Following last week’s the conclusion of the GEICO Motorcycle Superbike Shootout, Team Hammer has returned its focus to the 2014 AMA Pro Road Racing series. The championship resumed action today for Round 2 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
M4 SportbikeTrackGear.com Racing’s Joe Roberts is in the midst of his first-ever visit to the four-mile circuit. The Californian faces a steep learning curve as he attempts to quickly master the long and varied layout’s numerous sections.
The 16-year-old’s task was made a bit more difficult on Friday when he suffered a crash during the afternoon’s Daytona SportBIke qualifying session.
As a result, Roberts found himself mired down in 15th at the conclusion of the day, clocking best time of 2:23.654 on Friday.
“I’m not happy with today,” Roberts admitted. “The whole point of the day was to learn the track in the first session and then hopefully put in a fast lap in qualifying and be up with the fast guys. I was still learning the track during qualifying but I was pretty confident I could do a good lap. Unfortunately, I came in and got a new rear tire but it didn’t heat up properly. I went out and in the first turn I was leaning the thing over a little bit and it flicked me off so fast.
“It’s pretty disappointing. My qualifying position is 15th which isn’t great. We’ll have to see how tomorrow goes. We don’t know how the weather will be in the morning, but there will be more rubber on the track for sure, which will be good. We’re hoping to move up.”
Team Hammer and Roberts will have another shot at it tomorrow. The Daytona SportBike contenders will return to the track in the morning for second qualifying to lock in their grid positions. And then in the afternoon, they’ll compete for the checkered flag in Saturday’s 12-lap race.