SHUBENACADIE, N.S. – Jordan Szoke established himself as the man to beat at this weekend’s third round of the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship, sponsored by Honda and Pro Cycle, as he set the fastest time in practice on Friday at Atlantic Motorsport Park.
The Brantford, Ont. racer turned a lap of one minute, 8.400 seconds around the twisting 2.56km (1.6-mile) 11-turn circuit on his Waznie Racing / BMW Motorrad Canada / Parts Canada BMW S1000RR for an average speed of 134.737km/h (80. 842 mph).
Szoke’s time was over two seconds better than that of the second fastest rider, Alex Welsh of Uxbridge, Ont., who recorded a 1:10.471 aboard the AW7R / Kenwood Electronics Canada / Parts Canada Suzuki GSX-R1000. Jodi Christie of Keene, Ont. placed third in practice on Friday with a time of 1:10.633 riding the Jodi Christie Racing / Honda Canada / Accelerated Technologies Honda CBR1000RR.
“We got going surprisingly well, about a second better than I expected,” said Szoke, who has won the first two races of the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship season and is going for a seventh career victory at AMP. “It usually takes me a little longer to get going. We’ll try to keep improving. I’d like to be in the ‘sevens’.”
Szoke comes into the weekend with a 20-point lead over Christie in the Mopar Canadian Superbike Championship standings, 111-91. There are 56 points available at AMP, with the fastest time in Saturday’s Magneti Marelli SuperPole session worth four points.
A late flurry in the afternoon’s 40-minute Superbike practice session saw Sunoco Pro Rookie of the Year award contender Trevor Daley set the fourth fastest time. The Mississauga, Ont. racer recorded a 1:11.776 with his final lap on the One Speed Suzuki GSX-R1000.
Local ace Austin Shaw-O’Leary of Falmouth, N.S. was sixth quickest at 1:11.954 on his O’Leary Brothers / Pro Cycle / GoLo Racing Yamaha YZF-R6.
In other action at AMP, championship leader Christie was fastest in practice for the Hindle Exhaust Pro Sport Bike class. The Keene, Ont. rider set a time of 1:10.883 on his Honda CBR600RR. Shaw-O’Leary turned the second fastest time of 1:11.455 aboard the Yamaha YZF-R6 and Calgary’s John Ross MacRae placed third with a 1:13.049 riding his Riedmann Racing / Castrol / Blackfoot Triumph 675.
Maple Ridge, B.C.’s Steve Crevier led the Harley-Davidson XR1200 Cup class on Friday with a time of 1:13.362 for the MotoSport Plus team.
Dartmouth, N.S.’s Rob Forsyth topped the Magneti Marelli Amateur Superbike times with a 1:14.015 on his Yamaha YZF-R6 while series points leader Riley Dawe of Toronto was fastest in the Bazzaz / Inside Motorcycles Amateur Sport Bike division with a time of 1:14.003 riding the Riley Dawe Racing / Adrenaline X / Pete’s Superbike Yamaha YZF-R6.
Connor Warnell of Dartmouth, N.S. set the fastest time in practice for the Honda CBR250R National Race Series at 1:25.334, just ahead of championship lead Tomas Casas of Peterborough, Ont., who turned a 1:25.440.
Action continues at AMP on Saturday with qualifying, including the battle for Magneti Marelli SuperPole in the Mopar Pro Superbike division. The first of two Honda CBR250R National Race Series rounds goes Saturday, with feature races in all six national classes set for Sunday.
Video coverage of the Mopar Pro Superbike, Harley-Davidson Canada XR1200 Cup and Saturday’s Honda CBR250R National will be on www.csbk.ca, as well as highlights from Hindle Exhaust Pro Sport Bike.