On Saturday, the 2021 racing season came to a close at Calabogie Motorsports Park with the final round of the CSBK series. The double header event was added to the schedule in the final weeks of summer, bringing the total number of superbike races to seven. Like round one, it was a combined event with points counting towards both CSBK and the inaugural Pro 6 GP Calabogie Regional series. The schedule was condensed to hold the event over two days with practice and qualifying on Friday and two Pro Superbike races on Saturday, along with the other classes.
Unfortunately, Kyle was not able to get away from his day job of being a high school teacher and had to miss Friday qualifying. Jaret and I had a busy day and managed to make it work. Our setup was good right out of the trailer. In the second session, I was able to put in a time of 2:02.4, a new personal best and good enough for 4th position. I had a crash on my final lap of that session in corner 19. The bike was barely damaged with only a bent handlebar and a broken foot peg. I managed to tear up my elbow though. The injury was minor and didn’t really affect my ability to ride.
By the time qualifying began, Jaret had the bike back together, and we were ready to go. I, on the other hand, wasn’t really ready, I guess. I couldn’t shake off the crash and was a few seconds off the pace compared to earlier. I qualified in 9th and would start from the 4th row.
When we lined up on Saturday afternoon for race 1, I was feeling better. I got a decent start, had a few good battles, managed to pull away a bit, and settled in to finish 6th. I was a bit disappointed at our lap times.
For the second race, we had a red flag on the second lap and had to restart. Again, I got a good start and had a good opening lap. I ended up in a race long battle with Sebastien Tremblay, just behind Samuel Guerin. I got by Seb with a few laps to go but couldn’t hold him off. I couldn’t challenge him in the last few laps. The result was 7th place.
Hindsight is 20/20, and after thinking about it over the last few days, I think I made the wrong call for the choice of tire compound. We chose a harder compound looking for more performance at the end of the race, but I think we gave up a bit of outright speed at the beginning of the race when I needed to compensate for my poor starting spot.
It has been a tough year of Covid restrictions, race cancellations, a changing schedule and condensed race weekends. The results have not been as good as the potential that we showed at various points. On the positive side of things, the team has zeroed in on a great bike setup and we have an amazing superbike. I have put in new personal bests at both the tracks that we raced at, Calabogie and Mosport. We have the outright speed, but need to execute better during the races.
The big surprise of season is the Pro 6 GP results. Originally, the series was going to be 4 events, one of which would have combined points for CSBK and Pro 6 GP. The rescheduling and changes to the schedule resulted in the series being 3 events, the first AND third of which had combined points. Going into this weekend, the organizers decided that for the Pro 6 GP Championship, they would award points only to competitors who competed in all three events. They wanted to avoid having the standings being a carbon copy of the CBSK points. At the start of the weekend, it looked like Casas or Tremblay would wrap it up. They had both done well at the Pro 6 GP Round 2 and were leading the standings. Unfortunately, they both crashed out of the first race on Saturday afternoon. After the final race, when the points were tabulated, I won the inaugural Pro 6 GP Championship! It was a great surprise. My 4th, 6th, two 7ths and an 8th were enough to top the points.
Winning another regional Superbike Championship is a great consolation at the end of a difficult season and an amazing way to reward our sponsors. I could not have done it without the hard work from Kyle and Jaret. I owe a huge thanks to my wife Jennifer and daughters Jaimie and Jayden for all their support.
Racing would be impossible without all our sponsors.
Thank you to:
- Royal Distributing
- Dunlop USA
- BMW Motorrad Canada
- Windmill Motorsports
- Bell Helmets
- Joe Rocket Canada
- Hindle Exhaust
- DP Brakes
- GianMajor Inc.
- MWR Air Filters
- and Dave Smith
It is time to recover, regroup and start to think about next season. I hope you have a wonderful winter!
From a press release