US state of California, is the venue for round nine of the 2019 WorldSBK season from 12th to 14th July.
Three weeks ago, the team celebrated the first WorldSBK podium for the new BMW S 1000 RR at Misano (ITA). This was followed by a first pole position and another second place at Donington Park. The goal for the coming races is to continue to develop the race bike and establish the team’s position within the top six in the world championship.
Quotes ahead of the races at Laguna Seca.
Marc Bongers, BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director: “We showed at the recent rounds that we are making good progress with the development of our new BMW S 1000 RR. We are gradually closing in on the front-runners in terms of performance. We are now very excited about Laguna Seca. We hope to be able to continue the trend we have seen in recent weeks and to again have a say at the front of the field. Obviously every circuit has its own characteristics, so we will have to wait and see how the specific layout of the track at Laguna Seca suits our RR. We are pleased to have Markus back on board and are ready for the race weekend in California.”
Shaun Muir, Team Principal BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team: “It’s good to be back in the US. We want to build on the momentum that we gained at Donington Park last week. Tom is full of confidence. Despite the rules issue that we had at Donington Park we nevertheless we came away with a lot of positives. We’re pleased that Markus is fit and well to return at Laguna Seca. We hope he can learn the circuit very quickly and pick up some good pace. Overall we are confident of carrying some momentum; hopefully we can start the weekend strongly and then we aim for some strong positions before we enter the summer break.”
Tom Sykes: “I’m very much looking forward to the US round of WorldSBK. Obviously just continuing on from previous rounds it looks like the whole of the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team is gathering good momentum now. It’s just unfortunate that some things went against us at the Donington round which denied us another two strong podium finishes, but we had the pole position and a strong second place on the podium in race one there. Now we’re going to Laguna Seca, a circuit with a great atmosphere and a circuit which I enjoy riding. That coupled with the new BMW S 1000 RR really gives me motivation and I would certainly like to finish before the summer break with a very strong weekend.”
Markus Reiterberger: “I am really looking forward to finally riding at Laguna Seca. This is my first time there and I am already very excited about the circuit. I will give it everything there and am looking for a good result. We will work hard to find a few details on the bike that can help me to further improve and show even more of my potential. I am looking forward to an exciting adventure in the USA, to work with my team again, to good races and to a great event.”
LAVERTY TRIES AGAIN: A STARS AND STRIPES CHALLENGE FOR HIS WRIST!
Laguna Seca, USA, land of conquest and big challenges, house of the American dream, hosts WorldSBK Round 9!
The challenge to become World Champion passes through the famous Californian track, home of the Corkscrew, left-right on steep hill, father of historical passages of motorcycling.
The Go Eleven Team will be on track with the comeback of Eugene Laverty: after the forced forfeiture of Donington Park following the free practices, the Northern Irish rider continued the rehabilitation focusing to be back on track in the States!
It will be a real challenge for him to endure the pain, to find a position on the seat that could permit him to push and to bring the Ducati V4-R Go Eleven to the limit.
Eugenio will have to undergo new medical checks after the first free practices; only after Friday we will know if the Go Eleven rider will be able to take part to the three scheduled races!
JD Beach to Make World Superbike Debut at Laguna Seca
PHOENIX (July 3, 2019) – Next weekend JD Beach will make his debut in the FIM Superbike World Championship at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, in Monterey, California, July 12-14. The 2018 MotoAmerica Supersport Champion will be playing double duty at the U.S. round, racing in both the World and MotoAmerica Superbike championships aboard the Attack Performance/Estenson Racing Yamaha YZF-R1.
“I’m really pumped going into next weekend’s round at Laguna Seca,” Beach said. “It’s going to be a tough weekend racing both MotoAmerica Superbike and World Superbike, but I’m up for the challenge. Josh Herrin kind of paved the way for us to do it last year. I think I have some big shoes to fill because he was really quick. Both myself and the team are really excited about it, really looking forward to it. Laguna’s a track that I like a lot. I’ve had a lot of fun there. I’m really looking forward to riding a Superbike there again, the last time I did it was 2011. I think it’s going to be a great weekend. I feel like if we can be up front or be on the podium for MotoAmerica and run top-10 in World Superbike, that would be a great weekend for me and the team.”
A partnership was made this season between Attack Performance, a team with a history of success in the U.S. National road racing championships, and Estenson Racing, a team with a big presence in dirt track, to field Beach in MotoAmerica’s premier class. The road racer with strong dirt track roots also campaigns American Flat Track’s premier class with Estenson Racing. Beach made history earlier this spring at the team’s home race in Chandler, Arizona, scoring his first victory in AFT Twins and the first win on a Yamaha Twin since 1981. The multi-time road race champion went on to add his name to the record books the following weekend at VIRginia International Raceway by taking his first win in MotoAmerica Superbike, making him the first rider to do so in both premier classes in the same season since Nicky Hayden in 2002.
Moriwaki Althea Honda Team arrives at legendary Laguna Seca
After the racing action at Donington Park concluded, the Moriwaki Althea Honda Team packed up and flew to the US where round nine of the WorldSBK season is taking place this coming weekend at the legendary track of Laguna Seca in California.
This will be Ryuichi Kiyonari’s first visit to the track, the Japanese rider having raced at other North American tracks during his previous WSBK years.
After the Laguna Seca round, the Championship will head into its summer break, with the next WorldSBK round scheduled to take place at Portimao, in Portugal over the weekend of 6-8 September.
Ryuichi Kiyonari 23
“I’ve raced in the States in the past but never at Laguna Seca. I’m very excited to be going there as it’s something of a legendary track, home to many great races and battles both in SBK and MotoGP. I know the layout is a little particular, but I’m ready to work hard with my team to improve our bike’s setup and adapt it to any kind of track. From past experience, I also know that there is always a good atmosphere in the US, the fans enjoying the action and cheering for all the riders. I’ll do my utmost for them and for all our Honda supporters.”
From the UK to the USA for Althea Racing
Monterey (USA), Wednesday 10 July 2019
The Althea Racing Team and rider Alessandro Delbianco head straight from Donington Park in the UK to the United States, and the Weathertech Raceway Laguna Seca, where round 9 of the 2019 Superbike World Championship is taking place this weekend.
The Weathertech Raceway Laguna Seca is located close to Monterey in central California. One of the shortest tracks on the SBK calendar, just 3610 metres in length, it features eleven corners, the most famous of which is undoubtedly that known as the Corkscrew.
For Delbianco, it’s another new circuit, the young Italian having never raced in the United States. Set to face what is a spectacular and technical track, Delbianco is excited about the challenge that awaits him.
“I can’t wait to get out on track at Laguna Seca. I’ve never seen the track of course and am really pleased to have chance to race there and see the Corkscrew for myself! It’s always a big challenge when you head to a track for the first time but in this case, I’m really keen to start and to learn the track. It’s going to be a good weekend.”
#USAWorldSBK: Will Great Britain achieve a 250th WorldSBK win at Laguna Seca
Plenty of number crunching to be done ahead of the Geico U.S. Round, as statistics paint the picture ahead of Laguna Seca weekend
1. The first WorldSBK race weekend here was held in 1995: the winners were Anthony Gobert on a Kawasaki ZXR 750 and Troy Corser on a Ducati 916 R.
2. After a triple win by Rea at Donington Park, Great Britain has racked-up 248 WorldSBK wins and is in the position to be the first country with 250 this weekend at Laguna Seca.
3. With 198 starts after Donington Park, Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) is set for his 200th WorldSBK start on the Tissot Superpole race in Laguna Seca. 12 riders so far have reached this milestone, and the rider with most WorldSBK starts is Troy Corser at 377.
4. WorldSBK is set for his 50th race in the U.S. The first one was held in Brainerd on the 11th of June, 30 years ago (1989). Currently, the count is 48, so the milestone will be reached in the Tissot Superpole Race.
5. Ducati have achieved 41 podium placements at Laguna Seca: the first coming in 1995 with Troy Corser finishing second in Race 1, with the latest coming with Chaz Davies in 2018, finishing second in Race 2.
6. Thanks to the new Superpole Races, the season records are likely to be rewritten very early in 2019. Jonathan Rea has already recorded 19 podiums in 2019 and Alvaro Bautista is on 18. They are both in the position to reach 20 in Laguna Seca. Up to 2018, 20 podiums in a season was a stellar value, recorded only 10 times in history. The all-time record, 25 by Colin Edwards in 2002, can fall in Portugal in September.
7. Kawasaki have achieved 16 podium placements at Laguna Seca since 2013, and 22 in total. Their first was in Race 1 1995, when Anthony Gobert won the first ever WorldSBK race at Laguna Seca.
8. Laguna Seca has had 15 different winners in 32 races. Five of them are part of the current field: Sykes, Davies, Laverty, Melandri and Rea.
9. British riders have won the last 9 races in Laguna Seca, a record string for a country at this track. The sequence started in 2014, Race 2, with Tom Sykes. The last non-British winner at Laguna Seca is Marco Melandri (2014 Race 1).
10. Only one rider was able to record a pole time below 1 minute and 22 seconds here: that was Tom Sykes, in 2014. His lap time was 1’21.811. That was one of the most dominant poles in the history of the track, as the second on the grid, Sylvain Guintoli, was 0.528 seconds behind. Only John Kocinski had a greater margin, back in 1996 (0.569 seconds over Troy Corser).
#USAWorldSBK: Which manufacturer have been the most glorious in the U.S.?
Read all the stats and find out who has been prospering and who has been struggling at the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca
Ducati leads the way with 13 wins and 41 podium placements at Laguna Seca. Their closest rivals at the American racetrack are Kawasaki with 9 wins and 22 podiums. Ducati’s rate of success at the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca is so high that only in 2013 and 2014 they were not able to get on the podium here. In all the races held at Laguna Seca so far, Ducati had always been able to place at least one bike into the top 4 grid positions in qualifying. Ducati’s dominance in Superpole here is impressive as they achieved 10 Superpoles, while in total their rivals have amassed 6 Superpole so far (3 for Kawasaki, 1 each for Honda, Suzuki, and Aprilia).
Still, Kawasaki is the machine to beat at Laguna Seca, as they won five of the last six races, missing out just in 2017 Race 1 (Davies, Ducati). Seven of their nine wins and 16 of their 22 podiums were scored from 2013 onwards and were took by Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes.
In the last twelve races run here, the best Kawasaki machine under the flag had always been into the top-4 positions; starting from 2014, this record has improved with the best Kawasaki always finishing on the podium at Laguna Seca.
Honda won five times in Laguna Seca, last time in 2004 as Chris Vermeulen took the double at the Californian racetrack. The last podium for Honda was made by the late Nicky Hayden, who finished 3rd in Race 1 in 2016. Last year American rider Jake Gagne was able to record two top-10 finishes here, as he was 10th in Race 1 and 9th in Race 2.
Japanese manufacturer Yamaha climbed on the podium four times at Laguna Seca. Noriyuki Haga won in 1998, and in 2000 he finished first and second, while last year Alex Lowes finished third in Race 1. In Race 2 the same Lowes ended just outside the podium in fourth.
In 2013 BMW recorded two podium finishes here, as Chaz Davies was second in Race 1 and Marco Melandri third in Race 2. Last year Loris Baz scored points for BMW with the 15th position in Race 1 and the 10th place in Race 2.
It's Laguna Seca Time For MotoAmerica
All Five MotoAmerica Classes To Battle At WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca
COSTA MESA, CA (July 9, 2019) – Five down. Five to go. That’s the story heading into his weekend’s Championship of Monterey as the 2019 MotoAmerica Series begins its second half of the season at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
With five wins on the season thus far, Yoshimura Suzuki's Toni Elias arrives at the Championship of Monterey at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca with the lead in the EBC Brakes Superbike Championship.|Photo by Brian J. Nelson
The MotoAmerica Series will again join forces with the World Superbike Championship at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, July 12-14, but the difference this time around is that for the first time all five MotoAmerica classes will take to the famous racetrack in the hills east of Monterey – EBC Brakes Superbike, Supersport, Liqui Moly Junior Cup, Twins Cup and Stock 1000.
As MotoAmerica embarks on the second half of the season, the man they are all chasing is Yoshimura Suzuki’s Toni Elias. The Spaniard has won five EBC Brakes Superbike races thus far and has finished on the podium nine times in 10 races. His lone hiccup is his last-lap crash in race two at Road America. All that adds up to a 26-point lead over his championship rival Cameron Beaubier, 201-175, with five rounds and 10 races remaining in which to squabble.
Last year, the Championship of Monterey was the fifth round of the series and Beaubier came in with a two-point lead over Elias. The Monster Energy/Yamalube/Yamaha Factory Racing YZF-R1-mounted Beaubier then went out and won both races at Laguna to leave Monterey with a 29-point lead over Elias.
To begin the climb back into this year’s championship, Beaubier needs a similar effort this coming weekend at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. And he’s perfectly capable as he’s won four of the last eight MotoAmerica EBC Brakes Superbike races at the track.
Beaubier’s first half hasn’t been as impressive as Elias’ but he knows he’s heading into events that have been historically strong for him. Thus far, Beaubier has won twice and finished on the podium a total of eight times in the 10 races. Like Elias, Beaubier has a race crash, but he’s also finished off the podium one other time when he was fourth in race one at the Utah Motorsports Campus.
Beaubier is 39 points clear of his teammate Garrett Gerloff, the Texan trailing Elias by 65 points in his sophomore season of EBC Brakes Superbike racing. Gerloff has seven podiums to his credit, including six in a row, as he seeks his first career Superbike victory.
Yoshimura Suzuki’s Josh Herrin arrives in Monterey with two race wins to his credit. Unfortunately, those are his only two podium finishes, and his inconsistency has him fourth in the standings and 17 points behind Gerloff. Last year Herrin did double duty and raced in both the MotoAmerica and World Superbike races, but this year he will focus his efforts on the two EBC Brakes Superbike races.
JD Beach, the man who replaced Herrin on the Attack Performance Estenson Racing Yamaha, will try his hand at double duty and will race the team’s Yamaha YZF-R1 in both the MotoAmerica and World Superbike rounds. Beach is fifth in the series point standings, just eight behind Herrin. The two-time MotoAmerica Supersport Champion won his first Superbike National in race two at VIRginia International Raceway, joining Elias, Beaubier and Herrin as the fourth man to win a Superbike race thus far in 2019.
Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz has two second-place finishes so far in 2019 and that has the South African sixth in the championship – just three points ahead of M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Jake Lewis. Lewis is consistent as always, the Kentuckian scoring points in every race including four fifth-place finishes. Lewis is the only rider in the top 10 to score points in all 10 races this year.
FLY Racing ADR Motorsports’ David Anthony is eighth, just one point better than Omega Moto’s Cameron Petersen and 11 points better than KWR Ducati’s Kyle Wyman, the New Yorker in his first season on the Ducati Panigale V4R. Wyman is just two points ahead of Scheibe Racing BMW’s Jake Gagne and eight points clear of Thrashed Bike Racing’s Max Flinders.
This year’s Supersport Series has all the makings of a classic championship battle with Rickdiculous Racing’s Hayden Gillim and M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Bobby Fong separated by just seven points as the series arrives in Monterey. Gillim has four wins to Fong’s three and the two are fresh off splitting wins in two thrilling races in Utah.
Hudson Motorcycles’ Richie Escalante is third in the series, 35 points behind Gillim after scoring points in all eight races so far. Escalante is just four points ahead of HSBK Celtic Racing’s PJ Jacobsen, the New Yorker the only rider other than Gillim and Fong to win a race in 2019. Jacobsen is just a single point ahead of ultra-impressive rookie Sean Dylan Kelly, Fong’s teammate on the M4 ECSTAR Suzuki. The recently turned 17-year-old Kelly has four podium finishes in his first eight MotoAmerica races.
Although Ninja400.com/Norton Motorsports/Dr. Farr-backed Rocco Landers has a 21-point lead in the Liqui Moly Junior Cup Series, the races have been anything but boring. With his six race wins, Landers leads series rival Dallas Daniels, 175-154, but Daniels and his Quarterley Racing/On Track Development Kawasaki arrives at Laguna fresh off his first Junior Cup race win in Utah. He also comes to Monterey having finished second five times – the last three of which were by a combined .260 of a second. Kevin Olmedo, meanwhile, has also shown the speed to run at the front with the Altus Motorsports rider third in the series standings with five podiums.
Quarterley Racing’s Michael Barnes holds down an 11-point lead in the Twins Cup Championship, the two-time winner leading Draik Beauchamp and his lone victory, 86-75. Just nine points cover the next three in the championship – Copoulous/RBoM Racing’s Curtis Murray, defending champion Chris Parrish (Ghetto Customs) and class rookie Alex Dumas (Roadracing World Young Guns).
The closest points battle in the MotoAmerica Series so far is in the Stock 1000 class where defending champion Andrew Lee leads Stefano Mesa by just two points, 99-97. Lee has ridden his Franklin Armory/Graves Kawasaki to two wins with Mesa winning one race on his Mesa37Racing Kawasaki. Team Norris Racing’s Michael Gilbert has also won a race and sits third in the standings, 32 points behind Lee, and 12 ahead of Weir Everywhere Racing BMW’s Travis Wyman. Ameris Bank’s Geoff May sits fifth, the Georgian the fourth race winner in the class.
WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca Notes
With his two victories on the season, Cameron Beaubier now has 34 career AMA Superbike wins which puts him third on the all-time win list for the class. Toni Elias, with five wins this season so far, has 30 career wins and has jumped all the way to fifth and is just two wins behind Miguel Duhamel, the French Canadian who is fourth on the all-time Superbike win list.
Four riders have won EBC Brakes Superbike races this season: Elias (5), Beaubier (2), Josh Herrin (2) and JD Beach (1).
Josh Herrin earned pole position for last year’s EBC Brakes Superbike races at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, the Georgian riding the Attack Performance/Herrin Compound Yamaha YZF-R1 to a 1:22.980 in Superpole on the 2.2-mile track. Cameron Beaubier was second fastest with a 1:23.265 and Danny Eslick was third on the Scheibe Racing BMW with a 1:23.824.
Cameron Beaubier had the fastest race laps last year, the three-time MotoAmerica Superbike Champion lapping at 1:24.527 in race one and 1:24.472 in race two. Beaubier rode to victory in both races in 2018.
JD Beach beat Valentin Debise and Hayden Gillim to win last year’s Supersport race at Laguna. Beach went on to win his second MotoAmerica Supersport title in 2018 and has made the jump to the EBC Brakes Superbike Series for 2019.
Last year’s Liqui Moly Junior Cup race was won by Alex Dumas, the Canadian rider who would eventually take the series title. Dumas beat his KTM teammate Sean Ungvarsky by 2.3 seconds. Last year’s Twins Cup race was won by Jason Madama over Chris Parrish.
For the 2019 Championship of Monterey, the Stock 1000 class will race for the first time and the top Stock 1000 riders have also been invited to take part in Sunday's second EBC Brakes Superbike race.
MotoAmerica President and three-time 500cc World Champion Wayne Rainey won two AMA Superbike races at Laguna Seca (1983 and 1986) and three 500cc Grands Prix (1989, 1990 and 1991). MotoAmerica’s rider representative Doug Chandler has also tasted success at Laguna, winning two Superbike races (1996 and 1997) as well as two Supersport races in April and July of 1998.
Cameron Beaubier and Toni Elias are the only current riders in the Superbike class to have tasted Superbike success at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. In addition to winning four Superbike races here (one race in both 2015 and 2016, two in 2018), Beaubier has also won three Daytona SportBike (now Supersport) races on the Monterey Peninsula. Elias won both Superbike races en route to his 2017 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship.