MILLVILLE, N.J. – Altus Motorsports’ Jake Lewis wrapped up the MotoAmerica Stock 1000 title with a relatively stress-free victory while Robem Engineering’s Kaleb De Keyrel finished second later on a sunny Saturday to earn the 2021 MotoAmerica Twins Cup Championship at New Jersey Motorsports Park.
M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Sean Dylan Kelly, meanwhile, took a giant step toward capturing the 2021 Supersport title with a .001 of a second victory over his championship rival Richie Escalante.
SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup Championship leader Tyler Scott also scored a victory on Saturday to turn his nine-point lead over Benjamin Gloddy into a 21-point lead going into Sunday’s race two.
Ask any motorcycle road racer, and pretty much all of them will say that the best way to wrap up a championship is to win the race when you clinch. And that’s exactly what happened for Altus Motorsports Suzuki rider Jake Lewis in the weekend’s only Stock 1000 race.
Lewis had the best day of his MotoAmerica career with the win and the championship, but his closest rival Corey Alexander unfortunately had one of his worst days. Aboard his “Engine 23” HONOS HVMC Racing Kawasaki – which featured special fire engine-inspired livery in remembrance of the 20th anniversary of 9/11 – had a technical issue with his bike on the grid and was unable to start the race.
Second place went to Jones Honda’s Ashton Yates, who led a large portion of the 15-lap race until Lewis ultimately passed him and went on to the get the win. Meanwhile, the surprise of the day was third-place finisher Mike Selpe, who put his Markbilt Racing Yamaha on the podium in his first-ever MotoAmerica race.
In Supersport race one, the expected battle between points leader Sean Dylan Kelly aboard his M4 ECSTAR Suzuki and defending champion Richie Escalante aboard his HONOS HVMC Racing Kawasaki manifested itself in a big way during the 19-lap event. But, before that, it was Kelly’s teammate Sam Lochoff who had the best race of his MotoAmerica career so far.
The South African led the race multiple times and mixed it up with both Kelly and Escalante. On the final lap, Kelly and Escalante established themselves at the front, and the battle was on. The season-long rivals swapped the lead at least four times on the final go-around, and Kelly ultimately prevailed by a scant .001 of a second to notch his 11th win of the season thus far and move even closer to clinching the season championship.
In SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup race one, Scott Powersports KTM rider Tyler Scott and Landers Racing Kawasaki’s Ben Gloddy were expected to continue their season-long fight for the championship, but a fractured wrist suffered by Gloddy a couple of weeks ago prevented Gloddy from finishing higher than fourth, and he was more than eight-and-a-half seconds behind race-winner Scott when the 13-lap event concluded.
While Scott tallied his eighth win of the season, the rest of the podium was a battle between Rodio Racing Kawasaki’s Gus Rodio and Bauce Racing/Cybersafe Solutions/JL62 Racing Kawasaki’s Joe LiMandri Jr. At the finish line, Rodio prevailed in second place by just .024 of a second over third-place finisher LiMandri Jr.
The Twins Cup class has seen an influx of new riders all season long, and for round eight of the championship, Aprilia test rider Tommaso Marcon raced for Robem Engineering, while Cory Ventura, who podiumed twice in Supersport at Laguna Seca in his only other appearance this season, competed for Veloce Racing.
It was a case of bad news/good news for the pair of Aprilia RS 660 riders as Marcon crashed out of the 14-lap event, while Ventura won the race. And while Ventura celebrated on the top step of the podium, second-place finisher Kaleb De Keyrel celebrated the class championship that he clinched aboard his Robem Engineering Aprilia. Also celebrating was De Keyrel’s teammate Max Toth, who got his first Twins Cup podium finish in only his second race in the class.