MILLVILLE, N.J. — The Motul Travis Wyman Racing BMW team realized in the first on-track session of this past weekend’s MotoAmerica Superbikes at New Jersey that it had a technical problem with its motorcycle that couldn’t be fixed at the track, and team owner Travis Wyman still found a way to score top-five finishes in Stock 1000 and Superbike Cup on Saturday at New Jersey Motorsports Park.
Though the issue grew worse as Wyman raced in weekend’s lone Stock 1000 race and three Superbike contests at the Sept. 10-12 event, the Las Vegas resident wrung every ounce of performance he could out of his BMW S 1000 RR – and managed to keep himself in contention for second place in the Stock 1000 Class standings and still in the hunt for the Superbike Cup title.
It was a positive start to the event for Wyman, who was the fourth-fastest rider in Friday’s Stock 1000 practice session. Wyman’s pace improved later that day in Qualifying 1, but not to the same degree as some other riders in the class. He laid down a lap time 0.2 seconds faster than his best practice time but finished the session sixth fastest. Wyman ended up qualifying eighth when Stock 1000 Qualifying 2 concluded Saturday morning.
Saturday also featured the event’s Stock 1000 race and one Superbike race. In the Stock 1000 contest, Wyman got a good start and was running in sixth place by the time the field entered Turn 1. After falling to seventh by the end of Lap 1, Wyman made up two positions before the end of the race and scored his eighth Stock 1000 top-five finish of the season. Later Saturday, Wyman started the day’s Superbike race in 17th place. Thanks to some attrition farther up the running order and a late race move to get by another Superbike Cup rider, Wyman finished the race in 15th place overall and fifth among the Cup riders.
The second Superbike race took place Sunday morning, and Wyman got the most he could out of his ailing motorcycle and finished four positions higher than he started. From 16th on the grid, Wyman dropped as low as 17th in the running order on Laps 2-4 but — with several riders dropping out of the race – Wyman managed to secure a 12th-place finish. In the third and final Superbike race of the weekend, Wyman got off the line well, but the problem of getting good drive off of corners had grown much worse. Starting from 13th on the grid, Wyman struggled to maintain pace and gradually tumbled down the running order. He finished Lap 1 in 14th place, Lap 2 in 15th and Lap 3 in 17th. Wyman would lose another position on Lap 6 but finished the race in 18th.
After racing had concluded, the Motul Travis Wyman Racing BMW team swapped a fresh engine into its BMW S 1000 RR. It will have a couple days at its East Coast shop near Rochester, N.Y. to get the engine broken in and ready to go for the 2021 MotoAmerica season finale, which takes place Sept. 17-19 at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala.
Travis Wyman / No. 10
“This was a frustrating weekend to say the least, but I’m happy we got the best results we could have asked for given the circumstances. I have to thank my team for doing everything within their power to keep our BMW S 1000 RR running as strong as it could for as long as it did. I also have to thank Motul for coming onboard as title sponsor for these final two rounds, and the rest of the team and I are determined to give them a good showing at Barber next weekend. We have a fresh engine that will be ready to go there, and I did really well in qualifying last year at Barber on this same BMW S 1000 RR.”
Header photo credit: Brian J. Nelson