LEWIS AND TEAM HAMMER WIN IN SONOMA
Published: August 12, 2017
Team Hammer raced back into action following the MotoAmerica summer break with a triumphant win in Superstock 1000 on Saturday at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. The team earned its 175th podium in AMA Pro and MotoAmerica National races and then added a 176th podium for good measure.
M4 ECSTAR Suzuki's Jake Lewis was spectacular in the day's Superbike/Superstock 1000 race, at times lapping faster than any other rider on track regardless of class. The Kentuckian got away strongly aboard his fire-breathing 2017 GSX-R1000 from his second-row grid position, tracked down the early race leader in the STK1000 class, and pushed hard from close behind.
His rival then made a critical mistake and Lewis promptly took over the lead. His pace allowed him to control second place on the combined order deep into the race before ultimately taking the checkered flag with the Superstock 1000 victory while running fourth overall.
Lewis' third victory of the season elevated him to second place in the Superstock 1000 championship point standings.
After his win, Lewis said, "It was a great race for me. I qualified well, which set us up well, and then I got a good start on top of that. I just put my head down to catch the class leader, and unfortunately, he crashed. I then saw the Superbike leader out in front, and, honestly, I felt like I was catching him for a little while out there. I thought I had second overall, but with a few laps to go, I caught a huge pack of lappers, which hurt me big time. I lost a lot of time. But really, I'm super happy because what I need to do is win in the Superstock 1000 class, and that's what I did today.
"We're still facing a big points deficit, but I told my team and all my friends and family back home that I'm going for it until the end of the season. I just need to get race wins and I pushed to the limit every single lap today. I couldn't be more proud of the M4 ECSTAR Suzuki team. They put a great bike underneath me after I put one in the weeds yesterday and totaled it out. A win today was a nice way to thank those guys for all their hard work. We'll try to get another one tomorrow."
Meanwhile, teammate Valentin Debise enjoyed an excellent outing of his own in the Supersport race aboard his M4 ECSTAR Suzuki GSX-R600. Newly confident following a productive test the team conducted during the summer break, Debise was back to his corner-charging ways of old at Sonoma Raceway, a track he had not been on before the start of practice on Friday.
The Frenchman reeled in a rival running in second position late and crossed the finish line right on his rear wheel, in third position. Delighted, Debise is looking for even bigger things in Sunday's rematch.
Back up into third in the Supersport championship standings after securing his seventh podium of 2017, Debise said, "I would like to thank my M4 ECSTAR Suzuki team because they gave me a big opportunity to make some tests despite the expense. We went testing with Öhlins and we tried like 10 sets of forks and finally found something that works really well for me. So now instead of crashing I can push a little bit more into the corner which is really helpful. As you see, it was a big step forward for us. I was third and really close to second and not that far off first. Tomorrow we will try one more time, and why not try to push for the win? I'm feeling really confident, and I'm really excited for Sunday's race."
M4 medAge Suzuki's Nick McFadden finished eighth in the Superstock 600 race (14th overall). The Kentuckian found himself embroiled in an thrilling ten-rider scrap for position much of the race and missed out finishing one position higher by just 0.028 seconds.
Just behind McFadden, M4 ECSTAR Suzuki's Brandon Cleland scored his fifth top-ten result of the STK600 season in tenth (16th overall).
Unfortunately, M4 Rickdiculous Racing Suzuki's Daytona Anderson was forced out of the Supersport/STK600 race early due to a stomach illness.
Team Hammer will look to build on the weekend's success with more trophies on Sunday.
About Team Hammer
The 2017 season marks Team Hammer's 37th consecutive year of operating as a professional road racing team. Racebikes built and fielded by Team Hammer have won 68 AMA Pro and MotoAmerica National races, have finished on AMA Pro and MotoAmerica National podiums 176 times and have won five AMA Pro National Championships, as well as two FIM South American Championships. The team has also won 134 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.
Back to top