Mike Jones completed a perfect weekend to take two wins from two races, along with pole position in qualifying on Saturday at Round Two of the mi-bike Motorcycle Insurance Australian Superbike Championship presented by Motul (ASBK) at Queensland Raceway. Race Reports: MA, Photos: BiteSizePics…
Mike Jones gave his hometown fans plenty to smile about after topping the timesheets in Friday Practice for Round Two of the mi-bike Motorcycle Insurance Australian Superbike Championship presented by Motul (ASBK) at Queensland Raceway.
Jones (YZF-R1) hit-out early to clock just under a second ahead of Josh Waters (BMW M RR) and Cru Halliday (YZF-R1), while defending ASBK champion Wayne Maxwell (V4R), spent the first segment of practice cutting installation laps on his new bike (after damaging the front-end at Phillip Island a few weeks ago). Round one winner and championship leader, Bryan Staring (V4R) would eventually split Jones and Halliday, with Maxwell in fourth.
In the afternoon, it was Jones and Maxwell topping the order, with Jones’s 1:07.967 three-tenths quicker than Maxwell’s best, with Halliday a further tenth away in third. Most were expecting times to drop, but spots of rain in the afternoon thwarted any chance of improvement. Jones was comfortably inside the official lap-record at Queensland Raceway and pleased to make his mark on home turf so early in the weekend.
“It’s been a long time away for ASBK, but for me it’s my home circuit. I’ve cut so many laps around here and I’m really looking forward to the weekend,” said Jones. “This circuit has a simple layout, but having only a handful of corners makes it hard to go fast.”
Australian Superbike Practice (Full Results Here)
1 Mike Jones – Yamaha YZF-R1 (1:07.967)
2 Wayne Maxwell – Ducati V4R (1:08.281)
3 Cru Halliday – Yamaha YZF-R1 (1:08.335)
In Michelin Supersport, Jack Hyde (Yamaha YZF-R6) lead the way in Practice One, ahead of Olly Simpson (Yamaha YZF-R6) and Tom Bramich (Yamaha YZF-R6). In the afternoon sessions, but it was Simpson who stepped-up to go quickest outright by three-tenths of a second over John Lytras (Yamaha YZF-R6), with Hyde rounding out the top three by virtue of his earlier time.
Supersport 600 Practice (Full Results Here)
1 Olly Simpson – Yamaha YZF-R6 (1:11.784)
2 John Lytras – Yamaha YZF-R6 (1:11.864)
3 Jack Hyde – Yamaha YZF-R6 (1:12.188)
Dunlop Supersport 300
James Jacobs (Kawasaki Ninja) dominated the Dunlop Supersport 300 class early, ahead of the ever-improving Taiyo Aksu (Yamaha YZF-R3), while Aksu himself was a mere three-hundredths ahead of Laura Brown (Yamaha YZF-R3) before Glenn Nelson (Yamaha YZF-R3) shot to the top of the order – three-tenths up on Cameron Dunker (Yamaha YZF-R6) and Aksu. Dunker would leap ahead in Practice 2 to go fastest overall with a 1:22.801 ahead of Nelson and Aksu.
Dunlop Supersport 300 Practice (Full Results Here)
1 Cameron Dunker – Yamaha YZF-R3 (1:22.801)
2 Glenn Nelson – Yamaha YZF-R3 (1:22.926)
3 Taito Aksu – Yamaha YZF-R3 (1:23.306)
Yamaha R3 Cup
Taiyo Aksu (Yamaha YZF-R3) topped the morning session of the Yamaha Finance R3 Cup, ahead of Cameron Dunker (Yamaha YZF-R3) and Nate O’Neill (Yamaha YZF-R3). Dunker would top the final session of the day, but the overall order remained unchanged.
Yamaha R3 Cup Practice (Full Results Here)
1 Glenn Nelson – Yamaha YZF-R3 (1:22.653)
2 Taiyo Aksu – Yamaha YZF-R3 (1:23.918)
3 Cameron Dunker – Yamaha YZF-R3 (1:23.011)
Oceania Junior Cup
In Oceania Junior Cup, Ryan Larkin (Yamaha YZF-R15) edged Marcus Hamod (Yamaha YZF-R15) in practice one by one-tenth of a second, with a similar distance back to Hudson Thompson (Yamaha YZF-R15). Teerin Fleming would bounce back in the afternoon to jump from fourth to first in practice 2.
Oceania Junior Cup Practice (Full Results Here)
1 Teerin Fleming – Yamaha YZF-R15 (1:35.580)
2 Ryan Larkin – Yamaha YZF-R15 (1:35.892)
3 Hudson Thompson – Yamaha YZF-R15 (1:36.031)
Australian Sidecar Championship
The Horsell Australian Sidecar Championship made its return for 2022, with Phillip Underwood and Tristan Vercoe (Suzuki LCR 1000) staking an early claim ahead of Des Harvey and Stephen Marshall (Kawasaki RHR 1000), with Jamie and Shelby Turner (Suzuki LCR 1000) rounding out the top three. Underwood would again top the order in practice two, with Turner this time usurping Harvey in the afternoon to complete the final three.
Australian Sidecar Championship (Full Results Here)
1 Phillip Underwood and Tristan Vercoe – Suzuki LCR 1000 (1:20.559)
2 Neil Turner and Danyon Turner – Suzuki LCR 1000 (1:21.517)
3 Des Harvey and Stephen Marshall – Kawasaki RHR 1000 (1:22.331)
Practice form certainly dictated the outcome, with Mike Jones setting a time of 1:07.673 enjoying a two-tenths margin over Staring, but for the first time on the weekend – after much speculation – the top three riders finally dropped into the 1:07’s during ASBK RD2 at Queensland Raceway…
“Track knowledge is a key part of being able to go fast around here and being able to refine each corner to the absolute maximum,” said Jones. “I just need to make a good start, get my head down and put in some quick lap times and see what happens towards the end of the race.”
Starting behind Jones, P2 was grabbed by Bryan Staring who was not drawn on being the top Ducati on the day – ahead of Wayne Maxwell. “That’s fine, it’s not a big deal to me. I’m really happy with that qualifying session- to be back on the front row- I actually don’t know the last time I was on the front row. It’s all about getting a good start for the two races tomorrow…”
For Wayne Maxwell, P3 was a good outcome, but there’s work to be done if the 2021 Champion is going to claw back from seventh in the title chase. “Look, it’s been a bit of a struggle. We’re on the back foot compared to these guys… we’ll try to make some more improvements to the bike overnight and come out tomorrow and try to close that last bit of the gap. We’ll just do our thing tomorrow.”
In Q1, Jed Metcher, Aiden Wagner and Mark Chiodo progressed to the final stage of Superbike qualifying, while in Q2, Troy Herfoss would run into technical issues, forcing him to swap onto his second bike with five minutes remaining in the session.
Australian Superbike Qualifying (Full Results Here)
1 Mike Jones – Yamaha YZF-R1 (1:07.673)
2 Bryan Staring – Ducati V4R (1:07.861)
3 Wayne Maxwell – Ducati V4R (1:07.996)
After a close-fought qualifying, Tom Edwards (Yamaha YZF-R6) took the Michelin Supersport pole after securing a time of 1:11.180 – pipping Friday Practice fast man John Lytras (Yamaha YZF-R6) by two-tenths of a second, with Olly Simpson (Yamaha YZF-R6) a further three-tenths adrift. Until he put the bike on pole, Edwards had not topped the timesheets in any session but knew the incremental improvements the team had made was heading the bike in the right direction.
Supersport 600 Qualifying (Full Results Here)
1 Tom Edwards – Yamaha YZF-R6 (1:11.180)
2 Olly Simpson – Yamaha YZF-R6 (1:11.655)
3 Tom Drane – Yamaha YZF-R6 (1:12.478)
Dunlop Supersport 300
Glenn Nelson (Yamaha YZF-R3) edged Cameron Dunker (Yamaha YZF-R3) by a tenth of a second to take pole for Dunlop Supersport 300, with Henry Snell (Yamaha YZF-R3) rounding out the top three. After starting from fifth of the grid, James Jacobs (Kawasaki Ninja) edged his way into the lead, taking out Race One ahead of Cameron Dunker and Taiyo Aksu (Yamaha YZF-R3) in a typically exciting and varied Dunlop Supersport 300 race.
Dunlop Supersport 300 Race One (Full Results Here)
1 James Jacobs – Kawasaki Ninja (13:57.201)
2 Cameron Dunker – Yamaha YZF-R3 (+0.246)
3 Taito Aksu – Yamaha YZF-R3 (+0.258)
Yamaha Finance R3 Cup
The Yamaha Finance R3 Cup grid was the first to get locked away just after lunch, with Cameron Dunker (Yamaha YZF-R3) taking pole with a 1.21:916 – half a second ahead of Glenn Nelson (Yamaha YZF-R3) and Macus Hamod (Yamaha YZF-R3). In Race One, Dunker would lead from lights to flag ahead of runner-up Nelson, with Aksu rounding out the top three. A crash at Turn 3 saw Henry Snell walk away unscathed but out of contention.
Yamaha R3 Cup Race One (Full Results Here)
1 Cameron Dunker – Yamaha YZF-R3 (11:08.181)
2 Glenn Nelson – Yamaha YZF-R3 (+0.082)
3 Taiyo Aksu – Yamaha YZF-R3 (+5.419)
Oceania Junior Cup
It was going to be a tight bLU cRU Oceania Junior Cup with Levi Russo (Yamaha YZF-15) just edging Hudson Thompson (Yamaha YZF-15) in Q1 by just 2-hundredths of a second and Hunter Corney (Yamaha YZF-15) a further tenth away. In Race One, Ryan Larkin would vault from sixth place on the grid to take the lead with four laps remaining. After a close dice with Hunter Corney and Cameron Rende, it was Hudson Thompson who would prevail from Corney and Rende with just four-tenths of a second covering the top five riders.
Oceania Junior Cup Race One(Full Results Here)
1 Hunter Corney – Yamaha YZF-R15 (9:46.237)
2 Cameron Rende – Yamaha YZF-R15 (+0.221)
3 Marcus Hamod – Yamaha YZF-R15 (+0.304)
Australian Sidecar Championship
Phillip Underwood and Tristan Vercoe (Suzuki LCR 1000) laid down a hot time to take pole position for the Sidecars ahead of Jamie and Shelby Turner (Suzuki LCR 1000), with Howard Ford and Corey Blackman (Suzuki RHR 1000) rounding out the top three. Underwood and Vercoe went on to claim Race One victory, with Ford and Blackman edging Des Harvey and Stephen Marshall (Kawasaki RHR 1000) for the final podium spots. In Race 2, Underwood and Vercoe would go the double, with the Turners again taking the runner-up spot ahead of Jeff Brown and Paris Halsey (Suzuki JBR 1000).
Australian Sidecar Championship Race Two (Full Results Here)
1 Phillip Underwood and Tristan Vercoe – Suzuki LCR 1000 (8:04.717)
2 Jamie Turner and Shelby Turner – Suzuki LCR 1000 (+18.514)
3 Jeff Brown and Paris Halsey – Suzuki JBR 1000 (+26.659)
Bryan Staring (DesmoSport Ducati Panigale V4-R) got the early jump on Mike Jones (Yamaha Racing YZF-R1) to take the lead in Race 1, with Glenn Allerton (Maxima Oils Racing BMW M1000RR) also making a big first lap move up to fourth. Jones would briefly retake the lead on lap two, but left the door open enough for Staring to nudge through.
A mid-corner error from Staring saw the Championship leader drop out of contention and hand second place to Wayne Maxwell (V4-R). Jones would cruise to a 5.6-second lead to take victory ahead of Maxwell and Josh Waters (Maxima Oils Racing BMW M1000RR).
Maxwell would time his launch perfectly to take an early lead in Race Two ahead of Jones and Staring. It would be short-lived however as Jones ran past the Ducati through the outside of turn two. Arthur Sissis (Unitech Racing YZF-R1) and Cru Halliday (Yamaha Racing YZF-R1) would argue over fourth and fifth respectively. This duel would be settled before the chequered flag when Halliday stopped on the final lap with mechanical issues.
“All the guys at Yamaha have put in a big effort to help me adapt to this bike. The last win for me was in 2019 so to come and get a couple of wins is just fantastic,” said Jones. “I was hoping as the season went on to get to grips with the Yamaha and be able to challenge, so to lead the championship is a little bit above my expectations,”
Second-placed Staring was circumspect after a crash in Race One effectively lost him the championship lead to Jones. While, third-placed Maxwell was happy to score two podiums on which he deems to be his ‘bogey’ circuit.
Australian Superbike Round Results (Full Results Here)
1 Mike Jones – Yamaha YZF-R1
2 Wayne Maxwell – Ducati V4R
3 Josh Waters – BMW M RR
John Lytras (Yamaha YZF-R6) ran out to an early two-tenths of a second lead in Race One for Michelin Supersport, but couldn’t hold on – eventually being usurped by Tom Edwards (Yamaha YZF-R6) to the honours in ahead of Scott Nicholson (Yamaha YZF-R6) and Lytras. Nominal Championship leader (With actual leader Senna Agius now overseas) Tom Bramich crashed out of the race, giving him a challenge to work back into contention over the next six rounds.
Lytras would get the jump in Race Two, only to get pushed down to third in the first few corners by Olly Simpson and Tom Edwards. Tom Drane would make an impressive start to vault to fifth position. Tom Edwards was later found with illegal modifications, handing the round win to John Lytras.
Supersport 600 Round Results (Full Results Here)
1 Tom Edwards – Yamaha YZF-R6 (prior to disqualification) Post Race – John Lytras.
2 Scott Nicholson – Yamaha YZF-R6
3 Olly Simpson – Yamaha YZF-R6
Dunlop Supersport 300
After two riders went down at turn two (including Saturday front-runner Taiyo Asksu), the Dunlop Supersport 300 Race Two was restarted with five laps remaining. At the restart, Cameron Dunker (Yamaha YZF-R3) and Glenn Nelson (Yamaha YZF-R3) immediately grabbed an early break on the opposition. They were never challenged, with Nelson capitalising on a last-corner error from Dunker to take victory with Jonatha Nahlous (Kawasaki Ninja) in third.
In Race Three, Nelson and Dunker would get an early break on the field, with Nahlous fending off the rest of the pack. Dunker would pull a late race challenge, but Nelson would close the gate to take victory with Henry Snell eventually sneaking through to for third.
Dunlop Supersport 300 Round Results (Full Results Here)
1 Glenn Nelson – Yamaha YZF-R3
2 Cameron Dunker – Yamaha YZF-R3
3 James Jacobs – Kawasaki Ninja
Yamaha Finance R3 Cup
With a number of riders missing the grid for Race Two of the Yamaha Finance R3 Cup, a large contingent would be forced to start from pit-lane. Cameron Dunker (Yamaha YZF-R3) got the early jump but would be challenged by both Glenn Nelson (Yamaha YZF-R3) and Henry Snell (Yamaha YZF-R3).
Nelson would survive a tight-fought battle to take victory in a thriller from Dunker and first-time podium placer Sam Pezzetta (Yamaha YZF-R3). Dunker would make amends to take the victory for Race Three ahead of Henry Snell and Glenn Nelson.
Yamaha R3 Cup Round Results (Full Results Here)
1 Cameron Dunker – Yamaha YZF-R3
2 Glenn Nelson – Yamaha YZF-R3
3 Hayden Nelson – Yamaha YZF-R3
bLU cRU Oceania Junior Cup
In Race Two of the bLU cRU Oceania Junior Cup, it was another tense battle between Cameron Rende, Ryan Larkin, Teerin Fleming and Hudson Thompson (all Yamaha YZF-R15), with the lead changing multiple times each lap.
After dropping as low as sixth, Rende would time his run perfectly to take the chequered ahead of Larkin and Harrison Watts by five-hundredths of a second. However, applied penalties saw an amended result of Cameron Rende, Sam Drane and Hudson Thompson on the final podium.
In Race Three, Hunter Corney would lead into turn one ahead of Thompson and Watts. With only 1.2 seconds covering the top eight riders, getting the timing right would be crucial on the run to the flag. Rende would have no such luck after dropping out from third place, leaving Watts to take a narrow victory over a fast-closing Ryan Larkin and Hudson Thompson in third.
Oceania Junior Cup Round Results (Full Results Here)
1 Harrison Watts – Yamaha YZF-R15
2 Ryan Larkin – Yamaha YZF-R15
3 Hunter Corney – Yamaha YZF-R15
Horsell Australian Sidecar Championship
Completing an almost perfect weekend, Phillip Underwood and Tristan Vercoe win Race Three of the Horsell Australian Sidecar Championship with the Turner family fighting out the final spots – Neil and Danyon Turner taking second place ahead of Jamie and Shelbey Turner in third.
Australian Sidecar Championship Round Results (Full Results Here)
1 Phillip Underwood and Tristan Vercoe – Suzuki LCR 1000
2 Jamie Turner and Shelby Turner – Suzuki LCR 1000
3 Patrick Clancy and Amanda Williams – Suzuki LCR 600