More, from a press release issued by MotoAmerica:
Landers Breaks The Ice With Supersport Win At Brainerd International Raceway
Rocco Landers Adds Supersport To His Past Junior Cup And Twins Cup Victories
BRAINERD, MN (July 30, 2022) – Based on his career trajectory to this point, most would have thought that Rocco Landers’ first Supersport victory would have come sooner than midway through his second season in the class. After all, the youngster from Oregon blazed through both the Junior Cup and Twins Cup classes, amassing 29 Junior Cup wins and nine Twins Cup victories en route to three class championships (two in Junior Cup, one in Twins Cup).
On Saturday, Landers got the monkey off his back with a Supersport victory, and he did so in dominating fashion, handily beating championship leader Josh Herrin and veteran Josh Hayes.
“Finally, finally, finally,” Landers said, over and over after taking victory at Brainerd International Raceway on a sunny Saturday.
Supersport – Landers Gets It Done
Rocco Landers is used to winning. Despite only being 17 years old, he’s already won 39 MotoAmerica races in his young career. He’s also conquered two race classes by winning championships. The Supersport class has been a tougher nut for him to crack, however. Halfway through his sophomore season in Supersport, Landers got his first pole position in MotoAmerica’s middleweight class. And now, two rounds later, he notched his first win in Saturday’s Supersport race one at Brainerd International Raceway.
And he won with authority. Starting from the pole (his second one of the year), Landers led all but one of the 16 laps aboard his Landers Racing Yamaha and took the checkered flag by more than four and a half seconds over runner-up Josh Herrin aboard his Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati NYC machine. Third place went to N2 Racing/BobbleHeadMoto Yamaha rider Josh Herrin, who filled in for Kevin Olmedo, who is recovering from illness.
“It feels amazing to win this race, finally,” Landers said. “It’s been so long. It feels great to finally get to a track where we can carry more momentum. I feel like I used the handling of my Yamaha R6 through these fast, flowy corners, and used the hard braking, as well. Can’t thank this guy enough. I’m so lucky to have someone like Josh Hayes in my corner. It’s unreal. My whole team, they worked so hard last night to make my bike as perfect as possible. We made a couple changes in-between qualifying two where we were able to throw down pole and for the race, and the bike felt a lot better. I was just able to put those laps in a row after I was able to take the lead. I couldn’t feel better in these circumstances. It’s a great feeling to be able to run the 124 on my helmet and to honor Scott (Briody) like this. I also can’t thank Yamaha enough. They’ve stuck with me through the hard times when I was outside the top five, struggling to get in the top ten in qualifying. Busted my butt. I was able to drop a lot of weight. I feel really good on the bike. I’ve never felt better. The bike has never felt better. I think we have a very good chance of pulling something off like this tomorrow, as well. That would be unbelievable.”
SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup – Yaakov Again
“Running with the pack” is a continuing theme for the riders in the SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Championship. In virtually every race, the key is to be in the group of riders at the front, and then make your move for the lead in the closing laps.
Such was the case for Altus Motorsports Kawasaki rider Kayla Yaakov in Junior Cup race one. She battled hard with a group of five riders at the front, and on the final lap, the 15-year-old put her head down, took the lead, and created a gap to ensure her second victory of the season. Yaakov bested SportbikeTrackGear.com Kawasaki rider Joseph LiMandri Jr. by just over one second, who, in turn, beat third-place finisher and Alpha Omega Kawasaki rider Cody Wyman by almost the same margin of just over one second.
“I think this was the best race I’ve ever ridden,” Yaakov said. “The bike wasn’t exactly where I wanted it to be, so I worked with what I had. It worked out in my favor. I had a plan going into the race, and just kind of worked on it throughout it. Everything went well. I dropped back a little bit, but I didn’t get too frantic. Just kind of sat there. I’m happy where I ended up. I think it was pretty nice to get out there and show what I’m capable of in a big group like that.”
REV’IT! Twins Cup – Ventura’s High Way
In the only REV’IT! Twins Cup race scheduled for the weekend, MP13 Racing Yamaha’s Cory Ventura won his second race in a row after getting his season off to a bit of a slow start earlier in the year. Ventura survived a late-race skirmish with the other two riders who finished on the podium. Second place went to N2 Racing/BobbleHeadMoto rider Blake Davis, who was runner-up for the second race in a row after winning the first race of the season at Daytona. Finishing third was Rodio Racing/Warhorse HSBK Racing Aprilia rider Anthony Mazziotto.
“Big setback was me getting hurt after Daytona,” Ventura said. “We’ve been going to work. (Team owner) Melissa (Paris) and I both came into this year like, ‘it’s Twins Cup.’ I came on the bike last year and did pretty good. It should be a pretty simple year. But come to the fact part of it, these guys are gnarly. For sure, if they were racing 600s, they’d be battling for top fives, too. These guys you cannot take for granted. Probably some of my hardest racing I’ve ever done in my life has been here. So, we’re going to keep moving one step forward at a time and take the fight to them.”
Royal Enfield Build. Train. Race – Buyck In A Close One
Day one of MotoAmerica Superbikes at Minnesota event concluded with the women of the Royal Enfield Build. Train. Race. program competing in their feature race. Kayleigh Buyck emerged as the winner for the third race in a row but keeping her undefeated streak alive wasn’t easy. Chloe Petersen hung with Buyck for the majority of the race until Buyck managed to pull a small gap on the final lap to take the checkered flag by just over a second. With Petersen finishing as runner-up, third place went to Jennifer Chancellor.
“I knew I was going to be in a battle,” commented Buyck. “And I was excited for it. (Chloe) showed me a front tire, and I said, ‘Not today.’ The whole time, she was giving me pressure. She’s going to get me, and I’m stoked for that to happen. She’s a phenomenal rider. It was a battle the entire time.”
More, from a press release issued by Suzuki Motor USA, LLC:
SUZUKI GSX-R750 CONTINUES ROCK SOLID MOTOAMERICA SUPERSPORT PERFORMANCE
Scott and Ventura Earn Top Five for Vision Wheel M4 ECSTAR Suzuki at B.I.R.
BREA, Calif., July 30, 2022 — Suzuki Motor USA and Team Hammer collected valuable championship points on the opening day of racing as the 2022 MotoAmerica AMA/FIM North American Road Racing season resumed on Saturday at Brainerd International Raceway in Brainerd, Minnesota.
Vision Wheel M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Supersport racers Tyler Scott and Cory Ventura picked right up where they left off at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, scoring the team’s fifth double top-five in the class this season.
Rookie phenom Scott rocketed the next-generation GSX-R750 out to the holeshot, was dropped to third, reclaimed first, and then was pushed down to fourth, all in the course of a hectic opening lap.
Meanwhile, Ventura, in his second weekend riding in place of the injured Sam Lochoff, made his way up into fifth by lap five despite having to swap out his GSX-R750 for the team’s backup GSX-R600 following a qualifying shunt.
The Californian kept Scott honest from that point forward, as the two locked down fourth and fifth to the checkered flag despite some determined efforts from their adversaries to displace them.
“I captured fourth and overall, it was an okay race for us,” said Scott. “I feel a little bummed out because I lost points in the championship, but it was a decent result on a day when I feel my riding wasn’t the best. The bike worked well, there are just a couple of areas where I think I can do better and we get another shot at it tomorrow. I’m going to collect myself and hopefully, we will do what we are capable of on Sunday.”
The team’s third MotoAmerica Supersport pilot, Liam Grant, came home in tenth to give the squad three riders among the six Suzuki GSX-R motorcycles to finish in the top ten. Another example of the new generation Suzuki GSX-R750’s continued rock-steady performance in the hyper-competitive Supersport championship. Saturday’s race had 60% of the top ten finishers on Suzuki GSX-R race bikes.
Unfortunately, Richie Escalante was unable to capitalize on his recent progress in the MotoAmerica Superbike action on Saturday. The Superbike-class rookie demonstrated a continuation of his impressive speed from the previous round at BIR, earning a spot on the second row. However, he was absent from the grid due to an ankle injury suffered in a hard fall during qualifying.
That left the still mending Jake Lewis as the team’s sole representative in the premier class aboard the #85 Vision Wheel M4 ECSTAR Suzuki GSX-R1000R. The Kentuckian, who qualified 12th, fought his way up inside the top ten early. Lewis registered a steady ride to ultimately collect a ninth-place result in his first race back from injury.
“Today was the first race back for me and it was nice to be back, obviously,” said Lewis. “Definitely I wanted more than ninth place. It’s been a tough weekend with some pain from my thumb. Despite that, I feel like I should be fighting in the top five. We’ll make some changes for tomorrow and strive to be closer to the front.”
Team Hammer will be back in action on Sunday in search of even stronger results as the Brainerd International Raceway MotoAmerica race weekend concludes.
ABOUT TEAM HAMMER
The 2022 season marks Team Hammer’s 42nd consecutive year of operating as a professional road racing team. Racebikes built and fielded by Team Hammer have won 129 AMA Pro and MotoAmerica National races, have finished on AMA Pro and MotoAmerica National podiums 342 times, and have won 11 AMA Pro and MotoAmerica National Championships, as well as two FIM South American Championships (in Superbike and Supersport.) The team has also won 137 endurance races overall (including seven 24-hour races) and 13 Overall WERA National Endurance Championships with Suzuki motorcycles and holds the U.S. record for mileage covered in a 24-hour race. The team also competed in the televised 1990s Formula USA National Championship, famously running “Methanol Monster” GSX-R1100 Superbikes fueled by methanol, and won four F-USA Championships.
ABOUT VISION WHEEL
Founded in 1976, Vision Wheel is one of the nation’s leading providers of custom wheels for cars and trucks, and one of the first manufacturers of custom wheels and tires for ATVs, UTVs, and golf carts. Vision Wheel looks beyond the current trends and to the future in developing, manufacturing, and distributing its wheels. Vision’s lines of street, race, off-road, American Muscle, and Milanni wheels are distributed nationally and internationally through a trusted network of distributors. Vision Wheel also produces the Vision It AR app to allow users to see how their wheel of choice will look on their vehicle before purchase and installation. For more information on Vision Wheel, visit www.visionwheel.com.
Suzuki Motor USA, LLC. (SMO) distributes Motorcycles, ATVs, Scooters, Automotive Parts, Accessories, and ECSTAR Oils & Chemicals via an extensive dealer network throughout 49 states. Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC), based in Hamamatsu, Japan, is a diversified worldwide manufacturer of Motorcycles, ATVs, Scooters, Automobiles, Outboard Motors, and related products. Founded in 1909 and incorporated in 1920, SMC has business relations with 201 countries/regions. For more information, visit www.suzuki.com.