Tytlers Cycle Racing BMW’s Cameron Beaubier took a significant victory in MotoAmerica Medallia Superbike Race One Saturday at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.
It was Beaubier’s 55th career Superbike race win, the 76th overall AMA/MotoAmerica race win of his career, and most importantly it was BMW’s first AMA/MotoAmerica Superbike race win since Harry Klinzmann won on his BMW at Loudon in 1978, according to racing historian Larry Lawrence.
Beaubier took the lead from two-time and defending MotoAmerica Superbike Champion Jake Gagne and his Progressive Fresh N Lean Yamaha YZF-R1 on lap seven and held on to win by 0.340 second.
Josh Herrin rode his Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati NYC Panigale V4 R to an impressive third-place finish just ahead of Gagne’s teammate Cameron Petersen (fourth) and Westby Racing Yamaha’s Mathew Scholtz (fifth).
More, from a press release issued by MotoAmerica:
Beaubier Wins In MotoAmerica Comeback Ride At Road Atlanta
Five-Time Superbike Champion Cameron Beaubier Beats Defending Champion Jake Gagne In Thrilling Series Opener
BRASELTON, GA (April 22, 2023) – Cameron Beaubier picked up where he left off three years ago today at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta with the five-time MotoAmerica Superbike Champion winning the first race of his comeback season in a straight fight with two-time and defending champion Jake Gagne.
Beaubier’s .340-of-a-second victory over Gagne marked the 55th AMA Superbike win of his career and his first on the Tytlers Cycle Racing BMW M 1000 RR. It was Beaubier’s first MotoAmerica race since his championship-winning 2020 season and his two years of competing in the Moto2 World Championship. Beaubier’s win was also the first in the Superbike class for the Tytlers team and the first AMA Superbike win for BMW in 45 years, dating back to Harry Klinzmann’s victory in 1978 at Bryar Motorsports Park in New Hampshire.
When Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha’s Gagne threw down his usual blindingly fast opening two laps and pulled a gap on the pack, which was led by Beaubier, it looked to be a case of déjà vu from the past two years: Gagne gets great start, Gagne pulls away, Gagne wins. But Beaubier had other ideas and he put his head down and went after his former teammate, closing the gap until catching and passing Gagne on the seventh of 19 laps.
From there the two ran in formation with Beaubier leading and Gagne tucked in behind and the battle went to the finish with five-time champ Beaubier beating two-time champ Gagne to the finish line by a scant .340 of a second.
Behind them came a race-long battle between Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati’s Josh Herrin, in his Superbike debut for the team, and Gagne’s teammate Cameron Petersen – the South African returning to action after his horrific qualifying crash from Friday afternoon. Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz was also in the fight early on before eventually finishing fifth, 1.7 seconds behind Petersen, who was beaten to the line by Herrin by .206 of a second. The pair fighting for third actually closed in on the Beaubier/Gagne duel in the final laps with Herrin just 1.9 seconds behind Beaubier at the end of 19 laps.
Vision Wheel M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Richie Escalante was sixth, some nine seconds ahead of his teammate Toni Elias in what was the Spaniard’s first race in over a year.
Tytlers Cycle Racing’s Corey Alexander was eighth with Wrench Motorcycles’ David Anthony and Disrupt Racing’s Hayden Gillim rounding out the top 10 finishers.
Three riders failed to finish the race, including Tytlers Cycle Racing’s PJ Jacobsen who crashed early in the race. Aftercare Scheibe Racing’s Ashton Yates, meanwhile, failed to start the race after encountering mechanical problems with the team’s BMW.
Superbike Race One
- Cameron Beaubier (BMW)
- Jake Gagne (Yamaha)
- Josh Herrin (Ducati)
- Cameron Petersen (Yamaha)
- Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha)
- Richie Escalante (Suzuki)
- Toni Elias (Suzuki)
- Corey Alexander (BMW)
- David Anthony (Yamaha)
- Hayden Gillim (Suzuki)
Cameron Beaubier – Winner
“When I saw Jake (Gagne) riding away at the beginning, I was like, ‘Oh, man. It’s going to be a long race.’ I knew the guys behind us weren’t far off in practice and qualifying. Then I just kept my head down, kept pushing, kept pushing. Jake started coming back to me slowly. Honestly, the Tytlers’ BMW works really, really good on fresh rubber. I was just trying to utilize the strengths of the bike once I was able to get by Jake. That’s the power down the straightaway, and it brakes really good. It’s stable on the brakes. I was trying to do my best, but I was struggling so bad with grip there the second half of the race. I was doing everything I could just to keep Jake behind me. I was coming down the front straightaway and I was looking at Jake’s board and I saw the gap shrinking. I was like, ‘Man.’ I didn’t have anything left. I was riding as hard as I could. Same thing with me. I was pumping up a little bit in the first section. This place is a freaking handful on a big bike. But it feels so good to get this first win for Tytlers BMW. All those guys have been working so hard, sunup to sundown in Florida building the bikes, getting us ready to race for the season. Like I said, we didn’t know what to expect coming in, but at the same time, we’ve got to keep our feet on the ground. I know how good this guy is (Gagne). He’s incredible. He’s been stomping everyone the last couple years, and us all weekend until it came race time. I know his level. Just going to keep doing our thing. Hopefully, get some more grip out of this thing over race distance and just keep our heads down.”
Jake Gagne – Second
“No doubt. It was different,” Gagne said. “My first couple laps were hot. I saw my gap growing a bit, and then I knew it wasn’t going to last long. It was just fun. I don’t know Cam (Beaubier), maybe six or seven laps in, I think he came by me. Then I was like, ‘All right, I’ll sit here and chill out and see what he’s doing.’ Right then, I saw my gap and it was like four seconds and then all of a sudden it was dropping and dropping and dropping. Hats off to Josh (Herrin). I wasn’t sure who was behind me. I thought maybe it was my teammate or Matty (Scholtz). So, he stepped it up big. Just goes to show, you never know what’s going to happen come race time. But this Yamaha was really, really working good. I was struggling big time after a few of those laps. But I’m happy. We got some points and finished the first race, which hasn’t happened in these last two years. We got to take the positives. The bike is good. I’ve just got to figure some of my stuff out.”
Josh Herrin – Third
“I’m ecstatic. Like I said on the podium, we got this bike a week and a half ago. It’s not like it’s a completely different motorcycle than last year, but there’s a lot of different things and I only got to ride that bike one day before we got this bike. I came into this race with the mindset of let’s set some goals, let’s try to get the podium, then let’s try to get a second and then we’ll worry about getting wins, just because Jake (Gagne) is so fast. I think that really changed my attitude going into the race. Roger Hayden is somebody I’ve been working with this year, and we talked about it a lot yesterday. I think it was a good move, and I feel good. So right now, I’m happy to be here, especially because at the end of the race, we were able to close the gap by I don’t know how many seconds, but what I was seeing was them go through the kink on the back straight as I was coming over the hill in the back. Then by the end of the race they were maybe two seconds ahead of me. So, I’m pumped on that. The Ducati is like the V2 was last year. It just maintained the pace the entire race and didn’t drop off. Obviously, there’s faster laps being done at the beginning of the race than I was doing, so I need to take that into consideration, but I’m happy to at least know that the bike is consistent on tires, like the one last year was. Just got to put our heads down and keep working and hopefully we can get closer to these guys. If you had asked me yesterday, when I talked to you, I was really nervous about even getting a top five. So, that was not a gimme race. We earned it. Just got to give a big hats off to the entire team. Hats off to all of Ducati Corse for all the support that they give us. Huge thanks to Paolo Ciabatti and everybody for believing in us and believing in me and allowing me to race this bike this year. Thank you to all the DeNaples family and Bobby (Shek) for believing in me also. Hats off to Jake and Cam on his first one back. I know it probably feels good to get it, especially on a bike that hasn’t won. I’m happy and motivated for tomorrow.”
More, from a press release issued by Westby Racing:
Scholtz Finishes Fifth In MotoAmerica Superbike Race One At Road Atlanta
Braselton, GA – April 22, 2023 – Mathew Scholtz and his Westby Racing team came into the opening round of the 2023 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship with a well-tested Yamaha YZF-R1 and some upgrades to the bike’s electronics, engine, and suspension.
Mathew qualified fourth on the grid, got off to a good start and was in third place after the first lap. He lost a position on lap two, then one more position on lap three and stabilized in fifth place for the remainder of the 19-lap race.
For some teams, that’s a decent result. But, for a team that’s the caliber of Westby Racing, it didn’t set well with them.
“The race wasn’t what we were hoping for,” Mathew said. “We came to Road Atlanta thinking we had made a lot of progress, but it seems like the settings we came up with from our preseason testing program didn’t work out well at this track today. We’re kind of chasing our tails a little bit. I really feel like we have a lot of potential with our 2023 package, but we weren’t able to get there yesterday and today. Finishing fifth, I think we were only three-and-a-half seconds off the winner, which isn’t bad. But I know what the Westby team and I are capable of, so we’ve got a lot of work to do tonight. I know the guys will have us ready to come out swinging for the second race tomorrow. I’m really strong in some sections of the track, but we’ve got to fix the weak points, and I don’t see why we can’t be battling with Jake (Gagne) and Cam (Beaubier) up front. Myself, (Josh) Herrin, and Cam Petersen actually closed up to them from the midway point on, so we know that we have something to build on. The potential’s there, and I know we can fight at the front.”
For all the action from Road Atlanta, as it happens, subscribe to MotoAmerica Live+, which is MotoAmerica’s live streaming and on-demand service.
Meet Mathew, Get An Autographed Poster, And More
Mathew will be available for autographs during the Dunlop Hot Pit Walk & Autograph Session, scheduled for 11 to 11:40 a.m. Sunday on pit lane at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. He and the team will be handing out free posters and T-shirts, so don’t miss it.
Check Out The Westby Racing Sponsor Showcase
Superbike Unlimited and Suter Racing Products are the featured team sponsors on display in the Westby Racing paddock area this race weekend, so be sure to stop by to say hello and learn about some of the companies that support the team.
For more updates about Westby Racing, including news, photos, and videos, visit www.WestbyRacing.com
Also, follow “Westby Racing” on your favorite social media sites.
More, from a press release issued by Yamaha:
Gagne Takes Runner-Up Finish at MotoAmerica Superbike Opener
Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing’s Jake Gagne and Cameron Petersen finish second and fourth, respectively, in the first race of 2023 at Road Atlanta
MARIETTA, Ga. – April 22, 2023 – Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing’s Jake Gagne kicked off the 2023 MotoAmerica Superbike season with a runner-up finish in today’s Race 1 at the Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia. His teammate Cameron Petersen also had a solid start to the opening round, narrowly missing the podium with a fourth-place finish.
Gagne set the pace early, topping both sessions on Friday and taking the first pole position of the season. From there, the defending Superbike Champion got the holeshot and worked on building a gap up front. Unfortunately, he started to have issues with arm pump early in the race, and the competition was able to close the gap, passing him on the back straight before the start of Lap 8. The Colorado rider rode a smart race and tried to pass the leader but would finish second to score some valuable points early in the title chase.
Petersen had a rough start to the weekend with a big get-off on Friday but still qualified third to join his teammate on the front row. The South African got a solid start in fourth and was shuffled to fifth on the first lap. He made his way back to fourth on the next lap and was locked in a three-rider battle for the final podium spot. As the race wore on, it was a two-rider battle for third, with Petersen right on the heels of the competition. He tried to make a pass but ultimately finished shy of the podium in fourth.
The Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing Team lines up again tomorrow for Race 2 of the opening round of the MotoAmerica Superbike Championship, on Sunday, April 23, at the Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.
Richard Stanboli – Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing Team Manager
“Our R1s were working great. Unfortunately, Jake had some arm pump which he hasn’t had a problem with in the past. The last two years, Jake didn’t finish the first race, so we’re off to a good start in the points. Cameron was still getting back to his pace after that big crash in QP1 yesterday. He feels pretty good for tomorrow, and the bike is good. We’re going come back stronger and get back on top.”
Jake Gagne – Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing
“It’s the first race of the year, and I got off to a good start. The bike was working really well, and I was happy to put in some solid first couple of laps. I just really struggled with arm pump, which I haven’t really dealt with in the last couple of years. By Lap 3, I was so pumped up I really couldn’t squeeze the lever any harder. When Cam (Beaubier) came by me, I figured I’d try to chill behind him and see if I could try and make a move, but, yeah, it was just tough from there on out. In the last two years, we didn’t get any points at the first race, so it’s still a good start to the season. We brought it home and got some points, and we’ve got another one tomorrow.”
Cameron Petersen – Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing
“Yeah, it was a good first race at Road Atlanta. I got off to a fairly decent start, but those first few laps I rode around a little bit tentative after the get-off yesterday. Unfortunately, I just kind of got stuck where I was, but I felt great towards the end of the race and felt like I had some decent pace. All in all, it was just a positive day, especially with how the weekend started. I’m looking forward to Race 2.”
About Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA
Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA (YMUS), is a recognized leader in the outdoor recreation industry. The company’s ever-expanding product offerings include Motorcycles and Scooters, ATV and Side-by-Side vehicles, Snowmobiles, WaveRunner Personal Watercraft, Boats, Outboard Motors, Outdoor Power Equipment, Power Assist Bicycles, Golf Cars, Power Assist Wheelchair Systems, Surface Mount Technology (SMT) and Robotic Machines, Unmanned Helicopters, Accessories, Apparel, Yamalube products, and much more. YMUS products are sold through a nationwide network of distributors and dealers in the United States.
YMUS has a corporate office in California, two corporate offices in Georgia, facilities in Wisconsin and Alabama, and factory operations in Tennessee and Georgia. Additional U.S.-based subsidiaries include Yamaha Marine Systems Company (YMSC) with divisions Bennett Marine (Florida), Kracor Systems (Wisconsin) and Siren Marine, Inc. (Rhode Island), Skeeter Boats (Texas), with division G3 Boats (Missouri), and Yamaha Precision Propeller (Indiana).