Team Hammer endured a difficult day at the track on Saturday, as the 2014 AMA Pro Road Racing season resumed at a blisteringly hot and humid Barber Motorsports Park.
M4 SportbikeTrackGear.com Racing’s Joe Roberts made his stunning AMA Pro debut at the circuit one year ago, claiming the double victory in his first professional race weekend. Unfortunately, his return visit would not prove as kind.
Still feeling the effects of a broken hand that forced him to pull out of the Road America round prematurely three weeks ago, Roberts qualified his CBR600RR on the outside of Row 6. He clocked the 18th best time of the day at 1:30.403.
The 17-year-old was then caught out by the weekend’s compact, two-day schedule and missed the sighting lap, which forced him to start from the back of the grid.
Roberts’ raced his way from outside the top twenty up to 13th by lap six but his day ended on the very next lap when he lost the front.
Team Hammer Crew Chief Keith Perry said, “Everything was so bang, bang, bang, today, he just lost track of time. He just wasn’t here when it was time to go.
“We missed the sighting lap so we ended up having to grid at the back. And then he was coming around the long right-hander and touching the brakes trying to pull his line and he got into one of the seams and lost the front. That was it.”
Roberts and Team Hammer will look for redemption in the second half of the weekend doubleheader on Sunday.