When all was said and done and after eight sessions and two days on the Pittsburgh International Race Complex in Wampum, Pennsylvania, surprisingly it wasn’t one of the Fab Four on top of the Motul Superbike timesheets. Instead, it was Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz leading the way, the South African setting a best lap of 1:38.588 in the final session to complete the Dunlop test as the fastest of the Superbike men.
The Pittsburgh International Race Complex will play host to round eight of the 2017 MotoAmerica Series, August 25-27, with this week’s two-day test giving MotoAmerica teams and riders their first crack at the 2.7800-mile racetrack.
Scholtz was quick throughout the test and he was the quickest at the very end, besting Beaubier by .393 of a second with the defending two-time MotoAmerica Superbike Champion setting his best time in today’s seventh session prior to sitting out the final session.
“It was a really positive test for us,” Scholtz said. “We tried a bit of everything from different TC (traction control) settings to trying the new softer front tire. Everything seemed to move forward so overall we are really happy. We even had a good race pace going. Obviously, we chucked on a brand new set right at the end there just to do a really quick time, but everything is looking positive for us. We are really looking forward to the race here.”
Scholtz was also a fan of the new racetrack on the outskirts of Pittsburgh.
“I love it,” he said. “It’s a really fun track – some faster corners, it’s undulating. A lot of guys have been complaining about the safety aspects of it, but we go to circuits that are as dangerous if not worse. I’m very happy here. It’s a brilliant circuit and it seems to suit me with the flowing corners and the hard braking zones.”
Third fastest overall was Excelus Solutions/Lucas Oils/KWR’s Kyle Wyman, the team owner/rider was also consistently fast throughout the test, ending up with his best time coming in the eighth and final session.
Beaubier’s Monster Energy/Yamalube/Yamaha Factory teammate Josh Hayes ended the test as the fourth-fastest rider, the four-time Superbike Champion lapping .728 of a second off Scholtz’ best.
Bobby Fong made big improvements to end the test fifth after struggling yesterday. Fong rode his Quicksilver Latus Motors Kawasaki to a 1:39.541 in the final session.
In total, 15 Superbike/Superstock 1000 riders turned laps today, including Yoshimura Suzuki’s Roger Hayden who sat out of most of yesterday’s session after hearing of his brother’s accident. Hayden ended up seventh overall with his best time coming in the final session.
Inclement weather forced the final Supersport/Superstock 600 session to be canceled, leaving Garrett Gerloff to lead the way based on his best lap from today’s fifth session – a 1:40.928. That lap was just .016 of a second faster than Frenchman Valentin Debise, the M4 ECSTAR Suzuki rider turning his best in today’s seventh session.
Gerloff’s Monster Energy/Yamalube/Y.E.S./ Graves Yamaha teammate JD Beach was third fastest, .473 of a second off Gerloff.
The fastest of the Superstock 600 testers ended up being Aguilar Racing’s Jason Aguilar, the Californian lapping at a best of 1:44.042.
Day Two Times
The proclamation states…
The MotoAmerica Championship of Pittsburgh provides an opportunity for the best road racing talent in America to showcase their abilities in a globally recognized, highly competitive race for victory; and whereas the Borough of Big Beaver is proud to be one of the select number of host cities chosen to be a part of the MotoAmerica Championship; and whereas the debut of the Pittsburgh International Race Complex on the 2017 MotoAmerica schedule brings a new challenge to its competitors, a change of scenery, and an exciting, highly anticipated nationally televised event; and whereas race fans from Big Beaver and throughout the region are eager to show their support of MotoAmerica, helping to make this event and the sport of superbike racing a tradition in the coming years.