MotoAmerica Combines Supersport/Superstock Classes Due to Low Numbers
Low entry numbers have led to some interesting developments regarding the Supersport/Superstock 600 class of the upcoming 2016 MotoAmerica AMA/FIM North American Road Racing Championship. The low turnout in the Supersport class has prompted MotoAmerica organizers to rethink the previously class distinctions.
MotoAmerica partner Chuck Aksland spoke on the matter: “While entries as a whole were well up from last year across the board, the exception was in the Supersport class .This has forced us to make a change, but I think the option we came up with is a good one.
“The races will be entertaining for our spectators while also providing top-notch competition for our riders and teams. Over the course of this season, we will study our options to ensure that we have a suitable direction for the 600cc category for 2017.”
If this seems unusual, just let this MotoAmerica entry list tell the story – there is ample justification for the move. In the Supersport class, only six riders round out that entire class that has previously done well. In comparison, the Superstock 600 class currently features 19 enlisted riders, some of which have moved out of the Supersport class and into the Superstock 600 class for the 2016 season.
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At first glance, this could make for a one sided field but MotoAmerica has a solution in place that will smooth things out. The organization’s formula so far is to allow only the quickest Superstock 600 racers to be on the track while the Supersport riders are running practice, qualifying and races. Practice is going to be into two groups: Group 1 will host Supersport class riders and Superstock 600 competitors currently carrying enough championship points to put them in the top half of the field standings. Group 2 will be rounded out by those with the fewest overall points in the Superstock 600 category.
Once the last Superstock 600 qualifying session comes to an end, the top 15 riders will automatically be distributed into the main event, along with Supersport qualifiers. Last Chance Qualifier races for Superstock 600 riders will take place each day with the top five riders from those races advancing into the main event.
That will set the stage for the main event. Both days display all the Supersport class entries plus the top 20 Superstock 600 riders who happened to have qualified within 110% of the fastest rider that day. Supersport and Superstock 600 riders will be scored according to their respective classes and take their place on different podiums when the dust settles. That distinction is also extended to purse awards and championship points; the only thing they’ll be sharing is the track.
Due to MotoAmerica running as a support series for the Red Bull of the Americas with MotoGP, the opening round of the Supersport Championship at Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas, April 8-10, will be a Supersport-only race. The opening round of the Superstock 600 Championship will take place at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia, a week later, April 15-17.