2014 New Jersey AMA SportBike Recap & Results
Throughout seven rounds consisting of 10 races in the 2014 AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike Championship, five different riders took wins – Jason DiSalvo, Danny Eslick, Dane Westby, Jake Lewis and Jake Gagne.
Ahead of this past weekend’s season finale at New Jersey Motorsports Park, the battle was on for the title. But it was quickly over following race one; this is when RoadRace Factory/Red Bull’s Gagne piloted his Yamaha YZF-R6 to second behind the winner, Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Dane Westby.
Gagne earned enough points to clinch the 2014 AMA SportBike title one race early, though this didn’t prevent him from slowing things down in race two. Gagne won that race, earning his third victory of the season.
When the 2014 SportBike season wrapped up, Gagne earned a total of 244 points, 44 ahead of Meen Motorsports Yamaha’s Jake Lewis.
Following are the official New Jersey Motorsports Park AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike race recaps from AMA Pro Racing:
2014 New Jersey Motorsports Park AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike Race 1 Recap:
Dane Westby won his third AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike race of the year on Saturday. The Yamalube/Westby Racing pilot outlasted his rivals and the weather to take the victory after he’d earned his first career pole earlier in the day.
Jake Gagne finished second and clinched the championship for the RoadRace Factory/Red Bull team, taking the checkers in front of Jake Zemke.
Westby zipped to the lead in the restarted race and motored away, even as the rain increased during the 16 laps.
“I am ecstatic … over the moon,” said Westby after his third win of the year. “I knew that Jake was going to be big competition. It was pretty hairy. The rear end came around on me two corners from the end of the race. It was extremely treacherous. Someone was saying I have won more races in Daytona SportBike than anyone else in the class this year, so that was interesting. I am really looking forward to getting one more chance at things tomorrow.”
Westby’s third win of the year is more than any other rider in the class.
Gagne earned the title when he finished second and rival Jake Lewis retired from the race with electrical problems. Gagne charged up through the field and held second after passing Zemke.
“It’s incredible and the last thing I thought was to have this thing wrapped up today. I saw (Lewis) wasn’t on the grid. The race was tough,” said Gagne, “and the year was great. It was my third year on the team and they are the hardest working group of guys I have seen. I don’t really know what to say … I am ready to get on with it and race again tomorrow.”
Zemke, on the GEICO Motorcycle Racing entry, earned his first podium of the year.
Yamaha Extended Service/Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff and Danny Eslick of Riders Discount Racing Triumph earned top fives in some of the most challenging race conditions in recent memory.
Only nine riders finished the event as heavy attrition made the 16 laps seem longer – at least for Westby and Gagne.
2014 New Jersey Motorsports Park AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike Race 2 Recap:
2014 AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike champion Jake Gagne closed it out in style on Sunday, running away with the season finale. Gagne won his third contest of the year, topping Yamaha Extended Service/Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff and yesterday’s winner, Dane Westby of Yamalube/Westby Racing.
Jake Lewis (Meen Motorsports) earned fourth and was a factor in the battle for second much of the race.
Gagne got a clean start and led the whole way. He managed his gap well, dropping into the mid-1:23 second range when the pack threatened to make inroads on his lead. After clinching the title on Saturday, Gagne was clearly on a mission to win the finale.
“A few laps in, I saw they were coming from my pit board,” said Gagne. “I was either going to crash out or win it. I wanted to go for it. I started inching away from there.”
At the flag, Gagne lead by 2.562 seconds.
Lewis and Westby looked poised to fight for second to the flag, but Gerloff snuck through and held the spot during the final two laps. The Yamaha factory pilot eased a slight gap and Westby and Lewis battled for the final spot on the box.
Westby set the quick lap of the race after starting poorly from pole.
JD Beach (Yamaha Extended Service/Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha) earned another top five to close out the season.