DAYTONA BEACH, FL, MAR. 14 – Y.E.S. Graves Yamaha’s Cameron Beaubier apparently went to the Josh Hayes school of demoralizing your competition as the youngster went out and blitzed the field to lead the red-flag interrupted first Daytona SportBike practice session in preparation for Saturday’s Daytona 200.
Beaubier’s best lap was over two seconds quicker than M4 Broaster Chicken’s Benny Solis with fellow Honda CBR600RR-mounted Dane Westby third fastest on the GEICO Honda. Beaubier lapped at 1:52.099 with Solis and Westby at 1:54.006 and 1:54.129, respectively. Westby also crashed, as did last year’s Daytona 200 winner Joey Pascarella and Desmo Veloce’s Jake Zemke. The session was interrupted three times by red flags.
“I felt good,” Beaubier said. “The track was definitely slick. I think everybody was pretty much in the same boat – getting a feel for everything. We did our homework in the off-season and I’m feeling really good. I’m ready to get on with the season. It was pretty slick – mostly in the little right-hand kink. Three people crashed right in front of me and I definitely tippy-toed through there. It’s first practice and I’m just getting going and so is everyone else.”
Triple Crown/RMR’s Bobby Fong ended up fourth fastest in the opening session.
Daytona SportBike Practice
1. Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha) 1:52.099
2. Benny Solis (Honda) 1:54.006
3. Dane Westby (Honda) 1:54.129
4. Bobby Fong (Yamaha) 1:54.540
5. Garrett Gerloff (Yamaha) 1:54.549
6. Huntley Nash (Yamaha) 1:54.811
7. Jake Zemke (Ducati) 1:54.838
8. Jason DiSalvo (Triumph) 1:54.854
9. Jake Gagne (Yamaha) 1:54.885
10. Jake Lewis (Yamaha) 1:55.432