Tremblay wins thrilling Sport Bike race two at Shannonville

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The early momentum atop the Economy Lube Pro Sport Bike class shifted dramatically on Sunday, as Sebastien Tremblay led start-to-finish to take the championship lead at the Bridgestone Canadian Superbike opener at Shannonville Motorsport Park, presented by the Fallen Rider Support Team sponsored by Pace Law.

Tremblay got a spectacular start from second on the grid to grab the holeshot with Elliot Vieira and race one winner Ben Young slotting in behind him, while rookie Mavrick Cyr joined the mix in an early lead group of four.

Vieira had started to reel in Tremblay on lap two but appeared to miss a shift heading onto the back straight, allowing Young through with relative ease as he began to hunt down Tremblay.

The 2021 champion responded incredibly to Young’s comeback attempt, though, matching laps with the Superbike champion as Tremblay led throughout the first half of the race and held a steady gap of 0.7 seconds through lap ten.

That advantage would close to within 0.4 seconds with just two laps to go, setting up a potential showdown for the win between the two title rivals, but instead it all went wrong for Young on the penultimate lap as he crashed out of second place in the turn ten hairpin due to a rad hose failure.

That allowed Tremblay to cruise home in the final lap and score a crucial round one victory for the Turcotte Performance Suzuki team, opening up a ten-point advantage in the Sport Bike championship after settling for second on Saturday.

“It was a good race for us yesterday, but Ben just had a bit more pace. Today the roles were reversed, as Ben put a lot of pressure on me but we were able to make some changes and hold the pace,” Tremblay said. “It was unfortunate for him and a bit lucky for us, but we’ve been unlucky too. To be able to challenge him on more equal machinery feels really good.”

As for Young, it was a disastrous start to the day for the Scot-Build Suzuki rider as his hopes of a historic double-sweep this season evaporated in the opening round, dropping him to a tie for a third in the championship and 19 points back of Tremblay heading to Grand Bend.

That promoted Vieira to second both in race two and in the championship, as the GP Bikes Ducati rider exited with a huge haul of points in round one after missing the season opener a year ago.

“The bike feels so planted, I just need to find a bit more,” Vieira admitted. “I tried really hard but they’re pace was just so strong, so I decided to just bring it home and fortunately we got a bit of a break on the last lap.”

Young’s misfortune meant John Laing’s charge through the field would hand him the final podium spot, as the Vass Performance Kawasaki rider nearly reeled in Vieira at the midway point before settling in for a crucial batch of points to exit round one tied with Young for third in the standings.

“We were working hard on the bike last night, and it was awesome today. Everything was really good,” Laing said. “Elliot rode so well, I just couldn’t quite catch him, but we’re really happy to take third.”

Rookie pros Mavrick Cyr (04) and Philip Degama-Blanchet (62) came together on the last lap with Degama-Blanchet coming out of it with a fourth place finish, relegating Cyr to fifth. [Photo: Rob O’Brien / CSBK].

Just behind the lead trio was a fierce battle for the top rookie spot between teenagers Cyr and Philip Degama-Blanchet, with the latter making a bold move on the reigning amateur champion to take fourth on the final lap.

The 16-year-old Degama-Blanchet and 18-year-old Cyr exchanged words in the pit lane after the race, perhaps the first sign of a brewing rivalry as the Vass Performance Kawasaki rider chases down Cyr and the Rizzin Racing Team in their first pro season.

Tremblay’s victory will prove to be a crucial one for Suzuki atop the Constructors Championship, as they retain their early lead despite Young’s crash and the strong performances of Kawasaki and Ducati.

Vieira and Nathan Playford (sixth) did enough to move Ducati into second in that table, while Laing and Degama-Blanchet closed the gap in third in what is shaping up to be a dramatic award battle this year.

Full results from Sunday’s races can be found on the series’ official website at CSBK.ca.

Main picture: Sebastien Tremblay (24) led Sunday’s Pro Sport Bike race from start to finish at Shannonville Motorsport Park – most of it with Ben Young (86) within striking distance. Young would crash out due to a mechanical failure with just over a lap remaining. [Photo: Rob O’Brien / CSBK].

SOURCE: CSBK

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