ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (June 1) — After hard work from the entire GEICO Motorcycle Honda team, Sportbike rider Jake Zemke was able to snag a top-10 finish on the second day of the Subway SuperBike Doubleheader to wrap up a consistent weekend at Road America.
“It was a little bit iffy there at the start,” Zemke said. “No one knew what was going to happen because everyone was trying to keep an eye on the weather. On the first start there was an accident almost right away. The next restart went pretty well after that. I think we were up to sixth on the first lap and I was able to hold that for a lap or two.
“Of all the guys I was around, I think my bike worked better in the corners. We’re just fighting an uphill battle and are unfortunately down a little bit. We’re maximizing the positives of the bike currently. We have half the puzzle figured out, so we just need the other half now.
“We had three races — with the Superbike Shootout — between Daytona and this weekend, which gave us some much-needed time for development on the chassis to get it working the way that I like. We didn’t get a whole lot of off-season testing, so the extra races definitely helped. The boys are going to go back to the shop now and see if we can’t squeeze a little more power out of these motors. Then we will just roll our way on to Barber Motorsports Park.”
Even though GEICO Motorcycle Honda Superbike rider Chris Ulrich was able to steadily move his way through the field early on, his day took an unfortunate turn. A wreck on Lap 5 ended Ulrich’s day, resulting in a 14th-place finish after working his way up to the eighth spot.
“Today’s wreck was a little mistake,” Ulrich said. “I was riding really hard to keep up with the guys up front. Sometimes when you’re pushing the limits you fall off. Overall, it was a good race up until then. It’s disappointing to end up in the gravel trap but the good thing is we’re OK. Unfortunately, the bike broke a handlebar from the fall, so we were unable to continue. We had a strong ride going but I am a little disappointed after last weekend.
“I went over two seconds faster than I did last year here. That shows the progress we’ve made, but based on how I was having to ride the bike today, it seems like we have some more progress to make. We’ll learn from this, go to Barber, and try to continue to improve. We live to fight another day.”
The GEICO Motorcycle Honda team will look to regroup and prepare for the next stop on the AMA Pro Racing Series schedule at the Triumph Superbike Classic, June 21-22, at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala.