Updated: May 24
Via MotoAmerica Press Release- BIRMINGHAM, AL (May 20, 2023) – Warhorse HSBK Racing’s Xavi Fores won his third Supersport race in succession on Saturday at Barber Motorsports Park and it was a good one to win as the first-ever MotoAmerica “Extended” Supersport r acepaid double points. For many, however, it probably felt like two races as changing weather conditions prolonged the proceedings despite the race ultimately being shortened from 37 to 28 laps.
Fores completed the 28 laps in 44 minutes, 43.653 seconds to beat Tytlers Cycle Racing’s Stefano Mesa by 9.8 seconds with the pair battling until the mandatory pit stop left Mesa at a disadvantage that he couldn’t recover from.
Third place went to North East Cycle Outlet Racing’s Anthony Mazziotto with the New Jerseyan keeping his nose clean to earn his second career podium in the Supersport class.
Michael Gilbert Racing’s Michael Gilbert was fourth, some eight seconds behind Mazziotto, with Squid Hunter Racing’s Josh Hayes fifth after starting the final portion of the race on rain tires – a mistake that forced him to pit quickly after the restart to change to slicks.
“It was more stressful inside the pits trying to understand which tires to use, which tires to put on the bike, after the couple of red flags. After the first red flag, I didn’t know it was a huge crash and they red-flagged the race. Because I was pulling meters away. I see some drops coming initially, but I was still quite on my pace. I was pulling me and Josh (Hayes) pulling meters away. When I saw the red flag, I was a bit disappointed because I was waiting, waiting, waiting to come in when the proper rain was coming to put the rain tires. But, anyway, we came out again with the rains and was okay. I was still leading and fighting with Josh (Hayes) for one and a half laps. Then the red flag came again. I thought that it’s going to be challenging. So, I stayed inside the pits until the very last minute before to rejoin the grid. At the very last minute, we decided to put the slicks because the sun was coming out and I had some experience on endurance that you can run the slick tires even if it’s slightly wet. So, when the race restarted, I saw Stefano (Mesa) was with me all the time. I was trying to manage a little bit the tires. I put a medium compound in the rear, and it was not feeling so good. But I was so convinced on our pit stop, we did a good job there in the garage. Then I put the soft tire and I was trying to stay on the 27s (1:27 lap times). That was pretty much our race. It was a little bit crazy because two red flags in less than 20 minutes is not usual. When it’s raining coming, everything is quite challenging, but we did well. We got 50 points back home. So, I put my experience from the world endurance in this race and I think it was worth it. Thanks to all the team. They did a massive job inside the garage on the pit change. And all the sponsors. KYT, Alpinestars, Parts Unlimited, everyone who has been involved. They have supported me quite a lot. It has not been easy to arrive here, learn the tracks, being fast, try to learn the races. These guys are fast. They have a lot of experience here. I try to learn as much as I can in a short time.”
Story -MotoAmerica Press Release May 20, 2023
Photos- Brian J. Nelson
Xavi Fores Wins At Barber
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