Close Race Between Garrett Gerloff and JD Beach in Supersport Race 1 at Road America

Gerloff wins by fractions of a second

Four, one-thousandths of a second. That’s how close Saturday’s MotoAmerica Supersport Race was at Road America as Championship points leader Garrett Gerloff took the checkered flag inches in front of his Yamaha Extended Service/Graves/Yamaha teammate and defending Supersport Champion JD Beach.

Garrett started from the pole position that he earned in qualifying earlier on Saturday, with JD gridded right next to him. Rain earlier in the day meant that the race went green with the Wisconsin track still damp in spots. Slicks were the tire choice for all the top riders, and the pace started out slower, but picked up as the laps wound down.

Yamaha, JD Beach, Garrett Gerloff, Supersport Race 1, Road America
It was a close race on Saturday. .004-of-a-second close!Photo Courtesy of Yamaha

The conditions were essentially a non-factor for Garrett and JD, who got off the line well and stayed in the lead pack throughout the race, with each rider taking a turn at leading the race. With only a few laps remaining, Garrett put his #31 Y.E.S./Graves/Yamaha R6 up front, put his head down, and ran his fastest laps of the race at the end. JD did the same, and given that draft passes are a critical maneuver at Road America, looked perfectly positioned to steal the victory from his teammate by passing him right before the checkers.

It was so close, but the timing of JD’s pass just didn’t allow him to get past Garrett, who notched his sixth win of the season and extended his Championship lead to 39 points.

Yamaha, JD Beach, Garrett Gerloff, Supersport Race 1, Road America
Both Gerlof and Beach had a great race at Road America which got them to the top two podium positions for Race 1 of Road America.Photo Courtesy of Yamaha

After his victory, Garrett said, “I wasn’t really expecting the track to dry up as fast as it did. There were some spots that were pretty damp, but a dry line appeared pretty quickly. Towards the end of the race, it was mostly dry, so I felt like I could go a little quicker. I think we could all tell that my R6 had a lot of steam today, so that was a big help. Also, I was doing everything I could to stay tucked in because streamlining is so important here.”

JD commented, “I had a chance earlier in the lap to try to get by Garrett, but I decided not to try it. So then, I tried to time it and catch him at the stripe. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out. I’m happy with the race, though, and how I’m riding.”

Garrett and JD will go head-to-head again on Sunday in Supersport Race 2, which will go green at 2:45 p.m.

Watch Round 5 of the MotoAmerica Championship on beIN SPORTS and beIN SPORTS CONNECT

beIN SPORTS:
Sunday, June 5, 12:00 p.m. CST: Superbike Race 1, Supersport Race 2, Superbike Race 2

beIN SPORTS CONNECT (beIN SPORTS 6):
Sunday, June 5, 12:00 p.m. CST: Superbike Race 1, Supersport Race 2, Superbike Race 2