News 10 Oct 2017

Disappointing twist for Herfoss in final stage of ASBK defence

Multiple national champion reveals a two-year deal to remain with Honda.

Image: Alex Gobert (Foremost Media).

A mechanical problem in race one at Phillip Island denied defending YMF Australian Superbike champion Troy Herfoss the opportunity to directly challenge for the title on Sunday, causing a DNF that effectively put him out of title contention.

Herfoss entered the final round with a six-point advantage in the points, however an oil leak on his sole CBR1000RR SP2 made it misfire and ultimately forced him out of the opening encounter. From there he was 19 points in arrears with one race remaining.

The end result was third in the championship for the 2017 season behind former teammates Josh Waters and Wayne Maxwell after he rebounded to cross the line second in race two, however he stopped short of placing the blame on anybody post-race.

“We’re disappointed and it’s a bit emotional in the team, because it’s our first-ever bike issue,” Herfoss told CycleOnline.com.au. “It’s easy to say ‘it shouldn’t happen and blah, blah, blah’, but I crashed at Morgan Park and I’ve crashed many times before that. Josh and Wayne have both had their own issues throughout the year, but I guess when it’s the final round it feels worse.

“At the end of the day, Josh did a great job and he won the championship. For me, the pace I had in the second race, I know I had in the first race – I only got one lap in before the bike was misfiring and I had to pull in after that.

“Anyway, it’s ‘shoulda, woulda, coulda’ and it’s a minor mistake, so that’s all I can say, really. I just want to say a huge thank you to the team, because I enjoy racing with them and they’re a good bunch of guys. They don’t deserve something like that, so I feel for them.”

As per ever-mounting speculation up pit-lane, the Gold Coast-based Superbike mainstay revealed he has signed a two-year deal direct with Honda that will see him stay on-board a factory Fireblade through 2019. That news comes following last month’s revelation that Paul Free’s Team Honda Racing organisation will fold at the close of this year.

“I’ve done a two-year deal with Honda, so where I’m going to be at will all come out next week,” he added. “It’s been an amazing journey with Paul over the last four years, cos he’s been such a good person who’s really helped me on and off the track.

“He gave me a second chance in road racing and a bike that could win. It would have been nice to win him another championship, but I’m proud of what we’ve achieve together and I’ve enjoyed it – I hope it’s not the last time we see him at ASBK.”

With the exit of Free’s Motologic-run team due following this month’s Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix at Phillip Island, it’s anticipated much of Herfoss’ current structure including team manager Shaun Clarke will carryover into a new single-rider official Honda team to be announced.

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