Mesa’s The Man In Daytona Supersport
Photography by Andrea Wilson
Stefano Mesa had to make a quick decision. David Sadowski was leading coming out of the chicane on the last lap of the Supersport race, but suddenly backed off the gas. Mesa had one of two choices – slow and get into a drafting battle with five other riders, or peg the throttle and see if he could make a break to the flag. He decided to go with the throttle option and it paid off. Mesa had just enough of a jump to hold off Sadowski by a bike length at the flag.
Hayden Gillim was right there and finished a close third after officials reviewed finish line video.
Mesa’s margin of victory was 0.026 seconds. Just 0.274 seconds separated the top six riders.
The race could have been won by any one of the top six riders. They gathered up for the late-race melee with three laps to go after Mesa and Tomas Puerta seemed to have broken away a few laps earlier.
It marked the second career Supersport win for Mesa, an 18-year-old racer from Colombia and his first victory at Daytona.
AMA Supersport Results
1. Stefan Mesa (Yamaha)
2. David Sadowski (Yamaha)
3. Hayden Gillim (Yamaha)
4. Matthew Sadowski (Yamaha)
5. Tomas Puerta (Yamaha)
6. Sebastiao Ferreira (Yamaha)
7. Mark Miller Jr. (Yamaha)
8. Cody Wyman (Suzuki)
9. Armando Ferrer (Yamaha)
10. Travis Ohge (Suzuki)