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2017 Season Review Part One

With 2017 preparing to disappear into history, it is a fitting time to look back on what has been a breakthrough season for GP Juniors Australia. This year was a quantum leap for junior road racing in Australia and has provided an encouraging foundation for 2018 and beyond.

The first major development for 2017 was the inauguration of the GP Juniors Cup, with a one make series reintroduced after a gap of nearly a decade, the series contested by kids from 12 to under 16 years of age.

Yamaha Motor Australia stepped in to expand its major support of domestic racing with the Yamaha YZF-R15 the bike of choice for the GP Juniors Cup and Bridgestone also became a part of GP Juniors Australia with all the bikes using the Japanese company’s BT 39 treaded road tyre as the control rubber for 2017.

While these little machines do not have the outright top speed of the two stroke machines that have been the bike of choice in recent years, the competitiveness of all riders on the same machine and same tyres play a big part in unearthing the vast talent pool of young riders that this country continues to produce.

Motorcycling Australia was also a big part of the GP Juniors Australia in 2017 and made room for three rounds of the GP Juniors Cup to be held alongside the premier categories of the Yamaha Motor Finance Australian Superbike Championships. Additionally there were another three rounds for the GP Juniors Cup held with various clubs as well as three rounds for the 85cc and 70cc capacity machines in GP Juniors Australia.

Without doubt it has been a major success as in recent years the 150cc four-stroke class has had only two or three riders competing regularly in GP Juniors Australia, however, with the re-introduction of the one make series the numbers have increased by a whopping 500%!

A major reason for such a dramatic increase in numbers was the price of the bikes. At just $4690 for a Yamaha YZF-R15, with the race kit fitted and a further $246 for the Bridgestone tyres – if purchased through GP Juniors Australia – the cost is remarkable for a youngster to enter the world of road racing compared to the expense incurred with the traditional GP-style, two-stroke machines, that often require extra maintenance when compared to the reliability of the little Yamaha 150cc machines.

Also there are a fleet of bikes available for lease through GP Juniors Australia, a further enticement for families from as far away as North Queensland and Darwin that alleviates the expense of transporting their own bikes over vast distances to various events.

Another feature that was reintroduced in 2017 was the MAC points award that is awarded at each round and sponsored by AMCN. The award is for a rider that demonstrates attributes off the track that include Marketability, Attitude and Character.

If MotoGP is the university of road racing, the aim of GP Juniors Australia is to be the pre-school where they commence the education to move through to the primary school class of the Supersport 300 and 600cc machines as they chase their dreams of success with the next step Superbike senior school before, hopefully, graduating to the world championships.

GP Juniors Australia received excellent exposure through the press during the year with plenty of column inches in regional papers where the racing was held as well as valuable air time on TV news bulletins added to the coverage received at the ASSBK rounds through the live streaming that was introduced this year.

So let’s take a look at how the season unfolded.

WAKEFIELD PARK

The first outing for the new look cup was in March at Wakefield Park near Goulburn (NSW) as part of the program for round two of the YMF Australian Superbike Championship, with a good mix of experienced and novice riders taking part,

The most experienced of these was15-year-old, Tommy Edwards (Enemies Everywhere/Newcaslte Supermoto/AlpineStars, NSW), from Newcastle (NSW). Tom returned to Australia in 2017 after a couple of years in Asia, with the pinnacle competing in the 2016 Asia Talent Cup. Others involved were the little blood nut from Darwin, Joel Kelso (JDS Racing/Deborah Motorsports. NT) on one of themeless bikes while the likes of Max Stauffer (Dyno 27/YRD), Ben Baker (Baker Racing) from the NSW Central Coast and John Lytras (Caboolture Yamaha) had a ton of dirt track experience with Stauffer having the advantage of his Dad, Jamie Stauffer who has won multiple Australian titles on the dirt and tar on hand to assist.

Edwards’ experience proved to be a benchmark for all the others to compare their progress throughout the year and was of a great benefit to everyone. He didn’t have it all his own way as the youngsters gave as good as they received in some very intense battles thought the year.

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Front row (L-R) Luke Power, Reece Oughtred, Harry Khouri Back row: Max Stauffer, John Lytras, Jack Cousens, Ben Baker Pic: GP Juniors Australia.

However the weather had a major impact on the proceedings as every practice and qualifying session as well as the three, six-lap races were hampered by extremely wet conditions.

In fact, the youngsters faced the toughest of the conditions of any of the class as it seemed that every time the kids donned the helmets the heavens opened but they acquitted themselves remarkably well and accounted for the least number of crashes of all the classes throughout the weekend.

As expected there were many nervous eyes of the mums, dads and kids looking skywards as the first race approached. It was a very tentative start for the field as they headed out for the first race of the series on the Yamaha YZF-R15s in the extremely sketchy conditions with the track both wet and dry in parts.

Edwards experience shone through as he left them standing from the start and Kelso finished second with Lytras a further nine seconds behind in third. Young Jack Cousens (JC’s Motorcycle Shop/TM Performance) from Melbourne was up there fighting for a minor place but got a bit too excited and crashed around the half way point but gallantly remounted to grab some well earned points while one with little racing experience Harry Khouri was another casualty

Although the heavens opened just before the start of race two, the field was a lot closer as the confidence grew and Kelso Edwards and Lytras had a great duel in the opening laps with the trio locked together as they left the grid. Edwards led the first lap by just 0.002 from Lytras and Kelso third as they swapped the lead many times with a few slides to each rider thrown in to keep them further on their toes, however a big moment for Lytras on the third lap saw him drop of the bunch to remain in a lonely third. Meanwhile,12-year old Ben Baker and Stauffer were in close proximity the entire race in the battle for fourth.

Kelso won the race from Edwards by just 0.059 sec with Lytras third who managed a comfortable gap a gap over Baker and Stauffer with the pair crossing ht line side-by-side Baker claiming fourth by an extremely tight margin

The final race of the weekend was in the worst conditions of any of the classes, but again, the future stars put on excellent displays of riding.

When it was all over, as expected, the experience of Edwards shone through as he was victorious winning bthe final leg by a comprehensive margin. Cousens was up there in second for a couple of laps but a couple of near misses was enough for him to back it off a little. Lytras held onto second place from a fast finishing Kelso with Stauffer less than half a second away in fourth

The first outing for the GP Juniors Cup proved the concept was a winning and also highlighted that the season ahead was going to produce some very entertaining racing.

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They’re off at Winton (Vic). Pic: Half Light Photography

WINTON

The second round of the GP Juniors Cup was held at Winton Raceway on April 28-30 again with the ASBK however, unlike Wakefield a few weeks previously, thankfully the weather was kind with good conditions all weekend allowing the youngsters to put on an exceptionally dynamic and exciting exhibition of road racing.

The three races were decided by the closest margins of all 16 races during that ASBK weekend, including the premier YMI Australian Superbike Championship category, proving that the one make series with the Yamaha R15 was the correct choice for competition.

The scene for action was set in qualifying as 12-year-old, Ben Baker, claimed pole position from 13-year-old, Joel Kelso by just 0.007 of a second with Tom Edwards

As the field charged off the line in the first race, the front row trio were joined by another 12-year-old, John Lytras. The quartet soon became embroiled in a titanic duel, the lead changing at every one of the track’s corners, as riders went from first to fourth, and back again, from one corner to another.

After the five laps was done, the four crossed the line with Edwards beating Kelso and Lytras by 0.096 sec as Baker lost the slipstreaming duel to the finish line by just 0.320 sec.

The other two races was more of the same, just more intense! In the next leg, Melbourne teenager, Jack Cousens joined in for a five-bike freight train with some monumentally close racing before the race was red-flagged as the final lap started. It was set for another cracking finish but exiting Spokes Turn Two, Jack and Joel Kelso had a coming together through the second corner, causing Cousins to crash. The race was taken back a lap with Lytras the winner from Kelso and Edwards, the trio 0.219 sec apart with Baker just 0.417 sec away, in fourth.

The final leg was another exceptional race, an almost carbon copy of the opening race the day before, with another four-way dog fight. The race was set for an another enthralling battle to the wire but Lytras crashed out, half way through the final lap exiting YMF Turn seven and split the leading quartet with Kelso dropping off the Edwards and Baker. The pair had a great charge to the line to produce the closest finish of the weekend as Edwards beat his younger rival by an excruciating 0.012 sec!  Kelso finished third, five seconds adrift.

The total winning margin of the three races between first and second was a massive 0.225sec!  0.079, 0.131, 0.015, respectively. Additionally in two of the races, the total margin covering the top four was 0.956 sec;  0.320 and 0.636, respectively.

An interesting sidelight of the Winton meeting was the dramatic improvement in the lap times by some of the kids

The front of the field may have been the centre of attention but the rest of the youngsters had some great duels among themselves. Max Stauffer, was having his second attempt at road racing after his baptism in the atrocious conditions of Wakefield Park. He was involved in some excellent close quarter action with Harry Khouri (Excite Motorsport) their races also decided by tenths of a second.

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Guess who? Pic Gp Juniors Australia.

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MAX STAUFFER WITH A FAMILAR NUMBER, HARD AT IT Pic Half Light Photography

 

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MORGAN PARK

In June Round three of the GP Juniors headed to Queensland’s Morgan Park as part of the Southern Downs Road Race Series presented by the Motorcycle Sportsmen Club, and also featured the first round of the other classes in GP Juniors Australia for the 70cc and 85cc two-stroke machines.

Before we all arrived there, a special event was conducted a couple of hours away at Cooyar.

GP legend Garry McCoy had invited the participants of GP Juniors Australia to his magnificent 1800 acre property for two days of coaching and advice from the master himself.

Although it was during the school term, it was too good an offer to refuse so a number of the youngsters and their families took part in the exercise and camped overnight with Garry putting on a BBQ for dinner and also a hearty breakfast. All gained valuable information and tips to assist them in their development, no matter the levels of experience that was put into practice a couple of days later at Morgan Park where McCoy also attended to give further advice and guidance.

The entire week at Cooyar and at Morgan Park was a re

sounding success with the youngsters demonstrating remarkable skills in very testing conditions, particularly on Saturday. The way they handled the conditions was not doubt helped by what was taught to them on McCoy’s excellent training facility. as they learnt about sliding and front wheel control on the dirt in slippery conditions.

His efforts did’t go unnoticed by all who took part and for him to offer his time and expertise for nothing is ample demonstration of the passion he holds for passing on his knowledge to others. A massive thank you to him.

Also due a massive “thank you” is the Motorcycle Sportsmen Club as well as Motorcycling Queensland. Because of the numbers, the 70cc machines – that are raced by 9 -11 years old – were combined with the 85cc two- strokes and also the GP Juniors Cup Yamaha R-15, 150cc machines. As such, the spread of ages contravened what is laid down in the MoMS, but thankfully an exception was allowed for the 11year-olds of the 70cc to compete with their older peers, and what a display they all put on. The riding expertise of these young kids had to be seen to be appreciated and, on track, they conducted themselves brilliantly

Over the combined three classes, 14 kids, ranging in age from 11 to 15-years-old took part in four races over the two days with conditions on Saturday so bad that a number of races were postponed due to the deluge that swamped the track however the opening race was held on a very wet track before proceedings were halted. The riders handled the conditions with great dexterity and in some cases a lot better than their senior contemporaries, their skills belying their tender years.

The racing was very competitive in all races and all the conditions with close battles throughout the field with the weather allowing a number of riders in shine. A number of newcomers to GP Juniors Australiasuch as Tristan Adamason Zak Pettendy and Zylas Bunting demonstrated their fast learning skills as well as the talent they possess that will make them a force in the future.

Series leader, Tom Edwards from Newcastle (NSW) increased his lead over his rivals taking three wins, but it was newcomer,  Adamson from the Gold Coast, who impressed the most on his debut in the class, taking out the very wet first leg l – and celebrated a birthday at the same time – to claim second overall from the rapidly improving Lytras, third overall.

Tom also took out the Australian Motor Cycle news MAC award which is for conduct off the track with Marketability, Character and Attitude the three attributes that are judged by three different people.

“It’s been a fantastic week here,” explained Edwards at the time. “We have all learnt so much with Garry and other coaches plus racing around this place is so much fun. To win the Mac Award means a lot, too”

Zylas Bunting won the 85cc class after favourite Tom Browne crashed out of the second leg while in a commanding lead. Ben Baker was third after competing on both the GP Juniors Cup before he decided to ride his two-stroke machine in the final leg.

In the 70cc class for the youngest of the competitors, Harrison Voight demonstrated that he is a definite star of the future as he was victorious with three wins and a third from Joshua Hall and Glenn Nelson.

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A typical scene in any corner during the year. 12-year-old Lytras on the inside line from 14-year-old, Kelso. Pic: Half Light Photography

The GP Juniors Cup  Heads to Morgan Park

The third round of the inaugural 2017 GP Juniors Cup will take place alongside the first round of Southern Downs Road Racing Championships at the recently resurfaced Morgan Park track this weekend (June 17-18) in Queensland, and it is shaping up as another exciting outing for the youngsters.

Before racing starts, competitors will partake in four days of coaching at the property of three-time MotoGP winner, Garry McCoy. McCoy has a sprawling 1800 acre, purpose built training facility, near Warwick, the Garry McCoy Coaching establishment at Cooyar. Some of the youngsters will be taking up his offer of free coaching on the Tuesday and Wednesday before they reconvene at Morgan Park for a further two days of professional instruction.

The opening round of this historic new racing series was conducted in atrociously wet conditions at Wakefield Park (NSW) in March, with the second round at Winton Raceway (VIC) at the end of April. Hopefully, the weather shines on these young up-and-coming racers at Morgan Park, who are chasing their dreams to follow in the footsteps of many great riders before them.

Series leader Tom “Tom-E-Gun” Edwards from Swansea (NSW) will be keen to stretch his lead in the GP Juniors Cup. The 15-year-old has a lot more experience than the rest of the field as in 2016 he competed in the ultra-competitive Asia Talent Cup, contested on standard Honda 250cc Moto 3 machines, a stepping stone into the European Championship and Grand Prix World Championships. His experience provides a perfect benchmark for the others to judge their progress throughout the seven round series that culminates at the final round in South Australia in late November.

Edwards explained; “I am really looking forward to Morgan Park and seeing if we can improve on what we did at Winton. The GP Juniors Cup is a great series to be a part of and there are a lot of good riders in there so I will have to be on my game to win all three races. Hopefully, it will be dry for the entire weekend, but saying that, riding on the control tyre, I learnt a lot in the wet conditions of Wakefield Park in getting the feedback from the tyres.”

“I am also really looking forward to receiving coaching and tips from Garry McCoy. He is one of my all-time heroes and one of Australia’s greatest riders, so it is going to be very special to be getting some tips from someone like him. This is so exciting and it is what makes GP Juniors Australia the special race series that it is.”

There will be some great duels throughout the field as the teenagers gain more experience and understanding of the complexities of road racing. One in the field who has a wealth of experience in his corner is Max Stauffer, the son of multiple Australian Superbike Champion, Jamie Stauffer. For Max this will be his third road race after learning his craft in dirt-track racing where he won an Australian Championship.

Over the course of the weekend there will be two free practice sessions on Friday, while on Saturday there will be two qualifying sessions and one race on Saturday with two races on Sunday. Featuring at the round will also be 70cc and 85cc two-stroke classes with one of the racers a young Queensland girl, Taylah Morris joining the likes of regular class competitors, Tom Browne, from Toowoomba, and brothers, Travis and Joshua Hall, who also hail from Queensland.

PROVSIONAL SERIES POINTS

1 Tommy EDWARDS (NSW) 138

2 Joel KELSO (NT) 121

3 John LYTRAS (QLD) 114

4 Ben BAKER (NSW) 102

5 Luke POWER (VIC)   84

6 Max STAUFFER (NSW)   81

7 Harry KHOURI (NSW)   77

8 Jack COUSENS (VIC)   70

9 Reece OUGHTRED (VIC)   40

 

 

 

GP Juniors Australia and GMC Cooyar Unite

 

GP JUNIORS AUSTRALIA AND GMC COOYAR UNITE

GP Juniors Australia is extremely delighted to announce it will partner with Garry McCoy of GMC Cooyar to provide a training venue for aspiring road racers to learn their craft. This is a major development in the aims of GP Juniors Australia to establish nationwide training facilities to nurture and develop a new generation of road racing champions.

A training camp will be held at GMC Cooyar on 12th and 13th June. After coaching and practicing there on the dirt, GP Juniors Australia will relocate to Morgan Park Raceway with McCoy for two days of valuable training on the bitumen.

The opportunity to practice off-road at GMC Cooyar, combined with two day’s practice on bitumen with Garry will prepare the juniors well for the third round of the GP Juniors Cup, a part of the Motorcycle Sportsmen of Qld Southern Downs Road Race Series.

Only those that enter the third round of GP Juniors Australia during the weekend of 16th -17th June will be eligible to take part in this amazing opportunity.

For interested parties, that have the necessary licence, there is also the option of leasing a Yamaha R15 fitted with Bridgestone tyres from GP Juniors Australia, for the training and weekend’s racing.

An added bonus to the GP Juniors is that all this training will be free, thanks to GMC Cooyar, Dave Fuller from Advanced Rider Training and Motorcycle Sportsmen of Queensland! Standard club entry fees apply to enter the meeting.

GMC Cooyar is Garry McCoy’s private off-road training facility and is one of Australia’s largest motorcycle coaching and practice venues.  The 1800-acre property, 2.5 hours from Brisbane, features a natural terrain motocross track, speedway track, junior technical tracks and a fast and flowing flat track – all of which Garry has purposely designed for road racers to cross train on dirt.

Promotor of GP Juniors Australia, Mark Bracks is naturally excited at the prospect saying, “this is an excellent opportunity for GP Juniors Australia to work with Garry McCoy and opens an avenue that can benefit so many riders. I have been there a couple of times and it is a magnificent facility for riders of all levels and ages.”

“In his stellar 18-year racing career Garry won 125cc and 500cc Grands Prix as well as races in the Superbike World Championship. To have Garry passing on his skills and knowledge is invaluable” he said.

McCoy is equally pleased to welcome GP Juniors Australia to his Queensland training facility.  “When I was racing in Grand Prix’s I developed my own off-road tracks here for my off-season training. For road racers, the opportunity to cross train on dirt provides immense physical and mental benefits” McCoy said.

“Over recent years I’ve continued to develop my tracks and coaching venue here in Cooyar and I’m now thrilled to have this opportunity to work with Australia’s young talent and to share my tracks and experience with GP Juniors Australia” McCoy said.

For more information visit gpjuniorsaustralia.com.au and gmccooyar.com.

email: admin@gpjuniorsaustralia.com.au or gpjuniorsaustralia@gmail.com or  phone 0488 257 188.

 

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SENSATIONAL RACING IN THE GP JUNIORS CUP AT WINTON

Ben Baker (27) leads Tom Edwards (71), Joel Kelso (obscured) John Lytras (308), Jack Cousens (34), Harry Khouri (04) Max Stauffer (obscured), Luke Power (97) and Reece Oughted (33). The field away. The top four didn’t get much further apart, in every race. Pic: Half Light Photography

The second round of the GP Juniors Cup was held at Winton Raceway last weekend (April 28-30) alongside the Australian Superbike Championship. The youngsters, who are aged from 12 to 15, put on an exceptionally dynamic and exciting exhibition of road racing, with the three races decided by closest margins of all 16 races, including the premier YMI Australian Superbike Championship category.

It is the inaugural year of the GP Juniors Cup and all competitors ride the dynamic Yamaha YZF R15  using Bridgestone as the control tyre to provide a very level playing field for the talent to shine through.

If MotoGP is the university of road racing, GP Juniors Australia is the pre-school where they commence the education to move through to the primary school class of the Supersport 300 and 600cc machines. The next step as they chase their dreams of success, is Superbikes senior school, before hopefully graduating to the world stage.

The boys love the new shirts and of course GP Juniors Australia! Front row (L-R) Luje Power, Reece Oughtred, Garry Khouri Back row: Max Stauffer, John Lytras, Jack Cousens, Ben Baker Pic: GP Juniors Australia.

Over the course of the weekend, the up and comers had three practice sessions on the Friday, two qualifying periods and one race on Saturday with two races on Sunday, and thankfully the weather was kind with good conditions all weekend.

The scene for action was set in qualifying as 12-year-old, Ben Baker, (Baker Racing) from the NSW Central Coast, claimed pole position from 13-year-old, Joel Kelso (JDS Racing/Deborah Motorsports. NT) by just 0.007 of a second with Tom Edwards (Enemies Everywhere/Newcaslte Supermoto/AlpineStars, NSW), the most experienced rider in the field at 15, with two years international racing in Asia under his belt, third.

They’re off! Pic: half Light Photography

Edwards’ experience is a fantastic benchmark for the kids to compare their progress and competitiveness as Tommy also competes in the cut-throat Hi-Tec Batteries Supersport 300 and YMF Yamaha R3 Cup classes. He is a front runner in both so it is good inspiration for his class-mates knowing they can compete with him in the one-make, one-tyre GP Juniors Cup

As the field charged off the line in the first race, the front row trio were joined by another 12-year-old, John Lytras (Caboolture Yamaha, Qld). The quartet soon became embroiled in a titanic duel, the lead changing at every one of the track’s corners, as riders went from first to fourth, and back again, from one corner to another.

A typical scene in any corner over the weekend. Lytras on th inside line from Kelso. Pic: half Light Photography

After the five laps was done, the four crossed the line with Edwards beating Kelso and

Lytras by 0.096 sec!  Baker lost the slipstreaming duel to the finish line by just 0.320 sec.

The other two races was more of the same, just more intense! In the next leg, Melbourne teenager, Jack Cousens JC’s Motorcycle Shop/TM Performance) joined in for a five-bike freight train with some monumentally close racing before the race was red-flagged as the final lap started. It was set for another cracking finish but exiting Spokes Turn Two, Jack and Joel Kelso had a coming together through the second corner, causing Cousins to crash. The race was taken back a lap with Lytras the winner from Kelso and Edwards, the trio 0.219 sec apart with Baker just 0.417 sec away, in fourth.

A teenage freight train Pic Russell Colvin
Jack Cousins getting into it Pic Half Light Photogrpahy

The final leg was another exceptional race, an almost carbon copy of the opening race the day before, with another four-way dog fight. The race was set for an another enthralling battle to the wire but Lytras crashed out, half way through the final lap exiting YMF Turn seven and split the leading quartet with Kelso dropping off the Edwards and Baker. The pair had a great charge tot he line to produce the closest finish of the weekend as Edwards beating his younger rival by an excruciating 0.012 sec!  Kelso finished third, five seconds adrift.

Pic: GP Juniors Australia.

Edwards won the weekend to increase his lead in the seven round series as Kelso and Lytras finished on even points, with Kelso getting the nod for third with his better result in the final leg with Baker fourth.

The total winning margin of the three races between first and second was a massive 0.225sec!  0.079, 0.131, 0.015, respectively. Additionally in two of the races, the total margin covering the top four was 0.956 sec;  0.320 and 0.636, respectively.

The front of the field may have been the centre of attention but the rest of the youngsters had some great duels among themselves. Max Stauffer, (Dyno 27/YRD) the son of  multiple Australian Superbike and Supersport Champion, Jamie Stauffer, was having his second attempt at road racing after his baptism in the atrocious conditions of Wakefield Park. He was involved in some excellent close quarter action with Harry Khouri (Excite Motorsport) their races also decided by tenths of a second.

Guess who? Pic Gp Juniors Australia.
Pic Half Light Photography

 

The class debutant for the round was Reece Oughtred, (Carl Cox Motorsport/Dynoverks, Vic) the son of another renown racer, Dean Oughtred and he proved to be another fast learner on the bitumen after contesting dirt track for a few years.

Twelve-year-old Luke Power (APT Wealth JDS Moto) was another dramatic improver as he rebuilds his confidence after a couple of recent crashes and continued to lower his lap times and was rewarded with a fifth place in the final race.

The growth in confidence and learning the idiosyncrasies of the craft of racing on bitumen was graphically demonstrated with the lesser experienced riders in the class with the lowering of the lap times by very substantial amounts during the weekend. (See accompanying table). The growth in confidence and learning the idiosyncrasies of the craft of racing on bitumen was graphically demonstrated with the lesser experienced riders in the class with the lowering of the lap times by very substantial amounts during the weekend. (See accompanying table). E veryone of them should feel very proud and satisfied with their individual improvement and proved that the lesser experienced road racers are extremely fast learners considering how many had not seen the track before, either.

Lap Times

# Rider Slowest lap Fastest Lap Improvement

4

Harry Khouri 2:08.674 1:49.979

18.805

27

Max Stauffer 1:57.041 1:49.905

7.136

33

Reece Oughtred 2:06.688 1:56.190

10.495

34

Jack Cousens 1:56.166 1:48.108

8.058

66

Joel Kelso 1:52.650 1:47.308

5.342

71

Tom Edwards 1:50.815 1:47.752

3.063

72

Ben Baker 1:49.961 1.47:713

2.248

97

Luke Power 2:06.062 1:54.070

11.032

308

John Lytras 1:53.343 1:47.309

6.034

This improvement may have something to do with what happened before official proceeding of riders briefing  took place on Saturday morning.

All riders attended a track walk with Jamie Stauffer who explained the most ideal way around the three kilometre layout. While the speed of the Yamaha R15 may be somewhat different to the pace that he is used to lapping the Winton track, his words of wisdom were invaluable.

Pic: GP Juniors Australia
Pic: GP Juniors Australia
39 views

Additionally, the coveted off-track prize, the AMCN MAC Award, for the attributes of Marketability, Attitude and Character was awarded to Joel Kelso. Three independent, and unknown, judges take note of the youngsters over the course of the weekend taking note of their marketability, attitude and character. He joins Jack Cousens who won the first round MAC Points award.

These attributes are very important to the philosophy of GP Juniors Australia because there is more to racing than just how a rider performs on track. It is also vitally important that all riders conduct themselves in a mature and intelligent manner off the track, as well as maintaining their personality and integrity.

Points are awarded at each round on a 5-4-3-2-1 basis for each rider, the final tally over the year to find the season’s winner. Australian Motor Cycle News is the sponsor of the award with the point-scores kept secret.

Joel was a very proud winer of the Mac Points for Round Two.

The second round of the GP Juniors cup was immensely successful with exceptional racing put on by a number of very talented youngsters. The crowd was enthralled at their antics so every one involved should feel very proud of the occasion.

The next round is at Morgan Park (Qld) on June 15-17 and it promises to be spectacular.

2017 GP JUNIORS CUP ROUND TWO, WINTON RACEWAY

PROVISIONAL ROUND POINTS

1 Tommy EDWARDS (NSW) 25 18 25 68

2 Joel KELSO (NT) 20 20 18 58

3 John LYTRAS (QLD) 18 25 15 58

4 Ben BAKER (NSW) 17 17 20 54

5 Harry KHOURI (NSW) 14 15 17 46

6 Luke POWER (VIC) 12 14 16 42

7 Reece OUGHTRED (VIC) 13 13 14 40

8 Max STAUFFER (NSW) 15 16   0 31

9 Jack COUSENS (VIC) 16   0 13 29

PROVSIONAL SERIES POINTS

1 Tommy EDWARDS (NSW) 70 25 18 25 138

2 Joel KELSO (NT) 63 20 20 18 121

3 John LYTRAS (QLD) 56 18 25 15 114

4 Ben BAKER (NSW) 48 17 17 20 102

5 Luke POWER (VIC) 42 12 14 16   84

6 Max STAUFFER (NSW) 50 15 16   0   81

7 Harry KHOURI (NSW) 31 14 15  17   77

8 Jack COUSENS (VIC) 41 16   0  13   70

9 Reece OUGHTRED (VIC)   0 13  13 14   40

The GP Juniors Cup Is Warming Up For Round Two This Weekend

The Top Three from Round One.
(L-R) Joel Kelso, Tom Edwards, John Lytras Pic Keith Muir

The second round of the inaugural 2017 GP Juniors Cup that will take place alongside the Yamaha Motor Finance Australian Superbike Championship presented by Motul Pirelli (ASBK) at Winton Raceway, Benalla, Victoria on April 28-30 is shaping up as another exciting outing for the 12-16 year old youngsters.

The battles for the lead had a fair share of intensity – Pic Col Roper

The opening round of this historic new racing series was conducted in atrociously wet conditions at Wakefield Park Raceway last month, so hopefully the weather at the northern Victorian circuit shines on these young up-and-coming racers who are chasing their dream to follow in the footsteps of many great riders before them.

Current series leader, Tom “Tom-E-Gun” Edwards from Swansea, south of Newcastle (NSW) will be keen to stretch his lead in the GP Juniors Cup. Edwards has a lot more experience than the rest of the field as in 2016 he competed in the ultra-competitive Asia Talent Cup, contested on standard Honda 250cc Moto 3 machines, a stepping stone into the European Championship and Grand Prix World Championships.

“I am really looking forward to Winton and seeing if we can improve on what we did there,” series leader, Tom Edwards said. “The GP Juniors Cup is a great series to be a part of and there are a lot of good riders in there so I will have to be on my game to win all three races. Hopefully, it will be dry for the entire weekend, but in saying that, riding on the control tyre I have learnt a lot in the conditions in getting the feedback from the tyres.”

 

The talent and disposition of all the youngsters at the opening round was exceptional given the conditions over the three days of practice and competition, as only three of them crashed while more experienced riders in the other classes had many more crashes.

Edwards won two of the three races, from pocket-sized 13-year-old Joel Kelso. Kelso took out second leg in a titanic battle with the more experienced Edwards as Sunshine Coast local, John Lytras coming third in the three races.

There will be some great duels playing out throughout the field as the Junior riders gain more experience and understanding the complexities of road racing. One stand out in the GP Junior field who has a wealth of experience in his corner, is Max Stauffer. The son of multiple Australian Superbike Champion, Jamie Stauffer. For Max this will be his second ever road race after learning his craft in dirt-track racing, promptly winning an Australian Championship title.

Max Stauffer leads Ben Baker – pic Col Roper

Over the course of the weekend there will be two free practice sessions on Friday, while on Saturday there will be tow qualifying sessions and one race on Saturday with two races Sunday afternoon.

The GP Junior program will run in conjunction with certain rounds as the prestigious ABSK, providing an excellent platform for the future champions to showcase their talent in front of a large crowd as well as live coverage on national television on the SBS network and Live Streaming of the racing on the Sunday of the event on asbk.com.au

For more information on the GP Juniors Cup and GP Juniors Australia, check out gpjuniorsaustralia.com.au or call the series promotor, Mark Bracks on 0488257188

1 Tommy EDWARDS (NSW) 70

2 Joel KELSO (NT) 63

3 John LYTRAS (QLD) 56

4 Max STAUFFER (NSW) 50

5 Ben BAKER (NSW) 48

6 Luke POWER (VIC) 42

7 Jack COUSENS (VIC) 41

8 Harry KHOURI (NSW) 31 

  

Only three days left to enter for Round 2 of GP Juniors Cup

If you haven’t put your entry in as yet for round 2 of the GP Juniors Cup at Winton Raceway (Vic) on April 28-30, time is running out and entries are now subject to a late fee of $100.

There are only three days left with entries closing at 2359hrs on 21 April.

To enter follow this link:

https://raceentry.com.au/events/australian-superbike-championship-round-3-winton-raceway-gp-juniors-australia-april-28-30/

Time Running Out for Entries for Rd 2 GP Juniors Cup

A quick reminder.

If you haven’t already done so,  get your entries in for Round 2 of the GP Juniors Cup at Winton Raceway, Benalla (Vic) 28-30 April . If you miss out on the deadline for entries there will be a late entry fee applied and you will not appear in the program.
A basic entry for the event is only $120. That’s great value for the weekend.
Friday practice is $135.
Lease bikes are available.
You can place your entry by following this link:

https://raceentry.com.au/…/australian-superbike-championshi…

Entries will close at 6:00 PM, Friday 14 April; however please note that due to the public holiday entries received after Wednesday, 12 April will not be listed in the program.

Last chance entries will incur a $100 late fee and will close at 12:00 PM, Friday, 21 April 2017

. – Entries close 5pm 14 April, last chance 21 April at 12:00 PM.

 

FANTASTIC SEASON FINALE FOR GP JUNIORS AUSTRALIA

FANTASTIC SEASON FINALE FOR GP JUNIORS AUSTRALIA
 
On the eve of the historic opening round of the GP Juniors Cup at Wakefield Park (March 17-19), the management of GP Juniors Australia is pleased to confirm more exciting news for the 2017 season of the GP Juniors Cup and the classes of GP Juniors Australia, with the announcement that the championships will culminate with a two-day grand finale at Mallala Motorsports Park (SA) on November 24-26.
 
The final round of the GP Juniors Australia classes and the GP Juniors Cup for the Yamaha R15s will be on the Saturday, while Sunday will feature a stand-alone, one-hour endurance race for the kids. The race will be the curtain raiser to the annual Adelaide three-hour endurance race, with a tantalising twist!
 
The twist will add a heap of fun to the day and create a real family atmosphere, with the youngsters teamed with either, an adult family member, or a guest rider!
 
The one-hour endurance event will be open to the Yamaha R15s and the GP Juniors Australia 150cc machines. This special event, that will have no bearing on the overall 2017 titles, will be split into four separate races of 15 minutes each. The adults will start the race before pitting to hand over to the younger brigade. They will swap twice more, with combined times of the four legs deciding the overall winner. 
 
Hosted by the Phoenix Motorcycle Club of SA, the Club is ensuring plenty of track time for the youngsters over the weekend and the event promises to be one of the highlight meetings of the year.
 
“This is an excellent development for the juniors and I am very grateful to the Phoenix Club for giving GP Juniors Australia the opportunity of being a part of the Adelaide Three Hour program, and catering for all the classes of GP Juniors Australia over the weekend,” says GP Juniors Australia promoter, Mark Bracks. 
 
“Endurance racing has a proud history in Australia and has unearthed plenty of talent over the years. The aim of GP Juniors Australia’s is to uncover new talent and have fun so it’s a good fit. There’s not too many sports in the world where families can work as a team and battle for victory, so to do it in such an exciting sport as road racing adds another element to the event. There is sure to be plenty of frivolity and banter, especially when the kids may well be faster than their parent.”
 
Phoenix Motorcycle Club President, Rick Dowsett added,“The Phoenix club is really excited about the GP Juniors coming to SA and greatly appreciate the opportunity to work with Mark and to hopefully make this the best ever junior finale with great value for the teams and to be part of a long term relationship,” says  Rick.
 
The final round of GP Juniors Cup and the GP Juniors Australia race series, as well as the inaugural GP Juniors Australia One-Hour will be held at Mallala Motorsport Park, South Australia, November 24-26 2017.
 
 

Special Announcement – GP Juniors Australia

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BRIDGESTONE ADDS GRIP TO GP JUNIORS CUP

GP Juniors Australia is extremely pleased to announce the control tyre for the 2017 GP Juniors Cup will be supplied by Bridgestone.

This is terrific news for GP Juniors Australia. The announcement of Bridgestone as the official tyre supplier for the GP Juniors Cup, which will feature the Yamaha R15, is further confirmation Yamaha logoof the intension to have the class as neutral as possible. This ensures every competitor will be on a motorcycle of equal parity and performance.

The GP Juniors Cup is for young riders of 12 – under 16 years of age. It will feature three rounds with the ASBK, the first round at Wakefield Park (NSW) on 17-19 March 2017.

The decision on the tyre was no easy task with an exhaustive day’s tyre testing at Winton Raceway (Vic) recently, with three junior riders taking part to record their feedback on a variety of performance parameters from six different tyre brands to ascertain the best option for the task.
The Bridgestone tyres will be distributed through GP Juniors Australia with a full tyre service at each event, with two choices for the front and one for the rear. Competitors are encouraged to contact GP Juniors Australia to order tyres as quickly as possible.

GP Juniors principal, Mark Bracks says, “This is another great step forward in achieving the level playing field that we have desired for the GP Juniors Cup and I am very happy to see Bridgestone come on board for the year.

“I would really like to thank everyone who submitted a tyre for appraisal, their efforts reflect the desire of many in the sport to support junior road racing and build for the future.

“There is also a great synergy with Bridgestone as the company produced a similar tyre which Josh Brookes and Wayne Maxwell competed on when they commenced their road racing careers as juniors all those years ago.

“We are very excited about the season and looking forward to some great racing as we discover new talent this year.”

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2017 GP JUNIORS CUP CALENDAR

Round 1
17-19 March 2017 Wakefield Park, Goulburn, NSW Raceway
GP Juniors Cup with Australian Superbike Championships.

Round 2
28-30 April 2017, Winton Motor Raceway, Benalla, Vic.
GP Juniors Cup with Australian Superbike Championships.

Round 3
17-18 June 2017, Morgan Park, Warwick, Qld with with Southern Downs Championship
Round 3 of GP Juniors Cup and a round of GP Juniors Australia Series with 70cc and 85 cc two-strokes and up to 160cc four-stroke Motorcycle Sportsmen

Round 4
5-6 August 2017, Wakefield Park, Goulburn, NSW with St George MCC Club round
Round 4 of GP Juniors Cup and Round of GP Juniors Australia Series with 70cc and 85 cc two-strokes and up to 160cc four-strokes.

Round 5
25-27 August 2017 Morgan Park, Warwick, Qld
Round 5 of GP Juniors Cup with Australian Superbike Championships.

Round 6
11-12 November, Broadford State Motorcycle Complex, Broadford, Vic Victorian RoadRacing Championships
Round 6 of GP Juniors Cup and round of GP Juniors Australia Series for 70cc and 85 cc two-strokes and up to 160cc four-strokes. Preston MotorCycle Club

Round 7

24-26 November 2017 Mallala Motorsport Park, SA

Sat 25 – Three stand alone races for seventh and final round of GP Juniors Cup and three races for the final round of the 70cc, 85cc and 160cc classes.
Phoenix MotorCycle Club

Sun 26 – To Be Announced

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