Former Goulburn resident Troy Herfoss heads into this weekend’s second round of the Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) at Goulburn’s Wakefield Park in the best championship position than he has ever done before in his racing career. Why you ask? Well, he sits in third place in the championship fight, tied on 59-points apiece with reigning Superbike champion, Josh Waters, and the pair are only one solid point behind Kawasaki BCperformance’s Bryan Staring, who took out the opening round.
Herfoss, 31, walked away with a third place overall finish at the curtain raiser round at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit at the end of last month. The Penrite Honda Racing Team pilot snared an emphatic race win in the opening race, which he has never done before in any of the other championships that he has raced in. Herfoss managed to hold his hero, Troy Bayliss (DesmoSport Ducati) at bay by a mere .201 seconds, with Waters and Staring in third and fourth place, while in race two and three it was a pair of fourth place finishes.
Herfoss told the Goulburn Post last Wednesday that if he and his team are fast at Phillip Island, then it sets them up good for the year ahead.
“Phillip Island in the past has been tough track for us,” admitted Herfoss.
“I’m just happy to get the first ‘normal’ round underway, as last time out we were doing double duties with racing in the WorldSBK and ASBK. So the regular season starts next week for us.”
On Tuesday and Wednesday, Herfoss and his Victorian based team were presence at Wakefield Park for a two day test ahead of next weekend’s second round of the ASBK series, which saw them working hard to fine tune an already good Honda CBR1000RR SP2 machine.
Herfoss left Wakefield Park pretty happy, as they did do a lot of long runs on the Pirelli race tyre, which saw them laying down a very respectable lap time around the 2.2km circuit. The scary thing about, Herfoss and his crew haven’t even thought qualifying or even doing a fast lap time. According to Herfoss, the lap time just came to him.
“I was able to consistently run at a really good race pace. Hopefully our race pace is a touch better than everyone else’s. In saying that, we don’t know what the others were doing as there was no official timing. While we know what we did, some of the other riders also looked pretty fast, so we’ll just have to wait and see where we are at come round two.”
Herfoss, who now has stood on the ASBK Superbike podium fourteen times, which sees him having scored five round wins and second places and four third places in total is simply just looking forward to getting back to Wakefield Park and get the race weekend underway now.
Last year at Wakefield Park, Herfoss guided the older Honda CBR1000RR SP2 model to a 1-2 finish, which handed him his one only round win for the 2017 season. This year at Wakefield Park will be the first time that Herfoss will race the all-new 2017 CBR1000RR SP2 at his old ‘stomping ground’.
So, how is Herfoss feeling ahead of next weekend’s block buster round at Wakefield on the new steed, which he debut at Darwin’s Hidden Valley last year at the start of July?
“I’m looking forward to seeing what we can get out of the new Honda CBR1000RR SP2 at Wakefield Park. It’s a good bike and the team and I are enjoying it.
It’s just good to be competitive,” Herfoss said.
For sure the new bike is better than the previous model. Herfoss explained that the new 2017 SP2 machine is a lot easier on the touch of the throttle.
While the 2017 model still handles like older CBR1000RR SP2 machine, the new model is a bit better everywhere, with the main advantage coming from the smoother power delivery.
However, Herfoss has expressed that it would be nice to be able to get some more top speed out of it, but that is something his team will have to work on over the year as they go by.
Phillip Island is a fast and flowing circuit, where top speed is your friend, the polar opposite to Wakefield Park. Herfoss displayed that he was not lacking too much down the main straight.
What Wakefield Park does require, is a motorcycle that handles well over the bumps and the tight and twisty circuit, which seems to suit the Honda’s very well. If that is the case, maybe Herfoss could deliver the town of Goulburn a home town win come sunset Sunday week.
Herfoss finished with; “I’m just pumped to be racing at home again. I can’t wait to see all my friends and family and hopefully put on a good show for all the locals from Goulburn who turn out to watch the round.”