It’s Close at the Top as Ducati Stars Aim for the VIR Podium
Kyle Wyman (Panera Bread Ducati) and Loris Baz (Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati New York) were right at the pointy end of an ultra-competitive day at VIRginia International Raceway as round two of the 2021 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship got underway.
Just under a second separates the top seven riders, with Baz completing 36 laps across the first practice and qualifying sessions to go P6 at the end of the day. Wyman completed a mammoth 42 laps on the green and black Ducati Panigale V4 R and is right behind Baz in seventh.
The two Ducati pilots will now turn their attention to the all-important Q2 session tomorrow morning before taking aim at the podium in race one, scheduled to start at 3:00 p.m. EDT.
FP1 Final Standing
P1 – Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha) 1:24.742
P2 – Bobby Fong (Suzuki) 1:24.761
P3 – Josh Herrin (Yamaha) 1:24.803
P4 – Jake Gagne (Yamaha) 1:24.842
P5 – Loris Baz (Ducati) 1:25.200
P7 – Kyle Wyman (Ducati) 1:25.744
Qualifying 1 Final Standing
P1 – Jake Gagne (Yamaha) 1:24.103
P2 – Josh Herrin (Yamaha) 1:24.258
P3 – Cameron Petersen (Suzuki) 1:24.561
P4 – Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha) 1:24.635
P5 – Bobby Fong (Suzuki) 1:25.007
P6 – Loris Baz (Ducati) 1:25.053
P7 – Kyle Wyman (Ducati) 1:25.091
Loris Baz (Warhorse HSBK Racing Ducati New York – Ducati #76)
“Today was my first day at VIR with the Superbike, but I did a track day last month on the Ducati Panigale V4 S so the layout is familiar,” Baz said. “Obviously, it’s completely different when on the racebike, and this is something that we will have to get use to as we will need to figure out many things at the new tracks (for me) this year. We have to find a base set up, base gearing, etc. We’re not yet at the pace we want to be, but we’re working on the bike, trying different tires, gearing, and suspension changes. I am confident we can be on a strong pace for tomorrow and put in a good lap time. I’ve done a lot of laps today and I’m sure we will be in a much better spot tomorrow with the Panigale V4 R.”
Kyle Wyman (Panera Bread Ducati – Ducati #33)
“Today was one of the best days I’ve had on the bike, we put in so many laps,” Wyman enthused. “Each time we went on track, we made progress, going quicker and quicker. It’s pretty rare when you don’t take steps backward and today was one of those days where we just kept getting better, so I have really positive feelings with the bike. It’s really close on the times. We’re better than we’ve been towards the end of last year and also at Road Atlanta. The bike is feeling really solid. We’ve got a plan for tomorrow where we have a couple of electronic changes and a different compound front tire to try, but overall, we’re just going to play with a couple of little things and try to keep this momentum rolling.”