SHUBENACADIE, N.S. – Two local riders are competing in the 2014 Atlantic Roadracing League (ARL) season.
The first round took place at Atlantic Motorsport Park recently, and Team Redline Motorsports riders Mark Morrison and Rob MacIsaac, both of Summerside, put in some very strong rides as speeds reached 200-plus kilometres an hour.
After suffering a season-ending injury last year, Morrison was looking to get back on track. He put in some solid practice sessions on his Honda CBR600RR, getting his motorcycle dialed-in and getting himself re-acquainted with his machine.
Morrison qualified in seventh place on the grid, didn’t get the start he was looking for and was passed by a few riders. After making a few passes, Morrison battled back to sixth position in the amateur superbike class (600cc-plus).
Morrison later said it was a difficult race because of him having issues with the arm pump.
Morrison again started off in seventh place on the line of the amateur sport bike race (600cc). Morrison didn’t get the start he was looking for, but battled for a few laps for fifth and sixth place.
Again, with the arm pump becoming an issue, Morrison was forced to slow his pace and was nipped at the checkered flag, dropping to eighth place by just 0.047 of a second.
Although a little disappointed with the continuing arm pump issues, Morrison felt the opening races went well, and he felt good being back on the bike.
“Conditioning will get better, and the lap times will drop,” said Morrison. “Just got to keep working at it.”
MacIsaac had a very strong performance during ARL’s Round 1. MacIsaac grabbed his first-ever pole position, and nailed down a personal-best finish of second place in the amateur superbike class, riding his Suzuki GSXR750.
Later in the afternoon, after qualifying fourth in the “Formula 46” class, MacIsaac got off the line in fourth place, and held that for a few laps. After battling for the rest of the race with a Nova Scotia rider, on his GSXR1000, MacIsaac ended up losing the fourth-place position at the line by .670 of a second.
In the amateur superbike race, MacIsaac started with a second-place grid position. He was able to hold that spot for most of the race, and ended up slipping one position to finish third at the checkered flag. That gave MacIsaac a second-place overall trophy and a best-ever finishing position.
“I didn’t realize that I had a rider who was that close to me,” said MacIsaac after the race. “Once he went by, I pressed to stick on his rear tire. I ended up missing a gear in Turn 2, and that was it.”
Overall, officials with Team Redline Motorsports termed it a very successful start to the new season that included strong rides and no crashes.
The next scheduled ARL event is at Atlantic Motorsport Park on June 14 and 15. Check out Atlantic Roadracing League on Facebook for more information.