Team M4 Monster Energy Suzuki’s Martin Cardenas was immediately on the pace as the AMA Pro Road Racing series picked back up on Friday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course following a six-week layoff.
The Colombian qualified his GSX-R600 on the provisional front row for the weekend’s twin AMA Pro Daytona SportBike contests, posting the fourth best time of the session at 1:29.457.
After qualifying Martin Cardenas says: “We tried both bikes this morning and decided on one for the afternoon. We struggled a little bit in the Keyhole turn. It’s a bit slippery there and we were losing a little bit of time. Everywhere else the bike is working well. We managed to get in race distance on the race tires and they’re looking good.
“I like the layout at Mid-Ohio but the asphalt is tricky because it’s inconsistent. From one corner to the next the grip level is quite different. In some corners you don’t know the limit, which makes it difficult.
Cardenas has been the class’ most prolific winner again this season, having claimed five wins already in 2010–more than the remainder of the field combined. He’s aiming to add to that mark this weekend and climb up from third place in the championship standings.
“We have to try to cut that gap and to do that we have beat our rivals every chance we get. They’re fast too, so we have to just as hard as we can each race and try to get more wins.”
Meanwhile, Jake Holden and Chris Ulrich put their GSX-R1000s alongside each other each other on the provisional second row in the day’s AMA Pro American Superbike qualifying session.
Holden, who is filling in for the mending John Hopkins with Team M4 Monster Energy Suzuki through the Laguna Seca round next weekend, was seventh fastest on Friday at 1:26.493. Ulrich was one position further back in eighth with a best time of 1:27.020.
On Saturday morning Cardenas, Holden, and Ulrich will claim their final grid positions for the weekend before turning their attention to the weekend’s race action, which gets underway on Saturday afternoon.