Australian Superbike Champion Josh Waters will have to wait until later in the year to make his American debut in the AMA Superbike Championship, the 23-year-old Victorian declared unfit to compete after circulating in Friday’s practice session at Laguna Seca.
Waters was set to replace injured regular Rockstar Makita Suzuki rider Blake Young at the Mid-Ohio and Laguna Seca rounds, however a testing crash at Willow Springs raceway saw Waters ruled out with a concussion and collapsed lung.
It’s expected that Waters will return to the U.S to make him AMA debut at Barber Motorsports Park in September.
In National Guard SuperBike practice, Tommy Hayden and his Rockstar Makita Suzuki waited until almost the end of the 50-minute practice session to knock Josh Hayes off the top spot.
Hayes had set the pace for the majority of the first practice session. Hayden, racing this weekend along with his two brothers at the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix Weekend, popped in a quick lap of 1:24.988.
Hayes was next up with a 1:25.263, while impressing once again was M4 Monster Energy Suzuki rider Jake Holden posted the third fastest time of 1:25.388.
“The track felt pretty normal to me,” Hayden commented on his day. “It was what I remember from last year. I was happy with the track. We tried a couple different bikes with different settings, something similar to what we ran last year and something like we have been running lately.
“I evaluated the two Suzukis and tried to get a direction for tomorrow. The lap time was pretty good, there are a couple of areas out there that hopefully we can improve on and make things a little easier and we can get a little faster. But overall it’s a good start to the weekend.”
The National Guard SuperBikes have two qualifying sessions tomorrow in preparation for Sunday’s 23-lap race, which will go green at 3:45 p.m. local time.
In AMA Pro Daytona SportBike, points leader Josh Herrin continued his fast form of late and posted the fastest time on his Team Graves Yamaha.
Herrin, coming off a win last weekend at Mid-Ohio, set the bar high with a stellar time of 1:28.483. No one else was in the 1:28 minute range.
“It was awesome,” Herrin said. “We went out and tried to shake down the bike we crashed at Mid-Ohio but I didn’t really like it so we went out on the back-up bike and did three laps and then right away we were fastest.
“Then we went a little quicker but then the red flag came out and we were expecting to end the session right there. We put a new set of Dunlops on and went out and I did the best time I could.
“It just came really, really easily on the first flyer. I was really impressed with the track and how clean it was, it was an awesome session and I can’t wait to get back out there tomorrow.”
The 23-lap Daytona SportBike final will kick off at 10:25am local time on Sunday.