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Feb 24, 2018

Australian Superbike: Race One Report From Phillip Island

Troy Bayliss (21) leads Troy Herfoss (17) early in Race One at Phillip Island. Photo by Andrew Gosling/TBG Sport, courtesy of Motorcycling Australia.

Herfoss Wins Incredible YMI Superbike Race

24 February 2018

A battle of the ages was witnessed at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit for Round 1 of the Yamaha Motor Finance Australia Superbike Championship presented by Motul Pirelli (ASBK). Troy Herfoss (Penrite Honda, CBR1000SP) won a YMI Superbike race that saw it all, spills, thrills and nail biting passing and just throw a re-start in there, as rain brought a stop to the original running of the race. Troy Bayliss (Desmosport Ducati, 1299 Panigale R FE) came ever so close to pulling of the fairytale comeback, but came up just short in second place.

The start of the race was eventful as they come with Josh Waters (Team Suzuki ECSTAR, GSX-R1000R) maintaining the lead and Bayliss dropping through the field. Glenn Allerton (NextGen Motorsports, BMWS1000RR) was an early casualty in the first lap, with a crash.

Yamaha Racing Teammates had an early battle, with Wayne Maxwell (Yamaha Racing Team, YZF-R1M) overtaking Daniel Falzon (Yamaha Racing Team, YZF-R1M) down Gardner straight to move into second position.

Despite his less than ideal start, Bayliss was slicing his way through the field, overtaking Bryan Staring (Kawasaki BCperformance, ZX-10R) and Falzon to move into third. Maxwell crashed out halfway through the race, with rain drops pouring around the circuit.

A red flag flew after just six laps due to rainfall, causing a restart. The race was declared wet and the battle was back on. Once it did get back underway, fireworks erupted at the front.

At the re-start, Waters now led from Bayliss, Falzon and Staring. It didn’t take long however for Bayliss to hit the front and lead, with Waters struggling for pace. This left an almighty scrap to occur between Bayliss, Falzon, Herfoss, Staring, Waters, Aaron Morris (Maxima Yamaha, Yamaha YZF-R1), Alex Phillis (Phillis Racing, Suzuki GSXR1000R) and Walters.

Despite Maxwell re-joining the race, he soon had to pull into the pits and retire after he gambled on wet tyres.

On the final lap, Bayliss had the lead but was overtaken by Herfoss who then held on to take the checkered flag. Second was Bayliss, followed by Waters, Falzon and Morris.

ASBK could not have had a better YMI Superbike race to start the season. If this first race is anything to go by, season 2018 could be anyone’s game!

Herfoss saying after the race; “One thing I’ve learned over the years is that anything can happen during a race weekend. When we all went into pit-lane, I assumed the race would be called. I’ve been in this situation before though and kept calm. I was coming through the field in the rain and it allowed me to judge the grip levels well. The last few laps would have been very exciting for the crowd.”

YMI Superbike Race One Provisional Results

1. Troy HERFOSS (Penrite Honda, Honda CBR1000SP)

2. Troy BAYLISS (Desmosport Ducati, Ducati Panigale FE)

3. Josh WATERS (Team Suzuki Ecstar Australia, Suzuki GSX-R1000R)

4. Bryan STARING (BC Performance, Kawasaki ZX-10R)

5. Daniel FALZON (Yamaha Racing Team, Yamaha YZF-R1)

6. Aaron MORRIS (Maxima Yamaha, Yamaha YZF-R1)

7. Alex PHILLIS (Phillis Racing, Suzuki GSX-R1000R)

8. Michael BLAIR (Gosford Classic Car Museum, Yamaha YZF-R1)

9. Matt WALTERS (Swann Insurance Superbike, Kawasaki ZX-10)

10. Mark CHIODO (Team Suzuki Ecstar Australia, Suzuki GSX-R1000R)

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