Young leads fast FP1 session from Dumas at Grand Bend

The feature GP Bikes Pro Superbike class wasted little time getting up to speed on Friday, creeping just shy of the race lap record in their first official session of the Bridgestone CSBK second round at the Grand Bend Motorplex.

Ben Young wound up at the top of the timesheets after producing a string of hot laps late in the 40-minute FP1 period, ultimately saving his best for last with a time of 1:03.224 at the chequered flag, only 0.017 seconds off the race lap record and almost a half-second clear of the FP1 pace from 2022. 

The Van Dolder’s Home Team BMW rider watched rival Alex Dumas pace majority of the first 20 minutes before he made some late adjustments, and it proved to be a step in the right direction as he put 0.267 seconds between himself and the championship leader entering qualifying. 

Dumas will no doubt be pleased with his own pace, however, putting his Purple Skull Brewing/Liqui Moly Suzuki comfortably in second and just narrowly off his personal best at Grand Bend already, eyeing at least a better grid spot than the fourth-place he settled for a year ago. 

Surprisingly in a distant third was unofficial Thursday leader Trevor Dion, though the LDS Consultants Rider admitted he was still working through various setup options as he prepares for his season debut. Dion would manage a best time of 1:04.001 midway through the session, but couldn’t improve in the late stages as he looks to defend his shocking pole position from 2022. 

The field was almost indistinguishable from there on, with just under 0.9 seconds covering six riders from third to eighth. Local star Chris Pletsch was amongst them in fourth, putting his Stratford Cycle Centre Honda an impressive 0.321 seconds behind Dion entering Q1 at roughly 2:40 pm ET.

Completing the top five was Tomas Casas, only 0.123 seconds off Pletsch aboard his Parts Canada Yamaha as he put in a late flyer to beat out LDS Consultants veteran Jordan Szoke, OneSpeed Suzuki’s Trevor Daley, and EFC Group BMW-mounted Sam Guerin, all covered by merely 0.413 seconds. 

Championship leader Matt Simpson set the early pace in the Liqui Moly Pro Sport Bike class, leading the first official practice session of the weekend aboard his Blackstock Motorsports Yamaha.

A third-place finisher in race one at Grand Bend a year ago, Simpson paced the middleweight class with a time of 1:05.960, just over a half-second clear of home favourite David MacKay.

The ODH Snow City Cycle Kawasaki rider won race two a year ago after crashing out of the lead the day prior, and will try to continue that streak this weekend from pole position, as qualifying gets underway at approximately 1:10 pm ET. 

Just behind MacKay in the morning practice times was the returning Sebastian Tremblay, who put his Turcotte Performance Suzuki only 0.197 seconds behind the Kawasaki rider ahead of his first Sport Bike action since 2021. 

Completing the top-five was a pair of local young talents in Zoltan Frast and Jordon Bauer, the former going just 0.336 seconds off Tremblay aboard his Eurorace Kawasaki while Bauer placed his One Stop Goat Shop Yamaha fifth in the session. 

Full results from the morning practice sessions can be found on the series’ official website at