With temperatures soaring, the Tytlers Cycle Racing team were once again at the sharp end in the latest round of the 2022 MotoAmerica Superbike championship.
Fresh from their podium successes at Road America, riders Hector Barbera and PJ Jacobsen were full of confidence as the series moved towards its mid-point with the ninth and tenth races of the year.
A strong qualifying for Hector saw him qualify on the second row, although a penalty for a rider ahead would see him promoted to the front row for Saturday’s opening race. From lights out the Spaniard gave his all, making changes to his BMW 1000 RR when the race was red flagged. At the restart, his pace was strong with Barbera crossing the line a fraction behind the fourth placed finisher. He finished fifth. Sunday’s second race brought a similar result. Setting off from row two he was soon lapping faster than in Race 1, coming out on top am intense battle for P5.
PJ Jacobsen was racing at the 2.47-mile Ridge Motorsports Park for the very first time in what is his return to racing and whilst learning the track posed no real problem, the #66 struggled to find the optimum feeling. A spill in Race 1 added to the frustration. A determined Jacobsen dug deep on Sunday and whilst still not 100% comfortable was able to secure a top ten finish, with ninth, at the flag.
Stock1000 title contenders Corey Alexander and Travis Wyman were also in action in the Superbike class. The pair finished seventh and eleventh respectively on Saturday, whilst Corey also secured an eighth placed finish on Sunday.
Hector Barbera:“Race 1 was not the easiest. I expected to fight for the podium, but the track conditions were so different to this morning and with the start/stop because of the red flag we made changes and I lost a little bit confidence. The gap to the front wasn’t too bad and P5 is not so bad. The second race was much more normal as we didn’t have a red flag. I started well but lost some feeling with the rear tyre which started to spin. We are making progress, but we still need to keep working to be in the podium fight more regularly. I am not happy with another fifth position, but I am happy when I see we are getting faster. I am super motivated and looking forward to being at the front at Laguna.”
PJ Jacobsen:“The whole weekend was tough for me. I had to learn the track as it was new to me and then in the races I struggled. In Race 1 I don’t know whether it was tyre or suspension, but I didn’t have a good feeling with the front of the bike and unfortunately, I went down. Race 2 wasn’t much better. I had no confidence and it’s not what me or the team expected in terms of results. That said, we will regroup and go again at Laguna.”