Team M4 EMGO Suzuki enjoyed a tremendous opening day to the AMA road racing weekend at Mid-Ohio on Friday, leading the way in Supersport, notching up three top-five practice performances, and qualifying on the second row for Saturday’s Formula Xtreme final.
Geoff May got the squad off to a terrific start, posting the fastest lap in the day’s Supersport free practice. The Georgian clocked a best time of 1:29.014 to top the charts aboard his Pirelli-shod GSX-R600. May was followed by teammate Mike Barnes, who was fifth best in the opening session with a time of 1: 29.863.
The team’s developmental rider Shea Fouchek, rounded out an impressive Supersport showing for Team M4 EMGO Suzuki on Friday by finishing 15th in the class at 1:32.830, a very promising outing for the young racer.
“The Supersport practice went really well,” May commented, “We got to ride a little bit yesterday and got the chance to get it dialed in a little bit. Since we didn’t get to test here with the other guys we thought we might be a little bit behind the eight ball. We got out there and got a good start and just kept working on the chassis from what we learned yesterday and kept going in the right direction. The Pirelli tires were working great. They were flawless this morning and I think we can go even faster. I didn’t feel like we were pushing the limit to achieve that time. It makes me feel really good and I’m excited about the race on Sunday, which is our main goal.”
May was also extremely strong in Superstock, guiding his powerful GSX-R1000 to the fourth best time in the class at 1:27.252, just 0.505 seconds off the fastest lap.
“The big bike took a little bit longer to get the chassis sorted out,” he admitted. “It’s a little bit more finicky than the 600 with all that extra power. We found something right near the end of the session. We made a change with 12 minutes to go in the session and it was the wrong way. We came back in with six minutes to go and we didn’t have time to make the changes we wanted to but we have a clear picture for tomorrow. I feel we’ll be right up there with the lead guys again tomorrow if not faster than they were today.”
Floridian Barnes will start Saturday’s 16-lap Formula Xtreme race from the second row, qualifying sixth with a best time of 1:28.510 aboard his Pirelli-slick shod GSX-R600-based FX racer.
The team will also attempt to capitalize on their Friday form during Saturday’s Supersport and Superstock qualifying sessions.