SHELTON, Wash. – In three of his four championship-winning seasons, Monster Energy Attack Performance Yamaha’s Cameron Beaubier won eight races.
Saturday, in the ninth race of the season, Beaubier won his eighth HONOS Superbike race, this one coming in the MotoAmerica debut event at the Ridge Motorsports Park. The four-time and defending MotoAmerica Superbike champion led from start to finish to win the 46th Superbike race of his career.
The race was restarted after a multi-rider crash on the opening lap that brought out the red flag, but after that it was clear sailing for Beaubier as he rode to an 8.1-second victory over Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz. Beaubier’s race got a bit easier when his teammate Jake Gagne was forced to slow near the end of the race with a badly worn tire, the San Diegan slipping back to fourth at the conclusion of the shortened 13-lap race.
Beaubier also benefitted from the red flag restart after he botched the initial run through the chicane.
“The first time around going into the chicane I didn’t click it back into first gear, and so I came out of that right-hander after I ran it wide in the first corner where I flicked it back right,” Beaubier said. “I was in second gear and I just bogged pretty bad off that corner and got passed by these guys. Then I had a big old slide on the back straightaway. That threw me out of the seat pretty good. Then, obviously, it got red flagged. We went back to square one and they shortened the race to 13 laps.
“I was like… I knew I needed to try to get off the start as good as I can and try to lead it out of the chicane and push as hard as I can. I was able to open up a little bit of a gap at the beginning. And it was slowly growing, slowly growing and then, all of a sudden, I was like, ‘man, I got to keep my head down.’ All of a sudden, I came by and it was a pretty good chunk. I was like, ‘I’m sure these guys are battling.’ There was no easy place to pass here. You pretty much got to kind of stuff the guy to get around him with all the tight corners here. So, I’m sure it made it good, some pretty exciting racing. I’m glad I was away from these guys. Just hats off to my Monster Attack Yamaha guys. I feel like I just need to pinch myself sometimes. It’s going really well. I just want to keep it going and not get too excited and just keep the momentum going.”
Scholtz came out the better of a near-race long scrap with M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Bobby Fong, the South African battling back after running off track midway through the race. Fong ended up third, Gagne was fourth and Toni Elias settled for fifth.