1st March 2016 – Round 1 of the Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) is done and dusted after some extremely close racing at Phillip Island over the weekend and the battle is only just beginning.
Crankt Protein Honda Racing departs the season opener with #17 Troy Herfoss in 4th place and #27 Jamie Stauffer in 11th place in the championship.
The World Superbike event was not without incident for the Honda team. In Race 1 on Saturday a moment of instability from Mike Jones at the front of the tightly packed group caused an unavoidable chain reaction. It ended in disaster for Stauffer when he hurtled into the back tyre of Herfoss who had quickly shut off his throttle to avoid the bike in front. The resulting impact threw Stauffer from his motorcycle only to slide at high speed down the front straight. Luckily, the other riders avoided Stauffer and he was able to limp to Racesafe for medical attention. Stauffer will possibly require skin grafts to his forearm in the coming days.
Battered, burned and with a number of bruises, Stauffer nonetheless lined up on the grid the following day for Races 2 and 3 ready to do battle again. The impact also damaged the rear tyre on Herfoss’ bike although he still managed to finish Race 1 in 5th place with a fastest lap of 1:33.527 sec.
In Race 2 on Sunday Herfoss recorded his fastest lap of the weekend, a 1:33.123 sec to finish in 5th place and Stauffer finished Race 2 in 7th place.
Race 3 saw Herfoss battle it out for the lead onboard his CBR1000RR SP only to have to settle for 2nd place by just .033 sec, placing him 4th overall for the event.
Herfoss is looking forward to Round 2, saying “Fourth position for the opening round of the ASBK is obviously not where wanted to start the season, but it is just the first event and we still come away with valuable points. My pace over the weekend was good on the Crankt Protein Honda and I am really looking forward to racing at my home circuit, Wakefield Park this month. A massive thanks to Crankt Protein Honda Racing for all their efforts this weekend, a great job done by all!”
Stauffer finished Race 3 in 7th place and took 11th place overall for Round 1. He will now focus on recovery. “I feel fairly lucky to walk away after that crash although I am pretty sore. It was just unlucky that I was tucked in so close behind Troy when it happened and had no time to react. I’ll be focusing on getting my forearm looked at now and making sure I’m good to go for Round 2. Considering the crash, I am pleased to come away with some solid points. It’s only Round 1 and the bike feels really good so I know we’ll come back strongly at Wakefield Park.”
Round 2 ASBK will be held 26th – 27th March at Wakefield Park in New South Wales.