BRASELTON, Ga. — Saturday afternoon, the Robem Engineering team was celebrating the triumphant debut of the Aprilia RS 660 in MotoAmerica Twins Cup competition. About 24 hours later, the team’s three riders were unable to finish Sunday’s Twins Cup contest, as Kaleb De Keyrel, Hayden Schultz and Toby Khamsouk all crashed out of the race at the start of Lap 8.
Despite not claiming any championship points Sunday, all three Robem Engineering Aprilias were running in the top seven or better for the first seven laps of the race, with De Keyrel and Schultz locked in a battle for the race lead. The team leaves the first of nine MotoAmerica rounds in 2021 with a win and a podium finish in the books, as well as two riders in the top nine in the Twins Cup points standings.
At the start of Sunday’s Twins Cup race, it was De Keyrel who grabbed the holeshot and led the field into Road Atlanta’s uphill Turn 1. From there, it was a four-way battle for the lead, with De Keyrel and Schultz taking their turns at the front of the quartet. De Keyrel was consistently fast, posting a 1:35.180 on Lap 4 – the fastest lap of the race at that point in time – then besting that time on Lap 6 with a 1:35.703. As De Keyrel was vying for the lead at the start of Lap 8, fluid began leaking from his bike, causing De Keyrel, Schultz, Khamsouk and another rider to crash as they entered Turn 1. The race was stopped and, due to damage all three bikes suffered in their respective crashes, none of the Robem riders were able to take part in the restarted race.
The Robem Engineering team will be back in action at Round 2 of the 2021 MotoAmerica season, which takes place May 21-23 at VIRginia International Raceway in Alton, Va. The tight, twisty nature of VIR’s 2.25-mile North Course should suit the good handling characteristics of the Aprilia RS 660, and all three riders will aim to further their goal of winning Aprilia’s first MotoAmerica title.
Robem Engineering’s technical partners for 2021 include The Center for Plastic Surgery, Velocity Calibrations, Bitubo Suspension, Dunlop, Woodcraft Technologies, Dymag, Vesrah, DNA Filters, Magura USA, Sara Chappell Photos, NGK/NTK, Blud Lubricants, Millennium Technologies and SC-Project.