As the saying goes, “save the best for last,” and that was certainly the case with MotoAmerica’s support-class races at Barber Motorsports Park. The final race of the weekend, and final race of the entire 2022 MotoAmerica Championship, was in SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup. And, the way things worked out, two riders ended up deadlocked in a tie based on season points, which meant that the rider with the most wins on the season would be named the season champion. That rider turned out to be Alpha Omega Kawasaki’s Cody Wyman who, as it turned out, did just enough on Sunday to win the championship, the number-one plate, the trophy, and the customized guitar courtesy of Dunlop Motorcycle Tires.
REV’IT! Twins Cup – Davis Gets It Done
The REV’IT! Twins Cup riders had their final race of the season on Sunday at Barber Motorsports Park, and the championship was still in the balance. Sixteen-year-old Virginia-based rider Blake Davis finished fourth and clinched the season championship aboard his N2 Racing/BobbleHeadMoto Yamaha. Meanwhile, last year’s Twins Cup season champion Kaleb De Keyrel won the race, which was, surprisingly, he first victory of the year. The Veloce Racing Aprilia rider started from the pole, was never headed in the nine-lap race, and took the checkered flag with a lead of more than three-and-a-half seconds over Robem Engineering Aprilia rider Teagg Hobbs in second. Hobbs’ teammate Ben Gloddy finished third and only .141 of a second behind Hobbs.
Commenting on his first career MotoAmerica championship, Davis said, “I felt pretty comfortable out there. It was great. Towards the end of the race, the rear started sliding around a lot, so I decided I was just going to back off and not risk it. They rode an amazing race, obviously. All year, I just felt like I was consistent, and I felt like that’s what helped me out the most. I was just having fun (today). I race best when I’m having fun, so that’s all I was going out there to do. Just have some fun, that’s the reason I race.”
About finally getting his first victory of the season in the final race, De Keyrel said, “Not really surprised at all, man. The Twins Cup class really stepped it up this year. We’ve been going a second to two seconds faster per lap at every single track we went to. I improved as a rider every single track, as well. Results on paper, it wasn’t the season I wanted, but as far as me improving as a rider, I went faster at every single track we went to. So, I’m going to hold my head high with that and just keep working hard and keep putting my head down and try to put on performances like today. Everything was clicking. Everything was feeling really good.”
Supersport – A Wet One To Herrin
Rain showers during the day on Sunday at Barber Motorsports Park played a factor in Supersport race two as some of the riders made the decision to use rain tires on the damp track while others chose slicks and gambled that the track would dry out enough as the race wound down to yield faster lap times. It was an interesting dichotomy in team strategies, but in the end, Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati NYC rider Josh Herrin, who chose rain tires, was able to run a fast pace from beginning to end, and even with the track almost fully dry by the time the checkered flag flew. Herrin, the recently crowned class champion, won the 15-lap race by a whopping margin of nearly 18 seconds over 3D Motorsports LLC Suzuki rider Luke Power, who finished second for the Australian’s second podium of the season. VisionWheel M4 Suzuki’s Tyler Scott was third.
“Last year, I decided to go dries, slicks in a moment like this, but it was even a little bit wetter,” Herrin said. “It was the worst decision I ever made in racing. No matter how dry it looked out there, I wasn’t putting the slicks on. I was just going to go rain and cross my fingers. It was a really good race, though. I’m happy to be up here. It’s the best way possible to finish the season, especially a championship-winning season when Rocco (Landers) was coming on strong at the end. Mentally, I think if you can win the last race, I feel like it helps a lot going into the next year. You’ve got six, seven months to sit and think about everything. Happy to be up here. I wasn’t expecting to get the win, for sure. In the warmup in the wet, I had a couple moments. Even on the warmup lap of the race, I had a moment. I was really nervous, but things just went our way. When Rocco and Stefano (Mesa) came by on the slicks, I was a little nervous. I waved Stefano by because I saw how fast he was coming up. I thought for sure he was going to catch us, but we got lucky and we were able to hold him off. So, super happy.”
Royal Enfield’s Build. Train. Race – Buyck Is Champion
Royal Enfield’s Build. Train. Race. program wrapped up at Barber Motorsports Park, and Kayleigh Buyck won the final race of the season while also clinching the season championship at the same time. Coming home second was Chloe Peterson while Crystal Martinez rounded out the podium in third.
“I psyched myself out trying to do a lot of math,” Buyck said. “I knew it was going to be close after Jersey, so I just put my head down and came into this weekend. I wanted to have fun. It’s been a stressful season. Everyone has been kicking butt the whole time. I wanted to win the whole race, but I knew if I at least finished decent, I’d hopefully be able to lock it in. Locking in the championship winning the last race is definitely the way to end the perfect season.”
SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup – Tie Goes To The Wyman
SportbikeTrackGear.com Junior Cup’s final race of the season was also the final race of the weekend at Barber Motorsports Park, and Alpha Omega Kawasaki rider Cody Wyman played his cards exactly right with no room for error. He finished eighth in the race, which was just enough for him to clinch the championship with a tie in points but winning the tiebreaker on more wins. The rider who Wyman tied with on points was the same rider who won Sunday’s race: Rodio Racing Kawasaki’s Gus Rodio. The New Jerseyan did all he could to wrap up the title with his last-race victory, but he couldn’t overcome the advantage that Wyman had in total season wins. Second place went to Altus Motorsports Kawasaki rider Kayla Yaakov, and in third place was Team ISO Kawasaki’s Ryoto Ogiwara.
Championship winner Wyman said, “It’s always tough. All these guys and girls are just absolutely sending it on these 400s. The class has been so good. MotoAmerica did such a good job with the rules. The racing is, I think, the best races of the weekend. They’re a lot of fun to be a part of. I feel like I did the work during the season, to have a bit more of a relaxed, although stressful, final weekend. I’m just really happy to be able to wrap this thing up and maybe get some sleep tonight. Just shout out to Lenny from K-Tech. He has had some health issues. We’re thinking about you, man.”
Race winner Rodio said, “Having experience now with a close championship and stuff like this, I to be honest would rather go in 20 points down than 20 points up. I don’t know what was going through Cody’s head, but I was pretty chill all weekend and I knew what I had to do. It’s unfortunately yesterday that that happened, but you can’t really look back and say, if this didn’t happen… We thought it was over after Brainerd, a couple DNF’s. We came into Jersey 50 points down. Came into here 20 points down, and we tied up the championship. Six-race podium streak, which coming into the season, that’s more podiums than I have ever gotten. So, to have that in a row is amazing.”Rohyaprogram wrapped up at Barber Motorsports Park, and Kayleigh Buyck won the final race of the season while also clinching the season championship at the same time. Coming home second was Chloe Peterson while Crystal Martinez rounded out the podium in third.