Australian Superbike: Herfoss Quickest In Practice At Morgan Park Raceway

Australian Superbike: Herfoss Quickest In Practice At Morgan Park Raceway

© 2023, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc. By David Swarts.

ASBK23_5_P09

 

 

 

More, from a press release issued by ASBK:

Tantalising Battle Awaits as Herfoss and Jones Trade Blows on Friday

The three free practice sessions on the opening day of the fifth round of the mi-bike Motorcycle Insurance Australian Superbike Championship presented by Motul at Queensland’s Morgan Park Raceway mightn’t mean anything except for the bragging rights of being the fastest, but at the end of the day, Troy Herfoss on his Penrite Honda sure made a statement.

It was a lovely and brisk winter’s morning as defending champion, Mike Jones (Yamaha Racing Team) led the first stanza from Herfoss with Broc Pearson (DesmoSport Ducati) showing some promise in third from a rejuvenated Anthony West (Addicted To Track) fourth, the quartet covered by less than half a second with Jones nudging Herfoss by 0.021 of a second. As usual it was more of a fact-finding mission for the Alpinestars Superbike field as they worked on settings to adapt to the cool temps, the nature of the layout, and also the resurfacing of corners around the back half of the circuit.

 

Mike Jones (1) has started strong as he looks for his first win of season 2023. Photo by Endorphin Media, courtesy ASBK.
Mike Jones (1) has started strong as he looks for his first win of season 2023. Photo by Endorphin Media, courtesy ASBK.

Settling into the weekend Herfoss reversed the positions in the second practice from Jones by just 0.079 of a second proving just how close the racing will be and for those who like premonitions, the #17 set his time on the 17th lap! Pearson was again in third, demonstrating that his curve is on the upward trend after his best performance of the year at the last round at Hidden Valley. Rounding out the top four was Cru Halliday (Yamaha Racing Team) who is in a determined mood to put the troubles of Darwin behind him with the championship leader, Josh Waters (McMartin Ducati) fifth but just three tenths off the fastest pace while Anthony West was right up there until he had an issue with his chain which negated his final charge.

The track temp was over 35 degrees celsius during the second session, but by the time the final session was on track, the temp had dropped 10 degrees. The surface may have cooled for the final session, but the intrigue didn’t. Even if it was only unofficial practice there was plenty of activity and intrigue. Herfoss was red-hot as he climbed to the top of the sheets, but what was more impressive is that it was the fastest ever lap of a motorcycle of the Morgan Park, to better Wayne Maxwell’s 2022 qualifying lap by over three tenths of a second to be now the unofficial benchmark of 1:12.243.

Jones was again second from fastest from Pearson with Waters fourth and Halliday rounding out the top five. Three-time Australian Superbike Champion Glen Allerton had been knocking on the door of a top three and was heading in the right direction but had an issue with his chain in the final session which halted the final rush to the top.

 

Broc Pearson builds on a season-best result in Darwin to finish the day in the top three.
Broc Pearson builds on a season-best result in Darwin to finish the day in the top three. Photo by Endorphin Media, courtesy ASBK.

After Friday’s free practice sessions, the scene has been set as it now appears that the battle will continue between Herfoss and Jones as they attempt to clamber above Waters in the point score. Herfoss is just a tantalising eight points behind Waters with defending champion, Jones now gaining the momentum to make an impact on the series in third, 51 points off Waters with Allerton just a point adrift from Jones. It may seem a fair way off for Jones to make the difference but never discount the determination of any rider.

The change in the demeanor of Herfoss over the past two rounds is palpable and he has a confident attitude heading into the weekend. The events of Queensland Raceway, and more particularly, the last round in Darwin have shown that the two-time Australian Champion has increased his hunger to succeed. This weekend will be a major indicator of what lies ahead.

Tomorrow will feature a timed practice in the morning with the two qualifying sessions to determine grid positions for the two, 16-lap Alpinestars Superbike races on Sunday.

Latest Posts

British Superbike: Race Two & Race Three Results From Brands Hatch

Editorial Note: In British Talent Cup Race One, Americans...

EWC: Results From The 45th Coca-Cola Suzuka 8-Hours In Japan

Team HRC with Japan Post won the 45th Coca-Cola...

AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days: MotoAmerica Deploying RWAF Soft Barriers

AMA Thanks Roadracing World Action Fund, MotoAmerica for Support...

Seen At Services for Aaron Dreher, R.I.P. (Updated With Videos)

Some scenes and photos seen at services for Aaron...

World Supersport Race Two Results From Autodrom Most

Aruba Ducati's Adrian Huertas won the second World Supersport...