AFM Round 4 Was Hot at Thunderhill Raceway
July 15-16, 2017
With the temperatures approaching 110, almost a third of the club decided not to attend round four of the American Federation of Motorcyclists (AFM) road racing series. However, this did not stop those in attendance from providing hotter action on track and some big thanks out to a handful of racers who provided canopies to the turn worker crews to help keep them cool!
In Formula Pacific, Wyatt Farris on his Bikers 911/Indian Resort & Spa/GP Suspension Kawasaki ZX-10R, would take the lead and the eventual win on lap 7 after Tyler O’Hara on his Jim Deehan-owned, BBJK-MCTech-tuned Kawasaki ZX-10R would give up first place tucking the front end just before the back straight.
Taking second would be Chris Siglin on his Fastline BMW S1000RR, and making his first appearance on the podium this season was Sebastio Ferreira on his Yamaha R1. Other notables who did not make it to the end were Lenny Hale, Jason Lauritzen, and Cory Call, who had a monstrous high-side in the very fast Turn Eight on the fourth lap. The first 600cc rider across the line was Ezra Beaubier on his One6Sport Yamaha YZF-R6 followed by Andrew Lee on his Yamaha YZF-R6.
In 600 Superbike action, Ezra Beaubier would get the holeshot and never relinquish that lead. However, Brandon Crawford would keep him honest every turn on every lap and would follow Beaubier across the line with only a couple of bikelengths separating them. These two riders would again match up in the 600 Super Stock race later in the day, and Beaubier would take the lead away from Crawford on lap two and stretch that lead to six seconds at the finish line. These two have provided some great races all season, and we’re sure the action will be fierce over the next three rounds!
In Formula One, Robert Brittain would take his first win as an Expert in a flag-to-flag win, with Stephen Rue finishing in second and Ilya Roytman rounding out the podium.
Closest finish of the day was in our 700 Super Stock race where Martin Sullivan won out at the line over Sam Romick. Sullivan, who had quite a gap over Romick as they started the last lap, was hunted down by Romick and as they exited Turn 15 onto the final straight. Romick got a monster drive and into Sullivan’s draft. As they approached the tower, Romick popped out of the draft and just fell short by 0.006 second!
In AFemme action, Jennifer Lauritzen would take a flag-to-flag victory over AJ Jacobsen with Daniela Fredrick rounding out the podium.
In the small displacement classes, the young guns Marc Edwards, Cory Ventura and Brett Voorhees, all coming back from their MotoAmerica KTM RC Cup race at Laguna Seca the previous weekend would start the action off hot and heavy. Who would win would be anyone’s guess as Edwards had been hot all season, Ventura was coming off two victories in the KTM RC Cup series and Voorhees has been keeping everyone honest and making them earn podium spots.
The action would start off in the F3 class where Fitzy Fitzsimmons would get a good start and jump out to the lead on his Honda NSF250. However, the young lions on their production-based Yamaha YZF-R3s all lined up behind him and went to battle. Edwards would lead the group for a couple of turns, then Voorhees would lead the group and so it would go for a couple of laps. Edwards made an uncharacteristic mistake cresting Turn Five and tucked the front. And now it would be Voorhees and Ventura trading spots back and forth. In the end, it would be Fitzsimmons, Voorhees and Ventura.
In 350 Production, the young guns would again go at it with Voorhees chalking up the victory and Paul Johnson and Jay Kinberger representing the beer-legal age riders rounding out the podium. On the fifth lap while entering Turn Nine, Ventura and Edwards were on Voorhees’ draft and an unsuccessful pass resulted in Edwards and Ventura getting together. As the bikes slid off track, Edwards was caught between both bikes but managed to come back to the pits with just some bumps and bruises.
Voorhees would then go on to dominate the 250 Superbike race with Ventura and Edwards rounding out the podium. Voorhees would come back two races later with a victory in Lightweight Twins with Ventura in second and Paul Johnson in third. Edwards had to pull his bike off the grid with a mechanical resulting from the previous day’s incident.
A special thanks to all the turn workers and race officials who braved the scorching heat all day and to the racers who provided shade for them!
AFM Round 5 will be September 2-3 at Sonoma Raceway. See you all there!