New Jersey Motorsports Park Recap: AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport
NEWS September 14, 2012
Photo by Brian J Nelson
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (September 14, 2012) - The James Rispoli/Dustin Dominguez battles in AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport this season have been intense, with both riders showing they have considerable potential to do well as they move up to AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike in the future.
Rispoli was a class champion last year, so it is no surprise he continues to run up front on his Celtic Racing/ Orient Express Racing Suzuki. He's run impressive lap times all year. Dominguez had shown speed in the past, but this year his consistency has improved vastly. The Latus Motors Racing Triumph rider has improved greatly in 2012 and has harnessed a lot of the rawness of his previous riding style. He's still aggressive, but he's managed to eliminate mistakes he's made in the past.
Both riders seem to enjoy the competition and the two clearly have pushed each other to improve.
The two split wins at New Jersey Motorsports Park. Rispoli won on Saturday while being harried by his rival for the entire race, crossing the line 0.167 seconds ahead of Dominguez. Unfortunately for Dominguez, he was penalized for passing under a yellow flag and received a penalty, so he lost second place in the process and was classified sixth.
"The race was pretty difficult," Rispoli admitted. "It was a little slick today and we just tried to get a good start and run a good pace. I saw that (Dustin and I) had a pretty good gap and then I didn't know what was going on with the 20 seconds. I got back by Dustin and brought it home. I didn't know what was going on so I just kept pushing like it was the last lap and we were pushing for the win."
On Sunday, the two went at it again for the entire race. Dominguez was declared the winner in a contest that saw two red flags. The second one occurred with three laps to go just after Rispoli had taken the lead. When the two encountered lapped traffic, Dominguez and Babuska Racing's Chris Starke collided. Dominguez remained upright but Starke did not.
"The race was going good and James and I were going at it," Dominguez said. "It was unfortunate there at the end. We got into lapped traffic and kind of collided there. I feel horrible -- it's probably one of the most uncomfortable wins I've ever had. I wish it would have come down to the end."
With four races left, it will be interesting to see which man gets the upper hand.
Behind them, the action was tight. On Saturday, Y.E.S/Graves/Yamaha's Garrett Gerloff managed to draft past RoadRace Factory/Red Bull's Tomas Puerta at the line to take second place in his first race back from an injury sustained at Daytona. Puerta's teammate Hayden Gillim finished just behind the duo. Elkhart winner Stefano Mesa(Kneedraggers.com Yamaha) finished four seconds back.
New Jersey's Eric Stump earned seventh in the race.
On Sunday, the red flag ended a seven-rider battle for third, with all of the riders crossing the line within a shade more than a second of each other. The pack included Jake Lewis, who took third, Corey Alexander on the National Guard/Fairhills Group machine, Gerloff, Mesa, Puerta, Elena Myers on the Suzuki SportBikeTrackGear.com bike, and Gillim.
Local rider Brice Lloyd earned a top ten on his Markbilt Yamaha.
With two rounds left, Rispoli and Dominguez have sizeable points leads in the East and West divisions, so the rivalry can take the forefront.