More, from a press release issued by MotoAmerica:
Gagne Completes Perfect Weekend At Ridge Motorsports Park
Jake Gagne Moves To Second In Championship With Fifth Win Of The Year
SHELTON, WA (June 26, 2022) – Fresh N Lean Progressive Yamaha Racing’s Jake Gagne had a perfect weekend in the Pacific Northwest, the defending MotoAmerica Medallia Superbike Champion breaking the lap record at Ridge Motorsports Park while qualifying on pole position, and then winning both Superbike races over the course of the Dynapac MotoAmerica Superbikes At The Ridge weekend.
If his rivals weren’t already worried, they should be now. Gagne looks to be on the verge of going on a roll like he did during his 17-victory, championship-winning season of 2021. Although a rough start to the 2022 season means Gagne only has six podium finishes in the 10 races held thus far, five of those podiums have been victories.
With five rounds (10 races) in the books, Gagne has now closed to within 11 points of championship leader Danilo Petrucci, the Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati NYC Panigale V4 R-mounted Italian earning his second podium of the weekend on Sunday at Ridge with a second-place finish to Gagne.
Gagne’s teammate Cameron Petersen also had a solid weekend with two podium finishes, the South African splitting second- and third-place finishes with Petrucci.
In typical Gagne fashion, the Colorado resident stormed off to a flying start, put his head down for the first five laps to open a gap on his pursuers and then maintained that lead for the duration of the 16-lap race. At the finish line, Gagne was 4.578 seconds clear of Petrucci, who in turn was just a second ahead of Petersen. The win was the 22nd AMA Superbike victory of Gagne’s career, all of which have come in the MotoAmerica era.
Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz matched his fourth-place finish from Saturday with another fourth on Sunday, the South African losing his hold on second in the title chase to Gagne after holding it for the first nine races.
Fifth for the second day in a row was Tytlers Cycle Racing’s Hector Barbera, the Spaniard beating Vision Wheel M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Richie Escalante by just .171 of a second. Those two were well clear of Disrupt Racing’s Hayden Gillim who barely got the better of his Yuasa Stock 1000 Championship rival Corey Alexander and his Tytlers Cycle/RideHVMC Racing BMW M 1000 RR.
Tytlers Cycle’s PJ Jacobsen was a lonely ninth with David Anthony riding the injured Jake Lewis’s Vision Wheel M4 ECSTAR Suzuki to 10th.
For the first time all year, Aftercare Hayes Scheibe Racing’s Ashton Yates failed to score a point with the Georgian crashing out of the race for his first DNF. Tytlers Cycle/RideHVMC Racing’s Travis Wyman was another who crashed out of the race.
Petrucci leads Gagne by 11, 176-165, after 10 races. Scholtz is third with 159 points, 20 better than Petersen. Barbera rounds out the top five in the MotoAmerica Medallia Superbike point standings with 101 points.
Jake Gagne – Winner
“It was a good weekend. I’ve always liked this track. It’s really technical, lots of ups and downs. We’ve had a lot of great weekends, but this is one of those tracks that really suits the Yamaha, for sure. After yesterday and all those red flags, it was kind of crazy, got off to a bunch of good starts. Today I knew these guys… everybody stepped it up and had a little more pace in them today than yesterday. So, I knew if I could lead into turn one, I had to push as hard as I could for four or five laps and see if I could have a gap or not. Luckily, I was able to have some clean laps and kind of get a gap. It was a fun race. Kind of flew by pretty quick. I knew those guys were probably battling hard back there. I’m happy to be back on track. I think the first couple races were tough on us. There were some things that we finally figured out with the front end of the motorcycle that I finally feel comfortable on now. So, just hats off to the crew because they just don’t stop working hard. We keep making progress. We know we’ve got to because these guys are making progress every weekend as well.”
Danilo Petrucci – Second Place
“I can be happy, for sure. I hoped before the race to have a better start and stay with Jake (Gagne), but I had a quite good start, but Jake and Cameron (Petersen) were better than me. I tried my best. At the beginning I was not really good. Then I tried to manage all the chattering, all the issues with the bike. For sure, it’s been really, really tough weekend. It started quite good in FP1, but at the end of FP1, our problems began. We miss a lot of confidence because we have these kinds of issues with the electronics side that cover my feeling. We are investigating why. But it’s not an excuse. Jake today was unbelievably fast, another level. Big congrats to him and also to Cam. I passed him (Petersen) and I knew I wasn’t able to close the gap with Jake, so I tried to defend my position. Happy to go away with two podiums. Cannot wait to go to Laguna, even if my last time was 2013 with MotoGP. Like another era. Happy to be here.”
Cameron Petersen – Third Place
“It was a rough race, honestly. I could tell Jake (Gagne), even getting ready in the riders’ lounge and stuff, I knew he was going to drop the hammer and have something a little bit different for us today. So, I tried the first few laps, but, honestly, he was just on another level. It was a really tough race. Not making excuses or anything, but about six or seven laps into the race I developed a chatter that I haven’t had all weekend. So, tried to ride around that. I was just really struggling to get into corners and turn the bike through some of the longer stuff. But regardless, we’re walking away from the Ridge with two podiums, a second and third, so I’ll take it. Honestly, I believe it’s only up from here. Just doing good work with the team. I’m learning so much from Jake. I’m having so much fun. Looking forward to the rest of the season.”
More, from a press release issued by Ducati North America:
Danilo Petrucci Puts It On The Box In The Sweltering Washington Heat
Petrucci keeps his championship lead after carding a third and second on the Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati NYC Panigale V4 SBK
Sunnyvale, Calif., June 26, 2022 – Despite several setbacks in the boiling heat of Washington State, Danilo Petrucci showed his mettle by staying on top of the points standings for the 2022 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship after taking a third and second place finishes.
On the Italian’s first visit to the undulating 2.5-mile circuit nestled between the pine trees of Shelton, Washington, Petrucci’s third place in race one came after two red flag disruptions. Given Petrucci suffered a technical issue on Friday which curtailed much of his riding for the day, he and the team were happy with the race one result and went into Sunday’s race two determined to close the gap to the factory Yamahas.
A race-long battle with Yamaha’s Cameron Petersen ensued, Petrucci eventually getting the better of the South African to take second place.
With a week off before the next round at Laguna Seca on July 8-10, Petrucci will take rest and come back strong, determined to build on his now 11-point championship lead over Gagne.
2022 MotoAmerica Superbike Top Five
P1 – Danilo Petrucci (Ducati) 176
P2 – Jake Gagne (Yamaha) 165
P3 – Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha) 159
P4 – Cameron Petersen (Yamaha) 139
P5 – Hector Barbera (BMW) 101
Danilo Petrucci (Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati NYC – Ducati #9): “It has been a tough weekend,” Petrucci said. “I am happy I am still leading the championship but for sure, we need to focus because now we start from zero (at Laguna Seca) as we are more or less the same points as Jake, who is riding very well. It’s a long time ago that I last won a race in Road Atlanta, and we need to recover that speed so we can continue to fight for the championship.”
More, from a press release issued by Westby Racing:
Two Fours For The Double-One At Ridge Motorsports Park
Shelton, WA – June 26, 2022 – Mathew Scholtz, rider of the #11 Westby Racing Yamaha YZF-R1, followed up his fourth-place finish in Saturday’s MotoAmerica Superbike race one with another fourth-place result in Sunday’s race two.
Finishing just off the podium in both races would be considered a pretty good weekend for most MotoAmerica Superbike teams, but it was cold comfort for Mathew and Westby Racing. They came into the weekend in second place and just 10 points behind the championship leader, but they leave the Pacific Northwest in third place and now 17 points behind the championship leader.
For whatever reason, Ridge Motorsports Park has always been a tough track for Mathew. In the three years that MotoAmerica has been going there, he’s finished second once, fourth a total of four times, and fifth once. All top-five results, but for a rider and team of Mathew’s and Westby Racing’s caliber, Ridge has been an annual challenge.
On Sunday, Mathew got a good jump off the line from fifth position, in the middle of the second row, and he overtook Hector Barbera and slotted into fourth behind Danilo Petrucci in short fashion. As the laps wound down, Mathew’s race pace closed the gap on the frontrunners, but there just weren’t enough laps left for him to improve his position.
“Another fourth place obviously wasn’t what we were looking for,” Mathew lamented. “But Ridge has always been the worst track for us as a team and for me as a rider. Yesterday’s race, we got fourth, but we weren’t even close. Today, we were fourth again, but we improved our race pace by almost a second every lap. We managed to close in on the battle for second in the latter half of the race. Overall, I think you could call it a positive day, but two fourths are not what we want or need. We most certainly have the package to be battling up front. If you had told me at the beginning of the season that, at Ridge, we would get two fourths, I would have taken it. But, considering how well everything has gone so far this year, it’s obviously a disappointment. We’ve got Vitto (Bolognesi) as our data person now, and this is our first race weekend with him, so we need to give him time to figure things out. Overall, it puts us in a really good spot for the rest of the season. The tracks we go to for the second half of the season really suit me, so I’m looking forward to those. Thank you to my Westby Racing team for working hard this weekend, and let’s get ready for Laguna.”
The Westby Racing team will be back in action for round six of the 2022 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship, which takes place at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California, on July 8 through 10.
MotoAmerica Superbike Standings
1. Danilo Petrucci – Ducati – 176
2. Jake Gagne – Yamaha – 165
3. Mathew Scholtz – Yamaha – 159
4. Cameron Petersen – Yamaha – 139
5. Hector Barbera – BMW – 101
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