LTD Racing's Puerta and Gaviria Podium at Infineon Raceway
NEWS May 15, 2011
Photo by Evan Williams
Sonoma, CA (May 14, 2011) – Y.E.S. LTD Racing earned podium finishes in the first of two AMA Pro SuperSport races at Infineon Raceway on Saturday. Tomas Puerta rallied to take second place despite a jump start and David Gaviria earned third in the face of a tough battle for position that wasn’t settled until the riders passed the stripe the final time. Sam Nash retired after a charge through the field in the race. Huntley Nash took fifteenth in the hyper-competitive Daytona SportBike class as the young rider continues to improve in his second contest in the class.
Puerta, the East points leader, jumped the start and was docked five seconds, but the Colombian quickly gathered his wits to mount a strong charge to second place.
“I was really trying to get a holeshot because I knew that would be important to be part of the podium. I knew I moved on the start … it went to my head in the opening laps a little, “said Puerta. “I was trying not to think about it but I did. On the third lap I did a big mistake before running down the hill and Benny passed me. I really wanted to finish the race but I didn’t think I could make the podium. I just tried to keep decent lap times and be there on the podium, because I knew I would have those five seconds.”
Gaviria’s fine result at a track he’d never ridden before Friday helped him retain the SuperSport West points lead. Gaviria fought for third place and took the position by a mere 0.289 seconds. David weathered passing maneuvers coolly and chose the quicker lines on corner exit to retake third.
“I was feeling so good at the start, but at the middle of the race I ran out of grip with the rear tire. I pushed very hard, but I couldn’t do anything because all the time I was sliding,” said Gaviria. “I tried to make a difference between (Corey) Alexander and me, but I couldn’t do it. At the end of the race he caught me, and we were fighting a lot, but in a good way. I was lucky at the last lap. My tire was finished, so I couldn’t do anything aggressive. It worked out for us today and I am happy to be third.”
Law student and part-time competitor Sam Nash rose to a large battle for fifth place, but pulled in after a near crash. “I guess the difference between part time and full time is I couldn’t get my head back in it after the almost-crash. I did some things I wouldn’t normally do so I pulled in. We’ll regroup and get it going again tomorrow. I was pleased with our pace before I had the issue.”
Although a broken ankle hindered his offseason program, Huntley Nash recovered to race at Daytona but struggled thus far at Infineon Raceway. The young rider and rising star undertaking a tremendous challenge by joining the elite Daytona SportBike class earned 15th in Saturday’s race. “It was a tough race for us and I am disappointed,” said last year’s number two finisher in SuperSport East points. “We haven’t gotten the bike working the way it needs to and I am not riding my best. We’re working, though, trying to get my confidence in the bike to where it needs to be. We figured some stuff out and we’re looking forward to getting another chance tomorrow.”
LTD Racing’s Director of Competition Gary Medley said, “Two of our riders’ SuperSport races went to plan. We’ll change some stuff tomorrow with what we learned today and see if we can go for the win. With Huntley, were still trying to find the setup he needs for this track. We just have to get him back to where he needs to be. It’s a tough track but we like the challenge because this will teach us how to get where we need to be. Every time he rides, it gets closer to that point.”
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