SuperSport #2 Fontana
Joey Pascarella took home every possible point from AMA Pro SuperSport competition at Auto Club Speedway during the Suzuki SuperBike Challenge, claiming pole position, leading every lap around the 21-turn, 2.36-mile speedway road course and winning both races under sunny California skies.
AMA Pro SuperSport is a class for the rising stars of the future are able to develop their skills under the halo of the big AMA Pro National Guard American SuperBike and Daytona SportBike presented by AMSOIL weekends.
One rider showing that he is someone to watch for now and the future is double-weekend winner Pascarella and his LTD Racing Yamaha team, putting on another display of skill and speed today as he won his second SuperSport race of the weekend, and third of the season, in dominant fashion.
After the winds of Saturday that delayed proceedings, Sunday was a picture perfect day for racing. Making a return to the field was Elena Myers and her Richie Morris Racing Roadracingworld.com Suzuki, feeling fine after her unfortunate coming together with Huntley Nash moments after the start of Saturday’s race.
This time, the field got away clean and everyone made it down to turn one. It was after that when things again got interesting when Myers had a close call with Nash and was actually touched by Scott Gilbert who was enjoying a superb weekend after his second place finish yesterday on his Team Graves Yamaha.
After the near miss, Nash on his LTD Racing Yamaha took up the chase of the quickly disappearing Pascarella with Gilbert in fourth, followed by a very fast starting Tyler O’Hara, a local Top Gun entry on his GP Bike parts Yamaha, Michael Corbino, another Top Gun entry riding the Aussie Dave Racing Yamaha and Eric Stump on his Rapidimage.com Honda.
As Pascarella again checked out to another time zone, all eyes were on Gilbert as he got by Elena and set off after Nash to rejoin their battle of Saturday. Myers and O’Hara waged their own battle until the later stages of the race when Myers pulled away to finish a record-setting fourth place, the highest yet for a female rider in AMA Pro Road Racing competition. Meanwhile, Nash and Gilbert were having a sensational race, Nash getting sideways under braking lap after lap and Gilbert doing everything he could to get by.
It was a contrast of styles and experience, as Nash hadn’t seen the track until this weekend while Gilbert has many laps at Auto Club Speedway and even suffered a season ending injury here in 2008. Making his comeback in a big way, Gilbert got by Nash out of the horseshoe only to have Nash get right back by at the next right-hand turn under hard braking.
Gilbert passed Nash on more than one occasion but Nash got him back every time. On lap 14, the race had to be red flagged due to an unfortunate fall by Top Gun Lucas Oil Suzuki rider Chris Sromalla who, up to that point, had been having a pretty nice weekend.
Sromalla was able to get safely out of harm’s way but, due to his motorcycle being on the race line in the fast turn one banking chicane area, it was decided in the interests of safety to red flag the race. With over eighty percent of the event completed, the race was declared officially complete.
Pascarella, who was still in some discomfort from his mountain bike fall earlier in the week commented…
1st – Joey Pascarella
"I just didn’t feel that great today. I felt comfortable this morning but for some reason I didn’t feel all that good in the race, I was making lots of mistakes."
2nd – Huntley Nash
"I said yesterday that I didn’t have many laps here and today I felt that a lot better, I was riding smoother and I really had a good time today. The bike was sliding a lot, I bet it looked good on TV."
3rd – Scott Gilbert
"The track was slicker today. It was not how I like it but it was fine, I just kept trying, I would pass Huntley but he was really good under braking and he got me back."
Behind O’Hara was Top Gun Charles Strong riding his Envia Yamaha in sixth, Eric Stump in seventh, Michael Corbino eighth, Robert Tinagero on his G&B CyclePro Yamaha in ninth and Chris Sromalla in tenth as he was classified after his fall.
AMA Pro SuperSport heads to Road Atlanta for the next exciting round of this class for up and comers and if Joey Pascarella’s form is any indication, he is clearly already on his way up!